A dream hunt just came together on this one. Alot of great folks helped get me directed and focused to harvest a wonderful trophy, a mature Dall Ram.
I want to extend appreciation first to my wife for holding down the fort while I wandered the hills. Second to my great hunting partner who follows through with everything and is dependable as the setting sun. Third Andy, the Coldfoot F&G trooper, who as a friend gifted me with solid dependable information about logistics, weather, and geography. I couldn't have just slung a pack on and done this on my own. Lastly......The Ram who weathered a more than a few winter storms to grace my wall and table.
So....how did it go down?
We'll I traveled from Sitka to Fairbanks where I met with my depedable hunting partner Chris. He's been hunting with me for a long time and every year or so we come up with wild adventures. This year....Brooks Sheep.
We packed up and headed up the Dalton for a planned 7 day hump in the rocks. We rifle hunted and so it took us two days to get back into and past the five mile line. I was planning on having company. Sure enough.....as soon as we reached the bowl where I expected to find rams......there was a tent right where the rams were seen a few weeks earlier. So if you have red Hilleberg and hunted up near a 6,500 peak in the Brooks PM me please. I know they saw lots of lambs and ewes and so did we.....over a hundred. So we sat out in the sun running ridges looking closely over everything with the Swaro. Three days passed with plenty of beautiful sights but not a legal ram. The weather moved in fast and my partner made an emergency call to lower camp just off the ridge and get below the clouds. The next morning after rain and snow I was sitting out making breakfast by a small water source and looked up into the rocks of that said peak and there were two rams scurrying somewhere safe just below the clouds almost in em. I was dressed and ready to roll and just a bite away from finishing chow. My partner was still in the sack. I woke em to let him know I spotted a likely shooter and I was traveling light and fast to intercept. With just a fanny, binos, and rifle I was on the move. Rocks, cliff, scree and a couple thousand feet later I was crawling flat across a high scree slope closing the gap. Unfortunatly......he took a tumble and ended up bloodied up and in a hole. I went back to find my partner and we recovered this great animal.
All I gotta say is I now appreciate a little more the perserverance and skills of accomplished sheep hunters. This is my first.........we'll see what the future holds.
We packed out to the Dalton and hitchhiked back to the truck. Those truckers treated us great.
So did the buffet at the Coldfoot Station.