Category Archives: Successful Hunters Previous

What is Bwana Bubba Adventurers?

                              It is about sharing the hunt with everyone!

A rather large Gold Medal Aoudad or also known as the Barbary Sheep!
A rather large Gold Medal Aoudad or also known as the Barbary Sheep!
Pronghorn -Antelope are the game in the West that everyone should have on their wall. Not as easy as some think to hunt!  Cobra
Pronghorn -Antelope are the game in the West that everyone should have on their wall. Not as easy as some think to hunt! Cobra

This is a site that I write what I have on my mind. Others write stories of their hunting trips and I share them with the world. My site is design to help those that enjoy the great outdoors and find their Adventurer. Bwana Bubba aka Cobra

Frank Biggs

Bill’s 1970 Canadian Moose Hunt

 Boone & Crockett Canadian Moose

Moose 2
This Moose has hung over the cast iron wood stove in this Log Home for about 40 years! A lot of shrinkage over the years!

Prologue:  I do remember the day I recieved the picture of dad sitting on the Moose, I just happen to be in Vietnam.  What a surprise, as I did not even know that he was going on such a hunt!  A bit jealous I was at the time.   I finally got to see the Moose up close on a wall in my parents home in Portland!  Cobra

 

This is my story of one of the greatest hunts that I have ever been on!  It has been some 43 years since the hunt into the Wilderness of British Columbia, Canada!  Though I might not remember every detail and I hate to type, I have given you the joust of the hunt through this day by day hunt story!   William Lee Biggs

 

Day 1

The first day in Canada at Fort St. John!  It took 3 days of driving coming from Portland, Oregon.  It was a beautiful drive and very enlightening trip with the sighting of lots of game along the way. Today I met up with the Head Guide “John” and the first question after shaking hands was “what do you weight?”  He had a small plane, said it “it will be a little bit of wait, as we have to clear the highway of traffic so we can takeoff.”  I said “OK” the take-off went off without a hitch and we were in the air for about 40 minutes when the pilot said “grab the stick; I need to read my mail.”  So I said “OK” and was in total control of the plane as we flew over the Rocky Mountains.

 

What a sight with all the game moving around on the ground below.  As the pilot was getting ready to land on the isolated airstrip, there was a big Bull Moose on the landing strip.  He moved off pretty quickly and once landed, all the guides were waiting for 4 hunters at the High Camp.

My hunting partners from Portland, Oregon (John Bay – Fred Bay News) went to the Lower Camp.  My choice to go to the High Camp turned out to be the correct choice on this hunt of a lifetime.

“It was my last time seeing any humans, no roads, only game and trails!”  So I thought!

Day 2

More information:  We gatherer up our horses and started the new day and John (Guide) asked me “how big of Moose do want?” I said “the biggest one you have tied up to a tree!”  Anyway I wanted a big Moose and John said “I can do that.”  We passed up many bulls for about a week and walked many a mile and road horseback on ground that only game had been on.  We never saw a deer or an elk during the whole trip, only Wolves, Moose, Sheep, Goats and Caribou!

Day 3

Up at 0700 daily to eat breakfast before the hunt and lucky enough to have a Pro Cook whose name is Luther Boy and what a cook he is, making sure we have a great lunch while out in the field in the Rocky Mountains of Canada.   Around 0900 daily is the times we start are hunts every day.  We are now back on the trail and we see a lot of Moose, but all are small.  John gives the thumbs down on all of them.  While on the trail the horses stopped dead, the Head ‘John” Guide said “Stop” it was a Wolverine crossing our path and they are meaner than “Hell Nasty Critter.”

Day 4

This is a resting day, as we have covered a lot of ground the first few days of the hunt.  We felt we had plenty of time to find game on this long hunt.

John looks up and says “we may have weather moving in” “Snow! Hell its August and the next thing we have 2 feet of snow.  Built a big fire and spent most of the day talking.  I asked John “what happens if a man gets sick?” He said “if you’re lucky they put you on a plane, if the weather is flying weather” a lot of ifs, and we didn’t talk about it again.

