Mathews Inc.
2024 has been epic thus far!!
Mule Deer
Contributors to this thread:
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
Slate 26-Jan-24
bowhunt 26-Jan-24
Jaquomo 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 26-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
bowhunt 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
Zbone 27-Jan-24
Bou'bound 27-Jan-24
BULELK1 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
Treeline 27-Jan-24
bowhunt 27-Jan-24
Bowboy 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
bowhunt 27-Jan-24
JTreeman 27-Jan-24
RK 27-Jan-24
Bowboy 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
Papadeerhtr 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
midwest 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
bowhunt 27-Jan-24
Shug 27-Jan-24
TMac 27-Jan-24
t-roy 27-Jan-24
bigeasygator 27-Jan-24
WV Mountaineer 27-Jan-24
bowhunt 27-Jan-24
sitO 27-Jan-24
Bou'bound 27-Jan-24
12yards 27-Jan-24
Treeline 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 27-Jan-24
Quinn @work 27-Jan-24
Ambush 27-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 28-Jan-24
Jaquomo 28-Jan-24
IdyllwildArcher 28-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 28-Jan-24
buckeye 28-Jan-24
SteveB 28-Jan-24
molsonarcher 28-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 28-Jan-24
BULELK1 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
Treeline 29-Jan-24
Scoot 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
Treeline 29-Jan-24
Bowboy 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
bohuntr 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
Zbone 29-Jan-24
Scoot 29-Jan-24
t-roy 29-Jan-24
Matt 29-Jan-24
Bou'bound 29-Jan-24
Jaquomo 29-Jan-24
milnrick 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
Bowboy 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
Treeline 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
t-roy 29-Jan-24
Shug 29-Jan-24
Cajunarcher 29-Jan-24
Gib 29-Jan-24
Bowboy 29-Jan-24
Rob in VT 29-Jan-24
ND String Puller 29-Jan-24
TMac 29-Jan-24
Shug 29-Jan-24
DEMO-Bowhunter 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 29-Jan-24
Willieboat 29-Jan-24
kota-man 29-Jan-24
Mike Ukrainetz 29-Jan-24
Nick Muche 29-Jan-24
Ron Niziolek 30-Jan-24
Pocoloco 30-Jan-24
BULELK1 30-Jan-24
Mad Trapper 30-Jan-24
njbuck 30-Jan-24
iceman 30-Jan-24
BOHNTR 30-Jan-24
Treeline 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
Bou'bound 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
Beav 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
Nick Muche 30-Jan-24
Bou'bound 30-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 30-Jan-24
midwest 31-Jan-24
TREESTANDWOLF 31-Jan-24
huntinelk 31-Jan-24
RK 31-Jan-24
sticksender 01-Feb-24
GhostBird 01-Feb-24
Bowfinatic 01-Feb-24
ridgerunnerron 03-Feb-24
Mike Ukrainetz 03-Feb-24
TREESTANDWOLF 04-Feb-24
Shug 06-Feb-24
TREESTANDWOLF 06-Feb-24
Charlie Rehor 06-Feb-24
Mike Ukrainetz 06-Feb-24
Shug 06-Feb-24
otcWill 06-Feb-24
Chief 419 06-Feb-24
DL 06-Feb-24
TREESTANDWOLF 06-Feb-24
arlone 06-Feb-24
26-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Edited Version: I received a few PM’s regarding this story. While I openly admit I am not a professed writer, I also apologize if I misled anyone based on the way it was written. My emotions had taken over, trying to portray what happened during the sheep hunt. I certainly did not intend to mislead anyone at all. More importantly, I value the relationships I’ve built here and have no reason to hide anything. My stories, like my Mt. Lion recap, Yukon Moose hunt are simply raw.

It turns out I offended some people by having my bow in the hero shot. That was not the intention. I carried all during the tracking and I carried it to the recovery. The bow was in frame and off to the side. I’ve since removed those photos for clarity. I clearly can see why it was assumed I killed the ram with my bow. A mistake.

I’m told some guys went to my FB page and IG page to verify this story. That’s ok. Those photos have been removed and replaced without the bow in the photo. For clarity, I was told to come clean. At no point in my write up was there a claim that I finished the ram with my arrow. Again, there was zero reason to lie.

