AK Dall Sheep Gear and Prep

bates

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Sep 4, 2012
Messages
508
Location
Florida
As I write this I am sitting 102 days out from my first ever Sheep Hunt.

I am still in disbelief that i will be hunting sheep this fall, something I have always dreamed of but never thought i would have the opportunity.

I am in full sheep shape and gear prep mode now.

I am currently 5'11'' 212lbs, 34 now will be 35 yrs old on the hunt.

Ideally i want to weigh in somewhere between 190 to 195 lbs and am tracking to hit that number.

I have really picked up the training the past few weeks a typical week looks kinda like this.

I live in Florida and its real flat

2 days per week of running, I am up to 6.5 miles on my long run but increasing 10% per week, goal is to get to where i can run 10 to 15 miles, my previous longest run was 9.3 miles.

2 to 3 days per week on the stair climber at the gym right now just doing 1 day in the pack and 2 days without
30 to 60 minute sessions.

1 day of traditional weights or group class - mainly upper body and a set of squats plus sit ups and back extensions.

Typically on a Saturday or Sunday i will add this before a step mill session
5 to 7 sets of : 25x weighted lunges, 30x sit-up, 30x push ups, 15x weighted thruster

I will go over gear in the next post, we will probably get an air drop for food so I should be 40lbs or less pack weight going in.

I was really going to start ramping up the pack weight and work with 90 to 95 days to go before the hunt.

I will add 1 long day in the pack to start then add another closer to the hunt and increase the pack weight on the step mill
 
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bates

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Sep 4, 2012
Messages
508
Location
Florida
Gear List

Rifle Dall Sheep and Grizzly Hunt

Brooks Range Alaska

Aug 19-26


Gear

Stone Glacier 6900 Pack with Lid and Rain Cover

Exped synmat HL MW sleeping pad

Kuiu 15 degree bag

Tent - (outfitter provided, but i will take my Hilleberg Niak 1.5 up with me to basecamp and might carry)


Clothing

Kuiu Attack Pant
Kuiu Gaitors
Kuiu Chugach Pants
Kuiu merino zip off long underwear
Kuiu Superdown pants

Sitka Gear core shirt
Kuiu Peleton 200
Kuiu Peleton 240 Hoodie
Kuiu Super down ultra hooded puffy
Kuiu Yukon jacket

Darntough socks (3 pair)
exoffico boxers (2 pair)
1 extra kuiu merino zip t

beanie and neck gaiter
ball cap
glove liner
Kuiu glove either the guide or yukon depending on weather
Kuiu glassing mit

Personal kit

Contacts and glasses
wet wipes
tooth brush
floss
leukotape


2 small lighters
delmore inreach
dark energy charger
extra batteries for camera
sony rx100 camera
2 zebralight's with extra batteries
Treking poles

optics and gun

swaro el 8x32
leica rangefinder
swaro 20-60x80
tripod

custom 280 ackley rifle
march 3-24x42mm scope
extra bullets

Fozzils bowl and cup
spoon
game bags
water bladder
nalgene bottle
 

Ray

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Oct 5, 2012
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1,101
Location
Alaska
Find some stairs and spend as much time as you can going down them under a load. Stadium or tall building. Its the only thing a flat lander can use to train for the typical issue that crops up for them in the mountains. And do some box jumps. Jumping down is just as important as jumping up.
 
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bates

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Sep 4, 2012
Messages
508
Location
Florida
Ray

thanks i have a cool state park has is a natural ravine with trails and steps going up and down i will be spending more and more time there. i think its a natural 120 ft ravine.


the wife and i have a trip to Jackson Hole about 1 month before this hunt, planning on getting in 2 big hikes with weight in some mountains as a gauge to see how i feel.
 

duchntr

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Mar 31, 2013
Messages
736
Location
Anchorage,Ak
Find some stairs and spend as much time as you can going down them under a load. Stadium or tall building. Its the only thing a flat lander can use to train for the typical issue that crops up for them in the mountains. And do some box jumps. Jumping down is just as important as jumping up.

Real good advice. Your gear list seems fine as does your workout schedule, I didn't see anything about boots though. So whatever you are wearing make sure they are broke in and they fit right. Ive had boots that I thought fit me fine until sidhilling with an animal in my pack, don't make that mistake. Wear your boots under load, walk around in the swamps if you have to, get off flat surfaces and get them wet and walk them dry. Your feet will make or break your hunt if your not used to long days under a pack. Good luck and take lots of pictures.
 
