Last year after saving some money I decided to finally go on my dream Sheep hunt. Being a NR I posted here and received lots of helpful recommendations, suggestions and assistance for my hunt. I decided on a reputable guide which many of you recommended (I won't say who it was or what unit I hunted as I don't want to point fingers and say negative things so this post gets deleted). My main concerns for a guide came down to (1) someone intimately knowledgeable about the immediate area we would be hunting, and (2) extensive experience and knowledge hunting and harvesting the animals we were hunting. After meeting with my guide in AK last spring (when I came up for a successful DIY black bear hunt), and many phone conversations we decided on a 1x1 hunt, 14 days and tags for sheep, grizz and moose. I paid extra for the 4 extra hunting days, and the grizz was included since I needed a guide for the sheep I might as well get a grizz. The moose was basically a given in the area we were hunting.
After being dropped off for my once-in-a-lifetime hunt, I learned my assistant guide was not even close to what we discussed. He was not even on my guide's website. My assistant guide had just received his license this last summer, had never guided or been on a guided hunt before, was a life-long hunter but had never harvest or even hunted the three species we were going for - sheep, brown bear or moose. He was a great outdoors man, a very good man, and loved to hunt goats, blacks by boat and fish. We hunted hard the entire time but never saw a single ram, saw just one grizz and got within 250 yards of it, and I did harvest a large moose. Many mistakes were made by the assistant guide, and I feel that this hunt was basically a drop off hunt for two strangers as neither of us had ever hunted that area - much less even that unit, and neither of us had ever hunted a sheep or brown - but at least I had hunted Yukon moose before. When I mentioned my disappointment to my guide regarding my assistant guide's lack of experience regarding the area and species, I was told simply told "hunting animals is hunting animals" and my assistant guide had lots of experience with hunting in AK and didn't need local knowledge or specific animal knowledge.
This whole thing just rubs me as wrong. I don't feel I received what we had agreed on and I could have done another DIY moose hunt with a buddy for a fraction of the cost. I'd love to hear your input. Am I off base on my expectations of my guide? Should a sheep hunt assistant guide have experience hunting sheep? Any suggestions what, if anything, I should do? Is this unheard of, not uncommon, or normal? Your thoughts? Are my expectations of a professional guide unreasonable?