Where I explained “positioning”, it’s a word chosen solely by me only. I opted to not loose this ram nor risk him fleeing again. I stated the shot was steady. Again, verbiage I chose. Not intending to mislead anyone. The kill shot was not with an arrow . It was with a rifle. I also assumed by posting the photos so far away from him, and me hiking up to the recovery would suffice, but not the case. I was exhausted and exhilarated that we got him regardless.

Honestly, knowing more Bowsiters would follow my trip hunting there and the others before me, I had zero reasons to claim I finished the ram with an arrow and post the story here.

For the guys who sent me those PM messages, I’m going to say thank you for giving me time to clarify, organize and explain. Anything you said, I won’t take to heart. I just have me more reason to set the record straight. My apologies. You can remain as you stated.

For those who gave me congrats, I also say thank you. If I misled you, I also apologize to you. I tried to convey the message of honesty through a Bowhunters mistake. My first shot was simply a bit high. More importantly, the POS head that was on that arrow was not a Ironwilloutfitters head. I truly believe I would have recovered my ram within 100 yards. I have a photo of the entry wound. That POS head made a 1.25” hole, in between two ribs and looks to have pierced the right lung.

Not to worry as I want to state is here, this ram will remain as the ram of inches and that could have been on my last third from 10. I wish it ended different because it’s a spectacular animal and it would have been great to enter him for my 10. But I can’t.

I will try again.

In closing. For those who asked me about the hit, the two arrows, the final shot, no disrespect, I just could not answer at the time of creating the write up.

Over the years, I have valued each and every relationship I’ve made on Bowsite. I apologize if I’ve misled you, or made you believe otherwise. I had nothing to gain by doing so.

There have been a couple of guys here who went before and after my trip. Let them tell their story, offer congrats, they have done well.

Rich

This will be a short / long one as I’m still here in Sonora.

I am hunting with Martin Leon Outfitters on the La Candelera Ranch outside of Caborca, Mexico.

The ranch is over 100,000 acres with vast mountain ranges and desert.

Mule deer are in full rut and the sheep rut is over however the rams apparently are always trying.

26-Jan-24

26-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
I left Long Island at 2:30 am to catch a 5:30 am to Atlanta, a small layover then onto Tuscon.

26-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Greeted by my outfitter in Tuscon, Martin, we really hit it off right away and I felt entirely comfortable with him and crossing the border.

After a quick check, we made our way south to Sonora!

I really took in all the sights on the way down to his ranch and believe me, it’s an eye awakening.

Some little towns and a few populated areas.

From: Slate
26-Jan-24
Just got back. It’s amazing. Have fun and good luck.

From: bowhunt
26-Jan-24
Yes!!!! A hunting story

From: Jaquomo
26-Jan-24
Psyched about this. I'm leaving Wednesday.

26-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
After arriving at the ranch, I was greeted by an incredible staff and wonderful accommodations.

I can honestly say Mexican food is my favorite and the cuisine was out of this world. Spices and flavors abound.

26-Jan-24

26-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Let me back up for a minute.

WARNING: MUZZLELOADER PHOTO AND STORY NEXT.

When I got to camp, the outfitter showed me Trail camera photos of a buck I had previous encounters with and he had blown up in into a superstar. I hunted him five straight days before I had the opportunity on the sixth day.

I went on my annual return trip to Vallisca Iowa for the late muzzleloader season in on January 1, at 5:11 PM I was able to harvest this beautiful buck at 171 yards with the Thompson Encore.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Grip and grin pics.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

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TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
167 3/8” stud.

Could not have been happier with this whitetail and the way the hunt played out.

27-Jan-24
This hunt in Sonora was booked as a Desert Sheep hunt.

I had the option of adding on a Desert Mule deer hunt.

I honestly had no intentions of hunting a deer in this hunt, but after the video footage that was presented, my thought process changed immediately.

If you closely at the next photo, you can see the Muley chasing a doe. (* This is a clip from the guides video from four days earlier.

Since the rut was in full swing, I had an anything can happen mentally.

27-Jan-24
I was able to sit a “ blind set” in his travel corridor, below two mountains.The blind had alfalfa, grain and water.

Not knowing what to expect, I opted to hunt Mulies in the afternoon and Rams in the am.

From: bowhunt
27-Jan-24
Rams and mule deer in the rut!

