I thought I would share some photos and my TMA hunt story with you.
My brother and I flew in to the base of Johnson Glacier on the 7th, landing around 3:30 and starting heading up a valley that ran on the SE side of the glacier around 4pm. We had to follow a glacier fed stream and bust brush a few times when the stream cut into the bank. Hit a hornets nest about an hour into the hike and got stung three times. Set up a temporary camp around 7pm. Next morning moved up the valley further and set up base camp. Hiked up a ridge behind us the next two days with some major side-hilling to see into a bowl. Saw 3 decent rams across the bowl from us, one maybe legal, one probably just sublegal, and the other ram was too far to tell.
1st day of the hunt we headed further up the valley and across the stream. Actually hunted all three days on the other side of the stream. Stalked a ram the first day that wasn't up too high, probably only 2500 vertical feet to climb (5500 total elevation). Turned out to be shy of full curl. Went further up the valley staying down low and glassing up the ridge lines.
2nd day climbed up a 7000 ft peak (4000 vertical; mostly started at 3000 ft mark). Saw one legal ram along with a 1/2 curl and a dozen ewe/lambs across a gorge from where we were hiking; decided to save him for the next day and work that ridgeline tomorrow. Continued up the ridge to the top and looked into a large bowl where there was one large ram, 5 smaller rams and a dozen ewe/lamb. Watched that ram for 5 hours in a snow squall before deciding to put on the whites and try to get closer. About that time he decides to move away from us and feed back up into the bowl and way out of range.
Third day we run up a ridge across from our camp. Saw one ram that may have been legal but didn't get a good enough look. A 1/2 curl was hanging out with him and that one sat out on a ledge and kept us stuck in a shallow gut that we had to crawl up several thousand feet. When the gut ran out we were far enough away from the 1/2 curl that he didn't care anymore. A short way up from there we were spied by another 1/2 curl about 400 yds away. We froze in our tracks for about 5 minutes before it went back to feeding and we were able to sit down below the rise. The 1/2 curl slowly moved to our right and dropped down a bit. I moved up a few steps to keep track of it when I spotted the ram bedded down. The 1/2 curl ended up bedding down next to the ram.
I missed the ram on my first shot and it bolted out of its bed, ran to the right and then stopped. My second shot hit it in the gut and exited out just by the hindquarter. It took one step and fell a short distance.
300 yd shot (range finder confirmed) with a 180 grain 300 ultramag. It took two hours to finally get to where it died because we discovered a gorge between us and the ram. We had to finish climbing to the top of the ridge and climb back down to get to it. The ram probably would have fallen down the gorge if I had hit it on my first shot. We ended up having to go back up the way we came because it was all cliffs below us.
I must say this was the toughest hunt Iíve ever done and Iíve lived up here all my life. Iíve sheep hunted in the Chugach 3 times, and the Alaska Range near Farewell 4/5 times. I think it was the length of the hunt (9 days of camping and 6 of those doing some major climbing and hiking). I figured we climbed about 20,000 vertical feet, averaging about 4 thousand a day. It was probably more with some of the up and down that we had to do.