I walked out of camp on the 6th day of my hunt, he...

I walked out of camp on the 6th day of my hunt, heart broken, frustrated and disappointed.  My expectations of a 1 on 1 hunt were obviously different than the outfitter.  Derek, the Owner of Misty Mountain, had partnered me and my guide with another rifle hunting client, her guide and packer. Something we never discussed ahead of time.

The hunt I won from CA FNAWS was marketed as a $32,000, 14 day, 1 on 1 Stone Sheep hunt.  A hunt I have been dreaming about my whole life.

Do to poor logistical planning by the Derek, I had to hunt with Mathy ,a 60 year old lady from Texas, her guide and packer.  We had to travel at her pace through some really tough country, which was frustratingly slow. I have a lot of respect for Mathy and her determination.  She should not have been put in this situation either. I felt for her as she apologized several times for slowing us down even though she was pushed beyond her limits.

On the 6th day I decided that Misty Mountain had not, nor could not, deliver the 1 on 1 hunt that was booked.  The hunt, up to this point (day 6) that was sold was not happening. I left as I did not want to give up a once in a lifetime opportunity to bowhunt Stone Sheep. I knew if I stayed I my chances would be gone.  I thought since Derek had put two clients in a bad situation he would be reasonable and work something out for a new hunt.

Disappointingly, Derek Drinnan, the owner of Misty Mountain says he met all of his obligations as an outfitter.  According to Derek, my expectations of a 1 on 1 hunt are irrational and my actions on the mountain were irrational by deciding to leave.  This is apparently the way Misty Mountain runs 1 on 1 Stone Sheep Hunts.

Since I won the hunt through CA FNAWS I discussed the situation with the president Ken Fish.  CA FNAWS bought the hunt and marketed it as a 14 day, 1 on 1 Stone Sheep hunt.  CA FNAWS understands my disappointment, however feels I should have stayed and my expectations of a 1 on 1 hunt are not realistic.  Partnering up and hunting with other clients on sheep hunts happens and you just have to make the most of it according to CA FNAWS.

This is only the 3rd guided hunt I have been on.  My expectations of a 1 on 1 hunt were just that, I would be hunting for the length of my hunt with just a guide. I have talked to a lot of sheep hunters and no one mentioned being paired up with another client for their hunt.  Apparently this is just part of sheep hunting according to Misty Mountain and CA FNAWS???????

I need your help with the following questions to help me better understand this situation.

What is a 1 on 1 hunt? Should a client expect to be partnered with another client, guide and packer during a 1 on 1 hunt? If so, how many days are acceptable?  Is this typical for Sheep hunts?  Derek also asked me to shoot a ram with a rifle as it would solve this problem.  Is this a reasonable solution to the problem of two clients competing for sheep?

This is a challenging situation to say the least.  I have so much physically, mentally and financially invested in this hunt.  It was so far from what I had always imagined.  Your help in better understanding the expectations of a guided hunt such as this would be very helpful.  Please give you your thoughts, they would be genuinely appreciated.

Thank you in advance for your help.

Best regards,

Jason

This article has 66 comment(s)

  1. Matt Reply

    Jason,

    Wow… I can not imagine any outfitter doing that. Having never been on a guided hunt, my expectation of a 1 on 1 hunt, would be me and a guide. I think you are right to be frustrated. Seems like Misty Mountain wanted to solve their problem by having you take a rifle shot to bag a ram. You seem like the kind of hunter who hunts for the experience, with game down an added bonus. Seems you got both of those taken away on this hunt…

    With that said, I’m not sure I would have left at day 6 hoping they would work with me. Then again, I wasn’t the one in the hills…

    Sure hope they work something out with you.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Thanks Matt. Yea it was a tough call to leave. But up to this point the hunt was so far from what was sold expected Derek to make it right. I also thought CA FNAWS would take a stand for a hunt they bought. I guess I am wrong on both accounts. I still feel like I did the right thing by leaving.

  2. G. Todd Brooks Reply

    Jason, that sounds Bogus! you pay a premium price for a 1 on 1 hunt. meaning in my eyes you and a reputable guide. if you booked a 2 on one hunt you would pay less and expect 50% less on shot opportunities.
    at least thats what any guides prices reflect. I wish you luck, with tags getting harder and harder to draw & prices going up, we have to make every hunt we take the best we can!. as far as killing your sheep with a rifle, we Archers are Archers. our goal being Pope & Young quality animals taken with Archery equipment or not at all. thats my two cents worth.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      G. Todd,

      Thanks for you input, I really appreciate it. I had no interest in shooting a ram with a rifle and certainly not with another client. Killing a ram is not the point as you know. How we do it is everything.

