On Thursday, January 24th, the Pope and Young Club convened a Special Panel of Judges in Sioux Falls, South Dakota for a potential P&Y World Record Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep. Clayton Miller’s massive ram is now the largest hunter-killed bighorn sheep with both Pope and Young and Boone and Crockett. The ram was shot in Pennington County, South Dakota on October 30th, 2018. Measurers present at the Special Panel were Ed Fanchin, Stan Rauch, Ricky Krueger, and Justin Spring. With a final score of 209 1/8″, Clayton’s ram was confirmed as the new P&Y World Record Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep. This ram surpasses the previous World Record Rocky Mountain ram shot by Todd Kirk in 1998 by almost 10 inches.
“The Rocky Mountain Bighorn sheep is such an American icon. To have the privilege to be part of a Special Panel of Judges to authenticate its final score was a special treat, said Ed Fanchin, Records Chair for the Pope and Young Club. “This ram exceeded the previous Pope and Young Club Rocky Mountain Bighorn sheep World Record by almost 10″, a record that stood for the last 20 years. Congratulations to Clayton and the South Dakota Department of Game Fish and Parks for practicing sound wildlife management. This ram will be on display at the Pope and Young Club Convention in Omaha, Nebraska in April 2019, it’s a must-see.”
“I couldn’t believe it when I got the phone call that my name had been drawn for the first and only Bighorn Sheep unit in the Badlands of South Dakota! I have been dreaming of the opportunity to draw a tag like this since I started applying religiously at the age of 12,” said Clayton Miller. “I went into this hunt knowing that there were some spectacular animals in the area, but it was beyond my wildest dream that I would be after the new Pope and Young Club World Record! Thank you to everyone that helped along the way, mostly to my wife Becca for taking care of the family while I made dozens of scouting trips. What an honor and a privilege it was for me to be able to watch these incredible animals all year long a short road trip from my backyard!”
“Boone and Crockett would like to join Pope and Young in congratulating the hunter on his record-setting ram,” said Justin Spring, Records Director for the Boone and Crockett Club. “In addition, we also would like to thank all those involved (both state employees and volunteers) in the restoration efforts bringing a robust population of bighorn sheep back to South Dakota. This is a true testament to the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation and a shining beacon of what can be accomplished with efforts and funds being dedicated to wildlife.”
This incredible animal has been entered into the 31st Recording Period–the biennium representing entries accepted into the P&Y Records Program from January 1, 2017, to December 31, 2018. At the close of every biennial recording period, numerical awards and honorable mentions are awarded to the most outstanding bow-harvested animals in each species category that have been entered during this two-year recording period. New world’s records are verified and proclaimed, and awards are presented to these outstanding animals during the Pope and Young Club’s biennial convention and awards banquet.
The Pope and Young Club is a non-profit North American bowhunting and wildlife conservation organization dedicated to the promotion and protection of our bowhunting heritage and values and the welfare of wildlife and habitat. The Club also maintains the universally recognized repository for the records and statistics on North American big game animals harvested with a bow and arrow.
Contact the Pope and Young Club office at:
www.pope-young.org or P.O. Box 548, Chatfield, MN 55923, Ph: 507.867.4144