Posted by JB on March 2, 2013 at 8:55 pm | Last modified: March 2, 2013 8:55 pm
HELENA – For Republican state Sen. John Brenden and many of his Eastern Montana neighbors, the idea of bison roaming the Montana plains as wildlife is absurd — and they want to do what they can to stop it.
Representative Alan Redfield (R) Park County is leading the anti-Montana Bison crowd near Yellowstone Park and Senator John Brenden (R) Scobey is leading the anti-Montana Bison crowd in NE Montana.
Interestingly, Senator Brenden is partial owner of Brenden Farms, which is heavily subsidized with your tax dollars to the tune of $523,908.38 in farm subsidy program payments from 1995-2011:
“Buffalo have their place in the world, but it isn’t going back to the 1850s,” Brenden said last week. “It’s no different than the dinosaurs. We’re living in a modern world, whether we like it or not …. We don’t need free-roaming buffalo.”
Brenden, a farmer from Scobey, is sponsoring a bill to prohibit moving wild bison from Yellowstone National Park herds to anywhere in Montana except the National Bison Range in Moiese.
His bill also creates a year-round hunting season for bison, allowing any hunter who pays $125 to shoot up to three bison.
“(My bill) says if the National Park Service and the feds don’t want to cull (the Yellowstone bison herd), we’ll cull them ourselves, when they come on private property,” he said.
Brenden’s bill isn’t the only one this session taking a whack at Montana’s bison management policies.
As the 2013 Legislature reaches its midpoint, a half-dozen bison bills are still alive, doing everything from requiring the state to remove bison from private property outside Yellowstone National Park to allowing landowners to shoot any “wild bison” that come on their property.
The wave of bison legislation is from Republican lawmakers who say they’re responding to heightened landowner concerns about bison encroaching on farms, ranches and other private property, not only near Yellowstone National Park but also in Eastern Montana, where wildlife advocates are talking about possible free-roaming herds of bison on mostly public prairies.
Opposing the bills are wildlife and hunting groups, state wildlife managers and Indian tribes, who say the bills derail a 2-year-old compromise that set up a planning process with tightly drawn restrictions on how or where bison could be “translocated” somewhere in the state besides near Yellowstone Park.
“We’re saying, rather than have a whole flood of new bills and supersede what we’re trying to do, as we work through a process — let’s let the process work, and see what the results are,” said Jeff Hagener, director of the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks.
Several Indian tribes also say many of the bills trample treaty rights for tribal members to hunt bison that range outside Yellowstone National Park.
“If that happens, it’s going to be a chaotic situation,” said John Harrison, an attorney for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes in Western Montana. “I guarantee there will be litigation. … When (tribes) talk about treaty rights, it’s as sacred to them as the Constitution is to American citizens.”
Two years ago, the Legislature passed a law that said the state must adopt a management plan before allowing wild bison to be transplanted to any private or public land in Montana.
The state is preparing an environmental review that examines where wild bison could be located in Montana other than near Yellowstone National Park. If some areas are identified, the next step is working with local groups of citizens on what safeguards should be in place if relocation might occur, Hagener said.
“Anywhere we’d put them in, we’d look at managing them on the landscape,” Hagener said. “What is the intent for that herd? How big would it be? What’s our long-term goal?”
Brenden, who chairs the Senate Fish and Game Committee, and Rep. Jeff Welborn, R-Dillon, wrote Hagener a letter late last month, asking about department plans for relocating bison.
Hagener replied a week later, saying the issue has spawned “no small amount of speculation, rumor and misinformation about bison management.”
In the letter, Hagener said the department has no current plans to move bison anywhere outside the Greater Yellowstone Area, and if translocation is considered in the future, it would follow the process in the 2011 law. He also said there are no plans to move any new bison to tribal lands in Montana.
Welborn said last week he thought Hagener’s letter addressed many concerns, and showed that the agency has “a genuine interest in bringing all of the stakeholders to the table and working out solutions.”
But the letter hasn’t stopped the flood of bills attempting to change state policy on bison.