      Jason

  3. headingoutwest Reply

    Jason,

    I feel for you, sounds like you were hosed.

    From the looks of it I would guess the foundation got the hunt at a bargain price and then the outfitter took it out on you.

    It truly sucks and sounds like a horrible ordeal. I could see packing two hunters to a similar area but they would hunt seperately each day and share a base camp if the area provided such an opportunity.

    To me a 1 on 1 hunt is just that, ONE hunter with a guide, or perhaps even 1 hunter with a guide and spotter/packer.

    What is the contact info for the outfitter and association?
    I dont mind contacting them and asking that they do the right thing and work something out with you.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Thanks so much for the offer to help. I assume there is a BC Guides and Outfitters Association, but I have not yet checked into it. I will shoot you an email to discuss.

      Jason

  4. Greg Bokash Reply

    Jason
    Plane and simple that sucks and you got ripped . No one who would put out 32000 for a hunt would think that was a 1 on 1 hunt. I have hunted all 4 sheep on guided hunts and all four where 1 on 1 hunts. Now there have been others in camp but when we left camp it was guide and hunter. I can’t believe that fnaws did not back you 100% and I would also inform the Grandslam Club and maybe they could put some pressure on the outfitter or at least not support them anymore. If you need anything from me feel free to call Greg

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Greg,

      My guide was Russ (cannot remember his last name) who guided you on your Dall Sheep hunt. He told me in 15 years he had never seen a situation like this created by an Outfitter. It was brutal. Thanks for your input it helps me with perspective on how this hunt was managed. I will follow up with Grand Slam and WSF, that is a good idea.

      Jason

  5. Josh Reply

    I think you were robbed. One on one is one on one, it is not an ambiguous concept. The outfitter was taking advantage of you, he knows he was wrong.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Josh,

      I appreciate you taking the time to post your comment. I feel robbed. Thanks for the support.

      Jason

  6. Tom Ryle Reply

    Jason,

    My heart sank when I read this. I’m utterly speechless.

    1:1 = one hunter per guide in every outfitted camp I’ve witnessed.

    2:1 = two hunters per guide.

    Youre expectations and the marketing of this hunt were correct and I’m surprised that FNAWS didn’t back you up to some degree, at least with a letter to Misty Mountain.

    I have filed a complaint with the AK Guides and Outfitters Association surrounding my arctic caribou/moose hunt in 2001. It got me nowhere.

    I always say, “you’re buying my advertising by me hiring you. It is solely up to you what kind of advertising you get out of it.”

    Word of mouth is deadly damaging, especially in hunting circles. It’s clear where Misty Mountain’s priorities are and the ad space they bought will go a long way to keep others from experiencing such piss poor hunting opportunities….use a gun? Really? Pathetic!

    Sorry to hear about this situation.

    -Tom

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Tom,

      Thanks for your detailed comment. To be fair to CA FNAWS one of the Board of Directors who booked and bought the hunt from Misty Mountain has contacted Derek and expressed their concern.

      Unfortunately, after talking with Derek, CA FNAWS believes hunting with another client for 6 days is not out of the norm for a 1 on 1 sheep hunt. I should have stayed and accepted this as my hunt.

      I find it interesting no one on the board has ever been on a sheep hunt and been forced to hunt with another client.

  7. Grady S. Reply

    Jason,
    I can’t even believe your posting this on your site.
    That is unfathomable. Whether you paid cash for a hunt of that caliber or won it, 1 on 1 is 1 experienced guide and 1 hunter. Period. Not only that a gun and archery hunter on the same hunt with high expectations is ridiculous.
    I honestly don’t know the next step to take because i have not been in that situation, however, this outfitter needs to be exposed and blackballed!
    The only imaginable way this would be acceptable is if he made you aware of this way prior to the hunt.
    That’s bull$@&;.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Grady,

      I cannot thank you enough for your feed back regarding my hunt. I agree, the lack of communication by Derek blows me away, especially on a hunt of this caliber.

