Hunting Washington Forum

Big Game Hunting => Other Big Game => Topic started by: Deepinthetrees on September 27, 2020, 10:15:44 PM

Title: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Deepinthetrees on September 27, 2020, 10:15:44 PM
I made my first scouting trip in June and another one in August and had some really good pictures of most of the rams on the Butte.  I had a short hit list but I knew things would likely change after the raffle tag holders had their say starting September 1st.  Sure thing, as expected, they shot two very nice rams, one with a bow and one with a rifle.  Iím not going to lie, I was a little disappointed but I knew there were still some very nice rams out there, and you never know what turns up come opening day.

I had decided to leave my bow at home.  It was a tough decision but ultimately I felt like if I want to take a specific ram and with another tag holder there, that the gun was the way to do it.  So I left my bow hanging on the hook.

With the season opening on Tuesday the 15th, I headed up there (Iím about 5 Ĺ hours away) on Wednesday the 9th to put some time behind glass and see what things were looking like. Thursday morning driving up the backside of the Butte I see signs saying itís closed due to fire danger!  What? Youíve got to be kidding me!  The land ownership says WDFW on OnX but the sign is from DNR.  Iím confused and worried. I call and talk to a WDFW officer and he confirms that it is open. Whew! Dodged that bullet for now at least.

After glassing for a few days I decided on Saturday to move in close to a group of rams to see if I could decide what I might want to do come opening day.  Itís so cool just watching these animals up close.  They get up and re-bed pretty often.  Then theyíll get up and start feeding, messing around with each other, butting heads and whatnot.  They remind me of a bunch of brothers pushing each othersí buttons and scrapping off and on. In the evening just before dark we found a ram that was a potential shooter.  I wanted to get a closer look at him.  So that was the plan for tomorrow.

Sunday ended up being so smokey, glassing almost felt useless.  We still kept at it though.  Monday was almost worse. It was frustrating trying to see through the smoke.  I glassed up a lone ram that was decent.  Then finally late in the day, I found that group of rams that had the potential shooter in it, just on the edge of visible range.  Now at least we could lay a plan for the morning.  We were going to drop in off the top and work our way towards the group of rams that we put to bed the night before above the river and see what we could make of it.

Opening morning; the highly anticipated day was here! It felt kind of surreal.  I was actually going to be hunting sheep.  We were at the top at first light, and ready to drop in.  Good friends of mine Sam and Lars were there along with Steve (BKMFR) who I met through this forum. Iím really grateful to have met Steve.  Early on in this process I wasnít sure how much help I should take; I didnít know if I should just do it all myself or what.  I met Steve on my first trip up there.  Heís a very busy guy but he gave so much of his time to help me on each scouting trip, the days before season and the day of the hunt. He really helped make this once in a lifetime hunt something special. 

We decided to split up so we didnít miss any rams as we moved down the mountain.  Steve and I ran into some rams pretty quick. We first saw a group of four or five with one pretty nice ram.  After glassing those hard we moved our attention further down the mountain to a group of rams spilling up over some rocks lower down on the ridge we were on.  After not seeing anything too interesting in that group I then turned up another group lower and down to our left.  This was a group of about 9 rams and 3 of them were really good.  One of them was a ram I saw on my first day on the mountain and loved the look of him, we started calling him Flare for obvious reasons. He seemed like a showman, and was always out front and man, did he stand out in a crowd.  He was super wide, long and looked impressive amongst mature rams.  But, he looked like he might be a little younger ram and didnít seem super heavy but man he was hard to judge. We felt like he could surprise us either way from an inches perspective.  By the only real judging that matters to me, he was a beauty of a ram.  The problem was I had made a decision to go after that other ram.  I had decided that I had really good pictures of Flare for the memory bank and I was set on going after what we thought might be a heavier ram.  So we decided to get in for a closer look.  We moved down the mountain and snuck to within about 170 yards.  Now I was being put to the test.  There he was, this showman, bedded down there just below me on opening morning. After mulling things over for a while I decided that thereís no way I couldnít shoot Flare.  Heís the ram I loved the most on this mountain right from the start and heís always the ram I looked for when scouting and if felt like we had some history. I loved looking at a group of rams from a long ways away and you could immediately tell if he was in the group.