Brenden’s Senate Bill 143 is an extensive rewrite of bison hunting and management policy, and House Bill 484, from Rep. Alan Redfield, R-Livingston, would direct state agencies to take certain actions when Yellowstone bison come onto private property.
Redfield, a rancher in Paradise Valley, said last week that his bill merely clarifies how the state departments of Livestock and Fish, Wildlife and Parks should handle bison that leave the park and cause problems on private property.
Tom France of Missoula, the senior director for western wildlife conservation at the National Wildlife Federation, said his group and others believe wild bison can be restored on and near the C.M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge, which surrounds a remote stretch of the Missouri River in northeast Montana.
Bison could be viewed by eco-tourists and hunted, he said, “with really minimal conflicts and a great deal of benefit” to the area.
The Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks should be allowed to study that possibility and other options for wild bison, France said.
“Until we have a result from that (process), it seems premature to be passing legislation that second-guesses it,” he said.
Wildlife advocates and state wildlife officials also say the bills revert state bison policy to what existed in the late 1980s and 1990s, when hundreds of bison were slaughtered by hunters and fish-and-game personnel when the animals left Yellowstone Park, causing a national outcry.
Pat Flowers, the state Fish, Wildlife and Parks regional director in Bozeman, said last week that HB484 essentially “requires that no bison will come out of Yellowstone National Park into Montana, ever.”
“This is very similar to the approach we took in the late 1980s,” he said. “It’s a failed policy then, it’s a failed policy now. This bill will take us right back to that same point in time.”
Brenden, however, said he and others are only seeking a balance in bison policy, and that if landowner concerns aren’t addressed, sportsmen’s groups should be worried about the backlash.
“People have closed up their properties to hunting because of the actions of Fish, Wildlife and Parks on this translocation of buffalo,” he said. “If we don’t get this bison thing solved, there won’t be hundreds of thousands of acres locked up, there will be millions of acres.
Senator Brenden is sponsoring the anti-Montana Bison Bill SB 143, which can be read here: http://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/2013/billpdf/SB0143.pdf
Representative Redfield is sponsoring his anti-Montana Bison Bill HB 484, which can be read here: http://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/2013/billpdf/HB0484.pdf
We are hopeful that HB 484 has or will be killed in the House Appropriations Committee.
You can contact both Representative Redfield and Senator Brenden or any given committee here: http://leg.mt.gov/css/Sessions/63rd/legwebmessage.asp
Tags: The War on Wildlife | Categories: Controversial Issues, Hunter Ethics | | Permalink
Read more: http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/landowner-fears-anger-stoke-barrage-of-bison-policy-bills-at/article_1437bbfa-c276-524e-9a41-3c190c5a96d9.html#ixzz2MPxVrn7T
Posted by JB on November 29, 2012 at 9:00 pm | Last modified: November 29, 2012 9:00 pm
Categories: 2013 Elk Hunting, Booking an Elk Hunt, Choosing between a rifle hunt or archery hunt, elk hunting outfitter | | Permalink
A view of Paradise Valley from historic Native American Eagle traps.
When moments are seized, appreciated, slowed down, they’re a branded into the soul. As an Outfitter, I feel especially blessed because I’m able to take with me everyone’s same memories, therefore I know have the stories.
The 2012 season ended up with nearly 70% success overall, which is about 60 percent higher than the general average! Dome Mountain Ranch continues to provide the kind of fair chase, traditional hunting that more and more folks are looking for. After all, we provide the full experience. While there are plenty of places that will drive you around in a truck and help you walk up and shoot an elk, most would agree that there’s nothing like the hunt, the real thing.
It’s about tradition. Our hunts are about the ethics that go above the rules of the law and place the hunter on a more equal playing field with wild things. Those who shared the mountain with us leave with new appreciations for our wild places and the privilege we have to gain in mind, body and soul from the earth, from those things that are natural. Of course, we’ll continue to strive for this and raise the bar.
