My friend and hunting buddy Espen just returned from a trip to Northern Pakistan where he enjoyed great success on ibex.
In fact, Espen and his guides were overjoyed to bring in what will be a pending claim for a number 2 world record. Espen’s ibex was a fourteen year old animal that had been seen and unsuccessfully hunted on multiple occasions over the past year. It is the largest ibex head to come out of that area in many years.
Most of the trophy fee is returned to the local community to encourage the preservation of such species in the wild. Apart from the cape and horns, the animal was fully utilised. Espen and his guides enjoyed a curry made from the animal that night. It made a fine meal despite the age of the animal. The rest of the carcass was shared among local villagers.
The Himalayan ibex is one of 4 sub species of the Siberian ibex. The only place it can currently be legally hunted is in Pakistan, close to the Chinese/Afghan border.
The one I ended up with had been missed by 3 previous trophy hunters in the last 12 months. We had been watching this animal for 3 days, before we committed to walk up the mountain to get into a position. We started at an altitude of 3200 metres and made the shot at 4200.
It ended up being a 320 metre shot with the borrowed 300 win mag. Horn length is 48″ and is currently the pending #2. At 14 years of age, he most likely only had 1 year left before becoming snow leopard tucker. We saw quite a bit of fresh sign of the cats.
It was now my good friend Carsten’s turn to have a crack at a Himalayan ibex. We moved to another community further south and after a couple of days, the guides got him into a position where he could get the great old billy. It turned out to be a 13 year old boy with huge bases and 44.5″ long horns. That head is also likely to be in the top 5 in the SCI record book.
The Trip then went to Baluchistan to hunt for the Sind ibex, which is more closely related to the wild goats. The Sind desert was a huge contrast to the Himalayas and reminded me about the Mount Isa area. We were guests of Prince Malik Qamar on his huge property and were looked after like royalty. The hunt was very different to anything I had experienced before, particularly the five AK47 wielding security guys that followed along everywhere.
We found a good male at last light of the first day. It was also a 14 year old model with broomed off horns.
The outfitter we booked with was the Turkish company called Caprinae Safaris. I would not hesitate to return to Pakistan for another hunt with them in the future. Although there is the possibility to run into strife in the country, we where looked after extremely well and never felt like we were in any danger.
Attached is a link from a local Pakistani newspaper, that explains the benefit to local communities from the hunts.