Later in the day the snow has melted and I look up from the campfire and in rides an Indian with two (2) hunters.  They were in a Spike Camp up in the High Country.  Ok! Two (2) Hunters, Two (2) Pack Horses, Two (2) Heads, Two (2) Capes and lots of meat.  The heads were two record class Stone Sheep.

The High Camp is some distance from the lake (camp).
The High Camp is some distance from the lake (camp).

Nothing eventful, other than Luther telling us we are going to have fresh fish, as he had caught two (2) big trout from the lake next to our camp.  Now that was a meal to remember!

Lake near Camp
The lake the tasty fish came from on the Day 4!

Ok! It was a big day for me and the guide to see some Sheep that had been harvested, the thought of being stuck in the snow for a while…

P.S. Also only the Healthy Hunter is allowed on this hunt (Sheep)!  So the next day we would be back in the saddle for another hunt!

John said, “Hell how do you feel like going up into the High Country, you’ll see the Goats and Sheep up close.”  “I am all in for that trip!”

 

Day 5

It is now Friday morning and what a beautiful day it is; the horses are ready to move on.  John said, “We are going into a new area today up high” “Ok! Let’s do it” We road all morning and came up on a big flat area in between ranges; all of a sudden I see something in the flat, “John what hell is that?” He said, “A bear made a kill here, they move all around letting everybody know this is my area, stay out”, so we moved on!

The rifle I have is Remington Model 700 with custom hand loads in 7MM Remington Mag with 175gr. bullet.  It could take down anything that I wanted to kill with it.  Great flat shooting and hard hitting round.

Looking up the hillside, John puts his arms up and tells me to “STOP”, then the thumb goes up, “ Biggest Moose I have ever seen in these parts” John says!  Off the horses quickly and John tied up the horses.

 

Dad is 6' 4" tall and has a wingspan of a Condor!
Dad is 6′ 4″ tall and has a wingspan of a Condor!

I am quick to find a down tree, so I have something to lean on and get a steady shot off.  The monstrous Bull is at 350 – 400 yards uphill.   I shot three (3) times at the broadside bull and he dropped like a log.  All three (3) had hit within inches of each other.  I learned a long time ago, keep shooting until they fall over.  Nothing worst chasing a 1500lb animal in heavy cover and in bear country.

John says, “Reload your rifle; we may not be alone here!”

“Now the work starts”

During the night a bear came in worked over the front quarters of the Moose, yet we were able to get the rest of the meat out in the next couple of days.

Conclusion:

My hunting party that came on the trip with me, that had decided to hunt in the lower camp both got their Mini Moose with little racks.  They were most impressed with the big one and wished they had gone the distance on a tougher hunt.

On the way back to the plane, I did take a nice Caribou and was thankful for that harvest also!

John capping my Canadian Moose out for future mount.  Finest hunter/guide that I have ever known!  BB
John capping my Canadian Moose out for future mount. Finest hunter/guide that I have ever known! BB

This Canadian Moose was the largest that had been taken from the area in many years and the largest that the guide had ever seen taken.

Even after the bear worked over the meat, there is plenty to bring home!
Even after the bear worked over the meat, there is plenty to bring home!

The Canadian Moose scored over 290, and was in full velvet, only wished I had had him scored sooner.  It now hangs in the home of my past brother-law in Oregon City; fitting that is a Log Home that one of his sons’ now lives in.

A total of 7 days of hard work on a 15 day hunt, the chance to see game in quantity and drink water next to your horse from a stream or lake!

BILL BIGGS HUNTER

Archery Talk – Postings

 

The following are links to Archery Talk on stories or posting that I have done on!

