Tom Farrell, Alaska Mountain Goat Hunt Report
I was looking for either a boat based hunt, or a late season mountain goat hunt in British Columbia. However, after researching my options, my consultant at Outdoors International informed me about a late season fly-in hunt in Alaska where we are already at altitude. The guide can fly in with his own plane, and can move based upon where we see goats. I flew into Valdez. Lost the first day to high winds and couldn’t got to camp. Was able to check my rifle and it was spot on.
Flew into the hunting area the next day. You can not hunt on a day you fly, so no mountain goat hunting on day #2. Hunted hard on day #3. Not used to wearing crampons, fell twice. Sore feet, sore back. I hurt in places I didn’t know I had. Plenty of water and ibuprofen helped a lot. Got a weather report with rain/snow mix and high winds moving in on Day #4, so we glassed in the morning (took some awesome pictures through the spotting scope of goats on the mountain) but flew back to Valdez about noon before the weather moved in.
Lost days 5-7 because of weather, but flew out late in the day on Day #8 to a different area. Able to glass many mature billies (counted 10 goats in the area with at least 4-5 mature billies) before dark and high expectations for the next day were in place. Woke to a beautiful bright blue sky day about 20 degrees and a little wind. From our camp, we spotted two goats that had moved down to a lower shelf and the hunt was on! Grabbed our packs, my rifle and off we went. Hiked in about 1.5 miles to the mountain base and set up. They were still 1,000 yards away, so we followed a small stream/ravine that got us to within 500 yards. Was shooting a Weatherby chambered in 7 mm Rem Mag. Sighted in with my zero at 300 yards with 160 grain TSX bullets. I knew it hits 7 inches low at 400 yards and 28 inches low at 500.
My first shot hit two feet below its back foot. Aimed two feet above his nose and hit him square in the gut. He turned and headed up to a shelf where he laid down and never got up. Climbed up to him and a finishing shot put him down for good. There were three other shots and some bad language as well, but we won’t talk about that. Took two trips to get him down off the mountain.
Never have I had such a physically demanding hunt in such a magnificent place. I truly hope everyone may have the opportunity to taste mountain goat back strap (sauteed in butter, with a little Himalayan sea salt) in their lifetime. Delicious.
How likely would you be to refer Outdoors International booking services to your friends and family?
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How was your agent’s pre-hunt correspondence?
How was your agent’s post-hunt follow up?
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How was the outfitters pre-hunt communication ?
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How was the Field Dressing and Trophy Preparation?
Were you successful or unsuccessful?
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How physically difficult was the hunt?
Is there anything that the outfitter should do differently in your opinion?