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bates

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Joined
Sep 4, 2012
Messages
508
Location
Florida
Awh boots

I will be wearing these:

Salewa Raven GTX

RAVEN 2 GTX - MEN - Salewa


I have had these over a year now. I wore the Crow's this past fall on my Wyoming Mule deer hunt and have alot more miles in them than my Ravens and havent had any foot problems to date since switching over to Salewa, i pre tape my heels and wrap my right big toe and ive been good to go so far. but i spent alot of time and money trying various boots.

I want to say i have either owned or tried all these boots since booking my hunt: (thank goodness for free returns)


Lowa Tibet
Lowa Bighorn
Salewa Raven
Salewa Crow
Salewa Mtn. Trainer
Scarpa Triolet
Scarpa Wrangell
Scarpa rebel pro
Salewa Raven combi gtx


The Raven 2 is probably the first and only boot that from the moment that i put it on and stood up i knew i was on to something.

as far as insoles ive tried all the superfeet and landed on lathrop and sons, wearing a set of custom lathrop insoles in them.
 

SLDMTN

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Jul 30, 2015
Messages
1,199
Location
Palmer, AK
Find some stairs and spend as much time as you can going down them under a load. Stadium or tall building. Its the only thing a flat lander can use to train for the typical issue that crops up for them in the mountains. And do some box jumps. Jumping down is just as important as jumping up.

Very good advice. Wall sits are another really good option for strengthening your downhill muscle groups. If they get easy, raise one leg to isolate.

The Raven 2 is probably the first and only boot that from the moment that i put it on and stood up i knew i was on to something.

Loved my Salewa Raven Combi's, I about cried when I heard they discontinued them. I believe it was you who mentioned the Raven 2's were top notch as well. They're on my list for this year. My Raven Combi's are toast.


This may be a strange tidbit but I'll offer it out anyway; get alcohol free wet wipes. The alcohol can throw off your skin's pH and will cause some of the most severe camp crack you've ever seen after a week of continual use. The 99% water ones are all that I will use now. Also, don't be afraid to stop midday for a preventative cleaning. The sweat combined with Mountain House gas can wreak havoc if left unchecked. The guide may look at you funny but it's better than trying to cowboy walk up and down hills cause you're bleeding.
 
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kaboku68

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Joined
Jun 14, 2012
Messages
228
Location
Alaska
What type of tripod?

Training is find a 400 ft hill that you can climb up with weight and rinse and repeat. Compound lifts like DL, PC, PU and SQTs. Do something like the Sheiko system till you can do 60 sets during one work out. You might have to cut back weight but you have to build up layers of functional muscle. Cardio wise- intervals are great.

Who are you going with? There is a great deal of differences in different guides in the Brooks Range. Some have death marches others basically carry you like a sherpa to the sheep.

No Scent Antiperspirant. Stuff is great on your feet. It prevents your feet getting moisture and that prevents hotspots.

Golf Ball. Works well on massaging feet.

Backpacker's chair. You have an assistant guide and probably a packer. Get one of those light Helinox chairs to work your spotter from.

Food. The guide may provide you with food. But think of this. You know what agrees with your body and you should pick dehydrated food that agrees better than some guide's wife. Most guides buy a lot of their food at SW and their wives often just chuck several boxes into carts and away they good. The best food is not that expensive and its worth it for you to work out your menu.

Dentist- Goto your dentist to get a first aid kit with painkillers and antibiotics that can allow you to continue if it gets real.

SatPhone Rental- Its worth it to rent and reserve a satphone from Surveyor's exchange in FAI. Its not that expensive 100-200 and its worth it for the wife to know that you are safe.

Shooting Practice. Make sure that you are hitting the range and shoot at least 1000 rds of 22LR from your companion rifle and iron all bugs out of your primary rifle. Make sure that you leave nothing to the last minute. Go out with your gear and test each piece before you get up here.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Sincerely,
Thomas
 
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bates

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Sep 4, 2012
Messages
508
Location
Florida
Tripod is an Induro ct-014 w/ Gitzo gh-1720 head with the plate it weighs 49.7 oz



great idea about the chair, i need to order one, that was something that i wrote down during sheep show that i needed to add.

would this be the best one.. Helinox Chair Zero - ultralight camp chair



I will be hunting with Jonah Stewart
 
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kscowboy01

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Feb 10, 2015
Messages
132
Location
Gunnison Valley, CO
Stadium steps are money, if you can find a good, long set of stairs. Load-up the weight and jam-out to Pandora or an iPod.