Archery Talk

LINK:  BLACKTAILS IN JANUARY

LINK:  HUNTING THE RANCHO RAJNEESH

LINK:  BWANA BUBBA’S 2012 ARCHERY DEER HUNT 

LINK:  BWANA BUBBA’S HUNTING ETHICS – BIG GAME RECOVERY

LINK:  BWANA BUBBA’S HUNTING EQUIPMENT – BLACKTAIL DEER HUNT

LINK:   ADVANTAGE OF MOVEABLE BOW SIGHT

LINK:   BWANA BUBBA’S 1987 RANCHO RAJNEESH MULE DEER HUNT

LINK:   HUNTING FOR LATE SEASON BLACKTAIL BUCKS

LINK:   BWANA BUBBA’S THOUGHT ON BEING PREPARED

LINK:   BWANA BUBBA’S MAKING THE SHOT COUNT

LINK:   BWANA BUBBA’S OLD FRIEND MARK D’S OREGON BLACKTAIL HUNT

LINK:   BWANA BUBBA’S – BOYS GET THEIR FIRST BLACKTAIL BUCK WITH BOW

LINK:   BWANA BUBBA’S 2013 OREGON ARCHERY BOW HUNT FOR BLACKTAILS

LINK:  BWANA BUBBA’S HUNTING METHODS

I hope to add many more in the future!

Bwana Bubba aka Cobra

 

Bwana Bubba’s 1985 Rancho Rajneesh Hunt

Hunting the Rancho Rajneesh aka “The Big Muddy” Ranch #1

My best Mule Deer Buck!

Before we start the story of a lifetime, there is more to the story than just the harvesting of a monster Oregon Mulie (Mule Deer) buck, but more about time period of this great hunt.

It is 1985, a time in Oregon‘s History that will never be duplicated!”

 

The following story might be hard for some to fathom, but is real and unless you’ve had the opportunity to experience even a part of it, it may appear to be something from a fictional book!

This story is also on Archery Talk:

Archery Talk link on this story!
Archery Talk link on this story!
The Leader with his disciples (Idiots)!

During this era of time we would be hunting on and off of the original “The Big Muddy Ranch” located in Oregon close to Madras, Donnybrook (Historical), Ashwood (Post Office), Clarno (Historical) and the Famous Town of Antelope or better know at the time as Rajnesshpuram.   The Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh (later known as Osho) came to America from India to be a teacher of his faith and culture.  He would take up residence on the “Big Muddy Ranch” outside of Clarno, Oregon (Historical)! The main house would be at 3 miles line of sight to Clarno’s Grange Hall which sat along the John Day River!  There would be more than 2000 disciples on the ranch!

The purchase of the ranch was made through lawyers, un-be known (as the local story goes) to the Rubin Evans as to who was actually buying the 64,000 acres of land that also encompassed a great deal of BLM and some State Lands.   Rubin made a great deal of money (4.3M gross) on the sale of rimrock, sage and juniper trees that could not support any sizeable amount of cattle. The City of Antelope (97001 Zip) some 12 miles away from the main ranch was later taken over the Bhagwan and his followers, thus it was incorporated and called Rajneeshpuram.

Rajneeshpram (Antelope) and the Rancho Rajneesh now had its own Peace Force that carried Uzi’s and M-16’s.  Traveling into the ranch on the county road (Cold Camp Rd) and once past the boundary of the Smith Ranch (cattle guard) were Security Huts with active machine gun toting Peace Force clear down to the numerous buildings and hotel! I can remember when Burns Bros., Travel Stops sold FM handheld radios to the Ranch.  They were used to monitor people driving through the ranch on the county road.  How much time it would take to travel in and out of the ranch.  There were back doors into the BLM via Gosner and Muddy Creek Roads to the southeast, but you still would get stopped in remote areas.  Questioned of course what your intent was, which we would say was traveling to Mitchell, Oregon.  Once out of sight, you would get yourself deep into the BLM, such as Horse Heaven.  It is hard for most to understand what this place became and how things were done.  I would have to think it was one of the largest Commune’s of its type that has ever been established in the United States.  There was even a Crematorium and Machine Gun Range on the ranch.  If one ventured deep enough into the interior of the ranch, you found many un-expected buildings and sights!  A great deal of land use laws were broken by the leaders of Rajneeshpuram and Rancho Rajneesh!