Elk hunters come to Dome Mountain Ranch from all over seeking a traditional style fair chase hunt-and often score on trophy Elk.If I’ve talked too much about the end result and the daylight realities, I’d like to make sure I talk about the things that clients will rarely see happen, but eventually realize that these are the factors that make all the difference. These are the defining moments when a hunter makes the decision to do things the right way. I’ve always commented that if we continue to do things that promote the future of hunting for all, then we’re doing okay. However, when our actions as seen in the public light, hunter or not, do things to contribute to the commercialization and defeat hunting’s future, then we need to re-evaluate our actions.After chasing elk around for about the last 20 years and being a part of thousands of hunts, I’ll be the first to admit that I’ll never figure it out completely. However, I figure I can offer an opinion or two (as most of you know). I’ve been able to see the mountain from both sides, in the saddle, in the rocks, on the top and from the bottom. From the air, and through the seasons, rest assured that without basic habitat, none of what we have been able to share here at Dome Mountain Ranch would be available.The balance between predator and prey may have finally returned
Opening day started out just like most opening days. The start of elk season on Dome Mountain is always an interesting event, especially opening morning. While we knew there were elk on the mountain, we also knew from experience that more would come if we waited. We were not disappointed. As several wolves ran by my glassing spot bumping Mule deer out of the Daily hay fields, from out of nowhere 300 plus elk seemed to appear, cows, calves, spikes, brush bulls and a few toads. This signified that our low impact, careful and controlled style of elk hunting was working. As an added bonus, many of successes came from public land, high on the mountain where the daily distractions aren’t seen or heard. These are the real special ones. We even had a couple “doubles” which at this point, I can only thank the mojo and the positive attitude of our guides and guests.
Mid-way through the season we did get a quick and heavy snow which melted then froze over the grass which made foraging more difficult for the Elk. It is confirmed that many of the few remaining elk inside Yellowstone Park did migrate. One difference could be that few public hunters were on site near the well-known Deckard Flats. However, our friend and fellow outfitter near this area did find some success on confirmed migratory bulls.
In seasons past the areas around Jardine, Eagle Creek, Bear Creek and the general public land boundary of the park see a large amount of vehicle traffic. In years past those not capable of heading into the hills had mastered road hunting in this area. In spite of the vehicle traffic, Elk would eventually try to cross. It wasn’t unusual to see trophy bulls loaded whole in the back of pick-up trucks. It would seem that the old days are gone, but maybe it’s just that the old styles of hunting down in this neck of the woods are gone and many of us may once again be able to enjoy chasing wild elk on public lands. I’m already looking forward to next year’s archery season and returning to these places where we’ve had so much success before, but then saw them change dramatically as the result of the introduction of wolves.
The ability to hunt wolves has been a long time coming and more than likely is a huge contributing factor. Thus far, sound wildlife science has prevailed. Let’s hope that another frivolous, money wasting lawsuit doesn’t slow down the return of modern wildlife science. Although a few wolves have been harvested in our area, there’s still quite a few around. The winter hunt and trapping should provide the opportunity to bring back more of a balance. Who knows, maybe even those of us who only have a weekend here or there to hunt elk will once again here the bugles from the high country in places available for everyone to hunt.
So, why was this year such a successful year in killing? The answers are more often than not simple, yet complex in their relationship to the end result. Once sufficient habitat is provided for wild things, then it’s a matter of making the most out of their habits and the opportunities they’ll provide. You can bet it’s never going to be easy, and if it does become easy, I’ll probably try something different.
By the close of the season, we all realized that having well-prepared clients who are willing to endure the rigors that only a traditional style hunt can provide helped keep spirits high and hands bloodied. Not many elk get killed from the couch.
There were definitely fewer hunters around. Perhaps this was due to our new special permits, or maybe folks are taking advantage of increased elk numbers in other areas of the state where opportunities were limited, but now changed since new predators pushed many elk to old stomping grounds.