The revolving StairMaster at the gym is a real butt kicker. Also recommended, if you don't have a good stadium or weather isn't cooperative.
 

Doc Holliday

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Jun 15, 2016
Messages
1,066
Subscribed. I have a sheep and mountain caribou trip next year but started training a couple of months ago. I am 3 years older than you, but about your size. 5'10" Also in Florida. I was 205# but down to 195#. I am generally active, fish 50 miles offshore on the weekends and sweat my brains out fishing all day & cleaning the boat at the end of the day, doing my lawn, and running, but booking this hunt brought my fitness into a focus that I have not had since I was an athlete long ago. And even then it was more about strength....i look around the gym at all the meatheads and am guessing few could get very far up a hill. Not to criticize them, but preparing for a sheep hunt has made me redefine what fitness really is. I am using a gym at my workplace during my lunch break and have to leave time for a shower, so typically I do 40 minutes on the Stairmaster at level 6 and will move to 7 or 8 for the last 10 minutes. Something Jim Shockey said, stuck with me. "It's not a race, you just have to be able to keep moving."

In talking to different outfitters, it amazed me how many talked about fat bankers, etc who would show up and then just quit. Not sure if I sounded like one of those guys to them or what, but I can't imagine what kind of yahoos they must deal with who think they can just show up and stroke a check.

I'd venture to say no one on this site will fall into that bucket....I am over a year out and think about it every day. I know you must be pumped...keep us posted, and thank you for sharing your experiences. I look forward to your posts
 
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Snyd

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Joined
Feb 10, 2013
Messages
675
Location
AK
Take care of your gut and your butt..

Wet-Ones Antibacterial wipes are not alcohol based and have worked well for me for 12 years in the sheep mtns sweating my @$$ off. I also take a small amount of preparation-h ointment.

anti-diarrhea over the counter stuff can save your butt. I've had to give it to 2 of my partners that were loosing it bad. Not good.
anti-nausea RX if you can get some.

Diarrhea and vomiting will take you out if you come down with either. A couple simple meds and a day of rest and rehydration can heal you up so you can hunt.

Any RX pain meds you can get. If you need them, you really need them.

Take a cotton handkerchief. Amazing how nice it is to have to wipe either the sweat or rain off your face or whatever.

Earplugs- In case of the snoring partner or the noisy tent in high wind. If you can't sleep you'll suffer. Don't worry about not being able to hear a bear. You'd never hear him coming anyway! :D

Training. Physical training is a must but at some point on a sheep hunt the body says no and the mind has to say go! It becomes a mental push. I have a local hike route I do and at times, on a day that I'm tired and it's pouring rain, I'll go do it just to push myself mentally. Not to where I'll risk injury but just to get out of the comfort zone.

Most important thing on your hunt is..... Take the time to soak in every moment of every moment. Before you know it you'll be back on the plane headed home. With or without your ram but with the memories.

my .02
 

Stud Duck

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Apr 30, 2017
Messages
108
Location
WV
Take care of your gut and your butt..

Wet-Ones Antibacterial wipes are not alcohol based and have worked well for me for 12 years in the sheep mtns sweating my @$$ off. I also take a small amount of preparation-h ointment.

anti-diarrhea over the counter stuff can save your butt. I've had to give it to 2 of my partners that were loosing it bad. Not good.
anti-nausea RX if you can get some.

Diarrhea and vomiting will take you out if you come down with either. A couple simple meds and a day of rest and rehydration can heal you up so you can hunt.

Any RX pain meds you can get. If you need them, you really need them.

Take a cotton handkerchief. Amazing how nice it is to have to wipe either the sweat or rain off your face or whatever.

Earplugs- In case of the snoring partner or the noisy tent in high wind. If you can't sleep you'll suffer. Don't worry about not being able to hear a bear. You'd never hear him coming anyway! :D

Training. Physical training is a must but at some point on a sheep hunt the body says no and the mind has to say go! It becomes a mental push. I have a local hike route I do and at times, on a day that I'm tired and it's pouring rain, I'll go do it just to push myself mentally. Not to where I'll risk injury but just to get out of the comfort zone.

Most important thing on your hunt is..... Take the time to soak in every moment of every moment. Before you know it you'll be back on the plane headed home. With or without your ram but with the memories.

my .02

This post is spot-on. Although I have not hunted sheep (yet), my BIL and I are coming to AK in about 3-5 years to do so.