      Jason

  8. Matt True Reply

    Jason,
    You did the right thing! The writting was on the wall and there was nothing left for you to do than try to salvage your hunt. This is one rare case when the only way to salvage your hunt was to bail out and hope someone on the other end would make it right. By the sounds of it, that’s not going to happen. But was grinding it out for 8 more days going to change anything? I don’t think so and it’s obvious you didn’t either. Sorry things didn’t work out for you.

    I have yet to book my first sheep hunt (Dall Sheep)but it’s on my “things to do list” in the next 3 years. My hopes are also to get the job done with my bow. After reading your story, this just re-enforces why it is so important to never take anything for granted and check multiple referrences. People sometimes forget that outfitters are often salesman too. What they tell you prior to the hunt is frequently different than what happens on the hunt.

    Don’t let this one keep you from finding a way to go on that dream hunt.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Matt,

      My goal in creating this blog is it will help someone else. This was a lesson well learned and I hope it will keep someone else from having this type of experience on a once in a lifetime hunt.

      Jason

  9. Dewey Riesterer Reply

    I am a British Columbian, former working bushman for the BCFS and Alberta FS and several other similar employment venues. I have 58 yrs. of fishing, 54 years of hiking and 46 years of backpacking and hunting here to base my opinions on. I am a member of a pioneer BC family who has been here for 140 years and have been all over BC.

    I have been on hunts with some of the most famous and costly Guide-Outfitters in BC and know several of them quite well. I have been asked to be a guide several times by outfitters and have always refused and I know many guides here and have for over four decades.

    With that, I will say three things about this, the first is that it is standard practice to “double up” hunters in BC, as clearly stated on every GO contract I have ever read WHEN the outfitter considers it necessary. This is how it has been here since I can remember and Drinnan did exactly what is a frequent practice here…for obvious reasons.

    The next comment is that your experience is NOT unusual in BC, the GOs here are ALL about MONEY and I know of several questionable situations such as yours and have experienced very poor treatment by a man, now retired, who was lauded as “the best outfitter in BC”. BC is NOT the “hunter’s nirvana” that so many Americans seem to think it is and things are getting worse and will continue to do so, as a result of resident’s increasing hostility to foreign hunters here and a major problem with aboriginal status.

    Finally, I am genuinely sorry that this happened, you impress me as a decent gentleman and one I would like to meet in person. I “think” that you perhaps should have stayed, but, I can understand why you left. Drinnan has the “cards stacked” in his favour and the Ministry of Environment boffins and government here are solidly on the side of the GOs. Sad, but, this IS the reality honourable hunters face in BC at present.

    There are other GOs who hunt Stone’s and if I were to book such a trip, my choice would be Larry Warren of Tuchodi Outfitters. I hope you can get another opportunity and, if I can help, send me an e-mail.

    Life is sometimes a large beotch, eh!

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Dewey,

      Thanks for taking so much time to write up a detailed post. I appreciate your perspective and thank you for sharing. I think you last sentence says it all! eh?

      Jason

  10. Tom Ryle Reply

    @ Dewey, great perspective. You bring up a good point about doubling up, however, when a 2:1 situation is in play, communication is key and in this case, it appears that Derek failed to make his intentions clear. Perhaps he figured since Jason won the hunt, he didn’t need to treat him as a paying client. This is where I’d think FNAWS would step in, as I mentioned.

    The AK moose/caribou hunt I eluded to above, (among other more important issues) our outfitter told us he’d move us once for the price we paid. Once we arrived in camp and we inquired about moving, he said, “no, I said I COULD move you for addional fee”. Four of us (from three different states) went into this hunt with the exact same understanding.

    This post isn’t about me and my woes of 9 years ago but the point here is communication of intentions and plans. Pairing a rifle hunter with a bowhunter – a longbow hunter, no less – sends up all kinds of red flags. It’s clear Derek and Misty Mountain Outfitters treated Jason as a side-show guest and not a paying client.

    So unfortunate for all involved. With a little effort from Derek, the alternative could have been so rewarding for all involved.

  11. Janis Putelis Reply

    BRUTAL!

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Agreed!

  12. Brian Reply

    Not a whole lot add; I think we are all on the same page here. (this sucks!) Thank god for the internet! Hopefully Misty Mt. will be out of business by next hunting season.

    I know I will be booking my first or last sheep hunt with these guys.

    Cathy from Texas; you go girl! I hope when I am in my 60’s I am still able to go on hunts like this.