The people of Rancho Rajneesh even damned up Current Creek (dam is still there) and made a dandy lake with a floating lodge on the lake for the followers to sunbath.   As said before they broke many land use laws and even made a paved road that was built in the center of the ranch and put in an airport.  The paved road was built so the Bhagwan could exit without notice to Madras, Oregon in one of his many Rolls Royce’s.  The road came out on Gosner Rd. on the south side of the ranch.

The Bhagwan did some improvements to the land with the planting of wheat, alfalfa and putting in small stick dams in the creeks plus the electric fence that surrounded more than 100 square miles of BLM and Private Land.  It create a atmosphere for deer, elk and antelope to multiple, live longer and move into neighboring ranches in the area up to 10 – 15 miles away line of sight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He was a great buck with great symmetry, with the only deduction with the even cheaters!

 

It was not an easy tasking for anyone to hunt the public land, as the Bhagwan thought the BLM also belong to HIM, his (followers-disciples) would do everything to keep hunters out of the public land that intertwined the ranch.  I probably forgot tell you that there were hundreds of No Trespassing Signs put on the parameter of the ranch, which included the posting of all the BLM, even if it was not on Rancho Rajneesh.  We use to joke that if we were ever caught, that are destiny would be left at the Crematorium!

Been there and it was big, even with bleachers to the north!

The challenge was on for myself and a few other fellows, such as “Stick”, “Baily”, “DB”, “MJ”, “Bennie” and “Bone” just to mention a few that I knew that would hunted for the monster Mule Deer bucks that harbored on the ranch!  I did leave out the fact that in 1984 we discover Elk on the ranch while glassing for bucks in a basin below the tower via the county rd.  I will leave that up to your imagination whether we hunt for elk, but then that is another story…

If one thought they would get away with trespassing on the private part of the ranch, they had something to look forward too, like 50 – 100 young people some with weapons in lines working down the ridges or draws where you might have been spotted from the “Tower” that had windows & maps with a 360 degrees layout!  The “Tower” was put on the highest spot of the ranch that would allow the viewing of draws such as Gallagher Canyon, Fir Tree, Lyon Ridge and Vanderhoof Canyon.  It was not only the Rajneesh patrollers (disciples) that could number in numbers, but the local law enforcement…   I will never understand the alliance that was between the cult and government’s police forces’.

This sign was taken from B.L.M. Land near Mays Res., to the south in 1984!

Oh! It would have been great to have my BLM mapping program and a modern day Garmin GPS, which would leave no doubt to being legal!  Then again BLM had great maps and I could read and visualize the land marks!

It was once told to “MJ” by an old Oregon State Police Game Officer of the time, “Go in on BLM and Come out on BLM”.

The cult would take the State of Oregon and other people to the cleaners over the years with Debt, above the law and trying to rid Wasco County of a good people.

In 1987 the Rajneeshpuram came to an end and not without controversy, such as Ma Anand Sheela setting up a Bio-Terrorism attempt in The Dallas with Salmonella Poisoning.  She would later be deported back to the United States from Germany to stand trial.  The Bhagwan would be deported (allowed to leave) back to India!  He died in 1991 of Aids, so you might be able figure out what else went on in the ranch besides the spiritual teachings!

I would have to say it was like those that drank the Kool-Aid at thePeoples Temple Agricultural Project of Jonestown.  People gave their wealth away to follow the Bhagwan’s radical teachings!  I understand their standings in the cult were based on the money!

Now let’s get one with the story!

The Oregon Archery Season was coming to a close in three days.  I’s passed up many smaller bucks during the early season, trying to find a P & Y Mule Deer.

Now it was performance time!

I made a quick call to Dave Brill because I knew I could count on him to go on a mission with me at the drop of a hat.  I told him we could make a Saturday afternoon hunt over on the breaks of the John Day Rive rin Central Oregon.

