Rock And Roll Ibex
By Steve Mahurin

In late 1992 my wife, Shirley and I had been on a lazy weekend, staying on a friends ranch in the hill country of Texas near Mt. Home, Texas. This ranch was located about five miles off highway 41, and was very aptly called Rocky Creek Ranch. At the time I believed that was the rockiest place I had ever been on. Lttle did I know that I waq greatly mistaken!

As we drove those few miles back to highway 41 we passed a ranch with the name Southern Safaris on the big steel gate. About 100 yards inside the perimeter fence we saw a herd of anmals with striking backward curving horns. We stopped the truck and grabbed our binoculars to take a closer look. This herd of about fifteen animals were all trophjy record book class, Persian Ibex. We got our Canon 35mm, telephoto equipped cameras and snapped of a couple of pictures and went on our way.

Afew days later when we got our pictures back we looked very closely at those Ibex, as well as some great pictures of two Sika deer bucks fighting, we had gotten on Rocky Creek ranch. I had been wanting to take an ibex to go toward the completion of my Super Slam of Exotics. I figured that all I had to lose was the cost of a few phone calls, and some of my time to find out if I could afford to hunt one of those great lookinganimals.
I got the phone number and made the call. David Groce the head man of Southern S`faris answered and after a fiftden-minute phone conversation we had settled on a pricd and date for my hunt.

So here Iwas a couple of months later heading west on I 10 toward the hill country again, for a try for my Ibex. The closer we got to our destination the higher my anticipation got. As I pushed open the iron gate leading into the ranch, Shirley and I could see a small herd of Dysbowski Sika feeding near the lodge.Our accommodations were great. Just after dark our host called to say that our guide the next morning would be well known taxidermist and hunter, Jim Robinson, of Ingram, Texas and would be at our door abnut seven a.m.

Sure enough, he was right on time. Heres where the weather kicked in, making our chances of success a little more questionable. As we left the lodge I checked out the cool feeling temperature on the temperature on the porch. A cool 49 degrees, not a problem in itself, but qith the combination of a drizzling rain falling, it looked like fog almost, our comfort zone was going to be pushed seriously today.As we began thd drive to start looking for our quarry a raw wind started blowing in from the north, making it feel more like 29 degrees than 49. Icould just imagine what it was going to feel like once the rain soaked our camouflage clothing to the skin.

We tried finding the ibex herd by driving the acreage thru and around the mesquite thickets to no avail. Of course the rocky ground, literally covered with a carpet of at least golf ball to tennis ball sized white colored rocks didn't help our trying to spot game before they heard us. We did see a very nice Whitetail deer buck outlined in the mist.

Well we found out how it would be outside being soaked to the skin at 49 degrees, Miserable!!! We had decided to try hunting our animal on foot. This seemed to accomplish the same as driving and looking for them. Nothing but frustration. The main reasons were twofold. The main reason was the spookiness of the Ibex and the rocky carpet of rocks. They were very noisy for one thing, because every few steps you would step on them and no mater how hard you tried not to, some of them would roll under your boots making it difficult to even stand, muc` less try to make a quite stalk. Seemed like it was strp,step, and a rock and a roll, walk and stalk, and a rock and a roll.

We could stay at least in sight of our target animal most of the time, but of course it was imbedded deep into the herd. We made our stalk attempts at least six times but got busted each time,either too noisy or we couldn't get the Ibex separated from the herd for a shot. On about our seventh stalk the herd had split up and we spottd the one Iwas after all by itself about 150 yards away.

It was barely visible through a misty, foggy, veil of rain. The only shot possible was offhand, as there were no trees around big enough to get a rest on. I had decided to plop down on my rear end and take a rest across my knees. Painful !! Ihad rock impressions on my rear for hours afterward. But at least the pain was worth it because when the gun went off my rock and roll Persion Ibex folded in its tracks.

When we got to it I just had to put a tape on its sweeping horns. They measuped out at 34 5/8 by 35 3/8, a solid gold medal class animal.

Written by Steve Mahurin on May 18, 2000.

Rock and Roll Ibex

Steve Mahurin
25 North Heights
La Marque, Texas 77568

Email: samahurin@comcast.net

Copyright 2001 - 2011

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