I want to dedicate some space here on www.cameronhanes.com to give some much deserved props to longtime hunting partner Roy Roth for his incredible 2007 bow season. For those of you who donâ€™t know the storyâ€¦here is the abbreviated version -- Coming from very humble beginnings, Roy and I went to a small high school just outside of Springfield, Oregon. There were about 28 kids in our graduating classes (he is a year older than me) and the thing we liked doing most way back then was, sports of course, and hunt. Some things never change huh? In those days we hunted blacktail deer, Roosevelt elk and black bear, period. That was it, as those were the only hunts we could realistically even dream about. For us then, if we got crazy we would head over to the â€œCalapooyaâ€ to elk hunt. The Calapooya River drainage was 45 minutes from the small town we called home, but to us that was a â€œroad tripâ€. Could have had something to do with our rigs. Roy had a little Nissan pick up that I donâ€™t think he ever changed the oil on. Just kept putting more in. About like most guys treat a lawn mower. My truck, "Blue Thunder"Â was a CB equipped Toyota 2WD, and one of the only rigs in town at the time with an Easton arrow forÂ the radio antenna. Also, gas was an issue. The first time we ever headed to the Eagle Cap, an 8 hour drive from home, Roy sold a collectorâ€™s edition .30/.30 his grandpa had given him so we would have enough money for fuel. We were homebodies, a couple of young bowhunters who were tickled pink to hunt just 10 miles, or closer, from home. The pinnacle back in the day was our hunts for big bodied bulls in September or dark antlered blacktail bucks during the November rut. Back then life was sweet as it was simple.
About 12 years ago Roy uprooted his family and headed north, landing in Wasilla, Alaska where he set up shop as a general contractor, building new spec homes. He has never looked back. The insanely successful 2007 season began for Roy in the mountains above a cabin he built on a remote stretch of river in wild Alaska. Glassing for â€œfreshâ€ bear dens, he spotted a big brown bear moving down a creek. Roy quickly realized the bear was in a compromising position so he hustled to the creek, gauging the bearâ€™s path of travel. As the bear continued down the creek, it moved closer and close to Roy. Finally the bear was 30 yards and completely unaware. As the hulking grizzly turned broadside, Roy hit him with a perfectly placed arrow. With snow flying and blood spilling the big boar crashed through the alders. Roy watched him go down after about a 60 yard frantic burst.
What a way to start a season! A huge Pope & Young brown bear with a bow. And who would have guessed at that time that Big Roy would arrow another huge brown bear (the area he hunts for brown bear in AK, unit 16, allows residents two bear), a black bear, a beautiful Dall ram, a trophy Rocky Mountain goat and a moose all this same bow season, all public land and of course, all do-it-yourself. And get this, the dude is not done yet. Next week he heads to Kodiak Island to chase big Sitka blacktail bucks with his oldest son Taylor. A couple seasons ago, I wrote a memorable article about Roy in Eastmansâ€™ Bowhunting Journal titled, â€œA Perfect Ten.â€ The article covered the ten big game animals he arrowed that year â€“ 2004 I think it was. A lifetime worth of memories in one bow season. Looks like he might do the unfathomable again this year. The guy is a bowhunting machine, the toughest man youâ€™d ever hope to meet and I am proud to call him a friend.
Stay tuned here for the update on his Kodiak deer hunt.