British Columbia is home to over 50% of mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus) that are found globally, with an estimated half of those residing in the Skeena region (MOE 2010). Mountain goats are ranked S3 and are Blue Listed in British Columbia, indicating they are a species of special concern (BC Conservation Data Center 2016), for management. Mountain goats are not only a species that need to be conservatively managed; they are also a symbol of rugged wilderness and have important linkages to First Nations cultures, hunters and non-hunters, in the Province of British Columbia and beyond.
I am not a hunter, in fact the only thing I’ve ever shot was a beer can from forty feet away. And that was only after missing two-dozen times. I worked as a ranch hand for a few seasons and a farm hand for a few others.
It has taken me a while to wrap my mind around what drew me to mountain hunting and what continues to bring me back. I may not ever fully understand this love, but I believe I am getting closer to some level of comprehension. Like most others, I have gone through numerous phases in life.
As 2017 was winding down, the host of a network TV hunting show posted pictures of himself with a cougar he hunted and shot in Alberta. Hang on, here we go again. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…kaboom. Another social media hunting fiasco erupts.
To classify all hunters with one broad stroke of a brush would be akin to using the term “mammal” as a descriptor for every ungulate in British Columbia. Certainly this term is not incorrect; it simply lacks the appropriate nuance. Unsurprisingly, the majority of my friends are hunters, though some of them couldn’t be further apart in their views.
It goes without saying that a little goes a long way when it comes to preparing for a hunt, especially a mountain hunt where your gear and fitness can have a significant impact on your success and enjoyment.
Dr. Ed Ashby invested 27 years in the study of arrow performance and broadhead lethality. Starting in 1981, while working as a PH in Zimbabwe, Dr. Ashby was recruited by the Mkuzi Game Reserve head Game Ranger Tony Tomkinson to assist in a bowhunting research study. At the time bowhunting was not legal in South Africa.
Editor’s Note: We’d like to thank Rob for submitting this incredibly well written and timely piece. You can read more of Rob’s excellent work on his own site http://www.conservatontruths.org/. “Pseudo-conservation” is a label …
Feature Image Credit: Talus Creative There are few words in the human vocabulary that carry as much negative weight as failure. For driven, goal oriented individuals, to have the outcome of any personal or professional …
We’re going to try something a little different in this month’s Mountain Life column. Rather than publish another written piece, we’re going to experiment with a purely audio based article that you can stream or …