The Alberta Bighorns i've been apart of

Stinky Coyote

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Mar 25, 2013
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176
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Alberta
To keep in my theme of hitting the ground running here at rokslide. :)

Once i got the bug, and started to wear out some boot leather carrying around entirely too much crap in a eberlestock j107 for the first couple seasons of scouting and hunting lightened gear a bit, got a j104 at the time and then i tagged along with a buddy who had a ewe tag and we went up and got one, finally got to put my hands on a rocky mountain bighorn sheep and pack some out, i was obsessed.

I drew the ewe tag the following season and got my ewe solo, packed her out with head in one go with a j104, not comfy but did the job, no injury but did bend a leki trekking pole pretty good on way down. I was up high all day looking for ewes and on my last swing across to my last glassing point before heading down later in day i spot white rumps way down in the trees crossing through some slivers of open and the adrenaline rush was incredible, it was on like donkey kong. I came down as fast as i could on one ridge and knew i'd lose them but at their pace figured i could shoot across to the next ridge if i could find them in the tree openings when i got down there so set up in likely spot at elevation i anticipated they were at and started glassing hard across to that next finger, it took awhile for them to materialize, lots of highs and lows, seeing them, losing them and trying to find them again, then finding them again, emotional rollercoaster. Now i gotta find a 'ewe' and get it done, studied and found one at 311 yards and the sako a7 270 wsm with federal 140 accubonds did the job. Lost her in the trees and as soon as i dropped down i knew i'd lose all vision until i stumbled upon something so again, the question marks, the wonder, took what landmarks i could and down i go across the deadfall, is it dead? Shot felt good etc. Sure enough i spot her dead from about 30 yards, i walked right up to her as if on a string, amazing. Day running late, field pics and hiked her out in the dark but what a day!

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Even more obsessed now, gotta get that ram monkey off my back. This same year as my ewe only later in season i got a tip on a ram that was likely legal, found him and had him to myself for hours, lots of snow and -11c, but could not give myself a 100% and had to walk away.

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That was tough, bugged me all winter, i studied hard, took 3 years to finally get on a likely legal ram and was still weak in one area...judging...don't like to make mistakes like that more than once! So later in my 4th season i found a ram, it didn't take me long at all when i saw the profile at 1000 yards to see him legal, the homework paid off, on like donkey kong! Snapped a couple pics thru spotter as usual and it was getting late in the day for what i thought was the more ideal stalk attempt, i just had to go for it direct and hope for the best.

I already had him legal in a pretty large band and he was noticeably darker than all the rest so all i needed was a glimpse and to find the dark one and shoot. So i climbed, and once up through the trees with things opening up into verticle fingers of open strips and tree strips i came through and peeked up and saw two of the lighter rams looking at me at 330 yards straight above me....crap. Backed into trees and got pack off and ready to come around to no sheep...nothing i can do but gear up and climb some more.

I cross that opening toward the downwind and cross the next sliver of trees and climb that edge when all of a sudden i hear commotion. Although the sheep i spooked had ran back upwind likely to the larger group i had to assume it would get them rattled but because only a couple young ones saw me i thought the confusion may not hurt me? and that they might stay in area long enough for me to get eyes on the dark one. So i kept heading downwind so they couldn't get that on me which is the direction they were travelling anyhow so sure enough i hear commotion, sheep start blowing through the tree strip right above and into and through opening right in front of me, my first hike with a kifaru gun bearer and rifle was up and shouldered instantly(i'm a believer in that little piece of gear!), two sheep stop for a second in the middle of the opening and one was the dark one, scope went from head to behind should as all was green light and boom!