This is going to be good

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
I had the opportunity to check my bows on this “365” target.

This is a “must have”. Great target.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
As Bowhunt mentioned, the rut is in full swing for the deer. After an evening beverage, an area below a steep incline was selected to target this great animal.

27-Jan-24
Some photos on the way to the blind. Did I mention everything bites you in the desert.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

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TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
A young ram on a peak above us.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
After being dropped off at the blind, I began picking apart shooting lanes. Some were 40-50 yards.

About two hours before sunset, deer were on the move.

I glanced to my left and watched two does high tail it through the cactus. Behind them, a 2x3 Mulie. He chased them around a bit and then followed one walking into a shooting lane. I was not interested in shooting him but he certainly was in full rut.

This buck ended up laying down about 35 yards from the blind, keeping a close eye and watching the does feed.

From: Zbone
27-Jan-24
Wow, nice whitetail, CONGRATULATIONS!

Best of luck on the rest of your adventure...

From: Bou'bound
27-Jan-24
The big deer was killed in Iowa

What a horse that was. Great job Rich.

From: BULELK1
27-Jan-24
Stud Iowa buck for sure man.

Keeping this thread going.

Good luck, Robb

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thank you gents. Yes the whitetail was killed in Iowa. I wanted to share it on this thread since it kicked off my 2024 season.

There are Coues here as well.

So many sharp things!

One of the guides lent me leather gloves. The Kuiu gloves I had did not help at all.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
I was accompanied in the blind with Andrea. She is smart beyond her years and knows mule deer and sheep. Having a second set of eyes really made a difference. Andrea just took up shooting a bow and within 3 days she was drilling the target at 20 yards. Of course I was helping where I could and let her know about “ Shot IQ”

27-Jan-24
As the sun was setting, we had a few more does come by. Straight away from the blind we could make out a big deer cruising. What seemed like an eternity was probably seconds, and he appeared in a 33 yard opening, heading towards us following a doe.

He definitely was breeding her based on his actions. At 23 yards, the arrow was on its way.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

From: Treeline
27-Jan-24
Wow! Great whitetail buck and looking forward to this mule deer!

From: bowhunt
27-Jan-24
2 bucks down, and the stories just getting started!

From: Bowboy
27-Jan-24
Please keep it coming. Congrats on the stud whitetail in IA.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thank you Bowboy.

The Ironwilloutfitters S100 blew through him and deflected out a barely nicked a doe.

Very blessed to have had the chance to take this animal.

They say timing is everything, the photos we took with the sunset are amazing.

From: bowhunt
27-Jan-24
Wow!

From: JTreeman
27-Jan-24
I hear there are more photos forthcoming! Congrats man!

—Jim

From: RK
27-Jan-24
Awesome job. Great animal and the photo is spectacular Congrats all around !!!

From: Bowboy
27-Jan-24
Gorgeous buck love the picture.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

From: Papadeerhtr
27-Jan-24
Awesome deer congrats

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
The guides made quick work of skinning and salting the hide for me. Very efficient.

From: midwest
27-Jan-24
He's a beaut! Congrats on the Iowa buck, too!

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thank you Midwest.

A couple of more pics for perspective.

27-Jan-24

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TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

27-Jan-24

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TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
The “ Boyz” hoisting him up.

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
And time for a few more of these. ;)

From: bowhunt
27-Jan-24
Giant bodied buck

Very unique horns.

Bet your super happy!

From: Shug
27-Jan-24
Yes spectacular seems fitting… More please

From: TMac
27-Jan-24
Awesome Rich congrats on some hammers!

From: t-roy
27-Jan-24
Dang, Rich! You’ve set the bar pretty high already, and we’re not even into February! Congrats on some incredible animals, and looking forward to following along for what’s next!

From: bigeasygator
27-Jan-24
Heckuva start indeed! I don't think the story is anywhere near over though :)

27-Jan-24
Awesome! Congrats!!

From: bowhunt
27-Jan-24
Big bucks, guacamole, margaritas, and rams!

Trip of a lifetime.

From: sitO
27-Jan-24
What a buck, and that first pic with him is just awesome!

From: Bou'bound
27-Jan-24
And to think that’s not even a species you planned on hunting on that trip

From: 12yards
27-Jan-24
Holy cow that mulie is massive!

