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Thread: Kid again

  1. #1
    Member Rick P's Avatar
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    Default Kid again

    I like many others have been feverishly preparing and training for this years sheep opener. I have quit smoking and have been doing at least 3 alpine hikes a week for the last 4-5 months. For the first time since august 17 2003 when I fractured L4 at the base of my spine I feel physically ready to take on the challenge of sheep and goat hunting, here's the thing........... I feel great! Like a kid again! No, I'm no where near as fit as I was when I was a kayaking guide/competitive surf kayaker but who really can say they are still at peak condition at 41, if you can you've led a much more careful and I suspect boring life than I.

    I've also rediscovered an old love with a new twist namely archery small game hunting. As a kid I spent hours wondering the cedar swamps and hills of Michigan's UP with a light, hand me down, target recurve bow, hoping to sneak up on a squirrel or a rabbit. Here's the twist marmots, you read right I said Marmots! I had been noticing allot of them on 2 of my favorite hikes and I got too thinking about dragging along the bow, Dad always said "the best practice for Large game bow hunting is Small game hunting". I did some checking and they can be harvested under a trapping licence and I couldn't find anything banning the use of a bow too harvest them. (If I'm wrong please tell me! I really don't want to be in any kind of red zone here!)These guys are tough to sneak up on, especially in open country/above tree line. I recently hunted them well above tree line in a little hanging valley at about 4500 feet. The "hike" in was hairy but spectacular and the little valley was beautiful. I decided too post on a small hill near the center of the valley and almost immediately jumped a large marmot who went scampering off across a boulder field that would have given a Goat a stroke! He crested his ridge and proceeded to watch carefully for a full 10 minutes to be sure he wasn't followed, he'd then start to cautiously feed again. This pattern continued for several rounds, finally I was able to get above him by sneaking around the back side of the ridge as if I were stalking a sheep! In fact he busted me once when I sky lined myself and went heading for higher ground, luckily marmots only run a couple of dozen yards before they stop and check things out behind them. Finally after half an hour of slow crawling along the back side of the ridge I found myself about 20 yards from him shooting down hill, his head and shoulders where visible above a large rock when he sat up between feeding. I waited and when he looked up to check his surroundings I drew and let fly...missing his head by about 1/2 an inch.

    I had ample time for reflection while looking for my arrow among the broken slabs of rock. At one point I questioned my sanity, who in there right mind risks life and limb for a shot at a marmot? Same could be asked of Goat or Sheep. Why do some of us seem to enjoy a "fine and pleasant misery", and the challenge of hunting in a alpine environment? What is it within man that makes us strive to know what's up on that next ridge? Oh who gives a rip!!!! My face hurt from grinning all day, I got to be a little kid, I played in the dirt and my inner child is still doing the dance of joy!
    BHA Member
    Bowyer to the forces of light in the land of the midnight sun.
    The 3 fold way: Every step we take as we walk through life effects, our family, our comunity and ourselves. One should walk thoughtfuly.

  2. #2

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    Haha good post man. I am only 19 but I hunt with a longbow and wooden arrows. I do more small game hunting than anything else because the cost of fuel. Heck sometimes my big game hunting turns into a small game adventure hehe. You have to love those traditional bows though you can shoot a bunch and 5 minutes later see a trophy animal lumbering towards you

  3. #3
    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    If you get one Rick, are you thinking of a head mount or a full body mount?
    Last edited by kingfisherktn; 08-22-2008 at 07:48. Reason: spelling

  4. #4
    Member Rick P's Avatar
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    Actually thinking more along the lines of a hat.
    BHA Member
    Bowyer to the forces of light in the land of the midnight sun.
    The 3 fold way: Every step we take as we walk through life effects, our family, our comunity and ourselves. One should walk thoughtfuly.

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