Best goat yet


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It’s the last week of September and with a recent change of work commitments, Robert, whom I met through Marcus a few years back, is now able to visit for our first outing together.

Rob arrived late on Friday night and after a short get together with my family we hit the hay in anticipation of a very early start to get to an area were I have been seeing pigs and fallow deer over the last couple of weeks.

Over a light breakfast and coffee, we discussed our morning’s plans, with Rob deciding to carry his Schultz and Larsen .270 that has shot very well at the rifle range. Naturally, he was  keen to try it out in the field hunting.

Our gear loaded into Rob’s 4×4, we arrived at the hunting area at first light; it was a 20 minute walk from the vehicle through thick timbered country that is all up hill, but once there we came upon vast and wide areas to glass.

No pigs were evident but a group of five fallow were moving with some kangaroos at a good pace. Changing our location for a better view, I was confident the deer were making their way into a large gully to settle into, so we watched their movements.

They trotted over to the start of a gully in a wooded area, so we waited to see what they’d do next. They had not exited yet for the next gully over.

Having lost sight of the deer for a few minutes, I thought they may be  making their way up the gully, but no –  they broke cover and proceeded up the next saddle, and eventually disappearing into the gully bellow it.

We stalked the deer for the next couple of hours, but this morning belonged to the fallow and no shot was taken. By now it was mid morning and our plan was to go to anther property to hunt goats for meat or if we are able to locate a good trophy size billy.

Having parked the Pajero, we slogged uphill to get to where we could glass a mob of billies we spotted previously. I had recently acquired a pair of Steiner 8×30 Wildlife Pro binoculars, which were perfectly suited to this style of hunt, so once we had gained the same altitude as the mob, we settled down to glass from an opposite ridge.

Although the wind was in our favour, by the time we had settled down to glass, they were disappearing over the ridge top, away from us.

The goats on this property are quite savvy, so with the sighting of a vehicle, they were probably spooked initially. Also, they have learnt to stay near the kangaroos and use them as an early warning that danger is near and all this savvy does add to some good, challenging hunting and stalking.

Broaching the next ridge very carefully using available concealment, we again locate the goats and we settle down to glass them again. Then Rob, from the sitting position, prepared to take a nice young billy at 150 yards. With the sound of the shot the goat went straight down.

After a couple of photos, we took the meat and bagged it  into our large day packs. Then we moved off into another area and soon spotted a couple of goats below us.

A nice white coloured meat animal was taken at 75yards with one shot. I commented that both goats were shot were very well and accurately from the chosen sit position by Rob.

With heavier packs and on the move again we stopped for a break to enjoy some venison sandwiches and some water.  While we rested and ate, we continued to glass around we spotted another small mob with a couple of solid older billies.

Stalk planned, we made our way slightly lower and found the billies through the bush with the binoculars. They were slowly moving through thicker vegetated and rocky country.

We started moving as stealthily as possible toward a point in front of them and soon one of the billies  materialised to my left from the brush, up on a rocky outcrop. I now stood very still behind a sparse bush.

Robert was just behind me off my right shoulder and with some slow hand and finger signals he gets into position to take a safe shot at the billy that is wide-eyed and locked onto our movement.

At a distance of only 20 yards the billy was pushed downed hard with the impact from the Hornady 130gn Interlock’s impact. He sported a nice set of thick horns.

It had been a nice stalk that will be long remembered by us both, especially the look on the billy’s face before Rob took the shot would have been a classic photo.

This billy was not rank at all, so we took his backstraps and made our way back to the 4×4 to unload the meat into the cool box.

We drove to a new location, left the vehicle and spent the next 15 minutes glassing the surrounding countryside and soon spotted a nice bachelor mob of billies a long way off.

With the wind in our face, we were able to close the distance with the 4×4 to an undulating kilometre walk.

There was a really nice, shaggy, long horned brindly-brown goat that looked the best of the group and we decided to stalk him.

Despite the fact that they were feeding slightly above a group of four kangaroos, with care we were able to soon get to 30 yards from the nearest roo with the use of the cover available. Rob had positioned himself against a tree for the slightly uphill shot.

I re-glassed the billies at this point and pinpointed another charcoal black grey billy with an even better set of horns and said to Robert, “Not the motley one, the black billy moving toward the other original target.”

Robert verified his target and at 75 yards sent the deadly 130gn Hornady into his vitals. The billy lurched forward, took a couple of wobbly steps and collapsed amongst the mob. “You beauty!” I said, “That’s a real nice billy you got there.”

Now next the billy we congratulated each other again and chat about the whole stalk again a couple of times. Then we took plenty of photos of this top billy trophy.

With only an hour of daylight left we reflected on what a awesome full day we had enjoyed while we made our way back to the vehicle and home.(Till the next time we
are out and about).

 

This article was first published in the January 2014 issue of Sporting Shooter magazine.


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Alex Juris

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