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» Trad Gang.com » Main Forums » The Hawaiian Connection » Staci's Sheep Hunt, The Time Has Come!!! (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Staci's Sheep Hunt, The Time Has Come!!!
Ryan K Sanpei
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Hey Gang,
Staci and I are heading to the Big Island to hunt some feral sheep. We'll be sure to keep you guys posted...

Posts: 3031 | From: Hawaii | Registered: Apr 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Ryan K Sanpei
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Staci, getting in some practice

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Posts: 3031 | From: Hawaii | Registered: Apr 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
FerretWYO
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I will be watching this one.

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TGMM Family of The Bow

Posts: 6401 | From: Cheyenne Wy | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Jesse Minish
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quote:
Originally posted by FerretWYO:
I will be watching this one.

Same here. Good luck guys!
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Dogboy900
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Good luck guys. From what I have seen those sheep are hard to get up on!
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Ryan K Sanpei
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Final touches on the Muzzys

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Starting to pack

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I'll let Staci take the story from here...

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Makua Girl
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Last year, our friend Chris invited Ryan and I to hunt feral sheep in Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii. Although we had a great time, and had good shot opportunities, I was unable to successfully harvest an animal.

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Fortunately, Chris invited us again this year to hunt one of his leases. I was quite excited; I had worked hard this year to better my stalking skills. I am shooting a 36 lb. recurve with 470 grain arrows, which means I need to get pretty close. We spent many days stalking goats on Oahu using different techniques to get me within comfortable shooting range. I practiced being “sneaky”; knowing when to move and when to stay still, keeping my bow out of sight, and using wind to hide the crunch of leaves beneath my feet or knees.

As the day of the hunt drew near, I became more and more excited. I couldn’t wait to get on the beautiful slopes of Mauna Loa. The thirty minute flight from Honolulu sure seemed much longer. Chris picked us up at the airport and we headed out of Kona town toward the mountains.

Honolulu Airport

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Arriving in Kona

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Heading to the hunting area

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[ October 03, 2015, 08:09 PM: Message edited by: S2 Bowstrings ]

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Makua Girl
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Once we got to the hunting area, we “geared up” and set out to find some sheep. We came across a small herd and looked for a good route to make the final approach. There looked to be a pretty good path, but it would take a bit of crawling through dried leaves and dead branches to get close enough. I dropped my pack and started the slow crawl towards a pile of rocks that would keep me hidden from the ram I had my eye on. I was about three-fourths of the distance there when the herd became startled and took off. Someone made too much noise! (I think it was the camera man [biglaugh] )

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[ August 26, 2013, 05:17 AM: Message edited by: S2 Bowstrings ]

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Makua Girl
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I was disappointed, but it was still early in the day. We gathered up our things and glassed for another herd. About 20 minutes later, we came across more animals. The sheep were feeding on some flats and my best approach would be to loop around a small ridge and cut them off at the bottom. I headed down into the ditch and slowly made my way along the base of the ridge. I was approaching a group of low bushes when I noticed two sheep hiding behind a short tree. Both of them were partially hidden; I had a perfect view of their vitals, but the tree blocked their view of me.

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I was about 20 yards away, so I nocked an arrow and ever so slowly closed the distance. I am comfortable shooting out to 15 yards, but would feel even better at ten. Step by step, I inched my way towards the oblivious sheep. Just one more step, just one yard closer....and wouldn’t you know, “CRUNCH!” Both sheep swung their heads in my direction and bolted off!! One of the two sheep was a really nice ram with a tight curl like Princess Leia’s buns. Of course he was the one closest to me and the one I would have put my arrow through. I could have taken the shot at 15 yards, at 14 yards, at 13 yards, but I wanted to get just a little closer. Talk about crushed.

[ August 26, 2013, 05:18 AM: Message edited by: S2 Bowstrings ]

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Makua Girl
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I hung my head, feeling a little sick to my stomach. I felt I had blown a perfect opportunity. I let a little doubt creep into my head and it cost me the shot. If only I hadn’t taken that last step. On the other hand, I got within 13 yards of a nice ram! Thirteen yards! Maybe the past year and all the hours in the field have actually improved my stalking. If I could get that close to these sheep, maybe I could do it again. I pulled myself together and set out to get it right if another opportunity presented itself.

As luck would have it, we came across another herd as they headed towards their bedding area. The wind wasn’t in our favor and it pushed the herd off into the distance. I thought perhaps this wouldn’t be my time. As we walked in the same direction as the herd, I saw in my binoculars a rather interesting sight. In the hollow of a dead tree, there stood a ram. His head was actually in the tree. Like an ostrich hiding in a hole. I was going to put a stalk on him!

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[ August 26, 2013, 05:23 AM: Message edited by: S2 Bowstrings ]

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Makua Girl
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I had to make my approach from his left in order to take a good broadside shot. We made a wide loop and stopped about a hundred yards from where the ram stood. There were a few trees between the ram and my current position. I could use the trees as cover, along with the small dips in the terrain. I would still need to crawl, though. I dropped my pack and started my approach.

On my hands and knees, I made my way to the final tree. I slowly rose to a kneeling position, and peeked between a “v” in the tree. The ram still stood with his head in the tree. I was breathing hard and fast. I had just crawled through grass and leaves, using the wind to cover the rustling. I couldn’t believe the ram was still there. I took deep breaths, trying to calm my nerves. I kept peering through the “v”, making sure the ram hadn’t moved. There were no more trees. I had to take the shot from my current position. I was about 18 yards from the ram.

You can watch the rest of my story play out in this short video Ryan put together.

VIDEO ------- http://youtu.be/nLhyFGVloAM

[ August 26, 2013, 05:28 AM: Message edited by: S2 Bowstrings ]

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Makua Girl
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The initial shot was a little far back. I watched the ram through my binos and followed his every move. Giving him some time, I waited to pursue. I was anxious as I crept ever so slowly in his direction. Finally I reached him huddled in a shallow ditch and released the fatal shot.

I was elated! I harvested a feral ram! It really was just a matter of time. But it wasn’t time wasted, it was time well spent. I had practiced hard, worked on my stalking, and gained confidence in the field. Slowly everything is coming together. I feel now, finally, I can call myself a traditional bow hunter.
You should see the smile on my face when I say that!! [goldtooth]

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[ August 26, 2013, 05:47 AM: Message edited by: S2 Bowstrings ]

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wapiti792
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Outstanding Staci! Those noisy camermen [Smile] Great hunt, great photos, and great camera work by Ryan. Congrats!

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Mike Davenport

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twitchstick
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[thumbsup] [thumbsup]
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lone hunter
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Well done. [thumbsup] Real happy for you.
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