Re: Chama NM
Nice feedback on your hunt. I hunted out of Missoula, Montana 5 years ago on my first guided elk hunt. The entire crew was professional, knowledgeable and made every effort to accomodate the clients. The Outfitter made sure to greet each of us in a group setting and explained the hunting conditions, terrain, weather, and clearly stated that if we had prepared for our hunt as outlined in his intructions upon booking our hunt. We would have opportunities to see elk and it would be up to us to make clean killing shots. As it turned out some clients didn't get physically, mentally or psychologicially prepared. After long days in the saddle, intense cross country hikes at high elevation, steep terrain, deep timber, rain, sleet, snow and ice managed to break down a few clients who didn't take the recommendations seriously.
Several clients didn't take the time to ensure their firearms were clean and functioned properly. They didn't spent time shooting under hunting conditions other than sighting in at 100yds before leaving for the hunt. One individual failed to kill an elk lying down 60yds away in a snow drift because he didn't rack the bolt all the way back in order to load a live round in the chamber. Later he claimed that the bolt was stuck. He asked if someone could check his rifle to see what was wrong. I volunteered and upon working the bolt it functioned as designed. But it hadn't been cleaned in a long time. I removed the bolt and took it apart, cleaned the frozen grease off of the firing pin and spring, and applied a light film of kroil on the parts andreassembled the bolt. I removed the action from the stock and used brake parts cleaner spray the gunt out of the trigger housing and lube it with kroil, reassembling the the stock and action, then torqued the action screws down tight. I bore sighted it on a rock 50yd out. Fired 2 rds within inches and moved out to 100 yards fired 2rds made adjustments and moved to a large boulder at 200yards fired 2rds and set the zero. A couple of days later He shot his elk at 600 yds with some hands on coaching and dialing his scope up.
No matter whether you hire an outfitter or do it yourself. Do your part and adapt to the situation. If your outfitter and his staff don't measure up, tell them up front that you paid good money for their knowledge and expertise. The least they can do is make every effort possible to uphold their part.
"Adapt, Improvise, Overcome"