onX Maps
Arctic Red River Bound!
Wild Sheep
Contributors to this thread:
Earltex 11-Jul-14
Bou'bound 11-Jul-14
bill v 11-Jul-14
stick n string 11-Jul-14
JW 11-Jul-14
Kurt 11-Jul-14
kota-man 11-Jul-14
loesshillsarcher 11-Jul-14
Shug 11-Jul-14
flyingbrass 11-Jul-14
flyingbrass 11-Jul-14
Bowboy 11-Jul-14
TurkeyBowMaster 11-Jul-14
Fulldraw1972 11-Jul-14
Earltex 11-Jul-14
LTG 11 11-Jul-14
LWood 11-Jul-14
Bigpizzaman 12-Jul-14
Florida Mike 12-Jul-14
elmer@laptop 12-Jul-14
bearhunter 12-Jul-14
bearhunter 12-Jul-14
caribou77 12-Jul-14
cubbies77 12-Jul-14
Adventurewriter 13-Jul-14
BULELK1 13-Jul-14
Earltex 13-Jul-14
Mark Watkins 13-Jul-14
PeroteHunter 13-Jul-14
Dennis Razza 13-Jul-14
Hawkeye 13-Jul-14
painless 13-Jul-14
Ace 13-Jul-14
Mad Trapper 14-Jul-14
tthomas 14-Jul-14
tthomas 15-Jul-14
Ace 15-Jul-14
Florida Mike 15-Jul-14
Earltex 27-Jul-14
Bowboy 27-Jul-14
flyingbrass 27-Jul-14
LWood 27-Jul-14
Drop tine 27-Jul-14
tthomas 27-Jul-14
Mark Watkins 27-Jul-14
BULELK1 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
njbuck 28-Jul-14
Drop tine 28-Jul-14
Medicinemann 28-Jul-14
APauls 28-Jul-14
Bou'bound 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Earltex 28-Jul-14
Paul@thefort 28-Jul-14
Nesser 28-Jul-14
Mark Watkins 28-Jul-14
Straight Shooter 28-Jul-14
Bou'bound 29-Jul-14
Beav 29-Jul-14
Toby 29-Jul-14
Reflex 29-Jul-14
HUNT MAN 29-Jul-14
Ace 29-Jul-14
Stekewood 29-Jul-14
elmer@laptop 29-Jul-14
Earltex 29-Jul-14
Earltex 29-Jul-14
Earltex 29-Jul-14
Earltex 29-Jul-14
Earltex 29-Jul-14
BOWUNTR 29-Jul-14
'Ike' (Phone) 30-Jul-14
Straight Shooter 30-Jul-14
speedgoat 30-Jul-14
BULELK1 30-Jul-14
Shrewski 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Ace 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
tthomas 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
'Ike' 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Earltex 30-Jul-14
Gaur 30-Jul-14
writer 30-Jul-14
Tilzbow 30-Jul-14
boschman158 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
HoytSlinger 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
loesshillsarcher 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
loesshillsarcher 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
kota-man 31-Jul-14
buzz mc 31-Jul-14
Sage Buffalo 31-Jul-14
elmer@laptop 31-Jul-14
Medicinemann 31-Jul-14
iceman 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
coonazz 31-Jul-14
loesshillsarcher 31-Jul-14
sharpstick 31-Jul-14
JLS 31-Jul-14
Stekewood 31-Jul-14
Southern draw 31-Jul-14
Mark Watkins 31-Jul-14
Southern draw 31-Jul-14
caribou77 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
leo17 31-Jul-14
Ace 31-Jul-14
Bou'bound 31-Jul-14
Earltex 31-Jul-14
Bigpizzaman 31-Jul-14
Iaintafraidofnotag 31-Jul-14
BULELK1 31-Jul-14
'Ike' 31-Jul-14
bentstick 31-Jul-14
HUNT MAN 31-Jul-14
writer 31-Jul-14
Drop tine 31-Jul-14
Hawkeye 31-Jul-14
Fulldraw1972 31-Jul-14
LWood 31-Jul-14
speedgoat 01-Aug-14
Gaur 01-Aug-14
njbuck 01-Aug-14
otcWill 01-Aug-14
HoytSlinger 01-Aug-14
TREESTANDWOLF 01-Aug-14
TD 01-Aug-14
ridgerunnerron 01-Aug-14
Shrewski 02-Aug-14
steff 02-Aug-14
Charlie Rehor 02-Aug-14
Busta'Ribs 02-Aug-14
Earltex 04-Aug-14
From: Earltex
11-Jul-14
Leaving tomorrow for an archery sheep hunt with Arctic Red River Outfitters. This is my third archery sheep hunt, my second with ARRO and anxiously seeking archery kill #1. I hope the third time is a charm in the 40" variety. Do-over sheep hunts can be painful in many ways, just ask my wife.

