Chatfield, Minn. — On November 21, Tony Loop of Appling, Ga., closed within 30 yards above the largest ram he had ever seen. The big ram had no idea he was there.
Loop steadied his bow and released the arrow. It found its mark, hitting the ram between the shoulders.
“As we knelt beside the big ram and admired this great warrior, I was overcome with both joy and sadness.” Loop said. “He was majestic in every sense of the word. This archery hunt turned out to be both a spiritual and physical journey. Before us laid the King of the Canyon.”
The initial entry score of the Arizona bighorn could surpass the existing world record by over 10 inches, according to a release by the Pope and Young Club. The current archery world record desert bighorn scored 175-3/4 inches, taken by Tom Foss in 2012. Loop’s desert bighorn had an initial entry score of 186-1/2 and is still subject to panel judging verification, which could change the official score, the Pope and Young Club release said.
The release went on to say that Arizona is implementing reasonable practices and policies while enhancing overall habitat, making for a healthy population of both desert and Rocky Mountain bighorns.