Scoop Lake 2013 Newsletter & Convention Schedule
2013 started out on a high with our long time friend/guide/ mentor John Devries winning the GCF Dalziel award from Wild Sheep Foundation (formerly FNAWS). John has been, and continues to be, a huge part of our success. This award could not have gone to a more deserving individual. John started guiding back in the early 70s for my step-father Earl Boose. He has a passion for hunting and guiding that is beyond one’s belief. John had a career as an elected representative within Yukon government but he still managed to guide each year. The species John has hunted, and the hunters John has guided from all corners of the world are too long to list. Any of our clients who have had the opportunity to hunt with John will realize how blessed they were to spend a hunt with John. He’s still guiding, so book now, and request the legend. He truly is a wonderful individual and we are fortunate to have John on our team.
We had another fabulous fall hunting season: the weather cooperated, equipment didn’t malfunction, and the planes kept running. Darwin found himself flying horse feed into Scoop Lake in March due to the long winter, which arrived on October 2, 2012 and continued into May — making winter two months longer than normal. But once Spring arrived, the weather was beautiful. Spring kicked off with burning season. We probably had the best burning conditions we’ve had for years. Darwin, Tiffany, and Norm ran around like pyros with lighters for days. Our summer was busy with all the preparations required to put on a quality hunt. In one of the out camps, we spent 75 man days renovating and adding onto the existing cabin. We then built a shower house, put in a demand hot water system, and piped in gravity fed water. We had a couple Kiwi lads (Pete and Caius) helping, and when prepping the site, they moved a few tons of earth onto the old walkway down to the lake, replacing the old board walk. We now have the great wall of New Zealand.
August 1st sheep season arrived, and this year we had organized to backpack a couple sheep hunts. This enabled us to access some country which we rarely hunt. We had success on a couple beautiful rams. We also did our normal horseback sheep hunts which were also successful. We are planning to book a couple more sheep hunters for 2014/15 who are young enough and tough enough to backpack with or without the support of horses. One of the things we did was use horses to gain access to the areas we wanted to hunt, then left the guide/packer and hunter there, and had the horses return once they were successful.
Cody and Kyle Shoman, in the picture with two rams (front cover), also shot two goats — so it’s nice when you can make a call and the horses show up to pack everything out. This was the year of family hunts, we had Kyle and Cody who shot a double header on rams and two goats. We had Terry Marcum with his daughter Maryanne who shot a beautiful moose. We had Terry Lawson return with grandson Austin who took a nice billy goat on opening day of the season. Austin at age 11 took that Boone and Crockett moose last year. We had Ben and Tina Gordon who took two nice billy goats. Brothers Alex and Spence Hudson had a double header on two 10″ billy goats.
Loren and Clayton Smith also took two nice goats. Mike and Owen Mass took a nice goat and moose. Luke Galindo on a return hunt with his father, Mayo, took two nice moose and a goat. Bill and Tom Flynn took a nice moose and goat. It is nice to see grandpa/grandson, father/son, father/daughter, brothers and couples hunting and enjoying each other’s experiences.
With the government relaxing the assistant guide requirements, we were able to hire a couple long time friends and past hunting clients to come and help us guide. Donny, from Colorado (who is an elk hunting fanatic), returned and helped us be successful on our elk hunts. Unfortunately, we did have one client who wounded an elk, and another who missed, but all in all it was a great elk season, especially after last year’s incredibly warm weather. The elk score ranged from 320–345 B&C, which is a bit surprising considering the long winter and late Spring — which must have slowed antler growth a bit. The moose seem to have been more affected by the winter as we only shot a couple Boone and Crockett moose, the size just wasn’t there like other years. The long winter and late spring will show up on the sheep horn annuli in a couple of years, as the growth rings will be much closer together.
When it comes to selling hunts, prospective clients are always looking at past successes, which is great but, from our perspective its always comforting to know you have seen and left a couple big critters on the mountain for next year. It usually comes at the expense of a hunter such as one of our sheep hunters this year, who was on his 40th sheep hunt and had previously taken a 43″ ram with us. He was almost within shooting range of, to use his words, “two of the biggest rams I’ve ever seen” but Mother Nature wouldn’t allow them to get close enough for a shot that day and the sheep were never to be seen again. Soooo maybe next year will be someone’s lucky year!
Once again we will be at Dallas Safari Club(4436), SCI(4421/4423), Wild Sheep(541) and Grand Slam(214) If you are at any of the shows, please stop by for a visit.
Thanks to all our crew for doing an amazing job. This newsletter would be pretty brief without all of their hard work.