Alaska: This state has experienced some localized sheep population declines over the past few years, according to recently retired sheep biologist, Wayne Heimer. Even so, a few hunters are taking some very nice rams these days, thanks largely to this state's full-curl regulation and the limited-entry hunts in portions of the Chugach Range (Unit 14C) and the Tok Management Area (Units 12, 13C and 20D). In examining Alaska's sheep harvest data, it is interesting to note that drainages which are producing big rams today also did so two or three decades ago. In an average year, Alaska produces about 58 rams in the 40-inch class, with the most coming from the Chugach Range, followed by the Wrangell Mountains (Unit 11) and the Alaska Range East (Unit 20). In fact, Chugach Range outfitter Rob Schuh from R & R Guide Service says this area has produced 22 rams with horns taping over 40 inches in the last five seasons. Furthermore, this past spring he said he thought this area had at least five to 10 live rams that would qualify for entry into the Boone and Crockett record book. According to outfitter Rocky Keen, who hunts the Tok Management Area, this past season the area contained at least 15 rams with horns in excess of 40 inches, and about eight with horns that would tape 43 inches or more.
Alberta: Wild sheep researcher Jon Jorgenson tells me that hunters each year take a high percentage of the legal rams (4/5-curl-or-larger) that are available in this province. As a rule, most big rams that are harvested wander in from adjoining parks that are closed to hunting, or from areas leased for mining and closed to hunting. Over the past few years, hunters have taken two rams that exceed the magic 200-point mark. Jorgenson and other researchers note that sheep found south of the Bow River usually have a faster rate of horn growth than those to the north. Even so, the fact remains that big rams do occur to the north, as witness the Gary Hansen ram that scored in excess of 204. Alberta is experimenting........(continued)