From: Treeline
27-Jan-24
That is one spectacular buck and picture! Congratulations!

27-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
One thing is a standout for me here.

The tag system is incredible. The tag even has a QR code that shows the licensee. The US could use some modification and take heed really.

27-Jan-24
EDIT: For some reason, my post ended up not in chronological order. One may assume that the mule deer hunt was in the mountains based on my post below. That was not the case, The mule deer was shot from a blind, below the mountains.

From: Quinn @work
27-Jan-24
Great Muley buck!! Thanks for sharing the story and photos.

From: Ambush
27-Jan-24
What a beauty muley!! Does he have more mass than most of the bucks there, or just got old enough? Sure puts the "Bonus" in bonus buck!! Congratulations!

And it looks like it gets better!

28-Jan-24
DBL post.

From: Jaquomo
28-Jan-24
Great bucks and story! Can't wait to see the ram!

28-Jan-24
Nice G1s on your mule deer. I'm curious what their measurements were?

28-Jan-24
Nice Whitetail. And I don’t care what that Muley scores. I love the character and mass. And nice shot by the way.

They must have the $hi! Wired tight to kill a rutting MD from a blind that quickly. Congrats.

28-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Haven’t had the chance to score him yet. We hope to get that done today. G1’s I’m told on a Mule Deer are a bonus!

Jay, one would think so but they run a massive amount of cameras. The guide showed me a video he took from the truck, 2 plus miles away. (Wish I could upload it)

They chose the blind set up based on a travel corridor bottleneck from one known populated doe area below a mountain range. Two other great bucks are still in that area. One things for sure, you can see the heavy deer movement runs in the roads here.

From: buckeye
28-Jan-24
What a tank of a mulie. Congratulations

From: SteveB
28-Jan-24
Amazing bucks Rich and beautiful photos! Jealous!

From: molsonarcher
28-Jan-24
Beautiful country there TW! I killed my coues not very far from where you are. I would guess within 20-30 miles. Saw some sheep while down there too.

Congrats on the deer. Both great animals.

It sure looks like theres part of a sheep horn in that pic with all the guides ;)

28-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thanks gents again.

As I sit here and reflect on the hunt, the outfitters dad, at a young 82 just shot a great Coues deer!

So happy for him and he’s a great shot!’

From: BULELK1
29-Jan-24
1 Hell of a Muley buck man---->

Congrats,

Robb

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thank you Robb.

The area I was hunting for Desert Bighorn Sheep has moderate elevation, rock canyons and outcroppings. Lots of loose rock underfoot.

This photo is from the second day of tracking the ram. (*Once again I’m out of chronological order. )

For tracking the Ram, I had a pair of Kuiu gloves and they just were not tough enough to hold the boulders at times. I was fortunate that one of the other guides offered me leather gloves. I was super glad because everything bites or sticks you here. Maneuvering up the mountains would be hell without them. I was grateful they were offered to me.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Backing up a moment, this hunt took place in Caborca , Sonora Mexico at the La Candeleria Ranch. There is over 100,000 acres of land to hunt here.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
The dead heads on this wall are all from sheep that have either died naturally or by predators. Some very impressive ones as well.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
And I have to mention that the hospitality and food was out of this world.

29-Jan-24
Fast forward to when a stud ram was located. This ran was a beast and liked to be about 10 years old.

I admit my heart and mind went a bit haywire and it was game time.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
After getting to a location for a shot, it would be roughly 30 yards.

The ram turned broadside and offered a 28 yard shot. This was the moment. The arrow was on its way.

And now… it gets interesting.

The ram exploded and took off straight up. My heart sank as the arrow looked to be about 2” higher than I wanted. ( Note: I aimed mid section. The arrow impact was not in the spine and there was roughly 4-6” of penetration. My arrows are 30” long, not counting which broad head I shoot)

A lot of arrow hanging out. My fletching can easily be seen by us.

My head hung low. I wanted to throw up. We have all been there. As we watched him crest the boulders, blood was pouring down his side and down his leg. The ram was completely covered in blood on the right side. I honestly didn’t know what to think. Would it be enough? Or am I in Bowhunting hell! Total transparency here, nothing to hide. It was a bad shot, period.

From: Treeline
29-Jan-24
Definitely been there! It’s a bad feeling…

From: Scoot
29-Jan-24
Very fun thread and quite the beginning of the year! Thanks for sharing this with us!

