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I went up north to

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Unread 02-05-2008, 03:29 PM
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Location: Yakima, Washington
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I've got to say that you guys showed a lot of restraint with the "camp boss". I don't think I'd have been quite so cordial with him. Probably would have had a chat out behind the outhouse.;);)

Come on now, get to writing and posting some more pics. I know you've still got a lot left in ya.
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Unread 02-05-2008, 06:16 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: west of Little Rock ,Ark.
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By the third day

Originally Posted by ss7mm View Post
I've got to say that you guys showed a lot of restraint with the "camp boss". I don't think I'd have been quite so cordial with him. Probably would have had a chat out behind the outhouse.;);)

Come on now, get to writing and posting some more pics. I know you've still got a lot left in ya.
The whole camp ( all 12 hunters ) were showing great restraint . After taking us for a hunt within sight of camp the first day , during which all twelve hunters saw a grand total of 4 caribou . We were informed on the second day that one boat would not be going out at all as the driver of that boat , yup ! you guessed it , Gee ,was not experienced enough for the waves .

So the 6 of us whut dont get to go load up on backpacks and luch buckets and march off as far as we think we can go and still get back before it got too late . I'm glad we did since the priceless doings of watching Scott stalk a bear at 700 yards only to have it turn out to be a monstrous porcupine . In case you wondering , yes , I was somewhat responsible for this as I spotted it and as soon as I said " look , theres a bear " Scott was off like a shot , running down the granite hillside like some mad scotsman competing in the hill run at a clan gathering . So , you see , I was only partly responsible as he never gave me an opportunity to investigate further , and no ! , I did not tell him till much later why the " bear " wasnt there when he reached the spot last seen . Simply said that it left before you got there . Uuummm , actually , I think it was yesterday that I told him .
Still no caribou other than a few scattered cows and calves and by now my brain feeble though it is was beginning to " have a clue " . Why on earth did did I forget that the hunters that were at camp when w e arrived tell us that they had to go 20 to 30 miles up the lake to find caribou . Perhaps because it was true ? And that 20 to 30 miles had to done with the driver ( guide ? ) standing to watch the water color for the treacherous shoals .

Trudging back to camp after a day of absorbing countless views of beautiful , inspiring terrain Scott and I managed to put the pieces together .

The camp boss and his fellow ( guide ? ) were simply burnouts . Here we were in middle October and they had been taking out 12 hunters a week since bow season started in August . Understaffed with no time to rejuvenate or pass the duties on to backup they had devised a plan that allowed them some rest .

Hunt the new crew close to camp the first couple of days , along with leaving late in the day and a few other devices thrown in was their way out . That was their plan all along .

When it was announced at breakfast the following morning ( third day ) that the weather was still too bad windy I left the mess hall and wandered around in the surrounding woods and tundra taking photos and , it must be said , dealing with a more than trifling bit of anger . Scott was in the same condition and suggested we go fishing which we did .

By the evening of the third day we hunters had congregated on our own and comparing notes validated the thoughts Scott and I had come up with on our own . I cant tell you how good a bunch of fellows we were hunting with , each and every one a lot of fun . I'm speaking of the paying guests of course .

The next morning we hustled to the mess hall but the weather had worsened a bit and we were informed that the hunt would be delayed a bit and that only half crews woud be going out in the boats . This to " make it safer " was the explanation .

At this point I skipped my coffee and proceeded to the beach , climbed in my boat and went to sleep across the seat while waiting the moment of departure . I assumed Scot t would do the same so was surprised when a hour later the boat rocked and the last two hunters allowed to go climbed aboard and neither one was Scott . Loking past them I saw him standing off to the side looking a bit out of sorts .

What a war of mixed emotions ensued then . You see the two that had clambered aboard were father and son . Seventy something and thirty something respectively . While he was in apparent good health it had become plain to see that the horrifically rocky , slippery shore line and the height of the sides of the canoe that he would probably not make this trip again .

Pickup my gear , get out of the boat , frown at Scott , though while doing so realizing that it was misplaced frustrations .
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Unread 02-05-2008, 08:24 PM
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Location: Potomac River
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Certainly some beautiful pictures!
The Smokin Fur Rifle Club
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Unread 02-05-2008, 08:55 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Nebraska
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I gotta agree with Bob. Beautiful pictures.
Sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for the rest of the story.
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Unread 02-06-2008, 10:28 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Great Falls, MT
Posts: 712
Gosh, I hope you have trophy pictures of the camp boss and guides you bagged as well!

Raptor Stalker by
Kirby Allen APS
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Unread 02-06-2008, 02:14 PM
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Location: west of Little Rock ,Ark.
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How Jim killed a toothless caribou - PART FOUR

C'mon ! C'mon ! , theyre back ! , the shout brought me out of my feeling sorry for myself reverie . Then came sounds of the outboard , growling ever louder as it was revved up to shove the canoe further up on the landing .

Hustling down to the cove I was treated to a lovely sight . Caribou !! and canoes full of them . A lot of smiling faces and everyone talking at once , what a grand feeling it brought .

Seems the lads had come upon a bit of a herd crossing the lake . Everyone had taken at least one bull and many managed two . Then we realized it was our turn . That grand feeling grew fit to burst .