I'm no expert, but based on my athletic and military experience, the steps to failure is usually brain, legs, lungs or brain, lungs, legs. Either way, what's number 1 in both scenarios? I constantly preach to the football players I'm blessed to coach is, "Train your mind and your ass will follow." As stated above, you've got to force yourself outside of your comfort zone and push to the breaking point just to see how body and mind will react once you reach that point on your hunt and from talking with guides in AK you WILL reach that point. I once read if you are sheep hunting and not wanted to quit at least once, you're not hunting hard enough.

All the previous posters have given you very good advice, advice that I'm heeding as well. I wish you the best, take lots of pictures and report back.
 

Jdog

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Mar 2, 2012
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Location
Derby, KS
Mental toughness is the best thing to be prepared with.

How bad are you willing to suffer?...
 

RyanC

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Feb 7, 2013
Messages
276
Looks like you are on the right track and receiving a lot of great advice!! I will throw in my .02 on the training. Mountain Hunting is sponsored by your Legs and Lungs. Don't be too concerned about upper body movements like bench press, curls, triceps work, etc. Yeah it's ok to work those in as accessory work but focus on Dynamic Movements that recruit as many muscle groups as possible, but again focus on legs & lungs. Do pack workouts as often as you can. Your going to be wearing your pack every day you are sheep hunting, get used to wearing it now and it will be like a second skin when you arrive in the Brooks for your sheep hunt. Work on your core.....if you have a weak core wearing a pack day in and day out is going to wear you down. One of the best core movements is a "Sand Bag Get Up." This will test not only your core but your mental toughness as well as you get into doing high numbers of them. Lastly don't overlook mobility. Warm up well before workout sessions, cool down and stretch afterwards, and on rest days work on mobility.....your hips, knees, ankles, back, and shoulders will thank you later.

Good luck on your preparation and as mentioned before, take in every moments up there in the Brooks.....it's a special place for sure!!

Ryan
 

mtnhntr

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May 10, 2017
Messages
227
Location
Michigan
Mental toughness is the best thing to be prepared with.

How bad are you willing to suffer?...

This is spot on. I'm 6'1" @ 275 - and have kept pace on every mountain hunt I've ever been on. It's all about pacing - at least for me. Once you find that pace, ride it out. When asked what it takes to be successful on a sheep hunt, I break it down like this: 80% mental, 10% physical, 5% skill, and 5% luck. If you have the fortitude to push on and not give up under the bleak conditions you will have overcome.
 
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bates

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Sep 4, 2012
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508
Location
Florida
Thanks for the info, i have a sandbag due soon and will intregrate some sandbag get ups into my program as well as the quadzilla complex from mtn. tactical, this is supposed to help with going downhill loaded


40min with 40lbs on the stairclimber today, gettting stronger, will increase to 50lb next week.
 
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Eagle

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Feb 27, 2012
Messages
909
Location
Western Kentucky
I highly recommend AGAINST jumping DOWN on box jumps, as that's generally when the Achilles goes pop for folks over 30. Jump up, but then step down, no reason to risk an Achilles injury the summer before your hunt of a lifetime.

Otherwise, good luck, I think you've received all the advice you need, now its on you to put it to work/practice.
 

6mm Remington

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Joined
Oct 19, 2012
Messages
1,486
Location
Western Montana
I did not happen to see a knife on your list and although the guide will have one or more, I certainly would want one on me!

For a pocket knife that has just shy of a 3" blade, this is a good one. Really good.

Benchmade mini-barrage - Make sure it is sharp prior to your trip and it should make it through without touch-up unless you use it extensively. A small steel or ceramic sharpener should handle touch-ups!!
mini-barrage
Search results for: 'mini barrage'

This is a good one also.
North Fork
Benchmade North Fork Family

Excellent for all around use below. Great size and blade shape for just about any task. (I hate the blades with the gut hook. Pretty useless in my opinion!)
Saddle Mountain Skinner
Benchmade Saddle Mountain Skinner Family

This is another excellent knife for just about any use.
Vanguard
https://www.buckknives.com/product/vanguard-knife/0192FAM01/

Besides lighters for starting fires which I see you have, I like to take a one of those magnesium starters with the striker. They work very well, and some of the starting sticks/pieces you can purchase to light and help start a fire really come in handy. Best of luck and have a great time. Take a camera with extra batteries and take a LOT of PHOTO's. You will love those later on and you can organize and put them printed into an album when you get home which will become a treasure for you later on! Never can take enough pictures, camp, scenery, nasty weather, animals, camp-mates, etc.

David
 
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