To close, it’s safe to say I learned more this season and saw things that I haven’t for a long time, good or bad, we all learn a valuable lesson to take with us the next time we’re out there. I won’t soon forget the adventures of 2012. Thanks to all of you for helping us make Dome Mountain Ranch a better place to be.
2013 PRE-BOOKING SPECIALS, SEASON DATES & WHAT’S NEXT!
ARCHERY: We’ll be offering both Elk and Mule Deer combination hunts next fall. Our dates will be flexible in order to make travel less expensive and more suitable to our clients. Therefore, if you are interested in an archery hunt for next season, please call me TODAY!
2013 RIFLE HUNTING DATES: Hunts will be 5 days in duration with an arrival/preparation day on the front end of the hunt week and a departure day on each end.
800-313-4868 TOLL FREE
406-223-0009 JB’s HUNTING HOTLINE!
“See You on the Mountain”
Outfitter #7843 JB Klyap
WEEK I: October 26th-October 30th
WEEK II: November 6th-November 5th
WEEK III: November 17th-November 21st
WEEK IV: November 27th-December 1st (Thanksgiving week)
SPECIAL: Return client discount of $500 current rates, plus Mule Deer Trophy fee 50% off at time of booking. ENDS DECEMBER 31st, 2012
Posted by JB on November 4, 2012 at 7:13 pm | Last modified: November 4, 2012 7:13 pm
If it’s possible to get a “moon burn”, then there’s going to be a few funny looking tan lines later this week.
- A Dome Mountain hunter finds a treasured part of the mountain’s hunting history in the form of a small game point of Obsidian.
“I’ve seen more elk in 2 days here and the last 3 guided hunts I’ve been on”.
“You certainly changed my mind about an Outfitted hunts. This is the best time I’ve ever had.”
“I just want to make sure you realize what a great staff you have. Incredible guides!”
The second week of elk camp at Dome Mountain Ranch was extremely adventurous and not without several interesting moments! Everyone worked hard and had decent opportunities all week. Mild weather combined with the bright full moon did make things challenging, but that’s why we call it hunting.
Categories: Montana Elk Hunting | | Permalink
This week, everyone sincerely expressed their appreciation for wide open spaces and this rare privilege of the hunt that we are all able to share. Never a day was there a complaint about the weather, the wind, the wildness and for that matter; even rank horses got a free pass from contempt. We had a group of diligent hunters who were always there where they needed to be, and for some, luck paid big, while for others, in spite of putting forth commendable efforts, elk dimply went the other way, and that’s elk hunting. “The mountain has its own ways”.
We’ll See You on the Mountain!
The week began with snow high in the hills. As temperatures warmed up, snow began to melt and bunch grasses came back from their dormant stage for a few days. This allowed the high mountain elk chow to become more palatable and as a result opened up more of the mountain for both cover and food. However, elk continued to frequent the popular areas we all love to hunt.
Every day was a good one and each proved to provide opportunities, but closing the deal was often a difference of mere minutes since elk spent most of the day bedded up tight and had no reason to seek additional food or water. So, if you’re joining up in the next few weeks, the game may have gotten a little wiser, but the good news is, they’re still here.
Posted by admin on October 27, 2012 at 9:11 pm | Last modified: October 27, 2012 9:11 pm
A hunter contemplates his next move on Dome Mountain Ranch.
An epic week of Elk hunting with nearly 100% success! According to our guests from last week, it was 110% satisfying!
A successful hunter from Pennsylvania taking a moment to lock in a memory or two.
Although we’d been seeing good elk numbers during our scouting missions, every day brought new surprises in the form of lots of elk and lots of shooter bulls.
The weather changed nearly every day and sometimes several times a day. It could start out cold and snowy and end up sunny and warm. It was all about staying dry and layers for this week!
Rikki Bobbi took two new clients to one of my favorite spots on the Hervit flat in the Beartooths.
Both Travis and Aaron were extremely happy to be back in the U.S.A.-as pilots in Saudi Arabia (where they say gas is 37 cents a gallon).
