Tag Archives: Oregon Hunts – Exotics

Bwana Bubba’s Thoughts – Oregon Coyotes in numbers

Let us not forget about the resilient Coyote that roams all of North American. Ever thought about asking a chicken or duck farmer to hunt the Coy Dogs that will lay in wait free roaming egg layers…

Having recently talked with a ODFW Bio, the news is out that the Coyotes are eating well! There is an over abundance of Rodents and Rabbits in S.E. Oregon. Time for hunters to get out reduce the Coyote numbers if they want Pronghorn and Deer fawn survival in the future!
Keeping this short with an ending comment!
“If you can’t call in a Coy  Dog, you don’t know how to call” (CF)

If you want to find the big boys you need to take out the Coy Dogs!

Oregon Exotic Sheep Hunting


The other day an old hunting partner of mine, Ben Olson called me back on an issue that I had.  We do not get to hunt or golf together much these days, but we do get a call in every so often.


Ben was telling me that he was over near Antelope or that region on an old road that we would cruise in the days of the Exotic Sheep hunting for Corsicans and Mouflons in that area of Oregon.   Those that had the opportunity to get there first, before the state made changes or ranchers could make some heavy cash on the trespassing fees to hunt we had some great hunts with lots of sheep.  Little Trout Creek was a great area to work.  Ok! Getting back to the phone call from Ben, he told me that one of the local ranchers told him he could deer hunt over there.  I asked him the name of the rancher, but he couldn’t remember, no use giving up a good thing.   He did give way to the area of the loop road and that was enough information for me to figure out who the rancher might be and the canyons that once or still may hold Exotic Sheep.

It will be interesting when Ben reports after scouting the ranch as to what he encounters there.

 I have attached a couple of pictures from past hunts, with a medium size Hawaiian Black that was taken from one of the guys in the group of past.

Oregon Hawaiian Black Corsican


 Hawiian Black Corsican taken near Ashwood, OR – Little Trout Creek

I was lacking a Hawaiian Black Sheep in my quest for the Grand Slam of Exotic Sheep.

One needed a Mouflon, Corsican (Pure Breed), Texas Dall (Pure White-Long Hair) and the Hawaiian Black in order to have a Grand Slam.

I had already taken a Corsican early on once I found exotics running loose in Oregon.

The Mouflon came a bit later and I took a Texas Dall in Oregon near Ashwood, Oregon.


During my hunt for the Texas Dall, I had the opportunity to harvest a Hawaiian Black and larger a Corsican than I already had, but past them up in quest for the Texas Dall.   I do remember that hunt as there were so many rams, I was overwhelmed.   I had concentrated on getting the Texas Dall.


Ok!  Getting to the hunt for the Hawaiian Black, I again was going to hunt outside of Ashwood, Oregon.    The sheep had not been in the area for a while, as their range of roaming freely was probably a 20 mile circuit.


I knew that when the sheep were in the area, that they would most definitely be located in the draws above Little Trout Creek, I could get in on them easily from above.   Most of the cover would be Juniper, light sagebrush and rimrock.


I believe that I had Chuck Megeske with me on this hunt and we headed up good old White Knuckle Road, leading up on top of the plateau.   It is the same area in which Chief Paulina is buried and terrorized the NW in the 1800’s.


I was fortunate to be able to find a nice ram running with a couple of other rams.

I do believe that the Hawaiian Black was the most difficult to find while hunting the canyons around Ashwood, Willowdale, Donnybrook, Madras and Clarno.


I was able to make a dandy 450 yard shot on the ram with my 257 Weatherby, loaded with a 120gr. Sierra Grand Slam.  

On this hunt, I was the only person to be able to connect on a ram.


A winter Hawaiian Black taken by LT.

Coriscan Sheep – Oregon Hunt


Dave’s Coriscan Sheep Killed in the Trout Creek area of Ore.


Some stories are supposed to be a bit funny at someone else’s expense.

Such is this story about an old hunting buddy Dave Brill from Sandy Oregon.

Dave and I have in the past hunted many days together with success for archery deer in Oregon.

On this hunt Dave wanted to harvest a Corsican sheep in Oregon.   At one time there were a great number of free ranging Corsican, Mouflon and Aoudad sheep running around the hills of Central Oregon.

So many years ago, as I might have stated before they were turned loose on a number of ranches in Oregon by Harry Hegardt.  He had made deals with ranchers for the right to hunt the exotics on their ranches with paying hunters.


Enough of the history of how the sheep got here!


Dave wanted a sheep pretty bad, so I told him I would take him on a sheep hunt in the rim rocks near Ashwood and Gateway.   I figured it would be pretty easy to get him into a sheep or two on this hunt.


To cover a vast amount of ground and get to the high spots and glass for sheep, we decided to use motorcycles to cover the ground and they would work great on rough dirt and heavy rocked roads.


After scouting for about 2 hours we spotted some sheep down on a flat near Trout Creek.

The hunt was on and it wasn’t long before Dave stalked the sheep down in the junipers and sage brush.   We had just observed the small group of sheep forging the flooding waters of Trout Creek while putting on the stalk.  Dave stalked within about 100 yards of the sheep and made his one shot kill on the ram.  Dave shot a damn nice ram for a free ranging Corsican.   In all the years of hunting Corsican’s and Aoudad’s, I have yet to see any water or barbwire fence stop them.