    Brian

  13. Stacee Frost Reply

    Jason,

    Your experience is heart wrenching. I would like to believe that is not standard practice – it was certainly not my experience. The outfitters association should be aware of the situation –

    I also won a Stone Sheep hunt, but through Arizona Desert Bighorn Sheep Society http://www.adbss.org and similar to you intended it to be archery from the very get go. Similarities end there however as Frank Simpson at Simpson Stone Sheep Ltd. treated me to a hunt as each of their other hunters received. That experience led me to believe that a 1:1 hunt means 1 hunter, 1 guide, 1 wrangler, and 8 horses and once the other 1 hunter and his 1 guide and 1 sous guide/wrangler and 5+ horses went their way – that I would not see another human being besides the 1 guide and 1 wrangler.

  14. Stacee Frost Reply

    Agh – fat fingers! Not sure if you got the first part.

    A notification should be submitted to the outfitters association – as well as hunt reports to SCI oh and what is the other one – The Hunt Report.

    Again, my experience with Simpson Stone Sheep seems to have been completely opposite your experience. Even though, to that point Simpson Stone Sheep had not had a successful archer after Stone in their area – I received the same treatment as their other two clients in the area at that same time: 1 hunter, 1 guide, and 1 wrangler/packer/extra set of eyes. So again, I’d like to believe that your experience was an anomoly.

    Kindly,
    Stacee

  15. Dewey Riesterer Reply

    Tom, et. al.,

    Agreed, another BC resident on his fourth hunt with yet another of BC’s top northern outfitters in a camp of this outfitter’s I was hunting from approached me a few days into the hunt and mentioned that we residents were “getting the cold shoulder” from the head guide and crew. I had noticed it, as well, and this outfitter tried to renege on the written terms of his glossy brochure and the contract I had signed, I left a day early on the first available flight without shooting my quarry…..better, for my blood pressure.

    All, of this to totally concur, Drinnan’s treatment of Jason WAS/IS NOT what a client hunter should expect here in BC or anywhere. But, I know of several really crummy incidents where “non-resident” hunters have been mistreated by BC GOs. One was an Albertan, on a Grizzly hunt where the guide pushed his muzzle aside when he lined up on a trophy Grizzly…they do this so that they can book more hunters per season then their “quota” allows them to actually kill bears. This, is also done with Stone’s rams and some pretty famous outfitters have a “different” reputation here in BC, to what is presented in their flashy adverts. in hunting rags, websites, “FNAS and SCI shows and so on…..

    There is no force that is external to BC that can/will influence the GOABC and things concerning hunting here are in a turmoil and undergoing a massive change. There are some good outfitters left, but, one must be REAL careful and there is always a risk that you will not get the treatment one would expect on a hunt that costs so much.

    My best friend knows Drinnan and several other northern BC outfitters as the guides often work for him during the “off season”; I now tend to avoid GOs and there are few whom I would recommend to a visiting hunter. Anyway, not to ramble on, but, hopefully, this will help some hunters planning a hunt here. Again, my honest condolences to Jason.

  16. Jeremy Hoyt Reply

    Sorry to hear your dream hunt was a bust. 1 on 1 should mean 1 shooter, 1 guide. The sad fact is a lot of Outfitters are just like carnival workers, they don’t care how many times you ride the ride as long as you get on once.

    I myself have won 4 hunts, and had unpleasant experiences on those. It seemed to me I was treated like a 2nd class hunter on the freebies.

    Good luck the rest of the season.
    Keep em’ Sharp

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hey Jeremy,

      This was a tough and disappointing lesson learned for sure. I am hoping CA FNAWS will help make this situation a positive in the end.

      Jason

  17. Matt Reply

    The worst part of this is now it appears that guides and outfitters treat “hunt winners” as 2nd class clients. As most drawings go to benefit organizations “dedicated to keeping sheep on the mountain” we all loose. Who really wants to buy a ticket for one of these type hunts after reading this?

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Matt,

      I hope CA FNAWS will work something out with the outfitter and make this a positive situation so we can all feel better buying or winning these hunts.

