Am I out of my mind for thinking about sheep?

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LonghairDontcare

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2022
Messages
11
I’ve been shooting a 6.5 creedmoor. Any negatives to that or a reason I should switch to a .270?
 

tuffcity

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Nov 2, 2013
Messages
438
Location
YT
I’ve been shooting a 6.5 creedmoor. Any negatives to that or a reason I should switch to a .270?
No negatives at all. My kid took her first ram (which was also her first animal) with my 6.5 CM.

Positive mental attitude on the mountain is your biggest strength. You can always go slower or take longer to get somewhere if not in the best shape but a mental defeat sends you home.

Slow and steady but coming out heavy. :D Last Sept with the kid's ram and I'm 59. Go get it done!

bnxKreG.jpg
 

Marine4life

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Oct 17, 2017
Messages
390
Location
Missouri
It sounds to me that this is in your financial means, you can easily research what it would take to make it happen and your interest is already there if you are watching hunts and considering going. The only way you will know if you will enjoy the experience is to prepare properly and go.

I was 51 when I killed my one and only sheep and it took me a few years to plan financially. I to am an avid hunter chasing waterfowl, local deer and whatever western tags I can draw. I also love to fish but deciding on doing a sheep hunt required me to prioritize my resources specifically to the sheep hunt for a couple years.

I had more than my fair share of shitty situations and mental/physical courage experiences throughout my career in the Corps and I was still worried a bit about being in remote Alaska. Even on the toughest western hunts (and I have done a few) I could always hike out if it got pretty bad or if I just got tired of it. When that plane drops you off you realize that is what you came for.
I also suggest you look at the overall experience of the trip and not just about killing a sheep. There is something about the country and watching the mountains over a hot cup of coffee in sheep country. You will likely see all kinds of wild things and very few people. It can be the first time you fly in a float plan or land on a 150 yard strip of tundra, sleep next to a moose trail with a big fresh griz track, eat fresh blueberries for breakfast and watch an eagle take fish out of a river 1500 ft below you. So much about that country has me aching to go back but the likely hood of this retired aging Marine doing it again is slim. I envy the opportunity you have and truly hope you make the decision to go experience it yourself. Good luck.


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JBrown1

Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2021
Messages
89
There is nothing crazy about shotgunner wanting to get into sheep hunting. There are a lot of sheep hunters who don’t hunt any other big game. If you are only interested in sheep, then why should you hunt anything else?

You seem to question whether you should have some other big game hunting under your belt before you step onto the sheep mountains. I know that some other guys have recommended getting a deer or two before “stepping up” to the holy grail. I completely disagree.

Sheep hunting and most deer hunting have almost nothing in common. Readying yourself for a sheep hunt by hunting deer would be like hunting geese to prepare yourself for turkey hunting: other than using similar firearms to take animals that look somewhat similar, the hunts have almost nothing in common.

Sheep hunting is known as the toughest hunting, but the actual shooting of a sheep is far easier than deer or most other big game. So, in my estimation, sheep is a perfect first hunt for a guy who is prepared physically, and understands the physical effort that will be required.

A seasoned hunter has a huge advantage in the deer woods. In deer hunting your opportunity for a shot might come at any instant with little or no warning. You often have to shoot quickly at an animal that is aware of your presence and is in the process or escaping, or might bolt at any moment. Often there is no time to find a rifle rest or use a rangefinder, you have a second to shoot, or the opportunity is lost.

Sheep hunting is entirely different and perfectly suited to a newbie who is a decent shot, but will probably need more time to prepare for the actual shot. If you watch videos and read about sheep hunting you will notice that rushed shots are a rarity. The most common shot set up in sheep hunting looks something like this: sheep are spotted and evaluated from a distance, hunters take their time hiking in closer, approaching the rams from above, hunters stay concealed and move to a spot that allows them to take their time setting up the shot, range finder readings are taken, individual target animal is discussed as is shot placement, a backpack or other rest is placed so that the hunter can shoot from prone. Then all that is left to do is take your time and squeeze the trigger.

I have limited sheep hunting experience, but I have guided my daughter deer hunting, caribou hunting and sheep hunting. We have seen a lot of legal deer but she has never taken a shot. The shot opportunities have been too demanding for an 11 year old girl. Hesitate for a split second and the opportunity is gone.

Caribou was easier as they are constantly moving around, but they live in the open and usually provide multiple shot opportunities. She dropped her first animal, a caribou bull, with a single shot at 200 yards. She was shooting prone. Except for the fact that it was 20 degrees below zero and the caribou was on the move, the shot was easy once he paused to look in our direction.

We didn’t get an opportunity on sheep last year, but if we had I feel confident that it would have most likely been a shot that I could have taken the time to coach her through, and she would have made the shot.

There is no need to add extra hurdles between you and your dream hunt. Do your research, send in your deposit, train hard, shoot a lot from common sheep shooting positions, follow your outfitter’s advice to a tee, then go on the hunt and have fun.
 
