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Outdoors This and That

Budget Backpacking

I could scarcely believe it when I checked the drawing results. After just 7 years of applying, I had drawn a coveted Montana mountain goat tag! Helping my odds of drawing dramatically was the fact that the hunting area began 22 miles from the nearest trailhead, deep in Bob Marshall Wilderness, requiring the services of an outfitter or a ton of miles backpacking. With limited resources, a stubborn Do It Yourself (DIY) streak, a willingness to learn and an unrealistically positive outlook stoked by hours of reading Cameron Hanes stories, I decided this would be the perfect indoctrination into the solo backcountry backpacking cult. Continue Reading

Outdoors This and That

Earned The Hard Way

I must just have a penchant for being miserable. Whenever I plan my hunts, I feel compelled to find a trip that will strain my physical and mental limits, and then shove me past them. My search for a bighorn ram in Montana’s backcountry certainly fit the bill.

I promised myself that if I ever had the opportunity to hunt bighorns, I would do it the right way. I’d climb high and hunt hard to find and kill a mature ram. My plan was to use horses to pack camp into the backcountry and hunt the high alpine basins on foot. We left the wall tent and wood stove at home, and brought the backpacking gear with no room for anything extra.

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