B&C World's Record – Stone's Sheep

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Lee Sherman Chadwick was enterprising enough to hunt Stone’s sheep (Ovis dalli stonei) in British Columbia’s upper Muskwa River country in 1936, long before the Alcan Highway made that formerly virgin game range more accessible. He was accompanied by Roy Hargreaves, with whom he had hunted several times in that region, as well as local guides Walter (Curly) Cochrane and Frank Golata.

On the evening they reached camp, Hargreaves looked the country over with a 20x spotting scope and saw a few sheep on a distant mountain. The next morning, the whole party rode horses in that direction. In the early afternoon they saw three rams on the skyline of a ridge, about a mile and a half away. Chadwick and Hargreaves left the horses with their guides, and started on their final approach.

“We went up pretty fast for men close to 62 years of age,” Chadwick said. “When my hatband, which was tight, banked up a large pool of perspiration, I would remove the hat, scoop off several handfuls of water, take a short rest, then plod on toward the top, with a dry mouth and my shoes filling with perspiration.

“When we arrived at the top, the sheep were gone, as we expected,” Chadwick said. “But we sighted them down in the Muskwa Valley, two thousand feet or more below. Then down over the rock slide—with sore feet and trembling knees—we went, until we got to within about 200 yards of them. We stopped and took movies of the three, and I undertook to shoot the big one.

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“My first shot was low, through his brisket,” Chadwick said. “He started off at a terrible speed, and I started to pour lead into him. I shot four times, one of these hitting him lightly in the hip. Roy followed him on the run, and when the ram started up the mountain he could not keep up with the other sheep. This gave Roy a chance to get in the finishing shot.

“The ram fell down a sharp ravine into a little brook,” Chadwick said. “I was about all in and could not keep up with Roy. It was a very bad place to get to, but we both got down to the sheep without a fall, and we saw that he was well worth the hard work.

“He had the most magnificent head I had ever seen,” Chadwick said, “but not an overly large body. He had two almost perfect horns. The right horn was slightly broken on the end and only measured 50-4/8 inches. The left horn was pointed clear to the end and measured 52-1/8 inches. They were both a little over 15-3/8 inches at the base and the spread was 31-2/8 inches. All told, he was the finest head I had ever seen and I remember thinking, If he is not a record head, he is close to it.”

While Chadwick’s field measurements were unofficial, his hunch was absolutely correct. Scored at a world’s record 196-6/8 points, this is the only North American ram ever taken and recorded with horns over 50 inches long. The “Chadwick Ram” as it is commonly called, is widely regarded as the best big-game trophy this continent has produced.

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>