Hurriedly loading our gear , we headed up the lake with
ever increasing excitement . About twenty miles into the trip bou in small scattered herds started appearing with regularity . Why arent we stopping to stalk them ? Turning to Gee , our taxi driver , I pointed out a group of caribou that was single filing along a small ridge and dropping out of sight one by one as we watched .

Holding my hands apart at my sides with palms up with what I hoped was a quizzical expression on my face I then pointed at the beach . A small shrug of the shoulders was Gee's response but he did turn to the land and we all piled out .

Two to the right and two to the left we planned a pincer stalk . Gee elected to go with Scott and I . Once he was out of the boat he seemed to be happier , as if some decision had been reached and he was no longer struggling with a private dilemna . It would not be until much later that I found out why this was so .

Climbing a rugged boulder strewn hillside we reached a vantage point where we could see where the caribou had filed off to . Rats !! , a spruce forest , grown close to the ridge we had spied them on had swallowed all sign of them . Our compadres on the other end of the pincer were nowhere to be seen as a bog was on their end and they were no doubt hidden by the dwarf spruce and larch that grew there . Trying to navigate a way through without sinking up to their necks would be slow going for sure .

Turning our backs on them we worked our way to the top of the hill in order to glass the steep slopes opposite us . 735 yds to the middle of the slope ,so said the Swarovski rangefinder and with a 25 to 30 mph full value crosswind a shot from our position was beyond our abilities . Sadly so because a nice bull was nested by a boulder the size of my house . Comfortably out of the wind it appeared he may spend the day there . This thinking led to a decision to go after him even though we would spend a minimum of an hour getting to within 300 yard of him without being seen .

Hindsight teaches that I should have joined Scott in explaining to Gee what we planned to do . I didnt want to let the bull out of my sight so continued to glass him as Scott made " arrangements" . Even so I am not sure it would have helped being as neither of us speak french .

An hour later found us staring at the giant boulder the bull had camped out at only to see .......nothing ! The bull , as caribou are more likely to do than not , had wandered on . Not disturbed by this at all we pressed on to the ridge top confident we would spot him on the other side . Double rats !! Nowhere to be seen and the ridge we were on culminated in a 500 foot sheer drop to the lake below. Glassing far to the east of the lake revealed nothing walking on four legs so we had a long walk inland to negotiate around the cliffs and make our way to the beach below . That was our plan , to be picked up on the other side of the ridge after Gee had collected the other two hunters .

Reaching the beach we found a sandy bit of shore suitable for grounding the canoe and sat down to some lunch . The camp cook always provided each hunter with more than most could eat but I was planning on giving it my best shot . Then a sentence remembered from the camp boss first day lecture paraded through my mind , " If you dont meet the boat at the appointed time you will be left until the next day " period , end of sentence . My appetite for the second thick meaty sandwich fled and I tucked it away in my backpack .

" Scott , I dont think Gee's coming " were the first words out of my mouth after a two hour wait and no sign of our boat . Aww ! , he wont leave us here , I told him to pick us up over here and I think I'm taking a nap " was his reply to my paranoia . Since taking a nap meant laying down in a depression out of the wind it also meant being out of sight of the boat should it round the point in search of us . So I asked him to take off his orange and tie it around a big rock that was plainly visible from all points .

Heading further inland I decided to make arrangements in case my fears of being left out overnight were realized . I knew the day faded fast way up here and did not want to spend the night in the open . With practically no prospects for building a fire due to lack of suitable fuel and knowing even if I did have material that would burn the wind was so strong and from every direction it would simply be blown all over the place including on sleeping Scott and Jim , I started looking for a way to build a shelter .

Spying a small grove of dwarf spruce I looked around until I found a small open space . Taking hold of the trunk of a tree and working it until I had it bent over I tied a bit of nylon rope to the top and continuing this process in a rough circle tied them all together in a way as to have around 3 feet of room underneath them with a small entrance to crawl into . By now three hours have past and I am resolving myself to spending a cold , long
night in this shelter that , up until now , had existed only in some fictional frontiersman novel I had read .

Jimmba !!! , the shout cut through my mental meanderings and then Scott , who knowing of my dreams of Africa had given me
that nickname to go along with them , came rushing up to my little castaway nest . Seems he had awakened to the sound of the outboard and spotting it far out in the main body of the lake watched first with unbelief as it proceeded to grow smaller ,then with relief as it turned in our direction .

I was a happy noncamper for sure but now a bit of anger was simmering as well . When confronted with our barrage of questions Gee simply pointed at one of our hunting partners and said in a broken english "that man see you orange , or for you , breakfast island " pointing at the spit of land we had just left . Suspecting that Gee knew more english than he could speak I pointed at the sheer bluffs that we had to work around and said " you knew those bluffs were there and you thought we wouldnt be able or willing too work our way around them to the beach so you just waited on us to return to the boat , yes ? For that bit of prescience I was rewarded with a small shrug and lifting of eyebrows . After discussing it with the other hunters this was confirmed .

Arriving at the camp just at dark I ate the excellent meal that was waiting and went to my cabin . Tomorrow was the last day .

Last edited by Jimm; 02-06-2008 at 02:22 PM.
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Unread 02-06-2008, 02:57 PM
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Northeast Montana
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This has been an exceptionally good read so far, please continue.
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