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February - 22 - 2014

Eric Stevens had his pick of the whitetails in Montana.

The ubiquitous whitetail deer.  From quintessential down-home hunts to world class outfitters, whitetail hunting has something for every hunter. Dean R. Yates (8879) enjoyed a repeat hunt with CJ Gaskill of Powder River Outfitters in Montana, seeing a mix of 20 to 30 whitetail and mule deer bucks a day! He took a 160-inch whitetail and a 165-inch mule deer. “Best place I have found for quality mule deer or whitetail hunting in 21 years of hunting out West.” 

As America’s Breadbasket the Midwest is also home to plenty of whitetails gorging on wheat and corn.  Don Sangster (8980) hunted in Illinois with Michael Zachary of Zack's Whitetail Adventures, who only takes a handful of gun hunters per season. “Unfortunately, once the hunting started, the trophy bucks did a bit of a vanishing act, as they like to do, but I still took a very good whitetail. Great people, great food, reasonable price and a good chance to take a real wall-hanger.” Sangster hunted with a muzzleloader and points out that a three-day hunt is not always enough to find the biggest deer. He suggests a combo gun/archery hunt for more time.

Deer love was in the air in Saskatchewan when Dennis Erickson (8928) hunted with Lyle Prosser of Branch Lake Outfitters. “I watched lots of nice bucks chase does, and passed up many big bucks before taking a very nice 5x5 on the last day. This hunt was special for me because I have never hunted whitetail in an area where I could take this attitude. The outfitter has access to a lot of prime whitetail country.”

Of course, it takes time and restraint to get that prize trophy deer. Eric Stevens (9447) had to think hard about which buck to shoot while hunting Montana with John Stuver of Stuver Outfitting. “I let several trophy whitetail and one monster mule deer walk, waiting for the big one. I got him! This was my third hunt with John in eight years, 100 percent every time. Also, my brother and two sons tagged out.” After all, what could be better than a good old-fashioned whitetail hunt with the family? Mark Hampton (8965) hunted Iowa with Pine Ridge Lodge, accompanied by his wife, brother and sister-in-laws. “The whole group took great deer up to 192. Great place, great people, great hunting.” Ruth Lippincott (9461) scored an 11-point buck on her hunt in northeast Montana with Milk River Outfitters, with husband in tow. “I enjoyed seeing many big bucks in beautiful country, and hunting with an enthusiastic guide. This was a huge family-owned ranch, with several other leased ranches to choose from. I took my husband as an observer and he enjoyed the hunt as much as I did.”


Robert Duhadaway found his chamois in the scenic Austrian Alps.

Put a chamois on top! Wherever you find alps, you can bet chamois are not far. The chamois is a wary animal from all that time spent dodging lynxes, wolves, eagles and, occasionally, the intrepid alpine hunter. It makes a great trophy in its own right. Carlos Ibanez (9375) passed on the ibex and went straight to his 89 SCI Pyrenean chamois with guide Valeriano Belles Tena of Ibex Hunt Spain. “Valeriano has a lot of experience hunting in high mountains, and he loves his job. I will be booking with him again,” says Ibanez. Recommendations? “Zero your rifle for 300 yards.” On the French side of the Pyrenees, Craig Kauffman (9020) made a dedicated chamois hunt with José Mallo of Espacaza. “This was a difficult mountain hunt, but very rewarding. Tremendous trophy quality. Espacaza is an excellent organization with wonderful accommodations.”

“Prepare for long shots,” says Laird Hamberlin (9410). Hamberlin went off the beaten path to hunt the Alpes de Haute-Provence of France with Renaud Degrées du Loû of Seladang in Paris. He took an SCI gold medal chamois, plus representative red stag and mouflon. “Great operation in an area few Americans have hunted. Abundant game. Simply a must-do.” Bob Duhadaway (9337) traveled to Austria to hunt with Martin Neuper of FN Hunting. He enjoyed old castles, the countryside and nice alpine chamois. “This was a wonderful hunt, challenging but not dangerous.”

There are two species (Western and common) and multiple subspecies of this beautiful critter from Spain to Russia, so a collector could cover a lot of ground. Paul Decleva Jr. proved himself a real chamois enthusiast, making a grand tour of Austria, Romania and Croatia. See Article 3013 in our January 2013 issue for the full report, in case you missed it!

Kayleigh Wright and her hard-earned blue wildebeest in Namibia.

Try something “gnu” with brindled wildebeest. Hunting wildebeest is one of the highlights of a classic East African plains game hunt or a great add-on for a buffalo hunt. Larry Horseman (9329) found his mark with Grant Abrahamson of East Cape Safaris in South Africa. “I shot my blue wildebeest with Grant's .375 just to enjoy a true African caliber. There are great trophies available at East Cape Safaris and excellent PHs to help you obtain your goal. Tell Grant what you want to accomplish and he will get it done.”

Tanzania has two subspecies of brindled wildebeest, including the smallest (Nyasa), and the palest (whitebearded). William Leighton (9307) took a “huge” Nyasa wildebeest while hunting with PH Luke Samaras of Luke Samaras Safaris. “Luke's camp is true East African style, and he is a real gentleman hunter with 40 years of experience under his belt. He put me onto outstanding game.”

Greg Morris (9264) took both black and blue wildebeest with Jamy Traut Hunting Safaris in Namibia. “Animals were plentiful, in good shape, and lightly hunted. For quality and diversity of game, Jamy Traut is a truly top-notch outfitter.” Kayleigh Wright (9353) got a blue wildebeest in Namibia with Dirk de Bod of Dirk de Bod Safaris. Kayleigh and her guide tracked the wildebeest for miles over rough, thorny country before making a nice shot. She took a number of plains game species, including a 54-inch kudu!

Daniel Hinz (9249) says he “passed on a couple blue wildebeest he should have taken,” but still took a nice one while hunting with Ernest Dyason of Spear Safari in South Africa. He also had an exceptional buff hunt. “This is a can't-miss adventure. Great expertise and hunting ability from Ernest, my PH.”

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