The final weekend of the season also happened to be my drill weekend with the U.S. Naval Reserve.  Luckily, I only had to spend half of Saturday and Captain’s Call was out at 1130.  I made it to Dave’s place just past noon in east Clackamas County.  There was an hour drive to the BLM, leaving us about 6 hours maximum for hunting.

On the way to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) property, we spotted a small herd of mule deer, with five bucks located on Earl’s Smith’s property.  All looked pretty nice, and I decided to take a few photos.  They were in the 23 to 25 inch class with one respectable four point at about 28 inches.  I did not have permission to hunt Earl’s Ranch, which would come later!

I took this picture on Father’s Day on a scouting trip with Dave Brill! I spotted the buck in the canyon and worked within 300 yards and let him come to me at 8 yards! He was very surprised!

At 3:00 p.m., we reached the B.L.M. land on the west side of theJohn DayRiver.  There a mutual friend, MJ, met us.  He wanted to show us where he had seen some big bucks.  In the middle of the basin were four “swamper” Mulie bucks, two around 28” and two in the 30” neighborhood.  I know, at this point you probably think I’m really pulling your leg.  I did take a few pictures of these bucks also, as they were not hunt-able at this location also.

Then, it was time to put down the camera and get down to the business at hand.  We split up and MJ headed over to his a ranch he would be hunting located along the John Day River to locate a Mulie he felt would easily go 36”.  By the way M.J. took this buck during the rifle season and he was 36”.  M.J. was a rifle hunter that we put up with as he was great with the game location logistics!

I would get a shot at the middle buck the following year!

With only about three hours of hunting time left in the day, finding a big Mulie was going to be even tougher.  Just before dark, I located a buck that would be about 28” to 29”, but he wouldn’t cooperate as I just couldn’t get on him in the open terrain pushing to fast before fading light.

We departed the area as Mother Nature began to drown the junipers and sagebrush.  The most difficult part of the trip was yet to come.  As I told you earlier, this was supposed to be a Saturday afternoon hunt-only.  Now, Dave and I would have to make phone calls to our respective wives.  Both ended being most understanding, which meant they knew we would be calling.  So we would have one more chance to get our big bucks before the rifle hunters came out of the woodwork in about 1 week.  You wonder how they were most understanding, well we did stretch the truth and told them we had a buck down and tried locate it in the dark, but would have resume in the morning!

The next morning we awoke to 39 degrees, patchy fog and overcast skies in Madras, Oregon.  We were working against the clock now, so crispy bacon and eggs at the Madras Truck Stop were out so a Coke Cola and Hershey Chocolate Bar were in order.  Ok!  Had a large jar of Jerky!

There is one smell in Oregon that really turns me on and that is the smell of wet sage at daybreak.  You have to know the feeling you get from the smell, as this is an optimum time in space to kill a buck!

It was already light when we arrived at the main access road.  Strangely, we saw nothing along the road going in.  When turning down into the main access road the Muddy Rd., there were fresh tire tracks in the road as it was very muddy, that was the answer to not seeing any game!  The roads in the area turn to slick clay like surfaces and deep ruts.  In about two miles we caught up to a Black Bronco II in front of us and the driver climbed out with bow in hand.  We pulled up for a brief conversation, and soon he couldn’t hold himself back.  He said he’d already had taken shots at 2 big bucks and that he saw a 30” buck feeding.  In the back of the rig was a respectable three-point his partner had taken with a 50-yard heart shot.  We also told him that he was now on ranch property and he better not be here hunting!  Oh!  Don’t get out of the truck with your bow if stopped by the patrollers!  He might get a chance to visit the Crematorium…

This 30” talk was something that should be investigated, I figured since it was located on BLM by the way he described the spot.  David and I headed back, hustled out of my truck and I climbed up the draw where the hunter said he’d seen the buck!  The draw would lead into a small basin with volunteer wheat.  It was in the BLM near Currant Creek, one the great spots to hunt.   There, at 45 yards, was a massive buck, feeding and completely unaware of my presence.  He was a long tined four-point, with extremely long eyeguards.  I felt he would be real close to 200 Pope and Young and real Oregon Record contender.  (You can tell I already had him on the wall!)  I did not have my bow with me, just my camera (I didn’t even take a picture).