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
I checked the sight, the bow, my mindset. What the hell went wrong. I ranged again and he was 28 yards and I dialed him to 30.

Too late now. Dammit I was pissed.

The guide and I waited an hour before deciding to take up track.

We climbed down and drive out to glass and used the spotting scope in hopes of seeing him. Zero luck.

Of course he went over the highest peak.

I looked up at that spine above us and well, said this is going to be fun.

Up we go. It took about an hour to get up there and where we laid last eyes on him.

The mountains kicked my butt big time while tracking the Ram I shot. Very steep and rocky with loose rocks under foot.

A couple times we got into some sketchy spots but the guides were on point.

I just kept thinking about my shot, over and over.

Today was a day that I will absolutely never, ever forget.

Blood track was good but now it’s late… we have to start back down by 3 pm.

I am in Bowhunters HELL ALL NIGHT.

Replaying everything over and over in my head.

From: Treeline
29-Jan-24
Damn tough sleeping with the animal of your dreams still out there to be found….

From: Bowboy
29-Jan-24
Yep been there. It’s definitely a sleepless night and replaying the scenario 1000 times over.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Literally no sleep and I wake up to hypothesize all scenarios with 3 guides and Martin.

He lets me know, he’s been here before and he felt the Ram might be dead given the amount of blood loss or he will die of infection if not found.

After breakfast, we drive back to where we hiked out. 4 of us head back up with lots of water and lunch. This is beyond my wildest dreams.

To be honest, some of the climb was a bit sketchy. I used a lot of the rock outcropping to hold onto, passing my bow back and forth.

The bow took an absolute beating. All I could think about was a string or cable becoming compromised or the sight bending. Ugh!

After a few breaks, we are at last blood.

Slowly we make our way over the top and along another spine. Martin was in the lead with Andrea.

He picked up real good blood, following it down and sound a corner of a ledge.

I could see the other guides on the road below glassing and using the spotter in case we jumped him.

I made my way down and over to Martin and he whispered he is there! 40 yards. As quick as I could, I tried to get to him to make the shot and the Ram bolted!

Heartbreak number two. I was exhausted, but not willing to give up.

The spotter followed the Ram down the ridge and back up the other side, we were told he was limping and not in good shape. I replayed the shot again and I was positive, I didn’t hit the shoulder.

We sat there to eat lunch and devise another plan.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Lost with my thoughts above the desert.

I walked over to where the ram bedded and there was blood everywhere , but why didn’t he die. He laid against a rock crevice with a big bush in front of him, in hiding but could see anything coming.

Of course “ now what” comes into play.

Martin did not even waiver. He said, we will find him and we will kill him.

I could not have had a better vote of confidence at this time. Im not giving up either. This sheep is exceptional. There no way I’m giving up.

We hiked back out and decided to leave the Ram be. We would opt only to glass the rest of the afternoon.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
No luck laying eyes on him at all.

Of course I’m sick to my stomach. So close!

The shot plays though my mind again for the next 24 hrs. What the heck happened. I obviously hit bone but not the shoulder. Blood now for at least a mile or so, who knows.

The ride back to the ranch was quiet. Everyone’s thoughts could be heard. We were all on the same page . There will be a tomorrow.

I could only now think of the coyotes, Mt. Lions and never finding him.

Over dinner, we did not speak of the tracking or the day. It was time to reflect, recharge and get after it again in the morning.

From: bohuntr
29-Jan-24
Wow, what an emotional rollercoaster on a hunt of a lifetime! Looking forward to seeing you with your ram. The whitetail and mule deer bucks are both amazing, hard to believe you are closing in on a giant ram as well. One helluva start to 2024 indeed!

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Way before first light and I’m up checking my bow all over. I’m outside as the sun breaks shooting some arrows.

Everything is good but my lower cam has me worried a bit. There are some dings . I shoot about another 10 arrows and still good.

At breakfast, I wait for Martin to talk about the plan for today. He and his team have given a monstrous effort up until today.

I sit silent. He knows what I’m thinking. He’s a Bowhunter also. We actually have become very close during this hunt and experience. He grew up here and knows these mountains like no other.

Outside, we speak alone. He reassures me once again and says, “Rich, this a very big Ram, we are not giving up… until we can’t do no more”.