      Jason

  18. Kurt Steindorf Reply

    Jason,
    It is terrible to hear about what transpired on your hunt. Everything that I have read and talked to people who have been on a sheep hunt, have all been a 1 on 1, meaning 1 hunter, 1 guide. I cannot even imagine a outfitter having a rifle hunter and a bow hunter together on the same hunt in that type of terrain, and then to have the b___s to ask you to shoot a ram with a rifle to smooth over the situation is assinine.
    I do not get much time to archery hunt, but I can attest if I was in your shoes, I would be mad as hell!
    I have volunteered many hours with different non-profit hunting groups, and usually if something like this happens we have tried to rectify the problem. Hopefully FNAWS will come to the plate and help out the problem.
    Good Luck,
    Kurt

  19. Chris Settelmeyer Reply

    Jason,
    This situation is extremely unfortunate and completely uncalled for. I know how long you have been preparing for this hunt.
    I have been a professional guide in ID and WY for 13 years. In my experience, hunters who paid extra $$ for a 1/1 scenario, expected a 1/1 scenario, plain and simple.
    If it wasn’t delivered, it would cause a tremendous amount of contention. With 1/1 hunts, we took extra measures to ensure that the 1/1 hunter and guide weren’t even in the same drainage as other hunters.
    Since hearing about this situation, I have spoken with several friends to who are serious, experienced sheep hunters and they were blown away when they heard about your experience. It is not only unfortunate for you, but the other hunter as well.
    In my opinion, for the amount of $$ spent on these hunts, situations to this extent should never occur. If there is some initial coordination that needed to happen to get both hunters to a location where they would split up (ie. 1, maybe 2 days) and go on their seperate hunts, that is one thing. But (6) days together and then to have the outfitter ask you to shoot a ram with a gun…. you have to be kidding me.
    I know how serious of an archery hunter you are. I know that you would have probably rather gone home without a ram, then to shoot one with a gun.
    I don’t agree with the outfitter’s approach on this situation.
    Someone needs to step up to the plate and make this right.

    Good Luck.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Thanks Chris, I really appreciate you taking the time to post a comment. What is so frustrating about the situation was how many days were burned with another hunter and the type of experience I had up to that point. All I wanted was a 1 on 1 hunt, nothing more. Too bad.

      Jason

  20. Kit Baughman Reply

    Hi Jason,

    Wow, your experience sure was an eye opener; even more so the responses from the BC guys. If I’d put money down (or won) a 1 on 1 archery hunt that’s what I’d expect – me with a single guide that knew archery hunting was very different from rifle hunting. This kind of thing makes my blood boil!

    Sounds like false advertising to me. Don’t know if you have, or want, any legal recourse. If you paid for trip expenses with your credit card you might look into getting them back through your credit card company.

    Sorry to hear about your troubles,

    Kit

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Kit,

      Thanks so much for taking the time to comment, I sincerely appreciate it. Yea, it was an eye opener for sure. I am not sure what recourse I have at this point. I am hoping CA FNAWS can work something out with the Outfitter.

      Jason

  21. George Hicks Reply

    Jason,

    I have never been on an outfitted hunt, and after reading your story I am not likely to go anytime soon. I just don’t understand “outfitter math”. In my book, 1+1=2. I know how much you looked forward to this hunt and how hard you prepared, and I am truly disappointed for you. I really hope your one-on-one Stone sheep hunt with stick and string comes together for you someday.

    George

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Thanks George, I hope it comes together someday as well.

      Jason

  22. Pedro Ampuero Reply

    Real sorry to hear this Jason. After all the preparation involved on a hunt like this I suppose it was frustraiting.

    I have to say it happened exactly the same to me two years ago, but the difference was that I had payed the hunt… It is just unfair.

    Hope you can solve this, because I couldnt.

    Have a nice day, and tell us more about your days on the field.

    Take care,

    Pedro

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Pedro,

      Were you able to come to any resolution with your outfitter?

      Jason

  23. Ron Spomer Reply

    Jason,
    Unfortunately, I hear way more horror stories regarding “donation” hunts than any others. It seems the donating outfitters somehow feel slighted or taken advantage of AFTER the winter party, so they take it out on the poor suckers who bought or won the hunts at the conventions. I can see their frustration and anger: they donate a $30,000 hunt; it sells at auction for maybe $10,000; they feel as if the buyer doesn’t value them (He thinks we’re only worth 1/3 of our usual price, eh!?); they punish the buyer (you) for “taking advantage” of them. Somehow they manage to forget that they donated the hunt for the good of the resource or “putting sheep on the mountain.”
    Ideally they would remember their long term goals, treat their “discount” clients as well as their full-paying clients, win a bunch of good PR and gain credibility/reputation/good will and more clients down the road, all while raising $ for conservation, which was (or should have been) their original reason for donating the hunt.
    The conservation organizations probably don’t stand behind auction hunt buyers (you) because they don’t want to tick off potential donators. Gets to be a vicious downward spiral that will end in no good for anyone.
    Sorry for your painful learning experience. Travel costs alone must have set you back considerable $.