Preparation for this hunt was overall fairly easy. From a physical fitness standpoint I am ready since I really never stopped my fitness program from last fall. Packing was also fairly simple with back to back trips. Having Tom Foss's gear list is also a big help.

Last year was a great hunt and I had every intention of making a post on bowsite successful or not but opted to keep it to myself. Arctic Red and their guides are the best and we left it all on the mountain for 12 days only to come home empty handed. Mentally and physically it was brutal; hunting wire to wire is never easy, but the memories will be with me forever. It was a blast.

I promise to give you an update good or bad after the 28th. Wish me luck!

From: Bou'bound
11-Jul-14
I wish you luck!

From: bill v
11-Jul-14
Good Luck Earl, hope 3rd times a charm!

Bill v

11-Jul-14
Git r dun! Good luck

From: JW
11-Jul-14
Good luck. Share pics when you return!

From: Kurt
11-Jul-14
Get one, if you don't succeed this year keep going back. Persistence pays with a bow in hand. Took me five licenses to kill my first bighorn and I am on my fourth license this year and have yet to get my first stone. The other bighorn and desert came easier (one hunt each) but you never know. Enjoy the hunt, and sometimes it just comes to you if you are on the mountain.

From: kota-man
11-Jul-14
Awesome...I've done Mountain Caribou with ARRO and as you know, they are fantastic. I WILL do sheep with them sometime soon Good Luck!

11-Jul-14
Hope you will have a great hunt

From: Shug
11-Jul-14
Safe and successful. ...

From: flyingbrass
11-Jul-14
lets see a link to Tom Foss gear list

From: flyingbrass
11-Jul-14
lets see a link to Tom Foss gear list

From: Bowboy
11-Jul-14
Good luck! Remember to post pictures and a story when you get back!

11-Jul-14
How come you didn't kill a couple on your first two trips? Didn't se any to shoot at? Miss?

From: Fulldraw1972
11-Jul-14
Good luck!!

From: Earltex
11-Jul-14
Kurt - Thanks for the words of encouragement. I have another trip booked for next year just in case...

Kota man - my first hunt with ARRO was for Mtn Caribou. I saw so many rams while flying around that I couldn't resist booking a hunt.

Flying brass - I will ask Tom to post his gear list. Dont want to distribute his secrets to the masses.

TBM - I have not drawn my bow on a ram yet. I have taken a ram with a rifle and it was quite easy and uneventful...kinda like bowhunting turkey.

Bow hunting sheep is tough and I respect those that are successful. Can't wait to join that fraternity one day.

From: LTG 11
11-Jul-14
Good luck and have a great hunt!

Post lots of pics!

From: LWood
11-Jul-14
Good luck, Earl.

From: Bigpizzaman
12-Jul-14
Get'er done!! Good Luck!! You got Foss's list now borrow Jake's Horseshoe!!!

From: Florida Mike
12-Jul-14
"You got Foss's list now borrow Jake's Horseshoe!!! BPM"

Just don't touch Jakes hat....LOL!

I am hunting Dall sheep in Alaska this year, I was cautiously optimistic until I read this thread. Now I'm wondering how many times it will take me to kill a sheep! LOL, Goodluck Earl anyway! Mike

From: elmer@laptop
12-Jul-14
hope you can post a semi live hunt even if it is after your hunt!

From: bearhunter
12-Jul-14
Good luck. Will be watching with interest

From: bearhunter
12-Jul-14
Good luck. Will be watching with interest

From: caribou77
12-Jul-14
Best of luck to you!

From: cubbies77
12-Jul-14
Good Luck!!

13-Jul-14
good luck!!!

From: BULELK1
13-Jul-14
Have fun, be safe and enjoy!

Good luck, Robb

From: Earltex
13-Jul-14
Update - Things are not going well. Got to Edmonton last night and my bow case did not arrived. Two words - United Airlines....I had a bad feeling when I was dealing with the people at check in. Easily the most confused and inept group of people I have ever dealt with and this was at the First Class check in desk!! The bows and bow case really confused them. I told them to get me a TSA agent asap and he assured them that it was not a firearm, did a security check of my equipment and signed off. This took an hour.

I stressed to them that my bow case had to arrive on time or it would be a nightmare. Well, its a nightmare. Im headed to camp anyway and hope my bow can get to camp via charter in coming days. It will be very, very expensive.

I would ask again to wish me luck but right now I need divine intervention to get this trip back on track .