So I decided I was going to try to take him but I wanted to get Sam and Lars over to us so we could be together when it happened.  I sent them a pin for our location and they were heading our way.  I was just sitting there enjoying the moment, taking for granted that they were going to stay bedded.  Well, pretty soon Flare decided to get up and go for a walk with a younger ram following him.  We started to get worried he might take off up and over the ridge.  Now I was starting to look for a place to set up and take a shot.  The adrenaline was starting to roll at this point!  He was almost straight away from us, kind of quartering up the hill to the ridge.  I couldnít find a spot to shoot from! Let me just say at this point, that I spend a lot more time with my bow in hand.  This was a new gun that I had set up and with all the parts and pieces and ammo coming together, I didnít get to shoot it nearly as much as I would have liked, especially in realistic hunting scenarios. I mean I had it dialed in out to 600 yards, but prone with a bag on the stock which is nice but doesnít always happen in a hunting scenario. With him moving and the long grass on a steep hill, I couldnít find a spot I felt comfortable taking the shot.  He topped out on the ridge and was gone.

We threw our packs back together and started moving fast up the hill.  We were moving around the other side of the knob to see if we could cut them off.  We met Lars and Sam at the little saddle and told them what was going on as we came huffing by.  We got to a spot we could see and I spotted them about 300 yards down and across the draw.  This was a really steep hill we were on and of course there was long grass, so laying prone to shoot was impossible.  So I set up with my bipod on my backpack kind of sitting into the hill but man it  felt like an awkward position but it was the best I could do. Steve was calling out which ram he was just to make sure I didnít shoot the wrong ram.  Fortunately Flare stands out pretty good from the group, so thatís easier than it typically is.  I dialed up for the yardage and settled in, held my breath and squeezed.  Clean miss.  Ahh, frustration!  I hate not being on top of my game and I was feeling the pressure of making it happen.  I readjusted, grabbed Steveís backpack to kind of lean my back into to try and steady myself.  Second shot, Sam was calling out the yardage and dial up.  I adjust, settle in, hold breath, squeeze.  Flare separates from the group of rams and starts angling down hill but still appears unhit!  Frustrating!  I need to make this happen. New range, reset things.  ďBreathe, just breathe, make the shot countĒ Iím telling myself.  Heís quartering away and weíre shooting down on top of him it seems. I settle in again, just trying to hit center of mass.  Hold breath, squeeze. Boom.  Finally I connect.  Not the cleanest hit but he goes down and takes some time to expire. Relief.  After a bit we worked our way down towards him, through a couple of brushy draws and over hill.  There he is. I walk up and lay my hands on him.  Wow, what a beautiful animal.  These things are so cool.  I was just soaking it up and thinking how fortunate I was to be experiencing this moment. Over 15Ē bases and 40+Ē long, this guy is better than we hoped.  Wow, he did not disappoint in any way.  We got some photos taken (thanks Lars for packing that camera and taking some photos).  Then broke him down, got him in our packs and headed up out of this steep draw and then after a break for some water and cool down we headed down. Two miles later we hit the river.  Steve had a friend of his meet us with a boat and off we went.  Ahh, what a great feeling idling up the river looking up at that beautiful ram.  What a great way to finish the day.  Thanks Mike for the boat ride, Steve for everything, man you rock.  Thanks to Sam for the help scouting and Lars for coming along and taking some photos.  It was a good time all around and something weíll remember forever.