  Now this is where the story gets good and a bit funny.   Dave decided that he would cross Trout Creek at a different spot then the usual safe spot even during the high water.  Well the crossing was not the best and even with a big 500 Honda, Dave did not make the crossing.  The bike, rifle, pack-frame and Dave both went down in the fast and deep moving water.  He did make it halfway across before the high water faltered his engine.  I could see Dave and the bike going down the river, I quickly ran down the river bank and managed to throw a rope line onto the bike.  As for Dave, he and his rifle made it to the shore on their own. 

Well it took about two (2) hours to get Dave’s Honda running again with me dragging it all around and after putting fresh oil into the crankcase.

As you can see from the pictures Dave was able to get bike and sheep back to the truck.

Oregon Texas Dall Ram – Ashwood, OR


Taken at 200 yards – Post Hollow – 257 Weatherby 

I remember Dynamo’s comment to me “Bubba, I think you could have shot a bigger ram, like the one I got”  Little did Dynamo realize that the Texas Dall (Corsican) Ram that I shot at 200 yards cross canyon would have a net score 105 (Gold Medal) would be the largest free ranging Texas Dall Ram ever shot in Oregon.  Al and I had glass a herd of rams and eves for about an hour as they maneuvered their way to us.  I had lots of time to decide on the type and size or ram that I wanted to shoot.

It had a been a virgin trip into Little Trout Creek, near Ashwood, OR.  We had gotten permission to hunt the Darrel Friend Ranch.  The sheep had a range of about 20 miles that they would move within from ranch to ranch and BLM.   During a spring run-off I watch sheep jump and swim across a river.  We had been the first persons other than family that got the opportunity to hunt this ranch.

Again this ban of sheep and other exotics had been turned loose some twenty years before this hunt by “Old Harry”.  He had found ranchers that would be willing to let him turn them loose for future use of paid hunting.  “Old Harry” just got to old to see where his dream went.

Oregon Aoudad Hunt – “The Bone Man”


        Bone’s last minute Billie!

Shot with 340 Weatherby 600 yards.

“Bone, you have to take the shot now, there’s not time to measure the horns at 600 yards, once he is the run, you won’t get another chance at a shot”. “Sometimes I think they’re worst then hunting elk.”  “Once spooked they won’t stop until they’re up in The Canyon.”  If one thinks they can track Aoudad’s in these canyons, they have something wrong with them. You do have to glass and look in logical places from previous knowledge and get the jump on them.  Once on the move they will simply disappear.  I have always said that the Aoudad’s have “caves that they hide and live in.”  This was going to be the course taken this weekend with Bone.  Bone was having trouble deciding on whether to take the shot or not on the big Billie Aoudad that we spotted above the Flats. Bone had the opportunity to shoot and kill the “Bell Wanger” as I had named the largest Aoudad Billie that I have ever seen.

The Billie was not going to be hanging on Bone’s trophy wall this season!

It was going to be a grind to find another Billie anywhere near the size of that one.
To this day I do not think anyone ever got the “Bell Wanger” Aoudad.  I had missed him 2 years back while hunting The Ranch.  Dr. Warnock, Jim August, Larry Spring, Chuck Megeske, Darrel Friend, Steve Biggs, Dave Brill, Mike James and Tim O’Meara are just a few that missed the biggest Aoudad that I know of or had ever seen in pictures and in the field.

By now “Bell Wanger” and his spirit roam The Canyon.

“Bone, it’s the witching hour, that’s not a bad Billie on the other side of the canyon”

You wonder why I call an Aoudad male a Billie, when some people call them Barbary Sheep.  One would think that males should be called Ram’s.  The Aoudad is closer to the Goat family, so in my circle, I have always called them Billie’s.

Oregon Aoudad Hunt – The Canyon – Junior


Frankie’s pack-out from The Canyon – 102 degree day!

With Rod and the boys we stood on top of The Canyon into the creek bottoms  looking for Aoudads.  It had been worked out for Frankie to shoot an Aoudad with the owner of the ranch.  The two boys, Frankie and is friend from High School, Gabe quickly glassed into the canyon and the surrounding rims.  Frankie was quick to say, “no Aoudads out there dad.” I glassed the rims, creek bottoms, draws, and the two drainages from afar for about 40 minutes with Rod, as the boys walked around looking for thunder eggs, which were lying around almost everywhere. “Give me a break boys; there have to be Aoudads around somewhere.”“Boy of boy, you guys just don’t know what to look for do ya!”  “I got about 6 Aoudads out on that South facing just laying around, about 800 yards out.”  The boys quickly came running and made comment “where are they at”, as I point my arm in the general direction. The hunt was on, we would have to drop down into the canyon and transverse up the opposite draw and get close to the open facing on the rim for Frankie to get a shot on an Aoudad.frankie-richardsons-ranch-high-ground-01.jpg

Frankie with Billie  – 257 Weatherby

Oregon Aoudad Hunt in Devil’s Canyon “Bwana Bubba”

“John, this Frank from Portland and I am in the sporting goods business , I understand that you have free ranging Aoudads running around on your place?”  “Yes I do”!  “What can I do for you, I don’t let anyone except family hunt my ranch?”  “Just wondering if you are into horse trading?”  “What do you have to offer?”  “Well I would probably like to know what you would really like to have for the opportunity for me hunt your place for an Aoudad Billie.”  “How about a mastercase of 22LR.” “John, consider it done, anything else you might want!”


LCDR AL Murray with my Billy shot at 650 yards with 257 Weatherby.

About two weeks later Al an old Navy buddy and myself showed up with a master case of 22 Long Rifle ammo and a Kershaw Knife. “I doubt that you boys are going to find any goats this late in the afternoon, but go ahead and try up in Devil’s Canyon, just follow the dirt road and take left before the creek and it will get you up there.”