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Outfitter Review - Wapiti Ridge Outfitters

Submit Date: Feb 4, 2006

Outfitter Information

Outfitter Name: Wapiti Ridge Outfitters

Outfitter / Contact: Justin (JJ) Jarrett

Location: Wyoming, United States

Hunt Information

Animals Hunted: Mule Deer

Game Quality: Poor

Game Quantity: Poor

Accomodations: Fair

Camp Condition: N/A

Food Quality: Fair

Guide Experience: Poor

Other Personal Experience: N/A

Review Information

Hunter: Mark Leiker

Phone: 785-445-3770


Would Recommend: No

Overall Impression: Poor

What a train wreck. A friend and myself were hunting with Wapiti Ridge Outfitters (used to be Dean Johnson outfitting) for the first season Nov. 1-5, 2005 west of Cody. This is a migration hunt and thus is very weather dependent. Needless to say the weather didn't cooperate, but the outfitter can't be held accountable for that. However, on the third day of our "hunt" (sitting on the same knob waiting for deer to walk down the same migration trail five days in a row) the weather broke from sunny and mild to rainy. The problem was that our guide didn't want to hunt in the rain!! What the &*%?. It was drizzly and a light rain, not a downpour, but we went to the trailhead and he said it would be a "waste of time to go out in this weather, we should just go back to town and spend the day at the motel". I don't know about you, but I've hunted in a lot worse weather than we were in and didn't think twice. Plus I've never shot anything sitting in a motel! We asked the guide to take us to another spot if he didn't want to get wet (since the rain was localized). He said he didn't know anywhere else we could go because this is where they always hunt (public land everywhere). Needless to say he wouldn't take us anywhere else and dumped us off very P.O'ed in the motel parking lot in Cody (with the sun shining at this point)! I then tried to call the outfitter owner JJ. He was gone the day and called me back that night. I told him what happened and he agreed it was unacceptable not to hunt due to rain. I agreed but didn't make any demands as we had two days left to hunt. If we tagged out - no big deal. Needless to say, the hunting was horrible for the rest of the week also. I know the weather wasn't helping, but if the deer aren't moving on the trail you are sitting on, as a guide you had better try something different, not just beat the same dead horse over and over. Our guide wasn't a bad guy, just not really into fulfilling his hunters expectations. Although, the day after the cancelled hunt day he was very angry and rude to us because the outfitter chewed him out after finding out he didn't take us out in the rain. Now, the hunt is over and we have not even seen a buck worth shooting (even at 1000 yards!). So I call up JJ (owner) and tell him that I don't think it's fair to pay for a five day hunt and only get to hunt four days. I expected him to make the situation right since he agreed that not hunting a day just because of a little drizzle/light rain was "unacceptable". (If situations would have been dangerous or life-threatening due to weather I would NOT expect any sort of refund, but that was not the case). Needless to say, JJ (owner) said sorry you didn't get to hunt for the full five days, but you had a good guide and I'm not refunding any of your money. Talk about getting the short end of the stick. This was my first guided hunt and probably not my last, but definitely the last with this outfitter. Out of 12 hunters in camp with this outfitter the week we were there, only 3-4 shot deer and most of these were true dinks (barely legal 4 pt. bucks). No bucks were over 145 class that I saw or heard about. Stay away from Wapiti Ridge outfitters (unless you just want to see grizzlies - we saw three on our four days of a five day deer hunt).

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