Tezwa ExpeditionsBritish Columbia
Website Address posted for sponsors only
Anyone considering this hunt, please feel free to contact me. There are more problems with this hunt and outfitter than I can give justice here. Don't fall for the phony hype. I'll give you truth and let you decide for yourself. Hunt cost me an additional $2500 in over what it was supposed to cost due to operational problems and lack of integrity by the outfitter. Outfitter was given ample opportunity to make things right but has refused. Running out of food, no prior scouting and being dinged for float plane expenses when contract explicitly states that all transportation during the hunt will be included. If you're still unsure, feel free to contact me at [email protected] and I'll give you the honest details of the hunt.
Was the outfitter notified of problems? - YES
Regardless how experienced Dave says he is, he is quite new to hunting and has only been on a few hunts. All of which he complained about to all of us. After two of the other hunters had met him, (before the hunt started) they asked me that they not share a tent with him due to his cynical attitude and was dubbed "grumpy guy" by them the rest of the trip. It was our first hunt in a brand new area if 2100 square miles. All the hunters were told the same thing about the area. That 95% of the area was unhunted and the mountain goat population was very good. And, yes....we would be exploring the area together every day.I even sat on the phone with some while both of us on google earth showing the valleys that they would hunt. Everyone was excited until they started hiking and there were no trails. Which everyone knew prior. I chose the places that we would all explore. Day 1- travel day to base (80 miles by ocean boat) Day 2- dropped off Dave and guide at the bottom of a ridge where they could climb up and walk the ridge to a valley that had goats in it. Got the call 3 hours later saying they were half way up to the saddle it was too tough and come get them. Moved them to an old logging road where they could access the same valley from a different direction. They spotted 12 goats in that valley with two billies with many more basins to look at. Day 2- watch goats. Day 3 - watch goats and decide it's too hard. ( I later made it to those goats in less than 2 hours). Day 4- extra camp help hauls more backpack food to them so the can keep hunting that valley. After they get re supplied they come out when they here someone ordered the plane to a high lake.
On our website we have 4 hunt types. Two involve a charter plane ride if that option is selected. It is clearly stated at the hunters cost. We went over what the plane charges well before it was called.....and everyone agreed. We called the plane and he said there'd was a chance he could come that evening but for sure the next day. We all looked at the forecast together and it showed two days of sun, a chance of rain, then more sun.
Day 5 - waited on plane. Day 6- the pilot showed up and took the credit card numbers of the hunters. We all flew up to the lakes and started hunting. Day 7- took two goats and received a message from basecamp that the weather changed and a storm was coming. Rain and cloud for as far as they could see. I sent messages to each guide (using "inreach" devices. Sat phones don't work up there). I purchased one later and it hasn't worked yet. I explained the weather situation and asked if they wanted to try and get out before it hit. My hunters did want the plane. Dave took a young 8" Billy and told his guide that he only wanted a shoulder mount. It took a long fall and broke a horn. They had lots of Time to do whatever they wanted to with the goat. Dave slipped and cut his finger bad and wanted to get back to camp. Day 8- socked in Day 9- from the lake we were on we had an option to climb 2000ft lower and get to a lower lake. Dave had the same option. If the plane still couldn't fly, we could still walk out 15 miles out an old logging road. My hunters didn't want to miss their flights. We hiked down to the lower lake and the plane was able to come to that spot. We waited all day for the weather to clear and tried to make it through but there was too much cloud and fog. The pilot wasn't prepared to spend the night and wanted to get home before dark so he took us back to his base in Burns Lake. Even though Dave's lake was socked in the whole time, I received a nasty message from him saying that HE was to come off the mountain first. The next day the plane was able to pick up the rest of the people. The guides were sending the pilot weather reports every hour and would send a message if there was 500ft clear over the lake. Day 10- out.
As for food? I bought $2500 worth of fresh food for that hunt and the entire fall's worth of mountain house was at camp (another $4000 worth),We had a new chef at base camp and this was his first time at this kind of thing. He was short a big breakfast on the last day as far as bacon and eggs, but there was lots of food there. Dave was mad that his coffee wasn't made everytime he went into the cabin.
No one on our first hunt was happy including me. I didn't like how the first went and offered the two guys that didn't get a goat, another hunt at cost. That offer still stands. I maintain that if a hunter books with me and hunts hard and doesn't get an opportunity......he can come back at cost. Dave tried extortion and if I didn't pay for his charter flights he would post negative reviews all over the internet.
Here we are.
We have learned and adjusted constantly through this season and things have been going much better. We have taken 7 goats for 12 hunters so far, including two guys that tried to climb the mountain once and our last hunt where we lost 8 days because of rain. One hunt ago I had 5 hunters out and took 3 billies and had one guy pass on one billy and counted 13 billies himself. Between us we saw 34 billies on that hunt, but most were out of range for these hunters. One guy had a horrible trip and hated everything saying the mountains are unhuntable, then I get an email from another guy on the same trip thanking me for the best trip of his life. They were one valley apart in the same weather.
Matt Hughes just came up a filmed an episode for his new show "Uncaged" and had a blast. He said things couldn't have went better and wants to come back again. His show will air in the summer of 2015.
Safety is always a big concern and although sometimes the messages take an hour to get through and sometimes a minute… It's much better than in years past. I've been guiding for 26 years and only the last few years has anyone had any kind of phones etc. to contact the outside world.
Now that I've seen the country and hunted it first hand I can screen my hunters much better and can provide pictures and video to show what it's like. It's a shame he has taken it to this level.
Typical BC weather