He lets me know he has another guide coming in named Gabby, who is an exceptional tracker. At the same time, he gives me the option to glass from below in case the ram is jumped or go back up. I’m not going to lie, Advil was in order.

The option was to have Andrea, Gabby and another guide go up to the top where the ram was last seen to see if they could pick up blood once again.

We glass from road below. After two hours? I could see the three of them at the top. We then get a radio call that Gabby is following tracks in some sand spots and found a new, broken branch in a bush . We wait……

Then it happens. The ram is just below them and he bolts! Oh no, not again. I hear "he’s seems to be weak and he’s with a younger Ram and Ewe."

They watch and let us know, then the ram went over again then down the mountain.

We then get in the truck and glass a new mountain side.

I’m straining my eyes to find him. Nothing. Then in another language, another guide finds him and we set up the spotter. My heart is absolutely racing now. He’s up there he says!

We race to get the spotting scope up and confirm it’s him. He faced us and there was no denying it was the ram I shot with my bow.

Now it’s time. He’s stationary, just standing and the other two sheep are not with him.

29-Jan-24
Positioning. (*Looking for a way to shoot him and not loose him again)

29-Jan-24
Having him in the position he was in, the shot was steady looked great.

It seemed seconds, he lunged forward and fell over a ledge, it was over!!!

Incredible emotions took over. The amount of adrenaline flowing was exhausting and I couldn’t wait to get to this animal.

This was not only my sheep, it was the entire groups sheep and the massive effort to not give up by all.

I could have never, ever, done this by myself, I admit that.

There are much better sheep hunters than me by far, but that doesn’t mean I’m not as passionate about hunting them.

I absolutely did not go to him until everyone was back. This was very important to me. Smiles everywhere, high fives, hugs, handshakes, you name it, it happened.

29-Jan-24

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

29-Jan-24
Boarding the first flight home from Tuscon.

I’ll wrap this up for those interested later this eve or in the am.

Thank you for tagging along.

From: Zbone
29-Jan-24
Wow, amazing... Great muley, CONGRATS, and CONGRATS on your ram...

From: Scoot
29-Jan-24
Outstanding! Many congrats!

From: t-roy
29-Jan-24
Great stuff, Rich, but we need more pics! Congrats on a beautiful ram!

From: Matt
29-Jan-24
Congrats and way for the team to stick to it.

From: Bou'bound
29-Jan-24
“For those interested”

Talk about stating the obvious. This whole site is interested!!!!! Great job and the more Details and photos the better. It’s a long flight from Tucson to New York. You have lots of time to type details and post pictures !!!!!

From: Jaquomo
29-Jan-24
Excellent, Rich!

From: milnrick
29-Jan-24
Thank you for sharing your adventure with us. Your writing style made many of us feel we were there.

Well done! Thanks for sharing and most importantly CONGRATULATIONS on 3 amazing trophies.

29-Jan-24

29-Jan-24
Martin wrapped his hands around the left base and they didn’t touch. Not that in really knew what that meant but it was over 17”! I never scored sheep and it started to sink in. He was gorgeous really.

From: Bowboy
29-Jan-24
What a stud of a ram congrats! Everyones locating the ram paid off.

29-Jan-24
Edit photo removed.

29-Jan-24
Craig.

They did not give up. Amazing guides and heart.

29-Jan-24

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
This is a “ shared” Ram.

This a clip of a video from the 2 Of the 3 guides who tracked and spotted him the last day.

Total celebration!!!

29-Jan-24

From: Treeline
29-Jan-24
You definitely had to go through an emotional rollercoaster on that one! Congratulations on a hard earned ram! So glad it ended on such a high note! Looks like a whopper ram for sure! Awesomeness!

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
These guys.

They brought a huge heavy duty tarp up the mountain, to carry is down whole!

Man oh man, thank you!!

From: t-roy
29-Jan-24
Wow! What a beautiful ram, Rich! Congrats again!!

From: Shug
29-Jan-24
Outstanding

From: Cajunarcher
29-Jan-24
Huge congratulations Rich!! Those sheep are super tough!! Hellava job sticking with that ram to finish the job. Thanks for sharing your amazing hunt with Martin and his entire crew! Such a special place to get to experience!!

