Originally Posted by Jeff In TX
Please don’t take this as a criticism as it’s not meant to be…maybe a reality check, but not criticism.
I view a sheep hunt as a once in a lifetime hunt though some may be more fortunate. I've seen many sheep on my moose hunts in Alaska. Yup I’ve put them in my crosshairs and wished I had a tag for one. Shooting PD’s, groundhogs and other varmints at a grand or more is common place with us. First round hits at a grand are extremely rare…really there few and far between. I could even see touching the trigger on a deer at that distance though I’ve never attempted it.
However on a once in a lifetime hunt I couldn’t even fathom touching the trigger on a sheep at that distance. I’m not even sure a guide would let someone even try no matter how hard they argued their point. I don’t view sheep hunting as an extreme long range hunt, nor do I think it should be. Realistically 400 to maybe 500 yards would be realistic extent of a long range attempt on a sheep IMHO.
I could be wrong as I don’t live in those areas, however I have hunted in them a bunch and I just don’t see a grand shot on a sheep, goat, moose or even a bear.
I'm not overly bothered by your post. I will say that your statement "I don't view sheep hunting as an extreme long range hunt, nor do I think it should be." is one probably best kept to yourself rather than directed towards me or other hunters. It invites an ethics argument which will serve no beneficial purpose.
Your reality and circumstances are obviously different than mine and they will undoubtedly affect the thoughts, opinions, preferences, positions, and even that prohibited topic -ethics
- that a person forms. I've hunted dall sheep every year for the past 15 years, and perhaps on an every-other-year basis the prior 15 years. It's not a once in a lifetime hunt for me. It's my annual "deer" hunt. Guides don't participate in my hunts. I'm not required to use one, and I personally have no desire to. I hunt sheep like others in deer-rich country might hunt deer except my limit is one ram per year. My sheep hunts occur entirely above tree-line. I'm not certain where you've seen sheep in Alaska, but they can be spotted and harvested at very long range. A long range shot will allow some rams to be harvested that simply can't be closely approached because they've selected a living room that affords them a grand visual panorama which serves them well for spotting any approaching predators or hunters. Dall rams are a relatively frail animal and are certainly easier to kill and recover than deer or mountain goats. 500 yds is a chump shot unless the wind is pretty darn ugly.
I get the feeling that sheep are profoundly honored and placed up on an alter compared to other big game animals from your perspective. I won't argue about that with you or others. I can understand how that can happen if your access to the animals is restricted by regulation, distance, expense, or other life circumstances. I've got reasonably good access to sheep, bears, goats, moose, caribou, bears, and more bears. And sheep is the best eating of those options.
Perhaps the only thing we see eye to eye on is reliably hitting ground squirrels or similar-sized animals at 1000 yds is more difficult than placing a killing hit on sheep-sized animals at that range. But hunting the ground squirrel has no relevance to hunting sheep, at least from my arm chair.