From: Mark Watkins
13-Jul-14
Good luck! Stay positive and good things will happen!

Mark

From: PeroteHunter
13-Jul-14
Extra good luck, hope the gear shows -

I am so paranoid that I have two identical setups. One I ship to the outfitter several weeks ahead of time and one that I travel with -

Good luck again!

From: Dennis Razza
13-Jul-14
Best of luck to you!!!

From: Hawkeye
13-Jul-14
Good luck! Stay positive and good things happen:)

From: painless
13-Jul-14
Hope the bow shows up. Had a similar experience once flying to NM for a deer hunt. The idiots at check in for American Airlines insisted that the bowcase betagged as a fire arm. Flew from Shreveport to Dallas to Albq. Never saw my bow or caser again.

From: Ace
13-Jul-14
Good luck Earl. I hope the bow arrives soon and this just becomes an interesting start to a great story.

Hang in there.

From: Mad Trapper
14-Jul-14
Good Luck Earl! and Good LUCK MIKE! This is your year!

From: tthomas
14-Jul-14
Guys, if anyone hears from Earl, let me know. I can get a bow to him if he needs one.

From: tthomas
15-Jul-14
Has anyone heard from Earl? Did he find his bow. I have one at ARRO now if he needs it.

From: Ace
15-Jul-14
Tom, that's an incredible offer, you're a class act sir!

From: Florida Mike
15-Jul-14
Very generous Tom! Mike

From: Earltex
27-Jul-14
Just got back from Arctic Red Country. What an awesome trip. As promised, I will get you an update over the next few days.

First of all, I wanted to get Flying Brass and others that are interested my gear list:

1 Kuiu attack pants

1 Kuiu long sleeve merino wool zip t shirt

1 Columbia t shirt

2 Adidas syn boxer briefs

1 REI convertible hiking pants - since the weather was quite warm I wore these most of the trip.

1 kuiu down pullover - one of the best pieces of hunting gear I own

3 pairs of Cabelas socks and liners

Kuiu wool hat and neck gaiter

Kuiu gaiters

Kuiu cap

Sun glasses

2 pair light gloves - didn't use

Kuiu belt

Lowa cevedale tech lite hunter

Kuiu Mountain Star 2 person tent

Marmot Helium 15 degree down bag

Thermarest noeair sleep pad

Sea to summit Aeros inflatable pillow

Bug headnet - lots of bugs but didn't use

Insect repellant - same as above

Platypus bladder

Nalgene water bottle

3 - s/m/l kuiu dry bags

Book

Toiletries- toothbrush. Toothpaste small bottle liq soap, disinfectant wipes, baby wipes, Advil, Aleve, Sunscreen, chapstick

Freeze dried food - 12 days

Cashews

Kirkland Sahale Pecan cashew Trail mix - awesome stuff

1 protein bar per day

1 candy bar per day

Meat sticks and jerky

1 ramen noodle per day

2 packs of oatmeal per day

Cajun Seasoning

Various individual drink mixes

Coffee

Spoon

Bowl

Cup

Hoyt Carbon element and backup(at camp)

CBE sight

16 Easton arrow

16 Ulmer edge broad heads

carter quickie 2 release and backup

Tight spot quiver

Bow sling

Arrow holder tube

Swarovski binoculars

Leica range finder

Camera with extra battery

Small flexible camera tripod

Spare rangefinder battery

Lens cloth

Komperdell Ultralight Vario 4 Carbon fibre walking stick - Not very durable - Broke into several pieces

Mystery ranch pack

Hip belt pouch

Knife and sharpener

String

Archery tool

Bowstring wax

Broad head holders

Judo tips

Target tips

Broad head wrench

Nock turner

I pod and headphones

At camp:

Backup boots

Backup bow

Dry bag

Clean clothes for trip home

Cash for tip

Headlamp - left in base camp since daylight was nearly 24 hrs

From: Bowboy
27-Jul-14
Looking forward to your post. Also nice gear list.

From: flyingbrass
27-Jul-14
pics?

From: LWood
27-Jul-14
Earl, Can't wait to here the story. Lenny

From: Drop tine
27-Jul-14
Did you need to supply your own food, tent and utensils or did ARRO supply some of it?

From: tthomas
27-Jul-14
Earl

What did you pack weight when you flew out of camp? My guess is at least 60#'s

From: Mark Watkins
27-Jul-14
Earl, Welcome home. Look forward to hearing your adventure! Did you take rain gear?

Mark

From: BULELK1
28-Jul-14
Exciting!!

Can't wait for your follow-up.

Good luck, Robb

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14
Droptine - ARRO supplied Tent, Bowl, Cup, spoon, freeze dried food, protein/candy bars, oatmeal. To control weight, calories and portions I will probably pack my own food next time. I would say that I probably carried 3-5 lbs of food I didn't use.

