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Main  ->  Blogs  ->  Mike Candela's October 2014 Goat Hunt with Hans And Nataliia

Mike Candela's October 2014 Goat Hunt with Hans And Nataliia

It was the second day of this vessel-based mountain goat hunt in southeast Alaska with Hans Baertle of Southeast Alaska Guiding. With only 10 hours of light in mid-October, the hunt was a constant race against time. The hike would begin at sea level and rise up to 5,000 feet at the mountain peak. All 10 hours of daylight would be needed to make the hike and return safety to shore before nightfall. The boat dropped us off at the base of a glacier shortly before daybreak. The hike began as the sun crested the mountaintop. It was a beautiful crystal clear blue-sky day, with calm winds and a 50” expected high temperature for the day. I could not have ordered a better day to hike above glacier.
About two hours into the hike we had risen to above 2,000 feet and was surprised to spot a goat at this elevation. There he stood perched upon a rock at only 200 yards. We dove for cover to hide ourselves for a better look. Was he a shooter? Weather was predicted to move in for the next few days. What to do? I decided to attempt a shot. I set up on my pack to steady my rifle. As I was settling myself, the fog rolled in and completely concealed the goat from view. I began to panic. Would he run off? Was the stack over? Will the fog lift? After about five minutes the fog lifted and the goat was still there. I settled in and squeezed the trigger. The hunt was over on the first climb. We had plenty of time for photos and we got the goat back to shore with two hours of light to spare. Once back on the boat, we finally realized the goat’s size. He was a Booner, officially scoring 47 0/8. I could not have predicted such a wonderful trip in such a beautiful place.

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