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Ron,

      Yea, I have learned a lot from this experience. The travel costs hurt, but missing out on a Stone Sheep hunting experience you have waited a lifetime for stings quite a bit. I hope by sharing this experience will help us all.

      Jason

  24. Staci Uesugi Reply

    Jason,

    I’m so sorry to hear that your much anticipated Stone Sheep hunt was such a major disappointment. The unethical business practices of the outfitter were appalling. I hope you get the issue resolved to your satisfaction…..if not for just your peace of mind, but for the benefit of other hunters so they may avoid the same heart-break and disappointment that you experienced.

    I hope you’ll get another opportunity at those sheep!

    Staci

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Staci,

      Thank you so much for the kind words and support. I hope others can learn from this experience.

      Jason

  25. Ryan Sanpei Reply

    Jason,
    I’ve been following your blog from day one. This sheep hunt had really intrigued me. I’ve even discussed this hunt with all my hunting partners.
    To say that I’m disappointed is an understatement. It wasn’t even my hunt and I feel robbed. I whole-heartedly understand how you felt. Heck if it was me, I would’ve left on the very next day.
    I’m still looking for answers. Did they treat you like this because it was a “raffle” hunt? Did they not like your choice of weapon, or is this just standard practice? No matter what the reason, you don’t deserve to be treated like this. I’m truly sorry for your misfortune, but I’m really glad that you took the time to share this info with the rest of us. I’ll be sure to pass this information on to others in the hunting community.

    Ryan

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Ryan,

      Unfortunately there was a lack of communication between the Outfitter and I regarding this hunt. If his intentions were to have me hunt with another client for a length of time he should have discussed this ahead of time. All indications from the beginning were my guide and I hunting together.

      Jason

  26. Ryan Kohatsu Reply

    This is ridiculously unfortunate. I wonder if the outfitter has read over this blog so far?
    Anyway, to think a bit outside the box, did your fellow hunter (the lady) pay solely out of her pocket for the whole hunt and promised a similar “1 on 1” deal? If so, then these guys were all about getting the rip off and maximizing profits! She should be shooting these clowns down as well if such is the case. Not saying the “raffle” should change the quality of the service contracted either though and I assume no one twisted their arm to sign up for and provide a raffle hunt.
    I’m very young and have not earned the status to be able to pay for any hunt so I may not fully understand the inner working of these deals. But it seems that there is an over-commercialization of hunting and big money seems to bring out the nasty here and there ie. canned hunts, overpriced rip offs, etc. It’s great you share these experiences so we can learn from this, stay above it, and discourage this from happening again.

    Note to self: “No sheep hunting for me with misty mountain.”

    Aloha -Ryan

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Ryan,

      Thanks for the response. I hope this is just a rare event and poor planning from the outfitter and his intentions were not as bad as they seem. I can only hope he will rethink his position and his duty as the outfitter and make things right in some way. I hope everything is good on the island and keep me posted on your sheep hunting over there. Got to get over there for a hunt one of these days.

      Jason

  27. John McKnight Reply

    Jason,

    Thank you for sharing this story and making the TRUTH known to the hunting community. The truth is part of the complex spiritual side of the hunt that is increasingly missing from our sport. Values, morals and the salt that makes us rugged individuals are what drew me to the sport 3 1/2 decades ago and it is too bad that $$ and egos have pervaded a pure pursuit to the extent they have today. Keep telling it as it is so that the purveyors of “armed trail rides” are exposed and weeded out through basic natural economics.