Tom - Starting off I would say that my pack did weigh about 60 lbs which included 12 days worth of food. That is alot to start with.

I will be a bit more diligent with weight control in the future. I believe I could have shaved at least 5-7 lbs off the load. This used to not be an issue, but over the course of the trip it was burdensome. For starters I would like to get lighter rain gear and reduce some of the food and archery related stuff I brought.

Mark Watkins - I wore rain gear probably half of the trip. It seemed like every time we started a climb the rain would start.

From: njbuck
28-Jul-14
Cant wait to hear the story and see the pictures

From: Drop tine
28-Jul-14
Thanks Earl. I am looking at doing ARRO in the next few years and I look forward to hearing your story.

From: Medicinemann
28-Jul-14
Earl,

There must be a problem with my computer.....it doesn't show your posted story yet (small hint).....

From: APauls
28-Jul-14
Waiting with baited breath.....

From: Bou'bound
28-Jul-14
I am sure you got animals, but most curious how the bow snafu was resolved with the airline.

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14
As promised I will give a recap of my archery Dall sheep hunt with Arctic Red River Outfitters (ARRO).

July 12 Departed Houston Texas for a non stop flight to Edmonton. As some of you already know my bow did not arrive at my destination. My checkin with United was one of the worst I have ever experienced. I travel at least twice annually with archery gear and right off the bat I knew my bow case wouldn't make it. The staff and managers at the checkin desk were absolutely confused with how to handle my gear. Seeing the confusion, I immediately asked for a TSA representative and we quickly cleaned up the situation...or so I thought.

After contacting ARRO's Tavis Molnar, he advised that I travel on to Norman Wells and then to camp without my bow and assured me he would get it to me when it arrived. Reluctantly I agreed and traveled on. This later proved to be a good plan.

July 13 Left Edmonton and flew to ARRO's base camp with the other hunters. The group included Adam Foss, Mark Seacat and crew as well as Matt and his wife Jaime from Reno. Another bow hunter had his flight cancelled and would arrive in another day or two.

In Norman Wells we all repacked our gear and left the luggage and bow/rifle cases with North Wright air traveling on with only backpacks and weapons of choice.

We then flew the North Wright air twin otter to ARRO's camp. There was so much excitement in the air on the flight in.

Immediately after arriving my gear was loaded into a supercub and Tavis flew me to my hunting area where I would spend the next 12 days my guide Kelly Robertson. Since season doesn't start for another two days we have adequate time to scout and, of course, wait for my bow to arrive.

Kelly is an awesome guide with 35 sheep taken under his watch. I am confident we will get it done.

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Watch out Adam...

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Arctic Red is truly a family operation. Here is Tavis's beautiful wife Rebecca Coleman with their new addition to the family. As in the past I brought candy for the kids Daxton, Cohen and Austin... something I'm not sure Rebecca totally agrees with but oh well, I will be gone soon!

On a somber note, on the walk into camp I learned that Kira Molnar, Tavis's sister, passed away earlier this year from Leukemia. Kira, Trevor and their son Austin were a key part of the ARRO team and its just not the same without them here.

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14
July 14 and 15 At this point it was completely unknown when or if my bow would arrive. Tavis decided that he would fly me out a rifle just in case the bow never showed. I was extremely grateful for the gesture but deep down I was not happy. For the next two days I carried the gun with me praying that I would not be tempted to use it. I was not here to rifle kill a sheep. I've done that already.

Kevin and I had a serious conversation on the mountain around the rifle. In an attempt to make me feel better about the situation, he mentioned that taking a sheep is a challenge, rifle or bow, and that I should be equally please with both. I disagreed. I was not there to take a ram with a rifle. I would have NEVER booked the trip if that was going to be the end result.

All of the hard work and hours I put into getting fit, practicing at the archery range and preparing my gear was done with the end goal of taking a ram with archery gear. I was not going to settle for anything less.

To make a long story short, my bow arrived the evening of July 15th, opening day. Kelly and I hiked several valleys around the strip and maximized our time in the field.

The moment my bow arrived, my spirits changed. I was ready to go. It should be noted that Tavis did everything he could do the expedite getting the bow to me. When it sat it Edmonton for two days he burned 30+ minutes of satellite phone time pleading with the United airline staff to just take it to Canadian North, something they failed to do. They said they left messages and were going to handle it their way.

When the bow arrived in Norman Wells Tavis had a plane waiting and my case was delivered by his cub pilot Mark Harris directly to me in the field. That is incredible customer service...at a significant cost. Tavis would have it no other way.

