We were told in no uncertain terms that the last quote in that story regarding exclusivity was misinformation and, indeed, upon checking the facts we found that more than one agent/operator books hunters into Hot Springs and other camps in Tajikistan during the prime hunting period (15 October 15 December), prior to and during the rut for Marco Polo sheep and mid-Asian ibex. According to the additional information we received, Safari Outfitters in Cody, Wyoming (307-587-5596) also has full-time, boots-on-the-ground support in Dushanbe, which allows their clients, too, to bring home trophies directly from their hunt.
According to Clark Jeffs of Safari Outfitters, his company has been working with Zafar and Atobek Bekmurodi and their extended family, owners of the Hot Springs Camp, since 1994. "At that time the Hot Springs Camp was not yet built and hunts were done from a couple of other locations (Observatory Camp being one)," says Jeffs. "The Hot Springs Camp was built in about 1998, and we have been sending our hunters there ever since, including 2011 and 2012 after a hiatus in 2009 when Tajikistan was closed to hunting, and 2010 when problems developed with trophy export and gun permits." Jeffs also forwarded us an email exchange between Sergei Kondtratov (Safari Outfitters' Moscow agent) and Zafar Bekmurodi........(continued)