Lee

From: Gib
29-Jan-24
Sa

From: Bowboy
29-Jan-24
Rich are you doing a full body mount of the ram?

From: Rob in VT
29-Jan-24
What an incredible trip. Congratulations!

29-Jan-24
Congrats Rich, heck of a start to a new year! Thanks for taking us along !

From: TMac
29-Jan-24
Wow what an adventure and beautiful ram congrats Rich!

From: Shug
29-Jan-24
Outstanding

29-Jan-24
Well done!!

It's an awesome place! I had a blast riding around the ranch in the high rack, just observing!! Saw a ton of bucks and the weather was awesome!

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thanks again guys. I would like to share more photos.

Bowboy…. I’m not sure at this point, however the hide is prepped for that.

Scott, you’re so right!

Again the very cool tags.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Full mount prep by the guys.

Very meticulously done I might add.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
A photo of my hides and horns. :)

I stood there for awhile. As hunters we take lives.

Then it hit me. Only a few hours ago, this ram was alive, trying to evade us.

The thoughts that crossed my mind then where many.

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
That night, we had a fantastic celebratory dinner.

Beef ribs, street tacos made on a wood fired grill, a few margaritas and wonderful red wine.

The entire crew was invited by Martin.

What can I say other than it was fabulous.

Even Martin’s dad was there. A lifelong hunter himself has trophies beyond your imagination. Polar bear, Marco Polo sheep, you name it. We had a language barrier, but not when it came to hunting.

A champagne toast to all.

“SALUD”!!!!!

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Martins dad showing me his trophy photos. He was very happy about mine.

He will be 83 this year.

I had the privilege of seeing some of his mounts and many, many trophies photos.

Then it dawned on me, I’m sitting with a world traveler who must have some amazing stories like mine.

His taken a huge Russian brown bear and once, a plane he was on flipped over and survived a crash.

Long love the hunt.

29-Jan-24
DBL post

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Getting there, Lol!

29-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
A photo of the actual branch the tracker located after the tracks in the sand.

If you look super close, there is a sheep hair on it. No joke!

The hair is right at the break.

From: Willieboat
29-Jan-24
Thanks for sharing congrats on your success!

From: kota-man
29-Jan-24
Wow…what a great trip. Congrats on a great year so far…Great read.

29-Jan-24
Wow! Awesome thread!! Three incredible animals! Thanks for taking the time to share. Let’s get more of these detailed hunting stories on bowsite!!!

From: Nick Muche
29-Jan-24
Awesome trip! Hard to tell from the photos, where did your first and second arrows hit the ram? Sounds like great blood with the first, and assume you spined him with the second arrow cause he fell right over?

From: Ron Niziolek
30-Jan-24
Heck of a year so far!

From: Pocoloco
30-Jan-24
Great way to start the year with those 3 trophies. Exceptional and epic! I like those 365 Archery targets too. They are though.

From: BULELK1
30-Jan-24
Ram-tastic---->

Congrats man,

Robb

From: Mad Trapper
30-Jan-24
Outstanding! Congrats!!

From: njbuck
30-Jan-24
Rich, congrats again on one hell of an adventure. Martin sure does have an amazing piece of paradise there. 2024 is off to a great start, looking forward to hunting with you in Sept!!

From: iceman
30-Jan-24
What a ride! Congrats again, bud! Thank you for sharing your adventure with us

From: BOHNTR
30-Jan-24
What an incredible post and hunt…..not to be outdone by the quality of the animals taken. Congratulations and thank you for sharing it, Rich. Well done, sir!

From: Treeline
30-Jan-24
Definitely an Epic Year! Not sure how you top the Mexico experience! Spectacular country, companionship, animals, food, hunt, and outcome! You made me feel like I was right there with you as you told the incredible story! Huge Congratulations!

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thanks again gents! I agree on what Mike says above.

More stories no matter the hunt. I really enjoy them myself.

Bou. I had some time to wrap this up and you mentioned. After landing in Minneapolis, the next plant at take off had brakes issues. We had to wait for maintenance only to deplane and wait for another one. ;)

Again, thank you everyone.

I’m going to share some last photos from this unbelievable trip.

Rich

Everyone helps fleshing out the hide and skull, even Martin.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Gross green score: 176.5”

From: Bou'bound
30-Jan-24
World Class and with a bow. Amazing.

