Leupold BX-4 Rangefinding Binoculars

Worst hunting camp ever!!


New member
Feb 16, 2003
Quesnel B.C., Canada
Lets hear your stories about your worst hunting camp! This one was mine!

We were hunting elk on the Columbia River here in British Columbia. The river levels are controlled by a dam and when the water is low, these lush little islands pop up everywhere and the elk like to swim the river and bed on them. Only problem was there was virtually NO WHERE to get a boat in the water, except under this bridge. And rather than loading and unloading the boat off the trailer every day, we just threw up camp! The bridge you see in the pic is part of the trans-Canada highway....about 1000 transport trucks a night use this bridge!! I didn't sleep for 3 days! Didn't get our elk either! So how bout it, what's your worst hunting camp!
About fifteen years ago, a buddy & me went back to Utah, hunting deer. We had some luck the previous two years, so we went to the same spot. Only this time, no snow. The tempratures hovered around 0% and the wind blew, at like 30 to 50 MPH for the entire week. Some times you couldn't even stand up in it. We couldn't even light a campfire, couldn't keep our tent up, and didn't see a single deer. On day four, my bubby slipped on some black ice and dislocated his shoulder, so I got stuck with all the camp choirs for the rest of the week. We stayed & hunted anyway, wern't about to give up, but it was miserable.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 02-19-2003 01:37: Message edited by: Anaconda ]</font>
First hunting camp we ever had back about 25 years ago. We built a lean-to in what looked like a nice flat place. The fall had been a dry fall with no rain. Well our second night at camp we got some much needed rain. Seems our camp was right in the middle of a stream. Had water come in on both sides of the lean-to. I was the only one that was dry. The other two woke up soaking wet.

With a little work with sticks, rocks and hands, we were able to divert the stream and use that camp for number of years.
Willie, you didn't expect trucks to run the TRANS CANADA HIGHWAY?? And you stayed for 3 days, rather than unload the boat??
By day four Anaconda's buddy was his 'bubby'. Guess you guys shared a tent, huh?

So willy, is your worst day hunting still better that your best day at work?
My worst camp was in Calaveras County, CA on a deer hunt. A bear came into our camp while we were gone hunting (naturally) and ate everything in our cooler. EVERYTHING.
We returned at dusk, hungry, and drove for many miles to find a store but it was closed. We cont'd to drive for a long while until we reached civilization and a store.

We bought grub and headed back to camp. But hit a skunk on the highway and that made everything just perfect. I can laugh about it now but at the time it was a lot of cussing. We smelt that skunk two days later, the beggar went out with style!

The bear returned (while we were hunting) and scratched up my buddy's Ford station wagon trying to get at our food. Lots more cussing.

We each shot medium sized bucks. No trophies but good eatin' venison. Never did see that bear though.

I paid for half of the insurance deductable for the Ford body work. Seemed like the right thing to do.
I remember the night we got to the campsite for fall deer hunting year before last. It was raining,the wind was blowing and it was chilly. Got the tents up and finally got it ready and then then spent half the night sopping up the water with my clothes. Miserable night it was. But the next day I went to the closest town and bought the first tent heater. Then we moved the tent.I had placed it right in a depression where the water accumalated.

You live and learn(the hard way) It tests you reserves and fortitude for hunting. LOL I wont be chased away.

But the rest of the week was great btw.
The absolute worst hunting camp I ever had was while dall sheep hunting in AK. My buddy and guide, Ed Toribio, and I decided to head up the hill light. We figured we could easily kill the largest ram and have him back to the base camp by dark.

We got up there and the rams had moved back and into a place we simply couldnt get at them. So, we waited them out, about 5 hours and finally they moved. We high-tailed it and got within shooting range and I killed the largest of the 3 rams. The damn thing rolled down the other side of the ridge, away from our camp. We boned half, caped about half of it and it got dark. We edged our way down 1200 or so feet to the lake, filled our water bottles and decided to stay the night there were it was level. We didnt have hardly anything but our packs, rifles, and clothes on our backs. We rigged up a nice little camp using everything we had. It wasnt much, but we were able to stay out of the half rain, half snow mix most of the night. The problem is, we'd get cold about every half hour and have to run around on a glacier to warm up. It was a pretty bad night for both of us. Anyway, heres the deluxe accomadations.


But it was all worth it for a ram like this one. We went without much sleep for 3 full days and I was one wiped pup by the time I got back to the tent.