  28. Tim Rushing Reply

    My dad and I hunted with Derek in 2001 and had the worst experiences of our hunting lives. Derek hired a half-assed and worthless guide from AB to guide my dad and he actually left my dad on the mountain and my dad was “missing” for 2 days after the guide showed up at camp and said he had lost my dad. Derek definitely lacks good judgment and if I hadn’t been so glad to see my dad alive, I’d have made Derek and the p.o.s. guide go “missing” on the spot. He has a very poor area for sheep and does not have a good grasp where the sheep are. I’m very surprised anyone ever goes with him although I know a few sheep have been killed in the area. Jason, your comments do not surprise me in the least – Derek does what Derek wants and that’s the reason I never went back with him for a Stone but went with Gundahoo River Outfitters – they are some of the best out there! On my hunt with Derek, I endured some of the worst weather I’ve ever been in and actually only got to hunt about 2 days out of 14. My dad btw, was rescued by a helicopter back at the spike camp he’d walked back to after wrenching his knee in a fall…he spent 2 nights out without a sleeping bag (the guide took it) and had frostbitten fingers and toes. I’m glad for Derek that my dad survived the ordeal. Avoid Misty Mountain like the plague…

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Tim,

      I am so sorry to hear about your experience with Misty Mountain. It seems like on both of our hunts Derek was not very concerned with his clients experience and more concerned with what is easiest for Derek. I am glad your dad made it out of the mountains alive. A sheep hunt has so much invested; financially, emotionally and physically. To have poorly managed hunt from a professional outfitter is incredibly disappointing to say the least. Thank you for taking the time to comment.

      Jason

  29. Chris Green Reply

    Hey Jason:

    Man, what a complete cluster eff. As a traveling bowhunter, I fully understand how your expectations were far from met and how disappointed you must be. I also fully concur with your expectations regarding a one on one hunt, which obviously you did not get.

    We work to pay for these trips, we work out to be in shape, we shoot/practice endlessly, we manage our schedules (both business and personal) to get away, and most of all we dream.

    And in the end, the success is often times largely up to someone else. Because the above routine is static in all of my hunt preparation, I firmly believe that the majority of my success is determined right here at my desk, either on the phone or in front of the computer.

    The time spent researching the best place in the world to be for a given hunt is the difference and one reason I avoid raffle or auction hunts, unless I have the opportunity to do my due diligence well in advance of the conventions.

    I would do everything in my power to reach as many perspective clients of MM and tell your story. I would post this fiasco on the Bowsite, write to The Hunt Report, get in touch with SCI and the Sheep Associations asap, it may help some other hunter avoid the same fate. I’m certain your network of contacts reaches far and wide in the hunting industry and it should be utilized to the fullest to put pressure on CA FNAWS, who ultimately is responsible for this mess.

    I’m curious, was your hunt an auction hunt or a raffle?

    Although my network is smaller, you can be sure this incident will not be forgotten anytime MM comes up.

    Good luck the next time you get back on the mountain.

    -Chris

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Chris,

      Thank you very much for taking the time to comment. This was a very BIG learning experience, careful what you ask for. As you mention there is so much invested to get ready and get to the hunt and I can all be for not if your outfitter does not run a professional operation. To answer your question, my hunt with Misty Mountain was a raffled hunt. Thanks for your support and interest.

      Best,

      Jason

  30. Chris Green Reply

    Hey Jason,

    Can you please send me your email address? I cant seem to locate it anywhere on your site.

    Thanks,

    Chris

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hey Chris,

      jasonh@kuiu.com

      I look forward to hearing from you.

      Jason

  31. Dennis Reply

    Jason,
    This story should be told to all who might ever want to do this hunt, Alberta Outdoorsman Forum is a great free place that 22,000 members that share the same passion go, I know you are a busy man but this story should be told to all the hunters out there. The members there for the most part are a great resource for this type of adventure, sign on free and do some guide reference checks.
    Also many members could help with the valuable feedback you are looking for. I am sorry to hear of this and wish you the best in this new business. I really have enjoyed reading the blog to this point and will continue to. I found the link to your blog on AO forum. Cheers, Dennis

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Hi Dennis,

      I agree with you. I will look into finding a way to get this up on that forum, thank you for passing along this information. I am so glad you enjoyed his work, I am so excited about our future projects we have planned. I appreciate you taking the time to comment and the kind words.

      Jason

  32. Larry Schwartz Reply

    A 1:1 hunt means one guide working with one hunter. I can see other non-hunters like a packer coming along but the big thing is that as a hunter your guides attention is focused on you, your goals, and your needs. That is why you pay the extra money for a 1:1 hunt.

    It also sounds like the outfitter deals mainly with gun hunters who may have a different set of expectations from an outfitted hunt.

