Apparently, my return from the NWT has created some excitement (in our house at least) so I'm going to take over the blog this week. The past two years Curtis has spent time in camp at Redstone Trophy Hunts working for Dave and Dallas Dutchik -and hunting a little too. He enjoyed it so much that he insisted it was my turn to head north. I said yes. Curtis promised me that he could hold down the fort for 16 days, so I booked my flight in mid July and faxed my paperwork away for my tag. I added a caribou tag at the last minute just in case I ran in to a whopper while on the trail for sheep.
August 13th arrived very quickly and I found myself standing on the dock before I knew what was happening. I was nervous about riding as I hadn't been on a horse in 10 years. After a six hour trail-in to sheep camp I was wishing for the Advil in the bottom of my pack. We spotted some sheep across the canyon as we were setting up camp - it was very exciting to see legal rams right away.
On day three, after 2 days of tough riding and hiking up the mountain, I shot the ram I was after and watched him fall off a 150 foot cliff. One of the guides had to free climb half way up the cliff to retrieve on of his horns that popped off during the tumble. He's a 12 year old ram, 33 and a half inches on his right side and has a heavily broomed off left side. I was ecstatic. Two other hunters filled their tags with beautiful rams at the same time, out of the same band of sheep. It's the first time there has been a successful triple at Redstone that anyone can remember.
We continued to hunt for caribou by taking day trips out of sheep camp, but mostly saw cows and calves and a few small bulls. Eventually we trailed back to the main camp. I had no expectations of taking a caribou and was happy with my successful sheep hunt. I had decided I wanted to shoot a hard-horned bull, which I knew would be tough to find that time of year.
On the day before I was supposed to fly out, I spotted a hard-horned bull a few miles away while the guide was skinning a wolf that my hunting partner had just shot. After a quick ride and and an epic sneak I ended up with a different bull out of that group. He's a full velvet monster with double drop tines and rough scores in the Boone and Crockett range. Anyone who knows Curtis, knows how much he loves caribou hunting, so I decided to keep my trophy a secret and then I was surprised him with this guy at the airport.