I watched him for a few more minutes from behind a juniper grove, and then slowly backed away.  I hurried back to the rig, told Dave what happened, and quickly returned to the spot with my bow.  He was gone!  The shot was there if I had taken my bow instead of the camera.

I returned to my truck, more than a bit upset with myself, but Dave quickly lifted my spirits.

“Frank,” he said, “I’ve located some more dandy bucks!”

As we stood there making our game plan up, there was a group with some twenty bucks in the distance, but immediately are plans to hunt ended quickly.  It was incredibly exciting to watch them through the binoculars as they departed out of the tight draw in single file.  The smallest buck of the group was no less than 24 inches wide.  Seeing that group of bucks only made me a firm believer in “buck pastures”.  I have to tell that over the years hunting here, it was always like that.  Very few does were ever seen in the area during the archery season.  It should be noted that the big buck in the back was at about 38” on the roll jabbing the other bucks to move along.  He was a buck that one would never forget it if seen again.

Within a few moments we on a small out cropping of rocks, Dave and I located a good buck, bedded and chewing his cud.  I put the spotting scope on him-not real wide, but great long tines with super eyeguards.  I felt that he would score very well, a 180-plus.  The hunt was on!  I dropped into the canyon, using junipers for cover.  The terrain wasn’t too rough and I was able to circle around the rim quickly without making noise.  In these days I was running no less than 50 miles a week!  The wind was coming straight at me, and a light mist of fog hung in the area.  What more could I ask for?  I slipped into the junipers between the buck and myself.

At 40 yards approximately I decided it was time and drew my bow back without thought, set the 40 yard pin on the lungs just in case I miss-judged the distance of the bedded buck.  The 125 grain 3 blade broadhead was delivered to him right into the lungs behind the shoulder.  He was up in a hurry, but soon collapsed down the draw.

Great Bucks of the B.L.M. in the Oregon Grizzly Hunt Unit!

Thanks to Dave’s help, we were able to drag him to the truck fairly easily.  I couldn’t wait to put the tape to him.  With a quick measuring, he went 27” wide, not counting the “cheater points” on each side of the main beam of the same length.  I also did a quick P & Y score for a solid 198 green score.  My net score on this tremendous buck was 190 P&Y.  (After some 15 years I had him officially measured at Sportsmen’s Show and he would be set at 188 2/8, to bad I waited to long to put him in the Oregon Record Book).  Just think he wasn’t even one of the real monster Mulies and my taxidermist felt the buck was only about 5 years old!

While leaving the area, Dave and I saw at least six more good bucks.  I went back during the general rifle season to camera guide and saw two taken that went 32” and 38” wide.

As the readers might find it hard to believe the amount of deer, I will close with this one comment.

In the mid 80’s and until about 2001, it was not uncommon to see as many as 100 plus bucks in a morning or evening drive!

The 38” buck that was mention earlier on my bow hunt was the same that one that Greg A. would take in the rifle season in 1985.  The buck was 38” on the roll and would have a net score of 201 B & C.  The buck was killed within a 2 miles of where he was spotted him during the archery season.  He was taken on a piece of private land that bordered Rancho Rajneesh to the S.W.

You are probably wondering why I have not put down having any encounters with the disciples of Rancho Rajneesh, when you know the enemies’ habits you learn when to come and go! We did have some encounters, but then it also help to have a local rancher with you once in a while.

This picture was during the archery season on a scouting trip by Michael J.
Michael was very close to this Shooter Buck!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whether it was to get dropped off at the BLM corner or BLM Section by someone, bike ride or run the 12 miles back to Antelope to get the pickup vehicle, it was always a rush and an outstanding Clandestine Operation in Hunting.

Camo was worn to conceal from the enemy, not the game!