Park the snowmachine and get out the snowshoes

Park the snowmachine and get out the snowshoes Open letter to Peter Mather on the commentary Snowmobiles and Caribou Don't Mix (the News, February 26): You have a very good point, as I have lived in the bush three-quarters of my 69 years. I am a hunter,

Open letter to Peter Mather on the commentary Snowmobiles and Caribou Don’t Mix (the News, February 26):

You have a very good point, as I have lived in the bush three-quarters of my 69 years. I am a hunter, trapper and was once a guide in the Omineca and Cassiar ranges of northern BC.

I’ve always believed in the old ways, being old-fashioned myself.

Snowshoes were my means of travel, while hunting the Johansen Lake and Ogden Mountain areas. I’ve climbed mountains for goats and caribou, and the lower areas for moose, and was never skunked. When hunting for myself and my family we never got skunked; even wolves I shot never heard me coming.

These new snowmobiles are a nuisance and the quads Ð they put the run on the game being hunted, including bison here not far from Haines Junction. Just this year, while hunting bison, I’ve seen the noise of them scatter the herds Ð scattering them from their resting and feeding grounds.

They may be OK for hauling in gear to set up camp and for hauling out meat, but you should not be allowed to hunt with them.

I’ve watched along the Dempster Highway while some guys chased herds of caribou and shot one after the other Ð two each per person.

I was on the road and totally pissed off as I glassed the scene. I could have stalked the two herds easily under cover of a small ravine that led to the base of the mountain.

I hunt now with a 54-calibre flintlock Hawken.

Take away their fancy new rifles and machines and let’s see how they do, eh?

I’ve been there once, but only used the Ski-doo to get to camp and haul gear.

You are a freelance photographer, I am a wildlife artist and observe what I see around me while I hunt Ð rather than just buzzing by it at 65 kilometres an hour.

Let’s be fair and sporting about this.

Keep up the column about this subject and maybe, just maybe, more and more hunters will realize this.

Richard Beaulieu

Haines Junction