South Dakota hunter holds new Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep world record
There’s a new world record holder for Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep. South Dakota hunter Clayton Miller shot what’s now considered the largest hunter-killed bighorn sheep by both Pope & Young (P&Y) and Boone & Crockett (B&C) in Pennington County, South Dakota, on Oct. 20, 2018. The ram, which had a final score of 209 1/8”, surpasses the prior archery world record by nearly 10”.
“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 Miller in a press release. “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 & 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!”
A special panel of P&Y judges confirmed Miller’s world record ram in January.
"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, P&Y records chair, in a press release. “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.”
B&C soon after echoed P&Y’s determination that Miller’s ram was, indeed, record-worthy.
“Boone and Crockett would like to join Pope and Young in congratulating the hunter on his record-setting ram,” said Justin Spring, B&Y records director, in a press release. “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.”
The ram will be on display during P&Y’s annual convention in April.
Congratulations, Clayton Miller, on a magnificent trophy!