He rolled once into the lone two trees in the chute and i could see a limb bouncing from him doing the bicycle upside down. I loaded another and was back on target lightning fast and stayed there for a couple moments before i even thought about taking my eye out of the scope. I could not see him, just the limb bouncing up and down. I make my way cautiously up and around tree and he's upside down foot still barely cycling, i run a final shot up the sternum from point blank although totally unnecessary it felt like the right thing at the time. And scream i did! Fred Eichler had nothing on my reaction that day. That was a four year obsession, the miles hiked, the ups and downs, oh man i let that mountain know what time it was! The ram monkey is off the back. I ranged back to where i was standing when i shot....35 yards, i laughed, all that work building that sako up to do long range and i kill my first ram at 35 yards, i definitely saw the irony. In fact it was my shortest kill that season and my only one with rifle. I killed a 189 muley with my bow at 53 yards, a little bull moose at 40 and a little whitetail buck at 65....oh the irony. Again getting late in the day, got it caped and deboned, meat bagged and tucked well away from my grizzly offering and my sweat soaked merino base layer on top to ensure my prize would remain untouched overnight as i packed cape/head out and back in morning for rest with a buddy who was keen to come for a hike the next day. At this point i'm quite a bit lighter than when i started, running a gregory z-55 and very minimal size optic and gear. That z-55 doesn't handle weight worth a crap and hurts me if i kill something but its light for most of the time i don't kill something lol, more on that to come.

Making him legal and trying to figure out how best to get within shooting range?
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And no words here
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He goes around 161, and 6.5 yrs old with 15 1/2" bases, a perfect first ram, not a squeaker, not a stud so i'm not spoiled early with a stud and will use whatever years i can going forward to look for the stud and get as much sheep blood/memory with close fam/friend doing this as possible before one can't do it anymore.

Waiting for the taxidermist to get the cape back
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More coming soon, we are only up to year 2010 at this point, bit more left to go.
 
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Stinky Coyote

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176
Location
Alberta
The following season a best bud draws the ewe tag and we run in and get him one. Got a workout that day, way up high and up a different route than we went but found them early enough that it was worth going for it. A lot of side hill and climb to get up to these ones but finally got there, ended up setting him up with the sako over my pack at i think 149 yards and one and done, great weather, took it in, no rushing, nice to get back to doing this with a buddy like the first ewe i was on although that first ewe was rushed also due to bear seen in area very recently and they are very accustomed to the dinner bell and my bud who shot that ewe didn't want any sort of issue so it was nice this time to just relax and enjoy the rest of the day, no rushing, etc.

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And later in the season we took a few days to try and find him his ram as he's earned one, he's been dragged around all sorts of mountains past couple years in scouting etc. And we found rams in 3 consecutive days but none legal. That ended the 2011 season. And again, took time in 2012 season to see about getting him a ram but best we could do after finding one is play second fiddle to a group ahead of us and found him first. We got to be apart of it, a good ram too, but just wasn't our turn yet. So you know the focus this year his ram first, i cross fingers we can pull of a double header but his ram first, then i get a ewe tag again and may try one with the bow?

Enter season 2012, my bro-in-law's turn at a ewe. I got him and his wife hunter educated years ago and building draw priorities but between all the babies popping out and house build i never got him out for his first big game animal until this season. What a way start eh? We were both pretty light and in good shape this year and he assured me he had hiking boots (shows up with hiking runners on the day of, i thought oh boy this should be interesting later in the day) but he was all smiles and game to go. We climbed in the dark to get to sheep elevations and just lucked out, just getting to first glassing elevations above treeline and light enough to see not too bad through the bino's, huffing and puffing just long enough to lift the glasses for a quick scan before moving forward to a better spot to sit and glass one side of the mountain and i find a group of ewes just left and up from us under 400 yards away. I turn to him and said 'oh this is going to be an easy day!'

The stalk was on, sun hasn't even thought about showing itself over the mountain yet. Got him to about 130 yards again with the sako over the pack and he stoned it. I saw the scope was maybe a bit too close to him but thought the muzzle brake would save him...and i'm sure it did but we both agreed after it was good that i didn't say anything to scare him from the gun as he finally had a good solid rest. This is a very green hunter/shooter so it took awhile to get where he felt good about taking the shot so i wasn't going to say a thing except keep your eyes open and just squeeze the trigger gently holding just behind that front shoulder. The blood looks worse than the cut really is and its healed to barely can tell mark but it was all smiles and the best of times. We laughed our arses off about that at the time and still do today. I'm watching through the bino's when the gun goes off and she comes rolling down and he says 'did i kill her?' and i'm still looking at the sheep i say 'yeah, can't you see her rolling down the hill' and so i looked at him, saw the blood, eyes full of water, he's still trying to get his bearings...not sure what i said after that but something about 'oh you got scoped' he was grinning ear to ear and we started laughing, i pointed out his sheep to him, some high fivin and taking it in and then collect the gear and head over to our prize. Fresh backstrap that evening was incredible. What a day, i get just as pumped about ewes as rams, its all the same to me...and i get pretty pumped about rams....so it just doesn't get any better. Now i'm really digging hunting with the right people, those two ewes just make my seasons. Can't get enough, so there will be plenty more sheep hunting to come as we try and get a few more rams and ewes in the coming years.