An equal effort was given by my wife Kelley on the other end to get it done. She is an awesome wife. She woke up at all hours of the night to talk to anyone and everyone who could help. As bad as it was, there is no doubt there would have be further delays without her effort.

My business with United is not finished. I will have a meeting with their customer service department at their office here in Houston to not only settle the issues I endured but also try to help change policy with how they handle archery equipment. It is obvious that their personnel are not trained properly and I hope to change that.

Now the hunt begins.....

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
The reluctant rife hunter...

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
There is no way to describe the thrill when my bow arrived.

From: Earltex
28-Jul-14
Getting tired...I will continue the story tomorrow. Thank to all tuning in. I hope you are enjoying the story thus far.

From: Paul@thefort
28-Jul-14
Exciting for sure as the hair on the back of my neck just stood up. "the hunt begins".

My best, Paul

From: Nesser
28-Jul-14
Ahhh....dang! Thanks Earl, this is great reading

From: Mark Watkins
28-Jul-14
Bring it on Earl!!!!

Mark

28-Jul-14
Earl, glad to hear your bow showed up, sounds like you had a couple great advocates expediting the situation. Excited to hear how the hunt turned out.

DJ

From: Bou'bound
29-Jul-14
Glad it worked out!

From: Beav
29-Jul-14
Can't wait for more. Thanks!

From: Toby
29-Jul-14
Now the hunt starts!!! Good luck I am sure you will get it done!!!

From: Reflex
29-Jul-14
Awesome!! Looking forward to the rest of the story

From: HUNT MAN
29-Jul-14
Man This is great. I am so glad some hunting seasons are opening up. Can't wait for the rest. HUNT

From: Ace
29-Jul-14
Sheeh, how tired were you Earl? Or are you just building the anticipation?

Glad your bow showed up, waiting for more details!

From: Stekewood
29-Jul-14
Looking forward to more!

From: elmer@laptop
29-Jul-14
dang dude....leaving us hanging already!!! Not Nice :o)

From: Earltex
29-Jul-14
My apologies for the delay. There is lots to do around the house after being gone for two weeks.

For the next 9 days of the hunt we will take a point A to point B route through some of the most beautiful country Arctic Red has to offer. About half way through the trip we will have to navigate a significant mountain pass. By then we will have half of the food eaten and lighter packs. Hopefully our packs are heavy with sheep by then.

We moved camp everyday and explored EVERY feeder valley and hidden basin along the route. On day two the first valley explored delivered our first rams of the trip. Seven in all. The oldest of the group was an estimated 8 year old full curl ram. Plenty good for me but not for Kelly. Arctic Red prides itself with taking rams >10 years of age or older; last year they averaged 11 years for all rams taken. With most of the trip in front of us it was not hard to walk away. I hope I dont regret it later...

From: Earltex
29-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Kelly checking out our rams.

From: Earltex
29-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Rams - trust me.

From: Earltex
29-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
29-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
So much fun.

From: BOWUNTR
29-Jul-14
Very cool... Keep it coming. Ed F

30-Jul-14
Excellent adventure...

30-Jul-14
Looks like Mystery Ranch is the pack of "choice". Great pictures, look forward to hearing the rest of the story.

DJ

From: speedgoat
30-Jul-14
Definitely good reading. I hope it does not take as long to get the story as it did to do the hunt. Great photos too.

From: BULELK1
30-Jul-14
This is great and everything seems to have fallen in place with the arrival of your bow!

Good luck, Robb

From: Shrewski
30-Jul-14
Man, do I miss sheep hunting. Have to find a way to get to NWT.

You have "camera" on your gear list. Can you give more detail on that? Those are some great photos so far.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14
Days 3-7 proved to be the most grueling of the trip. We would hike to the headwaters of the river valley we were hunting and then cross the pass.

Unfortunately we did not see many rams in this stretch.

The weather was sunny and warm on some days and rainy on others. The rain seemed to come in waves almost hourly day and night which made it a challenge to stay dry. My Kuiu Yukon raingear and Mountain star 2p tent performed well in the downpours. I really like Kuiu's new tent. Easy to set up and comfortable for one person. ARRO uses them exclusively for their operation.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Taking a break after a steep climb.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
One of several rainbows sighted.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
There were miles and miles of rocks to walk. Not sure how you really train to take this on but after a few days I adapted.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Camping at the pass.

From: Ace
30-Jul-14
I notice that the tents are set up pretty far apart.

I figure that means one of you is a big time snorer, or perhaps has a gassier reaction to Mountain House meals than the other guy.

Or maybe Kelly thinks that the grizzly bears are more likely to approach from a certain direction, and so he set up your tent along the most likely path, that way while you're being eaten he can get outta dodge?