See photos here:  https://photos.app.goo.gl/Lnj3jWiDwHHCE4W66 (https://photos.app.goo.gl/Lnj3jWiDwHHCE4W66)
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Dan-o on September 27, 2020, 10:26:08 PM
What a terrific looking ram!!!!!!
Looks like an amazing hunt.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Caseyd on September 27, 2020, 10:37:35 PM
Nice job. Thank you for sharing
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: HAGEMANIAC on September 27, 2020, 10:43:31 PM
Beautiful animal!! Got to know, how did he taste!?
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: X-Force on September 27, 2020, 10:46:24 PM
Congrats on a dream hunt and dream ram. Thank you for putting in the time and writing the story.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Deepinthetrees on September 27, 2020, 10:52:43 PM
Beautiful animal!! Got to know, how did he taste!?
Thanks!

The meat is spectacular. I'd put this up against any meat. Absolutely delicious.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: shootem on September 27, 2020, 10:57:07 PM
Great ram, story, and pics. Congrats.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Dan-o on September 27, 2020, 11:10:04 PM
The pic of just you, with the ram facing the camera......................................   WOW!!!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: elkrack on September 27, 2020, 11:11:21 PM
Great ram!  :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: L8NITE on September 27, 2020, 11:27:45 PM
Congrats and thank you for sharing! Thats a beautiful ram...what an exciting hunt makes you feel that we were right with you guys :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Katmai Guy on September 28, 2020, 12:08:27 AM
The pic of just you, with the ram facing the camera......................................   WOW!!!

 :yeah:
That is one fantastic ram!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: jackelope on September 28, 2020, 12:16:06 AM
Great job and thanks for sharing. Iíve been drooling over pics of that ram for a couple years now. Such a cool ram. Any chance you scored him?
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: bearpaw on September 28, 2020, 12:51:36 AM
Excellent story and ram!  :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: HUNTNORTHWEST on September 28, 2020, 01:28:29 AM
Everything about this is amazing.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Onewhohikes on September 28, 2020, 05:48:17 AM
few pics
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: cougforester on September 28, 2020, 06:52:06 AM
I spend a lot of time in Chelan and man is it cool to see what kind of critters are roaming around there up on the Butte. Well done.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: MADMAX on September 28, 2020, 07:52:50 AM
That is a dandy
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Duckhunter14 on September 28, 2020, 08:03:52 AM
Beautiful ram congrats! A very fitting nick name indeed. Thank you for taking the time to share the story and awesome photos with us. You'll be riding that high for some time. Love to hear what the tape stretches when you score him.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: greenhead_killer on September 28, 2020, 08:17:14 AM
man what an awesome experience! thanks for taking us along. beautiful ram!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: fishngamereaper on September 28, 2020, 08:23:59 AM
Stud ram. Congrats.
Almost looks like a south desert ram.  :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: hawks33 on September 28, 2020, 08:24:16 AM
Nice work! Congratulations
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Sandberm on September 28, 2020, 08:29:31 AM
The pictures and the short videos are incredible. The pic of you on the rock with valley far below is one of my favorites. Its awesome that you documented it so well. And what an animal!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: ganghis on September 28, 2020, 08:38:29 AM
Fantastic ram, fantastic pics.  Thanks for sharing the journey
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Mfowl on September 28, 2020, 08:42:29 AM
Congrats! Beautiful ram!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: hunterednate on September 28, 2020, 09:10:06 AM
Wow, that is an incredible ram. And the photos are stunning! Congratulations and thanks for sharing it with us.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Buckjunkie on September 28, 2020, 09:22:18 AM
Awesome Ram! Really like the width on him.

Congratulations!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Taco280AI on September 28, 2020, 09:24:18 AM
Wait, how did you get him? You weren't even wearing $2000 worth of today's best camo  :dunno:

Great pics and ram  :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Sutherland on September 28, 2020, 09:37:01 AM
Just a beautiful ram! Congratulations on a great hunt and thanks for the write up and all the amazing pictures!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: lokidog on September 28, 2020, 09:40:00 AM
Beautiful animal!! Got to know, how did he taste!?
Thanks!