30-Jan-24
Martin and his daughter Andrea are great people. I was very happy to have spent time with them on this trip.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Quick pic on the way down on day two of blood trailing.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
The morning the entire crews gear was loaded into the truck.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
A wonderful gift from Martin.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
The highest peak on that mountain range in the photo is where the most tracking and encounters took place.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
In the background is the ocean.

The famous “ Tibouron Island” is just south of this photo.

30-Jan-24
It’s important to me to include everyone.

The guys came out to load the deer.

Whenever possible the animals are brought whole, back to the ranch.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
This spice is fantastic on fruit. I mainly used it on oranges. I did get to bring some samples home, gifted by Martin.

From: Beav
30-Jan-24
Incredible! Thanks for taking the time to share this with us!

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
In closing, a special Bowsite thanks goes out to Lee, ( Cajunarcher) Rob (NJbuck) and Frank N.

You guys are the best and what Bowsite is truly about.

“ Come as a client, leave as a friend” Martin

From: Nick Muche
30-Jan-24
Hey Rich, where did the arrows end up hitting him?

From: Bou'bound
30-Jan-24
Rich how do you get the capes and rack / horns back home.

30-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Martin takes to Hermosillo for the Cities permit and the Wildlife Shipment - Declaration Form 3-177 for importation into the US. Of course there are added shipping costs and fee for the process.

While crossing the border back into the US, a US Fish and Game officer actually inspected my bags and bow cases.

His comment to me was do not attempt to have your trophies shipped without the 3-177 and the sheep horn plugged, otherwise they would be confiscated. I’m told by other Bowsiters that have been there to anticipate some delay.

From: midwest
31-Jan-24
What a ride...congrats, Rich, and thanks for sharing it all!

31-Jan-24

TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
TREESTANDWOLF's embedded Photo
Thanks all!

From: huntinelk
31-Jan-24
Great way to start 2024. Congratulations on the success. Martin definitely runs a top shelf operation.

From: RK
31-Jan-24
Rich. Awesome adventure Would it be possible to share where your initial arrow went on the sheep? And details how you got into position for the final shot.

From: sticksender
01-Feb-24
Outstanding trophies, congrats.

Curious where did the two arrows hit your ram?

From: GhostBird
01-Feb-24
Outstanding... epic for sure. Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!!

01-Feb-24
What a year already. Congrats on the great trophies

03-Feb-24
Congrats on three exceptional animals! Great mass on all of them! Thanks for sharing with your internet family.

03-Feb-24
Rich, can I ask is it low fence, free range hunting or high fence? I’m just curious. No offence if it’s high fenced. Are the mountains private land? Wondering how it works in Mexico? Awesome adventure no matter what!

04-Feb-24
Thank you.

PM sent Mike.

From: Shug
06-Feb-24
Rich would the first arrow have killed it at some point?

06-Feb-24
Shug.

Without question but that was not an option (“at some point”) after seeing the blood loss and distance it went, IMO. The feelings were we could get on him before he expired. Martin expressed that if we didn’t locate the ram, he would eventually die from infection.

After dressing out the Ram, it was obvious the penetration’was not ideal.

I’m incredibly grateful that the outfitter had some very good people involved.

Collectively, nobody gave up.

06-Feb-24
Well done.

06-Feb-24
Thanks Rich! Great story and pics!!

From: Shug
06-Feb-24
Dbl post

From: otcWill
06-Feb-24
Good stuff Sir. Congrats!

From: Chief 419
06-Feb-24
Congrats on a helluva ram! Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us. That’s one of the toughest animals to get. What’s the next target species for this year?

From: DL
06-Feb-24
Fantastic year doesn’t begin to describe it. That’s a year dreams are made of. Congratulations, memories for a lifetime. So what’s on the list for this fall? Going to be hard to top this. Thanks for posting all of the pictures and story. Great job man.

06-Feb-24
Thank you gents. Lord willing I will we be traveling to Greenland with some Bowsite guys for Musk Ox and Caribou. >>>------------> I will be great to share camp with this crew.

From: arlone
06-Feb-24
Thank you for taking me along on this great adventure. Congratulations on your success! The ram was a bit nerve racking I'm sure, but looks like you had some good trackers! Hoping it all gets to you and your taxidermist. Good luck with the Greenland trip, will look forward to a good report again.

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