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14
Ace - so observant. Most of your comments are totally accurate. Its funny how my guides carry a gun EVERYWHERE they go....and are fine with me having nothing.

In this case we targeted two separate flat spots.

From: tthomas
30-Jul-14
Earl

Did you carry bear spray? Impossible to carry it with you in your baggage and tough to buy up there. Did they have any spares laying around?

Figure the best way would be to mail it up there.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14
No bear spray. In all the years hunting with ARRO I have never seen nor been offered a can. Might consider in the future.

From: 'Ike'
30-Jul-14
Great, now you 'jinxed' him Tom! ;-)

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14
It was not until the seventh day that we saw a ram worthy of pursuit. To say I was excited would be an understatement.

Honestly, I had hit a low point that day mentally and physically. It had been a week so far and we were giving it our all and not seeing any big rams.

Things quickly changed when Kevin made his signature "I just spotted a ram" move which is a sweeping, circular hand gesture next to his head.

The ram was bedded with a younger one and after a careful look through the spotting scope we determined it to be at least 8 and in the mid 30's range. Although it wasn't up to par with the Outfitters average, it was good enough for me and worth a try.

Both rams were bedded in a very high, rocky wash and we would have to walk exposed to get in a better position for a stalk.

Doing our best caribou imitation we were able to get in position to climb the valley to the left of the bedded rams. Kevin suspected the rams would get up and feed on the lush vegetation to the right and it would allow us to follow them until a shot presented itself.

In no time we climbed the steep wash and peeked over the ridge at the same elevation of the bedded sheep only to learn that they were up and feeding another 200 yds uphill from their original position. And to make matters worse, the rams fed toward the ridge we were on and directly down wind. In no time they were on full alert and spotted us from their vantage point.

We made a last ditch attempt to close the distance and stalked to 110 yds of the fully alert rams. Eventually they had enough and we pushed them out of the area.

Walking down the hill we looked back and realized that they only walked two ridges over and bedded down 3-400 yds from were we last saw them.

Wisely we left them alone and hoped to find them again in the remaining 3 days of the hunt. I wanted this ram.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
The rams were bedded in the middle valley at the highest point. We stalked up the valley on the left.

From: Earltex
30-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
This is where we left em for the day.

From: Gaur
30-Jul-14
Boy they look untouchable there. Cool picture. got a close up through the spotting scope?

From: writer
30-Jul-14
Wow, this is so much fun.

Thanks for taking the time to put it online.

I'd rather look at these threads than about anything, just ask my boss or my wife. (I know, the latter of the two is technically both!)

From: Tilzbow
30-Jul-14
Great stuff so far! Please post faster, you're killing us!!!

From: boschman158
31-Jul-14
Enjoying the thread earl! Keep it coming! Good point TThomas I never even thought abouts airlines reactions to trying to bring bear spray

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14
Thank you so much for the patience. Between work and home obligations, available time to complete the story is very limited.

So we left the sheep alone and decided to get back early the following day to find the rams. Given that they only travel 3-400 yds after the initial contact we were encouraged that they would be close.

The good news is that we found the rams right of the bat. They had crossed the valley and joined up with another small ram. The bad news is that they were very high and headed to the next valley to the south.

They valley they moved into was not an area we intended to hunt in our original plans but we decided to spend the remaining 3 days in pursuit.

It took us the rest of the day to move camp to the new area and the route required sidehilling all day. Walking long distances on a constant sidehill pitch is usually a requirement for sheep hunting but I hate it...alot.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
The rams fed up and over the saddle on the right side of the valley. Rough country.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
On day 8 we moved camp to the next valley to the South. Stunning.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14
On the way my guide cut a track of a really nice ram....unfortunately we were too late.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
Too late is an understatement. Here is the ram.

From: HoytSlinger
31-Jul-14
Awesome read so far, loving it!

Some extremely beautiful country.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
On day 9 we hike up the drainage where we last saw the rams moved into from the North. Sadly we were not able to find them. I was devastated.

On the way in we saw a younger ram to the south and given we only had less than two days to hunt we decided to give it a go.

The ram was perched on a high lookout and dropped down to some parallel sheep trails headed toward the mouth of the valley.

31-Jul-14
If and when I type up my next sheep hunt, I am gonna lay it out all at once. This is torture. LOL. bring it

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14
Loesshillarcher - Sorry man, work is really getting in the way of finishing the story. I will catch a quick workout and lunch and finish by this afternoon.

31-Jul-14
sweet

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
We dropped into the creek and took an angle of attack to cut off the ram.

