With all of the melodramatic banter on here recently, thought I would offer up a new subject hopefully a few of you can chime in on. We talk here often of Alaska's most majestic animals, yet one I never hear much about, is that elusive predator of the night, the Wolverine. So, if any of ya'lls have any stories about a run in with these cool critters, I'd like to hear about it. Here's my story from this past season. It also falls in line with the recent thread concerning sleeping with one in the chamber.
It was August 9th, the evening before sheep season opened. I had located a group of about 6 rams, that had all bombed down the mountain to feed. After watching the rams a bit from about 1000 yards, I decided to set up camp, and get to bed, as it was around 10 at night, and starting to get dark. I found a spot at the top of a ravine, that would hopefully put me in good striking distance the next morning, hoping the rams would still be there. I should mention, I was hunting alone, and when doing so, I don't bring a tent. So I layed out my bag and bivy, covered it with my space blanket, and crawled in. I then cooked up a tasty Mountain House Lasanga, and let my mind wander to the excitement I would hopefully be in for tomorrow.
After eating, I laid my head back and tried dozing off to sleep. I figure it was about 12:30 or so at this point, getting pretty dark. At about that time, I kept hearing some rocks falling, up in the shale slide above me, along with some peculiar snorting/grunting noises. I kinda figured it was just those darn sheep, antagonizing me, and went back to bed.
About 20 minutes or so later, finally in a dead sleep, something woke me up, and this something was very close. I popped my head up, and about ruined my shorts, when not 10 yards away, I saw the black outline of a Wolverine, walking directly towards my feet.
Now, I've always wondered how I would react, if I were ever in a situation with a bear, or anything else for that matter, that called for immediate, calm, cool, and collective action. Oh yeah, and back to the whole sleeping with one in the chamber thing. Well, due to my history of sleep walking, and doing all sorts of crazy things in my sleep (peeing on the Christmas tree one year), I've never had one in the chamber while I slept. But my rifle was laying along side me, underneath the space blanket.
So back to the Wolverine. The moment I spotted him at 10 yards, and realized what he was, I yelled "YO!!!!!" At this point, he was about 6 or 7 yards away, and stopped, staring directly at me. I tell you what, that was one of the most soul piercing stare downs I've ever been involved in. Well, in about .2 milliseconds, I grabbed my rifle, threw one in the chamber, flipped the caps up, and had the barrel, barrelling down on him. Did I mention it was dark. Well, looking through the scope didn't do a darn thing, couldn't see any crosshairs, just the black outline of that Ghost of the Night. Well, in hindsight, I should have looked down the barrel, but hey, I am still here to talk about it, so it didn't turn out that bad. Anyway, I held that dark outline in the middle of the picture, and KABOOM!!!! And, sure as heck didn't hit him, but he was gone like a flash. Actually, not a really a flash, he wasn't that fast, but he was outta there, and for the next 4 or 5 hours, every little noise had this boy puckered up pretty good.
On another note, I gave those sheep fair warning to what time of year it was, and didn't see a sign of em for days. Had to go back a week later, but finally got my sheep.
Anyway, if your still with me after that novel, please share any run in's with these critters you all have had. It was the third one I've seen, which makes me luckier than most, and only increased my fascination with Wolverines.
Thanks for you time, and have a nice day!!!