Backpacking in the Mackenzie Mountains (IV)

Day 8

We packed the whole camp and kept moving towards the next valley.

It was raining a little but at least there is was no fog. That morning was quite special since we saw a few ptarmigans and a weasel, which was the Jeremys luck animal. It was signal to dont lose faith..

Before lunch we finally spotted a group of rams, in which there were at least two shooters. It was hard to judge, since they were way down the valley about a whole day of walking.

It was nice to finally have an objective, so we headed down towards the group of rams as quick as possible.

The following day was our last hunting day, so we had to make our best to make it count. We needed day 10 and 11 to get to a bush plane landing strip, and although we didn’t know the exact location of it, we knew it was going to take us more than a day to get there.

We tested the bow to make sure nothing happened in all the hunting days. 55 yards…Perfect. We were ready.

We saw the rams bed down on the top of a mountain. We set up camp in the distance, since we didn’t want to spook them, and went to bed.

Day 9

Neither of us slept that night… We woke up surrounded by fog and by the time it was gone, the group of rams was also gone. They were not on the spot we left them the day before, and we couldn’t find them again.

We started glassing around and spotted two beautifull rams close to camp. It looks like god was giving us one chance. It was tempting to get the rifle, but after all the training I needed to try it with my bow, although I knew I could come back empty handed. Dream big. They were feeding slowly in the middle of a steep slope.

I went around the mountain and locate myself above the rams, while Jeremy was below controlling their movements.  After about an hour everything went as planned, and the rams passed way  below me. After missing it and thinking I have wasted a lifetime opportunity, the ram stopped for a few seconds before turning over to the next valley. I will never forget the second it took the arrow to travel the 90 yards between the ram and I, that “thock” sound and that picture of the ram with the orange blazers right behind the shoulder. It just ran ten yards before starting to roll down the mountain… The craziest adrenaline rush I will ever experience for sure. Yahooo!!

A dream came true. I couldn’t be happier!!.It’s hard to express all the feelings, and anything I write would fall short..

Tagged out on our last and first chance, unbeliable!

We had our best lunch ever and started the hard work.

Day 10

Day 10 was a looong day. We packed everything and headed down towards the bush plane landing strip that was down the valley.

It took us 9 hours to arrive to the Ram River. The packs were around 80 pounds each, but the weight has never felt so good.

By that time it was quite late to find a way to cross the Ram River, since the strip line was at the other side, so we set up camp and went to bed. We needed some rest!.

Day 11

We packed everything again and headed down the river to fin the most favorable spot to cross the river.

It was a refreshing experience, especially on the deepest parts. This was just the beginning..

We finally found the strip and waited there for the bush plane to come, triying to delight the last moments of our great adventure in the mackenzie mountains.

We will never forget those ten days…

It was a long 30 minutes flight, I couldnt wait to share everything with Dad and check how he was doing.

It was an emotive momment when I arrived with the pack fully loaded to the base camp, and Dad went out and realized we had made it in the last moment.

I could not thank enough to be able to share this things with my father.

It was also nice to know that our buddies from Idaho had been all successfull in their caribou hunts too! Great bunch of people for sure.

We spent the whole afternoon telling stories about our respective hunts, too many things to share!

Just to remark that anything of this story would have been possible without Jeremy. Thanks for everything my friend, I will see you again!

Day 12

The following day the plane came to pick up us, and we had to say goodbye to the Artic Red River. Hope we can see it again in the future.

It was nice to meet on our way back a good friend that was going to be hunting the following 10 days, Jason Hairston. Be sure to check his report and news at KUIU webpage this week!

I will post next week a blog post reviewing the equipment used on the hunt and how it performed.

For the few that would have arrive at the end of this story, hope you enjoy it as much as I, it was nice to rememeber eeach of the days of the hunt…

Good luck all in the mountains!,

Pedro Ampuero.

14 comments on “Backpacking in the Mackenzie Mountains (IV)

  1. Will Jenkins says:

    Just Awesome! Congratulations Pedro! Sounds like an amazing hunt and to make that 90 yard shot is amazing!

  2. Pat Comer says:

    Really nice article and supporting pictures. Congratulations on the ram.

  3. ticiano says:

    Pedro!!!!! whaaaaat an increeeedible hunt!!!! That must have been amazing!!! Shot the ram on the last day!!! a 90 yard shot!!!! Congratulations!!! I just didn’t understand if you had another shot and missed him or if just had that shot opportunity?? Congratulations again!! awesome man!!

    • Thanks Ticiano!! I missed the ram previously. It was very steep and at those kind of distance the angle compentation depend also on the arrow speed lose, which is related to arrow speed, vanes, weight… You get to many factors, apart from the pressure and adrenaline! No excuses!! Good luck on you hunt and keep us posted!

      • ticiano says:

        Yeah I know!!! It happened to me also on a Rusa deer hunt , but the second shot I wasn´t good enough. At 77 yards I hit too far back and never found the deer, big regret.

        It happens….hope not need to make those long shot on my hunt. I´ll keep you posted!!!

        Congratulations!!

  4. Andy Ivy says:

    A big Congrats! Well done brother, thanks for sharing your Adventure!

  5. Congrats! Sounds like it was an amazing trip!

  6. Maj Z. says:

    Congrats to you and your father! Amazing reading, i expected more words but… its just fine…
    Stay safe and blessed hunting!

    • Thanks Maj, it is just a matter of time. It takes time for me to write especially in english! I will try to do a follow up on equipment, preparation, reflections, etc.. In a week or so. Wish you the same, take care!

  7. JOAN CATALA says:

    Thanks like allways my friend to share all your adventures. Is nice to see so many photos and read all the explanations. is like I was there. Thanks!!! And dont forget this next writting of all the gear you used in this hunt!

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