For all of my sheep hunts I carry a white Tyvek painters suit and I finally put it to use. Honestly it appeared to work real well allowing me to cross a huge open area without spooking the sheep. He was headed straight to me and really on the move.

I ran up the hill as fast as I could on a trajectory to cut off the ram. I targeted a cliff face running uphill that the ram would have to go around either above or below. I tucked myself against the cliff on a steep patch of tundra and nocked an arrow.

It was only seconds that he dropped down a chute on cue directly uphill, right where I thought he would.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14
From my guide Kelly's perspective he said it was an unbelievable sight. Both me and the sheep took the same path of destruction and disappeared in unison behind the cliffs.

From: kota-man
31-Jul-14
This is getting good...(Not that it wasn't good before, but now it is REALLY getting good)

From: buzz mc
31-Jul-14
Awesome. Thanks for posting it.

From: Sage Buffalo
31-Jul-14
Earl you are killing me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love it and thanks for sharing...

From: elmer@laptop
31-Jul-14
and he keeps us hanging again! STOP IT and show us the hero shots!!!!

From: Medicinemann
31-Jul-14
I am going to boycott this thread for a week....by then, the story will be posted....LOL

From: iceman
31-Jul-14
I'm with these guys. It's July, most of us haven't hunted anything in quite some time. Bring it!

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo
When he came down the chute he was 55-60 yds and walking at a brisk pace.The sun was at his back illuminating his horns; it was surreal.

I could even see the flies buzzing around his head.

I raised my rangefinder and shot a range of 71 yds equivalent horizontal. He finally saw me and froze.

I made a quick sight adjustment and drew my bow. He walked and stopped again 81yds. Adjusted again and drew, he walked again and stopped 96 yds .......................................................................... .......................................................................... .......................................................................... .......................................................................... ..........................................................................

To be continued August 2015. Thanks to all for tuning in. Good luck to all in the coming seasons.

Earl

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: coonazz
31-Jul-14
and you drilled him at 96 yards? :)

Really nice recap. Thanks for bringing us along with you.

31-Jul-14
He will be that much older next time. Beautiful country. Thanks for the hunt!

From: sharpstick
31-Jul-14
thanks for the story and pics...and thank you for NOT taking a 96 yard shot :)

I had a similar chance in Canmore (72 yards) and passed for fear of wounding, would do it all over again too.

cheers,

Mike

From: JLS
31-Jul-14
GREAT story. I enjoyed every moment of it.

From: Stekewood
31-Jul-14
Fantastic story and pictures. Thanks for taking the time to share them. Look forward to the sequel!

31-Jul-14
WOW great story and I am sure the horns felt pleanty good on the way down, congrats!

From: Mark Watkins
31-Jul-14
Earl, thanks for taking us along on a great adventure!

Good luck in '15!

Mark

31-Jul-14
Well I rushed the last post I was so caught up in your story, I thought you had green horns on your pack, great story and what an adventure, look forward to next time. thanks again

From: caribou77
31-Jul-14
Great Great read. What an adventure. Can't wait to hear about next year now!

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14

Earltex's embedded Photo
Earltex's embedded Photo

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14
So there you have it, that was my hunt. I came so close to touching a dream and came up short. I am learning that archery hunting sheep is rarely easy; at least not for me. But the experience is definitely putting me closer to the goal.

Bow hunting sheep is what I dream of day and night. Not sure what dream will replace it when it happens. I hope it never goes away.

Over the last two years Arctic Red River Outfitters has done so much to put me in a position to get a ram and still I am missing that one moment of good fortune to bring it all together. Tavis and his team are an awesome outfit.

After returning to base camp I learned that Mike from Idaho Springs bow killed a nice 11 yo ram and days later Mark Seacat closed the deal on his own ram with archery gear. One day it will happen for me. One day.

From: leo17
31-Jul-14
wait so what happened? did you take out the longbow? : )

From: Ace
31-Jul-14
Earl, great job on the write up!

Quite an adventure, I'm sure you'll get it done next time, or if not the time after that.

I can tell from your descriptions of the hunt that it's all about the journey. A sheep is the goal of course; merely planning a hike or a picture taking trip to the same area just wouldn't cut it. But the kill isn't necessary for the trip to have been awesome, just the pursuit and the possibility of the kill.

Thanks for taking us along.

From: Bou'bound
31-Jul-14
Well done, a true bowhunter.

From: Earltex
31-Jul-14
Ace - Your words ring true. I could not have verbalized it any better.