These guys decided to get as from away from things and ended up pulling off a “two-fer”. That’s two bulls in one day! I think they all had some good MOJO going, especially when the eldest guide (most experienced too) chose to go the furthest on the map!
Meanwhile, Dirty Kirty took a little walk with two pals from Pennsylvania and West Virginia. After a horse threw a shoe, they had not choice but to burn some shoe leather. Just below Bennie’s Hole they were able to knock down a nice Montana bull.
It's a team effort here at Dome Mountain Ranch-there's nothing like helping a pal pack out an elk-on your back!
This also provided Mikey and Tiny some well deserved time afield as they helped them drag off the bounty!
Needless to say, opening day was very eventful! We were fortunate to have so many opportunities in so many different places. This may signal a change that our elk are changing habits in order to survive amongst increasing predator numbers. On the other hand, it’s hard to gauge how the hunting is on other areas of public land.
A return client and another "Pennsyltucky" fella, finds more success on Dome Mountain Ranch.
The week continued to provide what seemed like at least daily opportunities. I would wager that every client on the mountain had at least one opportunity and certainly was able to see elk on a daily basis.
"Eight miles High"...Jerry posing with his son Justin after a long, steep hike to tag Justin's first Montana bull.
Dan had the pleasure of guiding a return client and his son. According to Jerry, the end result was something like this…”I wanted to see my son shoot a bull elk, and I did…I’m eight miles high right now!”. That’s some good stuff. Both were able to harvest exceptional bulls and somehow had found a way to make this year’s hunt even better than the last!
Everyone hunted hard right up until the last tick of legal shooting light on the last day. While we may not have ended up perfect, I’m certain that everyone did their best and got the most out of their Montana elk hunting experience that they possibly could-there certainly weren’t many days for sitting on the couch and watching TV. It was nice to get away from the distractions.
We’re gearing up for week two with cooler temperatures and snow that looks like it will stick around in the hills for a bit. We’ll see you on the mountain!
Tags: elk report week one 2012, hunting report opening week | Categories: elk hunting outfitter, fair chase elk hunting, Hunter Ethics, Montana Elk Hunting, montana guided elk hunts, Montana Hunts | | Permalink
Posted by JB on October 12, 2012 at 6:20 pm | Last modified: October 12, 2012 6:20 pm
We recently did some filming via a really cool remote control helicopter. We were able to g footage of about 200 Elk moving up the mountain from the pivot fields. Lots of bugling and whiney cows. We counted a dozen or so legal bulls. What an exciting morning!
If you’ve not purchased your wolf tag, please do so by visiting https://app.mt.gov/Als/Index You’ll be able to print out your temporary tag, however it is best if you have it mailed to Dome Mountain Ranch at 2017 US Highway 89 South, Emigrant, Montana. There is no additional fee to harvest a wolf and you’ll be doing great things to reduce these illegally introduced non-native Wolves to our area.
We had some fun fishing the lakes as well and caught what is arguably one of the biggest Browns I’ve ever seen in the net. My friend Greg Faye and I were leisurely stripping a bugger and just like we’d hoped Greg latched onto what he claimed was a “WALLY”. This big brown came in at 28 inches in length with 16 inch girth, an estimated weight of 13 pounds. That’s a hog of a fish! And, we got it all on video! The photo below is just a teaser!
A record book Brown Trout from Thelma's Lake on Dome Mountain Ranch.
In spite of all the negative publicity about “the wolves eating all our elk”, fact is, they must have missed a few, as there’s plenty of elk to go around on Dome Mountain. It’s just pretty tough to shoot them from a vehicle or ATV. That’s why we’ll continue to take great pride in continuing the great tradition of fair chase.
Next week at this time we’ll all be making plans, debating contingency plans, discussing the “what ifs” and hoping that we’ll all be safe the next morning as we pursue North America’s wildest big game animal. In the end, like with most years, we’ll recognize that with even the most well-laid plans, things just happen. Especially on opening day. Once the madness of opening day passes, then so begins the real hunting. We’re all looking forward to it.
