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South Texas Aoudad

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Dates – March 8 to March 12(3 hunting days)


Outfitter – West Texas Hunt Org., owned by Mike McKinny


Booking Agent – Wade Derby of Crosshair Consulting - http://www.crosshairconsulting.com


Guides – Ed and Tyler


Area –8K acre ranch approx.. 5 miles south of Juno, Texas.


Rifles – Weatherby MarkV Ultralightweight in .257 Wby Mag.


Ammo – Weatherby factory ammo – .257 110 grain AB.


Game Taken – Aoudad


Animals Seen – Aoudad, whitetail, scaled quail, skunk, jack rabbit, coatimundi, and roadrunner.


Planning - Not much planning involved here. Basically a call with the booking agent and some airline tickets, and we were on our way.



Standard light hiking clothing, Lowa Ranger boots and a Patagonia softshell. Once again, an Akubra Angler for sun protection.


We (joedjr and myself) flew out of Newark on Friday night, to land in San Antonio at 2AM. Luckily, we were able to get some sleep on the flight, and made the drive to camp 3 hours away ready to hunt.

After a quick breakfast we went out for the first of a 3 day hunt. Winds were blowing at 20-30mph, and we knew that the aoudad would not be moving much. We spent the entire day driving from canyon to canyon, glassing for an hour at a time, and then moving on to the next. At last light, we finally found a group making their way down a ravine about 500 yards way; but it was already too dark to see their horns.

Day 2 – The wind was still howling pretty good, so it would be another day of the same. About mid-day, I caught a glimpse of a lone aoudad walking up hill about 800 yards away. It bedded down between some rocks near the top of a hill out of sight, so I decided that I would try a stalk, while my guide and Joe watched from the road. I skirted the hillside until I got downwind, and made a quick climb up and over the rocks where we had last seen the aoudad. At about 50 yards away, I jumped an aoudad calf and realized that I was stalking a ewe. I peeked over the ledge, and sure enough, there was a aoudad ewe 20 feet below me. While disappointed, I can’t say that it wasn’t a great time.

Day 3 – The wind had finally calmed down the morning temp. was about 25 degrees. We knew that the sheep would be looking for sunny hillsides to warm-up. Having no luck glassing a very wide canton, we decided to move up to a hillside on the far edge of the ranch. We hiked about a ¼ mile and spotted a small group of aoudad, with one good ram. I quickly set-up my shooting sticks for a standing shot at 194 yards. The ram’s shoulder was partially obstructed, and I would have only a 3-4 inch “window” to get the bullet into the vitals. Worse yet, if the ram was to move in any direction, he would disappear from view entirely and most likely not be seen again. My guide assessed the situation, and gave me the go-ahead to take a shot. I fired, and the bullet hit about 2/3rds up the shoulder, dropping him. A quick reload and we watched for him to get up, since a single shot rarely puts them down for good. After about 5 seconds he raised his head and tried to stand, so I fired an insurance shot that hit the base of the neck, putting him down for good.

He was an old ram with lots of scarring, broomed horn on one side and even an old bullet hole about 6 inches back from where I hit him. The tape measured just shy of 30 inches on his long side, a respectable free-range ram.

All-in-all, a good no-frills aoudad hunt, and they are a blast to chase.



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