My trip started with Cuneyt saving my Bezoar Ibex hunt from disaster. After arriving in Turkey late on a Friday night I discovered that my bag had not made it out of Chicago. While my rifle case had made it, my ammo was in the bag that was left behind. Stores would not reopen until Monday and to make matters worse bad weather was moving into the hunting area. Cuneyt jumped into action at the airport, working with the local airport personnel and security he arranged for my bag to be held in a safe place when it finally did arrive a few days later. In the meantime, he was able to secure a rifle, ammunition and clothing for me which allowed us to hit the road immediately and begin the hunt before the weather moved in. None of this was easy in a small Central Turkish town in the middle of the night. Even before we hit the mountain I was grateful that I was working with Cuneyt.
We arrived in at camp late at night and quickly jumped into bed as we had an early wake up the next morning. We were bunked in a small cottage which was quite comfortable with a separate bedroom, plenty of heat, showers, etc. The food during the hunt was exceptional, far exceeding my expectations. My concerns for the potential success of the hunt took another hit when I spoke to a hunter in camp that had been there for the better part of a week without having seen a shooter quality ibex. We were at the tail end of the hunting season, so we had to be prepared to act quickly if we spotted ibex.
While my hunt started off with a bit of bad luck at the airport, it was quickly reversed as soon as we got out in the field. We glassed a number of ibex groups over the course of the first morning with some great billies, but all were in areas that would have been tough to approach. After a lunch in the field we spotted another group at the top of a mountain. Cuneyt and I started our hike up the steep face. Despite being in decent shape the climb was tough with a lot of loose areas that made it difficult for those of us that don’t spend our lives climbing. Cuneyt led the stalk navigating the swirling wind and we were able to get a shot at approx. 300 meters as the ibex worked its way up the face of an opposing mountain. My ibex taped out at 43 inches and I was absolutely thrilled with the experience and the trophy. Tremendous success after only a few hours in the field.
After cleaning up camp the following day Cuneyt was kind enough to allow me to tag along for the 8 hour drive to his home town of Antalya. While the hunt was over, he helped me find accommodations, rearranged my flights with Turkish Airlines and set me up with a great guide for the few unexpected days that I ended up having in Istanbul.
I can’t say enough about my experience hunting with Cuneyt. He’s a very knowledgeable guide and also a great guy that you will enjoy spending time with. I plan on hunting with him again in the years to come.”
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