The meat is spectacular. I'd put this up against any meat. Absolutely delicious.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

My wife was pleasantly surprised when we started eating mine.  :)

Congratulations!

How old was he, maybe 11 by my unpracticed eye?
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: h3x0ctb1n on September 28, 2020, 09:42:40 AM
What an amazing animal - congratulations! Fantastic writeup too!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: rainshadow1 on September 28, 2020, 10:38:41 AM
Great stuff! Thanks for posting!

Steve is the North Central Guru, and a great guy!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Rainier10 on September 28, 2020, 11:29:32 AM
Great story and beautiful ram.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Deepinthetrees on September 28, 2020, 03:36:29 PM
Thanks y'all!  I appreciate the support. Also I appreciate the help I got from many of you from my original post back in June.


My wife was pleasantly surprised when we started eating mine.  :)

Congratulations!

How old was he, maybe 11 by my unpracticed eye?
He was 8 1/2 years old.

Beautiful ram congrats! A very fitting nick name indeed. Thank you for taking the time to share the story and awesome photos with us. You'll be riding that high for some time. Love to hear what the tape stretches when you score him.
Hmm...lol, is it appropriate to share green scores here or no?  I know scores can get a little combative and that's not my intention.
Anyone know what type of shrinkage one could expect after the 60 day drying period? 
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: wheels on September 28, 2020, 03:37:25 PM
awesome great ram and story
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: jackelope on September 28, 2020, 03:46:32 PM
Thanks y'all!  I appreciate the support. Also I appreciate the help I got from many of you from my original post back in June.


My wife was pleasantly surprised when we started eating mine.  :)

Congratulations!

How old was he, maybe 11 by my unpracticed eye?
He was 8 1/2 years old.

Beautiful ram congrats! A very fitting nick name indeed. Thank you for taking the time to share the story and awesome photos with us. You'll be riding that high for some time. Love to hear what the tape stretches when you score him.
Hmm...lol, is it appropriate to share green scores here or no?  I know scores can get a little combative and that's not my intention.
Anyone know what type of shrinkage one could expect after the 60 day drying period? 

Green scores are allowed any time here on hunt wa. :chuckle:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Arrowchucker1 on September 28, 2020, 04:44:19 PM
As a fellow sheep tag holder I'd really like to hear what he scores to help my understanding of sheep on the hoof.  Part of me doesn't want to know or care because that is a beautiful ram regardless of what the tape says.  If I can find anything close to a ram that perfect I'm pulling the trigger!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Barebuck on September 28, 2020, 05:28:22 PM
Thanks for sharing. Great story, great people, and success, Trifecta! Pictures are awesome.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: OutHouse on September 28, 2020, 05:39:30 PM
Killer ram! The eyes on that skull stared into soul
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Deepinthetrees on September 28, 2020, 06:13:11 PM
As a fellow sheep tag holder I'd really like to hear what he scores to help my understanding of sheep on the hoof.  Part of me doesn't want to know or care because that is a beautiful ram regardless of what the tape says.  If I can find anything close to a ram that perfect I'm pulling the trigger!

Congrats on your tag man!  I hear you, you want all the practice judging and scoring you can get. Good luck on your hunt and enjoy the experience! 
Not being a real regular poster here I didn't want to rock the boat but I like to be an open book.

Green he tapes out at 180 9/16.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Deepinthetrees on September 28, 2020, 06:15:05 PM
The eyes on that skull stared into soul
:chuckle: :chuckle: kind of like the picture of I have of him live, head on.  Those eyes are piercing.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: actionshooter on September 28, 2020, 06:52:37 PM
Fantastic ram! Congrats!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Duckhunter14 on September 28, 2020, 07:51:40 PM
As a fellow sheep tag holder I'd really like to hear what he scores to help my understanding of sheep on the hoof.  Part of me doesn't want to know or care because that is a beautiful ram regardless of what the tape says.  If I can find anything close to a ram that perfect I'm pulling the trigger!