    I fault the CA FNAWS folks as much as the outfitter in not doing their due diligence in accepting hunt donations. I used to solicit hunts for my state bowhunting organization, the Maryland Bowhunters Society, to auction off at their annual banquet. I learned quickly to focus on outfitters/guides that only dealt with bowhunters or did a lot of their business with bowhunters AND to clearly spell out in the donation agreement what was being offered and what was not being offered. We had one of our donations go south on us as well. We had a member get an elk hunt at the auction, bought new gear and flew across the country. When he got there the camp was nothing like we/he expected, the guide was also the camp boss, and he left two days in after getting in a fight with his son who was the camp cook. We wound up giving the member the money back that he paid at the auction because we felt it was the right thing to do, but he was still out several thousand dollars in other expenses.

    I would think about taking some action to counter the publicity this guy got through his donation. Maybe writing a letter to the editor of the CA FNAWS magazine/newsletter, doing a short article on the hunt for them, placing an ad in their magazine, etc. to let people know how this guy does business. If they don’t let you do it then think about taking the same actions with the national WS organization and focus on the outfitter and not take a shot at the CA organization.

    Larry

  33. Will McNamara Reply

    Jason,
    I can only imagine how disappointed you were after being completely screwed over on your Stone Sheep hunt. The physical and emotional build up to a sheep hunt is half the fun. To have that hunt be a ruined by the incompetency of the outfitter and misrepresentation of the hunt is a crime.
    My only sheep hunt occurred in Montana and was on a 1 to 2 basis. I had 2 guides (a team).
    You should file a report with “the hunting report” http://www.thehuntingreport.com and save some poor SOB the pain of hunting with that outfitter.
    Will

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Thanks Will, heart crushing to say the least!

      Jason

  34. Shane Close Reply

    Jason, I’m just reading this over two years later and I’m sorry to hear about this! As you’ve said, this was a once in a lifetime opportunity. I couldn’t imagine being so excited to win a hunt and then everything being destroyed. More recently we’ve seen you chasing animals more with your rifle, but it would be cool to see another sheep or other hunt with your longbow. You’ve got a couple dall sheep down with the rifle, I’m sure it would be an amazing feeling to get one with the bow. Anyways, it’s good to see that you’ve found good, reliable outfitters to do your hunts with. It’s too bad that this one wasn’t…

  35. Quinn Reply

    Jason, did you see sheep in the 6+ days?
    Quinn

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Yes we did.

  36. beau purvis Reply

    I have been on a few sheep hunts and they were always one on one. As a matter of fact all the hunts I have been on[mule deer ..lots…Elk…caribou..white tail..lots of guided hunts..all were 1 on 1 unless I arranged 2 on one with my son along…never an unknown with another guide and in in same area as me!!!
    The guy you went with is a crook!
    Is this the second time of this for you …seem to remember something else like this with sheep ..thought you won a hunt and then it turned out you had to pay something?

    Love everything you are doing..have bought almost every thing that fits my needs!

  37. Al Schafer Reply

    I hunted with derrick in 2004 my story is every bit as horrific thanks to all who posted you were not alone

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Your the 5th person that I have heard from that had a terrible experience with Derrick.

  38. Dan Kauffman Reply

    I came across this, I know its dragging it all back up but…
    From the outfitters perspective I bet they look at a prize drawn hunt differently then a client who is paying top dollar. If shit happened for him he most likely had to cater to his paying client. This I figure would have been Mattie. I’m sure it was frustrating but their is no way that happens if you had bought the hunt in the first place. I’m sure the old bird would have tired out eventually and you would get your chance at a ram. Quitting a sheep hunt six days in especially in that country is throwing in the towel early I reckon. That part of the world can be harsh when you are backpacking no doubt about it.
    Did the little old lady quit after six days as well or did she tough it out? Did she get a ram?

    • Jason Hairston Reply

      Dan,

      It was simple. I won a 1 on 1 hunt. WSF CA paid for the hunt. It was not given to them, so I was a paying client. The reason I left was because the hunt he was providing was not what was paid for. I cannot ship a pair of $150 pants to a customer who paid for a $500 backpack and expect them to keep it because it is what is best for me. I left, because this was not the hunt I won or what WSF CA purchased. It had nothing to do with my ability or the difficulty of the hunt. I have been on much harder hunts that lasted much longer.

      Derek had a history of doing things like this to his clients. Good thing he is out of the business.

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