Oregon FNAWS
Hunt Stories - Jordan Behrens
Jordan Behrens 1
Sheep Hunt 2007
By Jordan Behrens
I was at work when I received a phone call from my dad who was checking to see what tags we had drawn online. He asked for my license information which followed by him mumbling "uhh Jord", a long silence on the other end of the line was confirmed by him saying "you drew a sheep tag". It took me a few moments to register what I had heard. I dropped the phone and went running through my workplace yelling and screaming. Everybody thought I was crazy.
For the next three months I devoted my summer weekends scouting for sheep, with the help of my dad, of course. We had traversed across some of the hottest, rockiest, and steepest country I have ever experienced in my life. Some weekends we would see as many as twenty rams and other weekends there would be nothing. Every day was different accept for the weather, it was either hot or hot. Not just the normal heat that comes with summer, it was the kind where we were just sitting and sweating, and there was nothing we could do to get away from it. By the end of summer, we scouted twenty one days.
Dad and I woke early on the morning of August 22, opening day of my sheep hunt. I was bursting with confidence and anticipation since we had spotted many good rams over 160 during the two months of scouting. I knew what I wanted and I wasn't about to harvest any average ram. I was trophy hunting. We were hunting fairly close to camp so we began to spot sheep 30 to 45 minutes after we started our hike. The first band had five rams, all of which were nothing to speak of, class 2 and 3 type rams. I passed on them with no hesitation. At that point, dad and I decided to split up. We paralleled each other on opposite sides of a rim that we knew held sheep.
It wasn't 20 minutes later when I spotted another band of five. I watched them until my dad made his way over to me and we pick apart the rams one by one. We sat and watched them feed for well over an hour and decided that this was the same bunch of rams that I had taken pictures of about a month prior. The dominant ram was a DANDY! Dad guessed him to be 165, I thought he was 168+, and after I had the pictures developed I showed them to a friend and he guessed it to be 170-175. I knew that I wanted to take this ram but the trouble was how I was going to close the distance. He was 380 yards from our position; I was comfortable with that shot but a magnificent animal of that caliber I wanted to make sure that he would go down quick. The rams were feeding out in the open and there was no way we could get any closer.
We backtracked to get off of the skyline and started easing around the hillside. We had finally reached a point that I thought was a more adequate distance but there was one major problem; the rams were gone, so we thought. Upon further inspection they were still there but had fed closer than expected. I quickly scrambled to get a dead rest from a pile of rocks. I chambered a round into my 7mm STW and at 120 yards; I settled the crosshairs and let'er buck. WHACK! A solid hit right behind the shoulder. The ram took about 10 steps and fell. The other four rams ran right in front of him and I guess that he just had the will to get up and run. He ran up the hill towards us, I couldn't believe it. I shot once more at 75 yards. The 140 grain Nosler Accubond penetrated deep into his chest and put the monarch down for good. I wasn't too nervous when I was shooting but when I stumbled closer and closer to my ram, my legs were like jell-o. There was absolutely no ground shrinkage; he just kept getting bigger and bigger. It felt so good after basically hunting for three months to finally get my hands on those big'ol massive horns. My ram green scored 172 6/8 and had only 4/8 inches of deductions. Both horns stretch the tape to 34 5/8 inches. After the sixty day drying period, my ram was officially scored at 172 2/8. Definitely a hunt my dad and I will never forget.
I have many to thank for helping me succeed with my hunt. I would like to thank Todd, Cleve, and Craig Foster (the biologist out of Lakeview) for all the helpful information about the area. My mom and Step-mother for allowing us to be gone for most of the summer, our family and friends for all of the support, and my dad for sharing every moment of the hunt with me. I wouldn't have been able to do it by myself. Until next year, good luck and happy hunting.
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