Congrats on your tag man!  I hear you, you want all the practice judging and scoring you can get. Good luck on your hunt and enjoy the experience! 
Not being a real regular poster here I didn't want to rock the boat but I like to be an open book.

Green he tapes out at 180 9/16.

That's awesome. With that length and over 15" bases I figured he was right in that 180" mark! Congrats again man. What a beautiful ram and awesome write up. Thanks for sharing.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: elkoholic1 on September 28, 2020, 08:09:22 PM
 :tup: :tup:
CONGRATS!!!!!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Camo on September 28, 2020, 08:11:24 PM
WOW! Super cool ram, congrats.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: trophyhunt on September 28, 2020, 08:16:11 PM
You hit a grand slam, great ram, great story, thanks for sharing.  Having someone take those pics are priceless, youíd never know how important those photos were until after it was all over.  Very cool!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: SWHUNTER on September 28, 2020, 08:19:32 PM
Awesome. Congrats! :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: ShaneTyTrey on September 28, 2020, 08:43:41 PM
What an awesome Ram, congrats!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: highside74 on September 28, 2020, 09:04:49 PM
The hunt the write up and the pictures were all excellent. Thank you for sharing.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: blacktailer on September 28, 2020, 09:11:17 PM
Beautiful Ram.  I really like the flare on him...
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: bearhunter99 on September 28, 2020, 09:16:54 PM
Stud beautiful ram.  Congrats on a true once in a lifetime hunt!   


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Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: BKMFR on September 30, 2020, 02:27:12 PM
Great write up Kevin! Congratulations again!!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: pianoman9701 on September 30, 2020, 02:36:59 PM
Amazing animal. Thanks for sharing.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: cantstump on September 30, 2020, 09:08:31 PM
Great photos and videos. So awesome.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: trophyhunt on November 05, 2020, 06:37:01 AM
What a sheep, beautiful ram!  love it, someday I'll draw.  Congrats, really nice!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Matth on November 05, 2020, 07:47:51 AM
Simply amazing. nice work.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Fatherof5 on November 05, 2020, 08:00:03 AM
Very cool pictures!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Will on November 05, 2020, 05:26:28 PM
Beautiful photos and write up, thanks for sharing the experience  :)
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Deepinthetrees on November 06, 2020, 11:54:19 AM
Thanks again you guys, it's great to see all the feedback.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Skyvalhunter on November 06, 2020, 11:58:32 AM
With all the hunting and scouting would you say he was one of the larger rams you saw? Sure is a beauty. If I were applying for sheep that would be my top area.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Pathfinder101 on November 06, 2020, 12:25:46 PM
Great write up and fantastic pictures and video. Thanks for sharing with us.   :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: jstone on November 06, 2020, 01:33:52 PM
That is an absolute bad ars ram.!! Great job.!!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: DOUBLELUNG on November 06, 2020, 01:41:59 PM
I love all the hunting photos and stories on this site, but the Chelan Butte sheep ones are so very special.  Thank you for sharing!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: DIron on November 08, 2020, 09:03:16 PM
Beautiful animal!! Got to know, how did he taste!?
Thanks!

The meat is spectacular. I'd put this up against any meat. Absolutely delicious.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Great Ram, great story, and I  have heard the meat is the best.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Camo on November 08, 2020, 11:17:21 PM
That is a super cool ram, congrats to all involved.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: TVHunts on November 09, 2020, 03:30:44 PM
Incredible animal!  Congrats to you and your crew.
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: bowhunterforever on November 13, 2020, 05:35:56 PM
Awesome ram, and story :tup:
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: gee_unit360 on November 13, 2020, 06:58:35 PM
Awesome Ram and hunt! Hope I can draw one day!
Title: Re: Chelan Butte Success - Story and Photos
Post by: Johnny Doe on November 17, 2020, 12:53:13 PM
Amazing Ram, I love everything about him! Congratulations!!!