What’s your impossible dream hunt? That one hunting goal that you know you’re too old or too laid up to even dream about, but you do anyway! We all have one. Admit it or not, there’s always that one more species, one more destination, one more hunt that keeps us going year after year.
That was the case for Tom Miller when he bought two SCI Foundation sweepstakes entries for an Alaskan Mountain Goat adventure. Sure, it was a 1 – in – 1000 shot, but the money went for a good cause, one that Tom had been supporting for years.
Actually, Tom’s dream of a mountain goat had long since faded. After all, he’s a 70-year-old disabled veteran, has limited mobility from multiple orthopedic surgeries and has no inner ear balance function. Who would want to escort him to the high country chasing a black horned, white haired dream?
Unbeknownst to him, Tom’s dream began to become reality when Outfitter and Master Guide Bruce Parker offered to donate just such a hunt to SCI Foundation. Parker Guide Service provides hunts aboard his custom-built luxury yacht the “Alaskan Harvest”. In fact, for thirty years Bruce has been guiding hunters, fishermen and sight-seeing tours throughout Southeast Alaska. Fulfilling the dreams of fellow hunters is Bruce’s passion, and the first priority of his entire team aboard the “Harvest.”
As time passed, Tom had actually forgotten about the sweepstakes and his chance of ever hunting the white goat. Of course, it was still a dream of his, but one that kept slipping further and further away. After all, he wasn’t getting any younger or more agile. Then one day it happened. The call from the SCI Foundation delivered the news – he’d won the drawing. It is really quite remarkable. He won a hunt he’d always dreamed about, a hunt that he could probably do safely.
Pursuing mountain goats along the Alaskan coast became a reality in mid-November 2020. By then, the animals had left the highest peaks and were more accessible. Plus, the rut was underway. Guided by Bruce, with two assistant guides along, they found the goats. At first, Tom had difficulty spotting the white creatures among the patchy snow, rocks and alders. Bruce later related that they had probably already seen 30-40 goats that morning.
By late morning, a fine-looking Billy had been spotted. A suitable rock was chosen that provided the needed cover and a suitable gun rest. Then, with one shot, the hunt was over. A mature, record book Billy, scoring 29 2/8ths SCI was the result.
This was the final goat harvested by Bruce and his team in 2020, culminating his 30th year of guiding in Southeast Alaska. But, not to worry, he’ll be back next year. Someone really should alert the bears and the goats!
A special thank you to Bruce Parker and the team at Parker Guide Service for their support and to Tom and the others that participated in the sweepstakes. Without your continued support, SCI Foundation could not continue its mission of ensuring the future of wildlife through conservation, education, and hunting.
A very special thank you to Bruce Parker and Parker Guide Service for donating this hunt and making it possible for Tom to accomplish his impossible dream.