AMK Sportsman

Once In a Lifetime

psycho

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2017
Messages
212
Location
Las Vegas, NV
Great write up and photos. Good job for walking on the right side of those ethical issues. I read the ND regs each year in hopes they add nonresidents. Fantastic bull. Congrats.
 

sharpshooter97

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 6, 2018
Messages
304
Location
North Dakota
Great write up, congrats on your once in a lifetime hunt. I hope to draw this tag myself one day, and the experiences you had meeting landowners is why I love ND so much. Some amazing opportunities we have.
 

Slate

Active member
Joined
May 23, 2020
Messages
124
Awesome story congrats. One thing I really enjoy about my hunting adventures is meeting great people as you did. Congrats again beautiful animal
 

6mm Remington

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Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
1,584
Location
Westen Montana
Congratulations on such a fantastic moose that you ended up getting! You certainly deserved him after all of the time and effort you put in. Exceptional respect shown for the animals, the property owners, and the land itself! You are the kind of person that any of us would be proud and lucky to share a hunt with.

In Montana I am trying to push us to get our bull moose, bighorn rams, and either sex mountain goat to be once in a lifetime. It's in legislation right now. So far so good! As you are fully aware there are only a very limited amount of tags for these amazing animals and the number of folks applying grows each year. In our state you can draw one of these special tags and after waiting 7 years you can start applying again. Seems like every year I know personally or hear of someone who just drew their second bull moose tag, or their third bighorn ram tag. True story I am friends with a fellow who has drawn and harvested 3 (THREE) bighorn rams in Montana! I'd like to see me or one of my friends or family have a chance at drawing one of these very special tags, or someone else and their people. I've applied 42 years in a row for a bighorn ram and a bull moose but have never drawn a tag. Here's some stats from the 2020 hunting season pulled directly from the Montana FWP web-site.

Mountain Goat: 19,680 applicants for 179 permits

Moose: 30,908 applicants for 341 permits

Bighorn Sheep: 31,855 applicants for 269 permits

Congratulations once more on a gorgeous animal. I'm a little partial now, but using your 30-06 for this hunt couldn't get any better either!

David
 

YoungGun

Active member
Joined
Feb 7, 2014
Messages
206
Location
Bozeman
Congratulations on such a fantastic moose that you ended up getting! You certainly deserved him after all of the time and effort you put in. Exceptional respect shown for the animals, the property owners, and the land itself! You are the kind of person that any of us would be proud and lucky to share a hunt with.

In Montana I am trying to push us to get our bull moose, bighorn rams, and either sex mountain goat to be once in a lifetime. It's in legislation right now. So far so good! As you are fully aware there are only a very limited amount of tags for these amazing animals and the number of folks applying grows each year. In our state you can draw one of these special tags and after waiting 7 years you can start applying again. Seems like every year I know personally or hear of someone who just drew their second bull moose tag, or their third bighorn ram tag. True story I am friends with a fellow who has drawn and harvested 3 (THREE) bighorn rams in Montana! I'd like to see me or one of my friends or family have a chance at drawing one of these very special tags, or someone else and their people. I've applied 42 years in a row for a bighorn ram and a bull moose but have never drawn a tag. Here's some stats from the 2020 hunting season pulled directly from the Montana FWP web-site.

Mountain Goat: 19,680 applicants for 179 permits

Moose: 30,908 applicants for 341 permits

Bighorn Sheep: 31,855 applicants for 269 permits

Congratulations once more on a gorgeous animal. I'm a little partial now, but using your 30-06 for this hunt couldn't get any better either!

David
Perhaps push for more "Unlimited" Opportunities in our great state of Montana and even more people can go on one of these hunts. The best means to create more opportunity is not addition through subtraction, IMO, but rather to open more districts and to work with Private Land owners to increase access to allow for more tags to be distributed in areas that currently do not have active hunt units. At best, OIL hunts for Bighorn in Montana would improve odds from 0.395% to 0.454%. I would propose that we look at additional units where an "Unlimited" quota system could be applied, pulling far more applicants out of the current point pool than simply limiting all big three species to OIL status, all while providing more revenue for the state, more hunter interest in these species, and far more hunting opportunity for these same animals. Let's not make Sheep, Moose, and Goat hunts only for those that are extremely lucky or extremely rich.
 