Now is the time when we’ll go through last minute preparations, from gear to work schedules. There’s a certain comfort that comes prior to the hunt when the hunter feels as prepared as one could be. While I’d rather be lucky than good anyday, I’d still rather be prepared than not.
Safety will always be first and foremost in our camp. In this business, we’ll often have clients join us or run into folks in the field who unfortunately do not come from a hunting background, let alone a family which grew up with guns in hand. Therefore, we have to be especially careful of those who have tried to learn to hunt from television shows. Safety is simple. Don’t get caught up in all the excitement. It doesn’t go over well on our mountain.
With that said, we’ll see you all on the mountain soon. In the meantime. Get organized and get ready for some “Montana Time”.
JB Klyap, Outfitter #7843
Dome Mountain Ranch, LLC
Categories: fair chase elk hunting, Montana Elk Hunting | | Permalink
Posted by JB on October 5, 2012 at 3:36 am | Last modified: October 5, 2012 4:22 am
I’m still trying to figure out where the summer went. Seems even though we fished a lot, it still wasn’t enough. As of tonight, we’re dealing with temps in the teens. Just a few days ago I was wet-wading and sweating from catching so many Whitefish! Now, I’m doing my best to shift into hunting mode whether I want to or not. Two true loves are tough to handle.
Hunting has a way of overtaking some of our lives whether we like it or not. Work, family, and other important things get set aside for a bit, yet thought about a lot. I’m glad to know I’m not alone.
Today, at work on the ranch I got pretty excited when I saw lighter colored fur up on the mountain. Although I was too far away to hear it, I knew by the way the big bull craned his neck that he just lit up the forest.
I couldn’t help but feel sorry for this fella, as well as the silly cows who were following him. Just a couple weeks ago I had an arrow knocked and watched in amazement as one of several Wolves stared me down and barked in my direction well within in rifle range, but well out of bow range. I’m pretty sure they at least heard that passionate call of the wild.
I looked a little lower at something I assumed were Mule Deer, and just 50 yards from me was a smaller bull with a few cows. He kind of had that look on his face like he got lucky last night, but he sure didn’t have an answer back for that big boy up on the ridges in the gold tinted Quakies.
Truth is, there’ve been a lot of elk around, but just like any other secret, it’s never good to talk about it in small towns. Especially when you’re talking about one of the most famous mountains in Paradise Valley. I actually have been seeing a lot for the last two months, (and, I’ve got friends who like to call me now and then when they’re driving by on their way to work).
I noticed some wallow action right close to the far wheel line down near the benchs. We’d been soaking this rough field and someone decided to get muddy. ”
The face of Dome Mountain continues to look awe inspiring. Especially as the evening sun settles over the Gallatins. I was thinking about how many times I’ve walked, rode, slid and stumbled up and down her over the years. Lots of good memories came back. Loads of good memories.
“Blackies Hollow” is a spot everyone loves to talk about. I do my best to keep it as a haven. Those who do decide that “they can sneak up on anything” and walk down into Blackie’s dark, cold, slippery, steep, rocky, muddy, and did I mention dark? All the time dark. Wet and slippery, steepness that’s just a few degrees off straight up! Elk do fine in here, they’re footing simply works better than ours, and most predators.
This place will always evoke some special memories. It’s where I guided a hunter to the first elk killed with a bow in a “coon’s age”. Then realized how much fun packing anything out of here can be! I also realized that was 14 seasons ago. My first season ever as the outfitter here. We’ve sure had some fun in the meantime.
Blackies Hollow is also where I’ll think about “Junior” for a long time to come. Gary Hagga Jr. It was his 18th birthday. Hunting was tough and everyone knew it. We’d not had much luck all week, but Junior wasn’t ready to give up and his Dad knew I would never give up.
That day we hunted the whole way to the top of Dome, came out around the Pinion Pine, spooked some cows, then we left them settle in loop down around us. With them, they brought a nice Montana bull.
