In December of 2013, Barriere resident Ryan Fadear took on one of the most challenging hunts of his life.
A very large cougar that had been responsible for numerous horse deaths and hunting dog deaths had showed up in an area not more than 30 km. from Barriere. It took the hunter three weeks to hunt and kill this animal, and on the successful day of Dec. 23, 2013, he had finally done it and put the local ranchers at ease.
Fadear explains, “The hunt was intense, like no other ever before. My dog battled the cougar in ground standoffs at least five times, and even at the tree it was only about six feet off the ground and showed behavior like no other cougar I had treed before.”
Pictured: This very large cougar was responsible for numerous horse deaths and hunting dog deaths. It took Fadear and his dog Spot three weeks to track down and kill the animal after an intense hunt. It is now fully mounted and in the record books of Boone & Crockett.
All said and done, the cougar weighed 180 pounds on the scale, and the skull measured 15 12/16 inches, ranking it as the fifth largest cougar shot in British Columbia, and making it in the top 10 of all time for North America.
Fadear continues, “It’s something I love doing, and the meat is always consumed. It helps save our moose and deer population and it’s one of the most physically and mentally demanding things you can do. Seeing this cougar get recognized for its size is a very special thing for me. I have the utmost respect for these wild animals, and I consider it a real dream come true to join an elite group of individuals when it comes to hunting records.”
Pictured: Ryan Fadear and his hard working cougar hound Spot following the trail of a big cat.
Ryan accompanied by family and friends attended the 29th Big Game Awards in Springfield, Missouri, hosted by the Boone & Crockett Club on July 16, of this year, where he received the first place award for cougars between the hunting years of 2013-2016.
“It was a great experience attending the event with family and friends,” said Ryan, “And the highlight for me was getting to take my boy Hunter Fadear on stage with me to accept the award!
“I’d like to give a lot of credit to my dear friend Bill Watt of Barriere, for being such a great mentor when it comes to hunting cougars. Without his years of teaching and expertise regarding cougars, this day might not have happened for me.
“To me, hunting isn’t just about shooting guns; it’s about the whole experience. You get to build bonds with family and friends. You gain the utmost respect for nature and its landscape. Hunting allows a person to put fresh, hormone free meat on your plate. But most of all, you can create lasting memories that you can cherish forever.”