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The weather turned on me and bro on the way out to add to the adventure some
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That gregory z-55 hurt me for the last time so after the season the kifaru t2 got ordered up, i'm sure there will be no complaints coming in that regard going forward! Good thing for the snow and open grassy/mossy chutes to allow some butt skiing as the bro in his hiking runners were not having a ton of fun on the way down by that point but he didn't complain a bit, just slowed him down. As i'm sure i've said several times, i cannot get enough of this, when i get free time, its what i'm preparing for or doing, my other hobbies are simply part of and geared towards making days like that possible. Eat, sleep, breathe it.
 
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Stinky Coyote

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Alberta
Hey Stinky coyote great stories and nice ram! I don't remember seeing any write ups like this from you on AO, lol, keep them coming.

lol, thanks guys, and yeah, i think i did a 'dream season' post when my ram hit there as i'd had my single coolest season, just want to get the formalities overwith here and give rokslide a bit of background on me so we can just carry right along with our gear junkie moutain hunting obsessions and review gear for each other etc. seems like a good time and place to move, hope we see a bunch of the alberta/bc bighorn/mountain nuts come over here and add in also as for the most part i'm not a big trophy guy as much as i am just go hunt guy but that is a personal thing, there are guys i hope to see show up here that are amazing, the trophy quality/volume/multi species etc. is off the charts, i've been lucky to get a few nice animals but almost like Fred Eichler i get just as ramped up with antlerless and non-trophy hunts, so hopefully as said the guys who hunt even harder and kill just huge stuff start coming over here, a little more western Canada content might just round this place out nicely? :)
 

Yellowknife

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.... a little more western Canada content might just round this place out nicely? :)


I suppose we can make a bit more space between the Montana crowd and the Alaskans...


Spent a couple years in Canada. Some awesome country, but didn't stick around quite long enough for a resident license.

Yk
 
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Stinky Coyote

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Alberta
I suppose we can make a bit more space between the Montana crowd and the Alaskans...

Yk

exactly what i'm thinking! seems like a killer thing going on here and i see a few familiar western Canadian faces so maybe we can bring in a few more with the same addictions, hope thats alrighty with rokslide?
 
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Stinky Coyote

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Hey Bearen! Nice to see you here, what a treat it would be to see some hunt threads by you! I already seen a bunch of your stuff and always blown away, so hope to see you share some here killer! I'm off to do my Blaser K95 rifle review now, watch for that in the next few minutes in the firearm section. :)
 

Duk Dog

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Apr 29, 2012
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Enjoyed your write up and pics. Gotta love those Big Horns. One of these days... :)
 
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Stinky Coyote

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U been in on a ewe havent you? Was that your tag or shooters? I say ewe's count! And my word is final! ha ha probably run into you again next year somewhere out there, from memory you worked pretty hard to fill that ewe tag. :)
 

Manosteel

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Jan 24, 2013
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Great story and pics! From my mishap with the bow and ram last year maybe breaking the rifle out of my safe would be smarter than tryin again with the stick and string. Might be better for my sanity :p
 

Duk Dog

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U been in on a ewe havent you? Was that your tag or shooters? I say ewe's count! And my word is final! ha ha probably run into you again next year somewhere out there, from memory you worked pretty hard to fill that ewe tag. :)

Correct you are. Shooter and I got a double header on the final run that year. The quest for a BH ram continues though.....
 
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Stinky Coyote

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Fingers crossed I see u posting a ram success thread here this fall. U guys put your time in. Good luck!
 
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