MTGomer

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Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Messages
3,883
Location
MT —> AZ
At best, OIL hunts for Bighorn in Montana would improve odds from 0.395% to 0.454%.

This is a 0.15% increase.
The important thing to note is that the math to get to this assumes that all people that have killed a big horn in the last 40 years are currently applying for them.
They aren’t.
Then it assumes that the new legislation would remove them all from the applicant pool. It doesn’t.

It may not be retroactive either, (depending on which legislator you ask to interpret it) which means that it wouldn’t effectively begin taking anybody out of the draw until 2030, when successful 2022hunters come off their 7 year wait.

It’s a meaningless, feel good bill.

It’s also harmful to conservation efforts. It’s basic human nature to have an interest in things that may benefit us. The chance of hunting sheep again is probably at the root of a lot of the motivation for so many people that are involved in sheep conservation.

The best way to increase the odds of drawing a sheep tag in Montana is to put more sheep on the mountain, followed by making it not almost free to apply.
 

sacountry

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 29, 2011
Messages
310
Location
NW Montana
This is a 0.15% increase.
The important thing to note is that the math to get to this assumes that all people that have killed a big horn in the last 40 years are currently applying for them.
They aren’t.
Then it assumes that the new legislation would remove them all from the applicant pool. It doesn’t.

It may not be retroactive either, (depending on which legislator you ask to interpret it) which means that it wouldn’t effectively begin taking anybody out of the draw until 2030, when successful 2022hunters come off their 7 year wait.

It’s a meaningless, feel good bill.

It’s also harmful to conservation efforts. It’s basic human nature to have an interest in things that may benefit us. The chance of hunting sheep again is probably at the root of a lot of the motivation for so many people that are involved in sheep conservation.

The best way to increase the odds of drawing a sheep tag in Montana is to put more sheep on the mountain, followed by making it not almost free to apply.
Amen! What I haven't seen quantified is how many hunters have drawn a second Big 3 tag. Is the bill going to solve for less than 1% of those hunting situations? Furthermore, the squaring of points almost already fully satisfies the desire of the bill by allowing more hunting opportunities for those who've never hunted a Big 3 species since they have more points. Having been incredibly blessed this last season, I can say that I wish more people could partake.....the reality is that I think they will with the current system. The best solution for more opportunity is through conservation not fixing an unbroken system. Increasing application fees would help on the conservation front as long as the fees don't put applying out of reach for the average Joe. That would be a bill worthy of our time......unless of course the number of 2nd chances is substantively high like say 5% or more of applicants. The actually numbers would tell the tale, more than "I know a guy who's killed 3 rams in Montana over span of 40 years"
 

HankFrank

Member
Joined
May 2, 2019
Messages
51
I think another big part of this discussion is when those guys drew their tags. My dad has drawn two moose and a goat, his friend has drawn two goats and two moose, and his friend also drew two goats and two moose. They were all work friends.

However,

Many of those tags were drawn way back in the day, before points and with low draw odds. One of those guys drew his first goat tag the second year after he came back from Vietnam. He drew another last year, but it had been at least 45 years since his first. The odds for the big three back in those days were much much better. I think at the rate applications are climbing this will become a non-issue. If I had started applying in 1970 I would expect something similar to those guys. However, I would never bet that they could repeat that today given the same amount of time. Those days are over, notwithstanding astronomical luck, which I am not in favor of legislating against.
 

