Started looking for outfitters to take me on a dall sheep hunt with Kerry fishing. Talked to a few outfitters, that where not able to accomadate both of us. I also wanted to go hunt in the wrangells.
November of 2012
Found Pioneer Outfitters and they where able to take Kerry fishing and me Sheep hunting, and the price allowed for a moose hunt also. My wife wanted a big moose on the wall.
December of 2012
Finished up the conversation with Terry and Amber and wire transferred the $10,000 deposit for, Kerry’s and my adventure.
Wondering where my contract is.
Wondering where my contract is.
April or May 2013
Finally got the contract for the hunt this fall. Fly in On Aug 30. Hunt aug31-sept 9 fly out sept 10. Kerry is fishing and accompanying.
Friday Aug 30, 2013
Fly up to Anchorage on aug 24 go to cooper landing for a few days and than drive the rental car to Tok to fly into chisana. Arrive at 40 mile air on aug 30th to fly into Chisana. Fly in and we are met by Costin one of the guide school trainees. We get moved to our cabin and proceed to meet the rest of the Pioneer outfitters crew: Nancy, Ben, Ted, Mike and Rob. Sandy one of the hunters informs me that Terry, Amber and the rest of the guide school trainees are bringing in the horses and no one knows when they will be back. Severe unease sets in, as I was contemplating asking for a refund this spring when I was having a hard time getting a contract. We went to the shooting range to sight in. I shot very bad due to the unease of knowing there was no Outfitter, guides or horses for the hunt we booked. And no one seemed concerned about that. Had corned beef for dinner. No where near enough food for everyone. Kind of scared about what is going to come up next.
Saturday Aug 31
No news on where the outfitter, guides and horses are. Went back to the shooting range . Grouped good enough for them with 3 shots at 150 and 3 shots at 250 yards. Put some rubber boots on and took Kerry grayling fishing and walking around the river bed. Took Kerry fishing.
Sunday September 1
Still no news on where guides, outfitter or horses are. Kerry and I went for a walk.
Monday September 2, 2013
Still no news on where they are . took Kerry fishing. Asked Robb where to go hiking. He told me Johnson Creek.
Tuesday Septermber 3, 2013
Discussion at breakfast about the situation. I was told I was not allowed to go up Johnson Creek, all I could do is stay in the river bed. Mike(guide at pioneer outfitters, who is guiding Werner.) and I do not see eye to eye at all. We also found out that some one on the team bringing the horse back did have a satellite phone and was in contact with a person in palmer or Wasilla. This info came from Nancy. She was emailing the person in palmer or Wasilla. Took Kerry fishing
Wednesday Septermber 4, 2013
Called Vanessa about options to fly out of Chisana. There was no one here to take us hunting. I was told of a couple of options to fly out. I told Vanessa at 40 mile air that I would call her first thing if we where going to take the mail plane out of Chisana. I asked Nancy to get a message to the Team coming from Canada with thehorses. I asked How much longer will they be? That night at dinner she told me she had sent the message to there contact. I took Kerry Fishing.
Thursday September 5 2013
Nancy gave me a print out of an email she had received from her contact stating that the horse team was still at least 2 days out. I called Vanessa at 40 mile air to fly us out on the mail plane that was coming in. We flew out, never meeting Terry at all.
Once in Tok, Vanessa had told us that she had called Fish and Wildlife and they where waiting for my wife and I. When we had arrived at fish and wildlife, the state trooper, had also just arrived, as Fish and Wildlife had called him. I gave Trooper Russ Landers and Fish and game rep Bob Gingue my story as told here in this letter. We talked for a while and they advised me to contact certain people. One of them being the National Park Service, and the Big Game Commercial Services board.
My wife and I than drove down to valdez.
Friday September 6 2013
WE changed our flight out of Alaska, We are leaving on Sunday September 8th instead of Friday September 13th. This change in our tickets cost us 15,000 miles and $200.00 But we where mentally beat down. We where completely amazed at what had just happened. I took Kerry fishing.
Saturday September 7 2013
Drove back to Anchorage. I called Pioneer outfitters and was told that the horse team was 6 hours out and should be back, that day. That is the message the person in palmer gave them from talking to one of the people on the horseback team.
Sunday September 8, 2013
Flew back to Idaho. I called Pioneer outfitters a couple of times that morning before flying out. Terry called me around noon that day, but I was on a plane.
Monday September 9, 2013
I called and talked to Nancy about the difficulties in trying to talk to Terry.
Tuesday September 10, 2013
I called Pioneer outfitters and Talked to Terry. I asked for my money back and was told that he could not due that. He did not have the money to give back. He told me he would give me an upgraded hunt for next year. I told him I would call him back in a few days as I would prefer my money back.
Kerry and I drove to the lower salmon river to do a multi day raft trip to clear our minds about this trip.
Wednesday September 18, 2013
I got 2 calls from Pioneer Outfitters today. I called back and talked to Terry. He told me he did not know of a satellite phone on there horseback trip from Canada. He told me that I could come back next year and hunt than. I once again asked for a refund and was told no, I could come back next year. I asked Terry to get me out a proposed contract for next year.
Wednesday Oct 2 2013
Terry told me that a contract has not gone out to me yet as he was out in the field. He would be getting me a contract on tomorrows mail plane.
I received an email today from Amber Lee of Pioneer Outfitters. It was a generic letter that must have went out to all there displaced hunters. The contract was to come back next year and do the same hunt as last year. I guess there is no upgraded hunt, like Terry told me he was going to give us.
The hunt dates where aug 30-sept 10, with aug 30 and sept 10 being the days of flying in and out.
The hunt was a 10 day 2 species hunt, (moose and dall sheep)
The cost of the 2 species hunt was: $17,900.00 with an additional $2,000.00 for my wife to accompany and fish.
So $19,900 for the hunt. This did not include license and tags for the Moose or Dall sheep.
We also paid 40 mile air to get us in and out of chisana.
I did tip out $1000.00 to the people who where in Chisana, because it was not there fault there boss was not there.
We also had airfare from Spokane to Anchorage and a rental car for when we where up there.
Basically I have spent roughly $26,000 on this hunt so far.
Right now, that is where everything is sitting. I feel confused on what I should do. I can sue Pioneer Outfitters and win easily, but I doubt I would get anything in the judgement. I do believe Terry could not pay me back. So I can sue and win and probably put him under and not get paid back, or I can spend another 5-6 thousand and go back with him. I feel like I am in a no win situation.
I ended up picking Pioneer Outfitter for my wife(Kerry) and I’s adventure, because they could get Kerry fishing and I could sheep hunt the wrangells. I also saw that they had a concession in the Wrangell St Elieas Park and Preserve. I did not believe that Pioneer Outfitters was the best outfitter ever, but I didn’t think, I wouldn’t get the chance to hunt at all. Right now, I can’t find any of my paperwork at all. I have lost the folder, that I had everything in. However the Email from Pioneer Outfitters with the do over hunt contract should be enough to say we had one with them last year. Amber has been making blogs about there International Horseback Adventure. The adventure does sound more important to pioneer outfitters than there clients do. The whole thing is a shame. WE worked hard for the money to pay for the trip and we worked hard to get in the physical shape needed to do this hunt. When you read the email they sent us, you can see they kind of apologize at the end of the email, not the beginning. The clients just are not important to Pioneer Outfitters. I guess I knew that when Nancy told me she was hiding from us, because she did not know what to do. We where in trouble.