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Savage Encounters

Website Address posted for sponsors only
Hunter: Cliff Sorrells Jr
Ratings to date: 3
Average Rating 2.3
Hunter Comments
I do not recommend this outfitter

We had booked this hunt 3 yeears before,and Chad had told us this would be the best week to hunt moose with a bow.We were very excited for 3 long years prior to this hunt and every hunting show{SCI,ISE},we would see Chad,and he would tell us what a great time we were going to have.He also told us that since we had booked so far out,to get this date that he would personally take us both.The ISE show was in Phoenix in March,and he told us we would need to pay the rest of the money at that time.We had several questions to ask,but he wasn't there,he had sent a friend that had hunted with him to the show.We paid the rest of the 6000.,and waited until Oct for the hunt.After driving from Phx to Alberta towing a trailer with 2 freezers as Chad had suggested we arrived a day early.We found a motel to stay in at a local town,and went to Chads the next day.Chad was out hunting and didn't get in until late,he sat around,and ate,didn't acknowledge that we were there.It got to be about 10 o'clock,and my buddy asked me what I was going to do.I told him that I was going to bed,and maybe tomorrow would work out better.We went to bed,and Chad came over to a bunkhouse that we were staying in as he had overbooked the hunt with friends and clients.He had a nice lodge built,but his buddies,and bow sponsers were put up there.We met our guide Stacy the next morning.He ended up being the only good thing about the whole trip.We were told that we would be hunting 1 1/2 hours away while the other hunters were hunting within 10 minutes from the lodge.We left for the hunting area before the other hunters were out of bed,and didn't get back to camp until the other hunters were in bed that night.It wasn't a big deal until later on in the hunt when the food had all been eaten when we got there.Stacy called and hunted his heart out for us.He called 1 bull in for us to 45yds.,but we didn't get a shot.We seen 4 other small paddle heads from the truck,but no chance of a shot.We ate baloney sandwiches,that we made every day for 6 days,and one day I asked for a coke,and a water,and the cook couldn't believe that I wanted both for all day.It snowed the last 2 days,we hunted,and the last night Chad never asked us anything about our hunt.The next morning Stacy showed up and we tipped him,Chad wasn't up yet,so we loaded up our gear.Chad walked to the lodge,seen us,but it was clear he had nothing to say to us.In closing I have guided many hunters,and guide the month of New Mexico for elk now every year.I know what it takes to have a successful hunt,it's not an animal,it's good food,good camp,and an outfitter that gives a damn about the hunters.There were 2 moose killed,1 with a rifle,1 small one with a bow.I am done with guided hunts,so even if Chad offered another hunt I wouldn't go.The only reason that I am writing this is in hopes that someone else won't have to go through what we did.

