For Chad Heiser, it was a dream come true.
A longtime avid hunter, Heiser was thrilled to draw a mountain goat license for the Beartooth Mountains in Northwest Wyoming. There was just one problem: a recent knee injury threatened to knock the Lovell man out of the hunt, which would mean an opportunity lost forever.
“For 30-some years I’ve been waiting to draw a tag – putting in every year,” he said. “There’s no point system on goats. There are now three goat areas in Wyoming but only 14 tags for this area, I think, and only 10 resident.”
Heiser and a friend were hunting on Line Creek on Sept. 6 when they spotted the billy. Heiser had designs on a larger animal but had to take a different one.
“We did a lot of glassing and had horses up there, but due to my bad knee I didn’t get to kill the goat I wanted to,” he said. “I was hoping for something bigger, but this one was nine inches (the horns). I was hoping for a 10-inch one. He’s probably 250 to 300 pounds.
“I shot him at about 75 yards. I had time to sit there and look and think about it. If it would have fallen (off the ledge), it would have been another thousand feet down, but I used a Remington .300 Ultra Mag, so I dropped him right there. I anchored him right there.”
Heiser said he will have the animal mounted – a full-body, life-sized mount. Does he have a room for the goat?
“I’ll find one,” he said. “I have bears and mountain lions and other things life-sized. It’s a beautiful animal. It was hard shooting him.”
Heiser is grateful he had the opportunity to realize his dream.
“Thanks to my father (Frank Heiser) for all the years packing me around hunting and trapping to make this possible,” he said. “Those are once-in-a-lifetime tags. You can never hunt a goat again.
“And with my bad knee…I had just had 35 CCs of fluid pumped out just before the hunt.”
By David Peck