Junior’s shot was lethal, but not perfect. We had good blood, but darkness fell. We decided to head back to camp and give the bull a chance to lay down and hopefully bleed out. Besides that, the bull had dropped off down into “Hervit’s Hell”. Not even a place I wanted to be in the daylight. There’s a pile of truck sized boulders in here nearly 100 yards deep and 500 yards long. An easy place to lose stuff.
The next day Gary Sr. joined us. We endeded up chasing that bull all day, we figured all said about 10 miles of up’s and downs. We did eventually kill that bull at the heart of Blackies. It died on a pile of dead fall that took three of us two hours with ropes, saws and sweat to move into even a suitable position to begin field dressing.
We packed that whole thing out that night because, if I remember Junior’s words correctly…”I’m never coming back to this &%^$ #($@(*) ^)((__)#@ nasty place again, let’s drag it out now!”
Junior and many of his friends and family hunted with us over the last 10 years. He left us this past Mother’s Day because of an ATV accident. Those of us who spent even a little bit of time with Junior remember him well. I simply had the rare pleasure of knowing him better and longer, than anyone else who’s walked these hills other than his Mom and Dad.
Gary Sr., Ladona and Jr. enjoying the spoils. We'll see you on the mountain Jr.
I’m dedicating this season to Junior. I hope we all have the chance to have the fun I had with that kid! Most of all. He had the right attitude. Keep shooting Junior!
Time to put more wood on the fire. Keep checking back, and my apologies for being slack. There’s been a lot going on, and those of you who know me, know that I’ll tell you that whole story…maybe even a couple times. Good luck and God Bless! I’ll look forward to hearing from you all and sharing Dome Mountain Ranch again!
With faith and passion!
JB Klyap, Montana Outfitter #7843
Categories: fair chase elk hunting, Montana Elk Hunting | | Permalink
Posted by JB on April 6, 2012 at 10:11 pm | Last modified: April 6, 2012 10:11 pm
According to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, there are 800 hunting licenses that were not sold, which means if you put in for the draw you will receive your license. In addition, the remaining licenses will become available at a later date on a first-come-first serve basis like last season. Therefore, be sure to pass the word on to friends and family. We have a few more spots available, so please call us toll free 800-313-4868.
The latest elk count from FWP shows that elk numbers continue to hover around 4000 plus. Of course, we wish there were more but science tells us that until we reconfigure the true balance between predator and prey, our ungulate numbers will suffer. However, we bet you’ll find that hunting “the wildest elk in North America” has it’s own merits!
Now that federal protections have been removed from the Canadian Gray Wolf, Montana’s state FWP should be able to play a more effective role in predator management. We’re firm believers in the North American Model of Wildlife Management and personally believe that we as hunters deserve the opportunity to play an ever more critical role in conservation just as we traditionally have through sustinance hunting and continuing the preservation of a great tradition.
Thanks again for taking some time today.
We will see you on the mountain!
Jim “JB” Klyap
Categories: 2012 SEASON DATES & RATES, Booking an Elk Hunt | | Permalink
Posted by JB on March 21, 2012 at 6:27 pm | Last modified: March 21, 2012 6:27 pm
Hopefully you’ve mailed in your license applications. Now that the March 15th deadline has passed, it’s a waiting game. Word from FWP is that a few more licenses seem to have sold, and bins of applications are arriving daily at the licensing office. Word is, hunters should find out if they’ve been successful in the draw after mid-April.
Thus far we’ve got a few openings left, so if you put in for a tag and didn’t select a place to hunt this season and you do draw a tag, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. Since Montana went to a draw hunters have been booking right up until the season opener. We don’t mind this at all, however as a hunter, hopefully you’ve been doing your own preparations and aren’t expecting anything less than a hardcore, fair chase Montana Elk hunt.
Thanks again to those of you who’ve already put your names on the books for 2012. It’s pretty early to predict the season, but there’s plenty of good news which will hopefully lead to higher numbers of Elk and Deer. Wolves have been removed from the endangered species list and will continue to be hunted and hopefully managed more stringently in favor of science over sociology. Secondly, we’ve had a mild winter with plenty of food for wintering elk. On the ranch alone there’s roughly 500 plus elk. All look healthy. A lot looking pretty fat too!