Was the outfitter notified of problems? - NO

Outfitter's Response

Wow, this came as a total surprize. Cliff and Ray had said they were happy with the hunt several times during that week as I did speak with them pretty much every day. So several misleading statements in the report, and as usual if they would have harvested a moose I wouldn't be responding to this. So yes they did book this three years out and I did say I would try and guide them, but try and promise to guide are not the same. Every hunter signs a contract with the hunt dates, price and information for the hunt and any other arrangement or specifics agreed to by me and the hunters. I am a busy outfitter and I cant commit to guide anyone as I need to be flexible to changes as picking up hunters and organizing a multitude of things. So first thing I can pick up from letter is they spent 3 years dreaming of this, That's great and one should be excited about any upcoming hunt, but don't write the script and film the movie before you get to camp. Many hunters expectations are really beyond reality. Cliff is comparing a Canadian moose hunt to a private land New Mexico elk hunt with huge populations of elk. moose populations in any region I have guided, Alberta, Bc, Yukon have low populations and quite frankly if weather or the rut is off things get tough. 2016 was one of these years, very tough. I talked with several outfitters and this was a tough season. So the traditional first week of October is the best week. I take 6-8 moose hunters per week on 3 weeks of rut hunts, Cliff was here on first week of October and we had 7 moose hunters in camp so we were not over booked,(I did have 2 non hunters and 1 sheep hunter for a night or 2during that week) plus I gave the guys the option to stay in the lodge or the Cabin, they said the cabin would be fine, the cabin is a nice heated 16x 24 with 2 bunks, table, chairs and couch with a deck and many clients prefer it as it is quieter than in the main lodge 50 yds away. Not once did I get any complaint about the cabin except that one other client snored to much so we moved him to a camper trailer, so Cliff and ray had the cabin to them selves. Cliff also forgot to mention they showed up 2 days early thinking they could stay at lodge and perhaps hunt early, well it doesn't work like that, I have a schedule, and then the showed up early in the morning on arrival day and the contract says after 2 pm. I really take offence to him saying I was over booked and that my buddies and bow sponsors got the lodge. Every one in the lodge was a paid client and some have hunted with me more than once but to even imply that I choose favorites is wrong. Next Cliff seems upset that he had to drive what is an hour to the hunting area, I have several moose units to hunt and some are closer than others, actually that week the one rifle hunter was driving further than Cliff and killed a 50 inch bull day 3. I spread the hunters out so no one is in the same area as other hunters so you have it all to your self. As it turned out the weather in the closer zones was much warmer than in cliffs zone. I never told Cliff they would be hunting close to the lodge. So 2 hunters hunted 20 minutes for house I guided them, they did not kill moose either but passed on small bulls only wanting book bulls, the other 2 hunters hunted 30-40 minutes from camp one killed a small panned 40 inch bull and the other missed 2 good bulls. Cliff says his guide Stacey was awesome, I agree, Stacey is awesome one of my best guides. So yesterday I called one of the hunters to go over that week and I went over Stacey and I's notes for that week. The Hunter (Jeff Shuler) that has been on 3 moose hunts with me recalled eating with the Arizona guys most nights and breakfast, I have a full time cook and open fridge policy. Hunters make there own lunches, fruit, several choices of lunch meat, tuna, peanut butter and jam, granola bars, bottled water, pop, basically what ever you want and lots of it, so I am quite upset that the allegation of no food. Stacey also confirmed most days they ate with all the hunters and had plenty to eat, I showed Stacey the comment about the cook being upset about asking for a water and coke and he said that's bull shit, the cook wouldn't do that. Stacey also said that every day they drove by a store going to and from the hunting area he asked if they wanted any thing and they said no they were fine. Stacey also bought them pizza one day for lunch at a restraint. The one thing as an outfitter I can control is food, so I am insulted at this lie and trying to figure out why. Next we noted that the weather was a bit warm early in the hunt but yes in there unit it cooled down but snowed and rained later in the week, so the conditions weren't bad but far from ideal. It made the roads muddy. Next Cliff said they only saw 5 bulls and one at 45 yds, Stacey says that bull was 25 yds and a good bull but caught cliff and ray moving around and talking to each other. Cliff wore a big black cowboy hat the whole hunt, not great for blending in. Stacey also said they called in 7 bulls, a pretty good week, but Cliff and Ray decided that only one would hunt each day and they wouldn't separate. Stacey told them they should separate to up the odds and catch bulls going down wind which ever bull did. Also Stacey said they talked when he was calling and he got pretty frustrated as because they hunted next to each other and one would shoot he felt really handicapped. So on the last day of the hunt, it was Cliffs turn to be the hunter and he says that there is no way I am going home with a moose if Ray doesn't so he quits hunting and then they both quite, so they blow the last day. Ok so he also says I didn't talk to them, but I talked to them every night and phoned Stacey at lunch every day to see what was going on. I also talk with all my guides twice a day sometimes more. I was pretty disappointed in there hunt choice not to separate and delegate who was shooting, that just reduces your odds, but its the hunters choice if they want to hunt like that. I am a very focused hunter and guide and I don't spend a whole lot of time socializing nor do the guides, if the hunters want to stay up and talk that's there business is killin moose. I am in camp and available to talk to hunters each day, so why did Cliff never say anything was wrong? They said they were having the a great hunt and that Stacey was Great, so how am I to know any different? On the last morning I did want to say good by, so I headed to lodge to check on the other hunters and went back out to talk but they were already driving away. I will admit I was displeased with them quitting but they did look tired, I was also disappointed with the choices they made while hunting. The bulls that week came in quiet and circled down wind for some reason only known by Mother Nature herself. And finally if you have a problem with they way your hunt is going ,talk to me and I will try and fix any legitimate problems you might encounter, don't wait 8 months and write an unfounded bad report on the internet. Don't compare guiding and outfitting in New Mexico to Moose hunting in Alberta. Listen to your guide, if he suggests you both hunt and separate, that's what you should do. Don't quite ever. As for any food Complaints, they were in charge of there own lunches and lots to choose from. And big breakfasts and supers ever day with open fridge and pantry to help your self any time.

Hunt Information
Date of Hunt - October 2017
Implement - Compound Bow
Hunt Type - Guided
Personal Guide - Stacy
Number in Camp - 10
Outfitter Cost - $6,000.00
Other Costs - $3,000.00
Weather Information
Did Weather Affect your Hunt? No - Weather not a factor
Weather Comments:
Weather was perfect,snow showed us there were no animals where we were hunting-no tracks.
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