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LonghairDontcare

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2022
Messages
11
There is nothing crazy about shotgunner wanting to get into sheep hunting. There are a lot of sheep hunters who don’t hunt any other big game. If you are only interested in sheep, then why should you hunt anything else?

You seem to question whether you should have some other big game hunting under your belt before you step onto the sheep mountains. I know that some other guys have recommended getting a deer or two before “stepping up” to the holy grail. I completely disagree.

Sheep hunting and most deer hunting have almost nothing in common. Readying yourself for a sheep hunt by hunting deer would be like hunting geese to prepare yourself for turkey hunting: other than using similar firearms to take animals that look somewhat similar, the hunts have almost nothing in common.

Sheep hunting is known as the toughest hunting, but the actual shooting of a sheep is far easier than deer or most other big game. So, in my estimation, sheep is a perfect first hunt for a guy who is prepared physically, and understands the physical effort that will be required.

A seasoned hunter has a huge advantage in the deer woods. In deer hunting your opportunity for a shot might come at any instant with little or no warning. You often have to shoot quickly at an animal that is aware of your presence and is in the process or escaping, or might bolt at any moment. Often there is no time to find a rifle rest or use a rangefinder, you have a second to shoot, or the opportunity is lost.

Sheep hunting is entirely different and perfectly suited to a newbie who is a decent shot, but will probably need more time to prepare for the actual shot. If you watch videos and read about sheep hunting you will notice that rushed shots are a rarity. The most common shot set up in sheep hunting looks something like this: sheep are spotted and evaluated from a distance, hunters take their time hiking in closer, approaching the rams from above, hunters stay concealed and move to a spot that allows them to take their time setting up the shot, range finder readings are taken, individual target animal is discussed as is shot placement, a backpack or other rest is placed so that the hunter can shoot from prone. Then all that is left to do is take your time and squeeze the trigger.

I have limited sheep hunting experience, but I have guided my daughter deer hunting, caribou hunting and sheep hunting. We have seen a lot of legal deer but she has never taken a shot. The shot opportunities have been too demanding for an 11 year old girl. Hesitate for a split second and the opportunity is gone.

Caribou was easier as they are constantly moving around, but they live in the open and usually provide multiple shot opportunities. She dropped her first animal, a caribou bull, with a single shot at 200 yards. She was shooting prone. Except for the fact that it was 20 degrees below zero and the caribou was on the move, the shot was easy once he paused to look in our direction.

We didn’t get an opportunity on sheep last year, but if we had I feel confident that it would have most likely been a shot that I could have taken the time to coach her through, and she would have made the shot.

There is no need to add extra hurdles between you and your dream hunt. Do your research, send in your deposit, train hard, shoot a lot from common sheep shooting positions, follow your outfitter’s advice to a tee, then go on the hunt and have fun.
I love this. Thank you. Seriously.
 

JBrown1

Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2021
Messages
89
I love this. Thank you. Seriously.
Just do it!

I forgot to add: you can get a lot of practice in by dry-firing your rifle at a cardboard cutout placed at the end of a hallway. I did this with my daughter as it was below zero all winter. It paid huge dividends. Just a few minutes each day is enough.

Also, I would buy and read Craig Boddington’s book Shots at Big Game. It is a thin book that is packed full of solid advice on becoming a good game shot with a rifle.

I’m excited for you!
 
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coloelk52

Newbie
Joined
Apr 25, 2022
Messages
3
I'm turning 70 this year, and going on my first bighorn sheep hunt. have waited 22 years to draw the tag. Getting in shape can actually be fun, it's about attitude. Just like making yourself go 1 more mile, look on the other side of that ridge. You can do this.
 

Mykolaivka887

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Jan 15, 2022
Messages
864
Not crazy! Go…..For….it! Study, read, talk to guys who have sheep hunted. It will change your life.


I agree with the above post made by 'sheephunt'. I wouldn't wait around to hunt Alaska, for sure, because it's not going to improve up here anytime within the foreseeable future. Fact of the matter is that sheep hunting up here will continue to get worse. If you're even remotely thinking of hunting sheep in Alaska, I wouldn't dilly dally.
 

Wingshooter

Member
Joined
May 21, 2017
Messages
97
Location
OH
I would second the recommendation on Boddingtons book shots on big game. If you haven't done a lot of shooting at this type of animal odd angles can rattle someone who hasn't faced them. When I am talking to someone who hasn't deer/elk hunted before I remind them no matter the angle there's a balloon between the shoulders pop it and they won't go far. OP if you have shot many coyotes this will be all you really need other than shooting down and up at steep angles.
 

CHL

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Aug 5, 2019
Messages
103
I love this. Thank you. Seriously.
Yep get after it man. They’re truly awesome animals and we’re blessed to have the opportunity to hunt them. Comes down to just one thing … either get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’.
 
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