With the new “unlimited special permit” we’ll hopefully see a decrease in road hunters and ATV users who often drive into areas and ruin the hunting for those who know the right way to hunt isn’t with motorized vehicles. We’ll continue to fight the battle to keep these idiots out of wild places. Folks who recognize and care about the last remaining wild habitat in the lower 48 don’t think twice. It’s common sense to keep these areas free of roads and motorized access.
See You on the Mountain!
JB Klyap, Outfitter #7843
Categories: Booking an Elk Hunt, Choosing between a rifle hunt or archery hunt, elk hunting outfitter, fair chase elk hunting | | Permalink
Posted by JB on December 5, 2011 at 7:24 pm | Last modified: December 5, 2011 7:24 pm
Yesterday was a good day to book your 2012 hunt with us. Normally I’d be pretty laid back about bookings, but based on the number of calls we’ve been receiving combined with the now public success we enjoyed this past season, I’m pretty sure the limited openings we have will fill quickly, and I sure hate to say “NO” to someone, but the only way we can be fair is to take reservations on a first come-first serve basis. If you’re a return client, we’ve made it easy by reducing your deposit to $500.00. Please give me a call today, toll free at 800-313-4868 so we can all have a Merry Christmas!
Dan and I have been spending some time in the high country doing our best to locate some fresh Mountain Lion tracks, but the problem we’ve been having is all the elk tracks, but we decided this is a good problem to have. We watched close to 500 elk coming up from Daily Lake. Now that the gates have been closed over there it’s interesting just how many elk benefit from this now undisturbed area. Chances are the road will be opened again next hunting season, which means we can count on someone driving in there and pushing all those elk right to our dinner plates.
During one of our hikes through some deep timbered bottoms above Clayton’s cabin we bumped some nice bulls out. We were able to video them as they walked up the side of Stands Peak. These bulls were likely here during the last few days of the elk season or longer, but they were in such a good hiding place and were probably nocturnal we just never saw them. However, something tells me Dan will file this little spot away for next season and be dragging some poor soul down into here. It’s a sweet spot without a name…yet.
Dan’s pal Tyler shot the cat of a lifetime weighing in at 178 pounds. When you see a predator this big it makes the hunter in all of us wonder just how many times we’ve walked right beneath a critter like this as it sat in the crook of a tree probably licking it’s chops and giving thought to dinner time. However, since we actively hunt these animals every year with an effective management system they continue to be wary of humans, unlike those in other states that have banned lion hunting. Take California for example. Those cats feed well on mountain bikers all the time. Maybe the spandex is easier to bite through compared to 3 layers of wool? Nonethless, I’m glad to be on the top end of the food chain. That’s the way it should be.
Our wolf quota has a ways to go with only half of the number of wolves taken. Although our quota filled quickly, many other areas of the state are having trouble putting up the numbers. Hopefully the extension of the season will bring some much needed scientific balance back to this emotion based environmental mistake. We’ve already noticed a difference in elk and deer numbers on the ranch with only a few of the predators being eliminated.
Since these wolves are not native and 30% larger than the original wolves of the state they’ve played a big role in changing elk habits. In addition, unlike the native wolves which were beginning to make a natural comeback, these non-native wolves hunt in much larger packs, which is probably why elk have become so bunched up. Predator control will continue to be an effective part of Montana’s ability to continue to offer outstanding hunting opportunities. Personally, I can’t wait until more wolves move into Colorado, a state that’s enjoyed virtually “predator-free” hunting for years. Maybe the Mexican wolves will move North and push a bunch of those soft elk our way. We sure wouldn’t mind some easy hunting.
Until next time, thanks for reading and we’ll see you on the mountain!
Jim “JB” Klyap, Outfitter #7843
Tags: When Should I Book My Hunt? | Categories: Booking an Elk Hunt | | Permalink