From: Bigpizzaman
31-Jul-14
It's telling that the best stories lately on Bowsite have been without "trophy photos" in the end. It is about the journey, it is about adventure. As Archers we are often asked why or why not with a gun? Not to be a snob or an elitist but if you have to ask why, you won't understand why! Earl Thanks much for taking us along and posting here. Follow your dreams and next time it will all come together. Remember the biggest problem in your life is you HAVE to go Sheep hunting again!!

31-Jul-14
+1 pizzaman!

Thanks for the read, sheep hunting is always an emotional rollercoaster that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Glad to hear you had a great hunt, and one day you'll take the air out of a terrific ram for yourself.

From: BULELK1
31-Jul-14
My hell---

I go 24 hours off the bowsite and you still are like that babe I took to the Junior Prom..

So happy for ya man.

Loving it----

Good luck, Robb

From: 'Ike'
31-Jul-14
That's a awesome hunt...Thanks!

From: bentstick
31-Jul-14
Great story, the pictures are fantastic, thanks for sharing it with us!

From: HUNT MAN
31-Jul-14
Thanks .HUNT

From: writer
31-Jul-14
Congrats on a great hunt, and sticking to your guns....er,...bows.

Your efforts to share are very much appreciated.

From: Drop tine
31-Jul-14
Fantastic pics, story and hunt. Thanks for sharing. I was thinking the same thing as BPM, it is great to see some of these amazing adventures written up regardless of whether an animal was taken or not. It really is about the journey and not the destination. For anyone that is thinking about doing one of these trips it is nice to see the reality of it as well so that realistic expectations can be set before beforehand.

From: Hawkeye
31-Jul-14
Truly incredible from start to finish. Well done and 2015 will be here soon!

From: Fulldraw1972
31-Jul-14
Wow great pics and story. Looking forward to a future story to be told.

Its guys like you that have taught me that there is more to a hunt then the kill. Its the adventure that is so great. Thank you

From: LWood
31-Jul-14
Great. Thanks Earl!!!

From: speedgoat
01-Aug-14
If everyone took this quality of photos and wrote up stories of their hunts like this we sure would not have time to watch some of the junk on television. Thanks Earl for doing such a good job on the story. Hope everything works out in 2015. Either way, I hope we get another story.

From: Gaur
01-Aug-14
Great story. That rock balanced in that last picture is awesome. Good luck next year. How old did you think that ram was that you almost got a shot at?

A couple of those pictures of the rocks you had to walk across all day looks painful.

From: njbuck
01-Aug-14
Earl, great story and some amazing scenery. Tough break that you didn't get your ram this trip but it gives you a reason to go back and when you finally do get to wrap your hands around his horns it will mean even that much more to you.

How did this years hunt compare to your past years hunts up there in terms of number of rams seen. Were you guys also seeing other game, such as bears or moose as well?

From: otcWill
01-Aug-14
Wow! This was awesome. Thanks for posting

From: HoytSlinger
01-Aug-14
Really great read and a helluva an attitude toward the hunt.

Obviously you hunted your butt off and that's all you can do.

Here's to hoping August of 2015 is your lucky year, if not, there's always '16! :)

01-Aug-14
Incredible experience and story, very much enjoyed every minute of the read.

you will get it done, I'm sure you will get it done, and when you do...... WOW.

Thx again!

From: TD
01-Aug-14
" if you have to ask why, you won't understand why!" Amen.

Great hunt, what an adventure in breathtaking (literally I bet) country! Thanks much for taking us along and sharing it. Enjoyed it very much.

August 2015.... marked on the calendar.... =D

01-Aug-14
Great hunt...great story...great pics...great attitude! Thanks for sharing and taking us along.

From: Shrewski
02-Aug-14
Earl, that was great. Sheep HUNTING is not an easy thing. Makes wrapping your hands around those horns when it finally happens oh so much sweeter.

Thanks for all the great pics and info.

From: steff
02-Aug-14
Thanks for sharing! Great trip, report and photos!!! Can't beat that area! I'm headed up next year to chase caribou with Tavis.

02-Aug-14
Something is definitely not right with United Airlines these days. They go lots of places we like to hunt but the service is getting pretty bad.

Thanks for posting. C

From: Busta'Ribs
02-Aug-14
Great report E.

I'm living proof that going home without a ram is not necessarily the tragedy most guys might think. And sometimes, attaining the goal leaves you missing something. That burn to succeed, to prepare, to practice, to train, and most of all, to dream.

I can tell from your words that you know what I'm talking about.

But it's time for you to kill a ram. You've paid your dues, in all ways. I'm certain next year will be your year.

Thanks for the great thread. Looking forward to the 2015 report.

From: Earltex
04-Aug-14
Just got an email from Tavis at ARRO base camp. So far this season they have taken 7 rams and with an average of +11.5yrs.

There are some old, bruiser rams in that country.

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