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American Handgunner Sep/Oct 2010 - Page 34

J.D. Jones HANDGUNHUNTING A beautiful Hangai Argali, as opposed to the swarthy Mr. Jackson posing with it! TIPS, TECHNIQUES AND POLITICALINCORRECTNESS T The Bombardier In The lead B-25 . Hell Yes! But Only If I Could Be WOuld I GO BaCk TO MOnGOlIa? here are hunts, good hunts, great hunts and disasters. I’ve had my share of them all. When you read articles in hunting magazines everything is wonderful. Everyone on the hunt, from 91-year-old grandma to the four-year-old great grandchild, each shot the #1 of the species with a one-shot kill at 500 yards —or 15' in a life or death situation. Doesn’t always happen that way, though. Generally, if you select an outfitter or professional hunter, you can expect Altai Ibex taken by a decent hunt, with a few problems thrown in for good measure. Don’t let a Mark Jackson. few minor problems ruin your attitude. A “hunt” may be simply a walk in the woods with little or no game in the area. A great hunt may be a hunt where everything from weather, food, vehicles, guide and game goes perfectly. Cherish those if one ever happens for you. Occasionally, when the hunter gets to the proper airport, no one is there to greet him. That’s the old “get the deposits and skip” plan. Solid heavy rain can turn a high dollar hunt into a disaster. So can leaving your gun on the horse just before it decides to roll, bite, kick or buck. From my experiences with horses (and I rode some mean ones on purpose when I was a kid) I’d rather shoot them than ride them. Sometimes they beat hell out of walking though. What Were We Thinking? M ongolia — now that was a high dollar disaster, even though I became the first (maybe the only?) to take a Gobi Argali sheep with a handgun. Mark Jackson recently took a Hangai Argali with a handgun, though. Think of the hunt as either a new Caddy, or the hunt. Landing at Ulan Bator in a worn out Soviet plane piloted by a suicidal pilot who dropped it on the ice-covered runway on the third try, stopping sideways, with the wing on my side overhanging the end of the runway was a good start. Next, no one was there to meet us. Sign language and US dollars got us through the arrival hassle and transportation to the hotel. Dinner was water with orange concentrate and a can of Vienna sausages. Good thing Kelly and I agreed this was to be an adventure, because things got worse. The helicopter we paid for didn’t have fuel … think of a WWII Chinese refugee train, that’s what we got. Although we had only one fight on the train to keep our gear from being stolen. We were dumped at some mile marker in the desert around 3 a.m. — no one there to meet us, either. We spent ten hours in a Russian jeep the next morning to get to a camp, where no one had ever hunted before, and the interpreter/guide was constantly stone drunk. Thank goodness the driver was always sober — when driving. The cook moved between drunk and not drunk. At night, there were motorcycle headlights in the hills and shots heard, where no one had hunted before? There was almost no game in the area, and our Jeep broke down. Kelly got zero but I got a great Argali after threatening to shoot my guides, driver and interpreter, so we could drive out of the area into a spot they first refused to go. We got in another fight in a village on the way back to the train stop in the desert. Next the stag hunt got bad — an aphrodisiac operation trapped and cut the rack off the bulls. The Ulan Bator airport was in sight; once there, our hosts were very hostile. Our soup was what comes from boiling out the skull of a stag, but the bread was very handy for sweeping the floating grease off the top of the tea. Don’t Fly Tourist ack at the hotel in Ulan Bator someone broke into my room during the night, and I chased him down the hall with a six-cell flashlight in my hand and murder in my heart. Then I cornered him in the end of a hall and realized how hilarious the situation was. Several other major incidents were left out, but it would take half a dozen columns to do the adventure right. Our interpreter offered to get our boarding passes for us when we left. He did, and traded our first class tickets for tourist, pocketing the difference. Don’t ever fly tourist in a worn out Russian plane with a suicidal pilot in Mongolia! High adventure. Yeah. Hunt disaster? Yeah. Glad I didn’t miss it. B * 34 WWW.AMERICANHANDGUNNER.COM • SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER2010

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