Well we did it! Fred and I flew in to the back country in a 206 landing at Indian creek on September 27th to start our 17 day Idaho Bighorn sheep hunt. We had our boat, packs, guns, 17 days worth of gear and grub on the plane. It took two planes to get us in. It’s amazing how much they will haul. We were going to float 75 miles of the middle fork of the Salmon River, hunting and living out of our backpacks, doing four or five day stints up some of the major drainages. Our Idaho hunting unit was one of the toughest and most physical hunts in the state.
This was by far the toughest Idaho hunting trip I’ve ever done. We were covering huge amounts of country rafting and then hiking a couple thousand vertical feet of elevation on the east side of our unit, so we could use our glasses and spotting scopes to glass across the river. We also did a couple of 20 mile “grinders” [Fred’s word] into some of the bigger drainages. We saw a lot of awesome country. Fred was a lot of fun to hunt with and is a great hunter / outdoorsman. He gets around in the mountains like an old mountain goat.
Well finally, on day 13, I shot my big horn sheep ram and Fred followed with his on day 14 of the hunt. We both felt really blessed and fortunate to have harvested two great big horn sheep rams back to back in such a tough unit. My ram is 8 1/2 years old and Fred’s is 4 1/2 years old. My ram has really neat characteristics the way his horns flare out and are broomed back. Fred’s ram had nice bases for a young ram being 14 inches. This has been a lifetime goal of mine and I couldn’t be happier with my sheep. I know Fred is also very excited. We only had two days of the season left when he harvested his ram. He contemplated trying to find an older larger ram, but he would have taken a very good chance on eating his once in a lifetime sheep tag. I think he made the right decision especially on this difficult hunt.
They are both amazing trophy big horn sheep rams and we couldn’t have been more proud of them. It took two days to float 50 miles of the Middle Fork River to get to Cash Bar where Des, Jared and Aunt Rose picked us up. I have never floated more technical class three and four rapids due to the low water level this time of year.
Because we added the weight of two sheep along with the rest of our gear it made the maneuvering interesting, but we were blessed with a safe and successful float out. This definitely was a trophy big game hunt of a lifetime!