Hey Jack, I live in Calaveras County. Where abouts were you guys hunting at?? This isn't the best place in the world to live but I have to admit that it could be a lot worse. I can be hunting bears and deer within a 5 minutes drive from our house so I guess California isn't as bad as most think.
The worst camp I've set was Elk hunting four years ago. We had a tent-trailer that we set up in a nice little valley that was beautiful to look at. Average temperature all the time we were there was about 8 degrees.. day and night average... the sun never got in and the temp never went up. The water froze in the tank so we had no wash water. It was so cold it killed the battery, so we had no inside lites (didn't want to risk bringing a latern inside). We finally wound up pitching an emergency tent we'd brought and we moved into the tent. We should have just packed up and moved. Don't know why we didn't... Got two elk for two hunters and that made things a lot better...

Oh, did I forget to mention the coyotes that raided out camp while we were hunting??

!!!!BAD CAMP!!!!?
I see now that it could have been possible!
Thanks guy's and great stories!!!

I've been camping 8 or 10 times a year since 1961 and I've never really had a bad hunting camp.

The worst camp that I can think of occurred while myself and a buddy were attempting to climb the Black Ice Coulouir on the north face of the Grand Teton. It's a technical climb, mixed rock and ice.

We had backed off half way up the ice climb gully because of bad weather and were attempting to get off the mountain via the Valhalla Traverse when we got caught by even worse weather on the retreat. We had been leap-frogging leads and my buddy was in the lead and out of sight around a corner when were hit by an ice storm. Since I had him on belay I couldn't let go of the rope to relocate or get out of the storm. I just had to stand there, tied into the the rock face, exposed to the storm and I got coated in a covering of ice. When he finally finished his lead and called for me to start climbing I was soaked to the skin. I reached the rock ledge on which we had to spend the night bivouac I was shivering uncontrollably. That's the first sign of hypothermia.

We got out our bivouac gear but since all my clothing was wet (even Gortex and nylon stuff) I could never warm up. We spent the night on a small ledge in a little alcove, tied into the rock wall a thousand vertical feet above the valley floor, while the ice storm continued to rage most of the night.

We were both exhausted from an entire day of technical climbing and gear hauling and the constant ice/sleet/rain never let us rest. To make things worse, my buddy was afraid that I would slip into a coma if I went to sleep. So every time that I started to doze off, he would kick me to wake me up.

Obviously we did survive the night and at dawn, the sky was clearing. We got going again and discovered that in the dark, we had made a wrong turn and spent the night less than rope length from a flat bivouac site. The only lasting effects of the night was some major fatigue and chest conjestion. We hiked out Garnet Canyon and took several naps along he way.

We didn't make the summit and my buddy wants to return but this time take the easier Owens-Spalding route. Maybe this summer.

Trophy Killer:

Our campsite was down the mountain (west on hwy #4) about 8 miles from Bear Valley.
Bear Valley was being developed by movie star investors at the time. But the Forest Service map showed the development was limited to a large meadow bi-sected by highway #4. The south-east side of the meadow has a small sewage treatment facility but beyond that is all PUBLIC LAND. Don't be deceived by the apparent boundaries of Bear Valley. The dirt road leading to the sewage place had US Forest Service signs that had been torn down and partially covered with tree debris. Gee I wonder who would do such a thing? Perhaps Lloyd Bridges?

Anyway, there are several old trails that take you back into the forest. Dotted lines on your Forest Service map. Many tall pristine trees separated by open spaces. We found names carved into the bark that dated back to the early 1970's. But nothing fresh. Gee I wonder why?

Keep hiking or pedal your mt. bike south east toward a reservoir, can't recall the name but it is remote. No one there at all nor sign of camping either. Hunt the ridges and you'll find deer sign but they tend to water at dusk.

We saw many deer but only two bucks and we nailed them. Seemed like way too many does for the area.

You should hike south from Lake Alpine some nice Autumn day to tiny Duck Lake. Carry a gun as mt. lions are present, so are bears. You'll find a few abandoned mining camps and bountiful deer sign. I'd guide for you but already have plans for this Fall.

Good CA hunting to you. I had a ball hunting deer in CA for many years.
Now I know why KC says gortex doesn't work like they say! I can't remember a bad hunting camp, not even a bad camping camp. I remember getting wet and being cold and not being able to sleep, but was never near hypothermia, so its all good memories.

One time, it was so cold. When I cooked steaks on the cook stove, I would cut a piece in the skillet, put my fork in it while its in the skillet cooking, and by the time I got it to my mouth it was luke warm. Another time it was so cold I had to try and sleep on my side, as sleeping on my back I lost to much heat to sleep much, I could still sleep though, on my side.

I never had a bad camp yet, cross my fingers.
Jack we hunt right up past Bear Valley. It's a heck of a walk to get in there but it's well worth it. I also fish Lake Alpine quite a bit. My dad has always said he wants to take me to Duck Lake but we have never really gotten around to it, time seems to go just a little to fast for all of the things we want to do. But maybe this year I will have to take a trip of my own there.
Gastro Gnome - Eat Better Wherever

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