YoungGun

Active member
Joined
Feb 7, 2014
Messages
206
Location
Bozeman
I agree Hank- this is a case of "feel good" legislation, with minimal real world impacts on draw odds, but very real impacts on hunter participation through maintaining an active interest in these species by continuing to give them a "chance" to possibly hunt them again some day. As Gomer pointed out, conservation efforts to create more hunting opportunities is the primary solution. There are currently multiple herds of Big Horn sheep that reside mainly on private ground in the eastern half of the state, and through leg work and private land owner outreach, these could be viable hunt opportunities, which would help distribute the point pool further. Reintroduction efforts to historical range would do the same.

For a quick fix to draw odds for those that are pushing the hardest for OIL legislation, implementing a number of solutions would far increase the odds over making them OIL.
-A preference system for a percentage of tags, similar to Utah, could give those with "Max" points a near guaranteed tag sooner than later, while still maintaining a "chance" for everyone else.
-Cubing the points instead of squaring them would even further separate those who have yet to drawn from those who have. As it stands, the squared points system gives the folks with 15 points 221 more chances at drawing than those with 2 points (225 "tickets in the hat" versus 4). Cubing points would further this same scenario to 3375 "chances in the hat" versus 8.
-Giving "Loyalty" points for continuous years of applying, similar to Arizona: In a system that squares points, an additional point for every 5 years of consecutive application would make a marked difference.
-Limit the number of species an individual can apply for in a given year. If hunters were limited to applying for say 2 or 3 species in a given year between Elk, Antelope, Deer, Moose, Sheep, and Goat, the odds for any given hunt would immediately increase.
-Increase the application fees. Although I don't support this, our current system is very cheap compared to most western states, and this, too, would decrease application numbers.

Those options provide a real world difference.
0.15% better odds at best through OIL does not.

Yet, the legislators will use emotion and a victim's mentality of "it's not fair that so-and-so has drawn twice, and I've never drawn" to push hard to pass this instead of getting creative to meet the goals of opportunity for all, with rewards for those who play the longest.
 

HankFrank

Member
Joined
May 2, 2019
Messages
51
I see what you're saying YoungGun, but if I'm completely honest, I think cubing points and a preference system is a bad idea. I think any measure that gives people the idea that they will draw if they put in long enough is foolish. There just aren't enough animals for that to be a reality. I think most people's frustration is that they feel entitled to draw the tag if they put in long enough. I think there would be less grumbling if everyone had the same odds, and we just ignored the jaded old guys. Those people with find something to moan about no matter what. Montana has a relatively young point system, and there are an awful lot of max point holders. I think it would be much better to go in the more random direction, instead of the long-term reward direction. I do like the idea of a loyalty point and possibly limiting species. I would be more than happy to give up limited entry deer and elk for a better chance at a moose or goat.
From your past posts I see you are in Montana. They pride themselves on opportunity. I remember when you used to have to front the money for the $150 m/s/g tags. Even that was enough to keep the road hunting crew from applying. I do wish we made residents put in more effort to draw those tags. This would increase serious hunters' chances, and I believe would be healthier for the species. It would cut down on nanny harvest, and guys shooting 4 year old rams on the side of the highway. I'm sure it's completely unrealistic, but I would be more than happy to front $1000 a species as a resident, even if they kept the licenses at $250.
Montana just can't get over the idea of a 14 year old kid who's uncle put him in drawing a moose or breaks tag. I admit this leads to some great stories, but I don't think it is worth the diehard outdoorsmen who have been putting in for their dream tag for 40 years.
 

HankFrank

Member
Joined
May 2, 2019
Messages
51
You have mentioned in the past increasing unlimited opportunity. While I would love it for my own opportunity, I believe that is becoming more unrealistic as well. Any unit where animals can be patterned is not fit for unlimited opportunity as the population increases. This was the case with the Spanish Peaks hunt. Everyone knew where the sheep were and it was a complete rat-race to see who could go kill them. The current UL system is held together by the terrain, low sheep density, and unpredictability. There is also the State and Park boundaries which limit the amount of sheep in the unit at any given time. The only other place I could maybe see it working is some of the Frank Church country in Idaho.
 
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