Photo of a sheep by Aaron J Hill.

10 Must-Read Sheep Hunting Books

Every year, the promise of adventure and challenge allures countless North American hunters in sheep hunting. The art of sheep hunting is a fast-growing interest among hunters. Yet, before the thrill of pursuit comes the daunting tasks of research and planning. To alleviate the overwhelming feeling associated with this task, numerous entertaining and informative books have been published over the years. Here we will introduce you to 10 of these legendary sheep-hunting books that will both inspire and inform you. Before delving into these books, let’s take a brief look at the incredible world of sheep hunting to spark your excitement and ignite your passion!

The Joys of Sheep Hunting

When I was growing up, I remember the beautiful stark white head of a Dall sheep that adorned my grandfather’s wall. Its curved horns and distinctive dark eyes entranced me for hours as a kid. Far back as the 16th century, the Inupiat people of Northern Alaska and Canada hunted sheep. Today, the allure of sheep hunting remains as enticing and thrilling as ever.

Many serious sheep hunters make it a lifetime goal to complete the “sheep grand slam.” This consists of the four major huntable sheep species in North America: Dall, Stone, Bighorn, and Desert Sheep. These remarkable creatures make their home in some of the most inhospitable and remote places on Earth, high on steep, rocky cliff faces. Needless to say, sheep hunting isn’t for the faint of heart.

Sheep meat offers some of the most tender, sweet meat in the world. It’s often cited as being some of the tastiest game meat a hunter can eat. It often contains little to no gaminess and is very lean. 

Aside from several delicious meals, sheep also provide the hunter with incredible trophies. In North America, few mounts rival the beauty of a full-curl Bighorn or Stone Sheep. The sheep’s cape also provides hunters with many options, including a rug, a cozy blanket, or a toasty vest. This is to say nothing of the intangible trophy found on a sheep hunt: the memories and tales of incredible hunting within an awe-inspiring wilderness.

10 Legendary Sheep Hunting Books

Here’s our selection of the top 10 most legendary books to inspire your next sheep hunt.

1. Sheep & Sheep Hunting by Jack O’Connor

The book cover of Sheep & Sheep Hunting by Jack O’Connor.

Jack O’Connor was long considered the foremost authority on the subject of sheep hunting. Serving as one of the most prominent writers for Outdoor Life magazine during his tenure, O’Connor’s word carries weight even today.

O’Connor published Sheep & Sheep Hunting in 1974, right before his passing. Due to O’Connor’s dedication to his craft, this book contains a lifetime’s worth of information regarding hunts around the world. O’Connor lays out precision guidance on sheep hunting within his definitive work. He also intersperses his content with short stories that aim to excite the reader.

The book covers many aspects of North American sheep hunting. This includes techniques for overcoming the mental and physical challenges of sheep hunting, and general strategies for locating and stalking sheep. Insights into sheep behavior and environmental factors help keep the reader interested. O’Connor presents this information in an engaging way that makes it fun to learn.

2. Dream Rams of British Columbia by Bill Pastorek

Book Cover for Dream Rams of British Columbia by Bill Pastorek.

Dream Rams of British Columbia serves as a celebration of the stunning wilderness of western Canada, and as a collection of captivating short stories. In this book, Bill Pastorek entertains readers with expeditions deep into the British Columbia wilderness. He shares stories of legendary mountain sheep.

These stories, pulled from Pastorek’s own experiences, allow the reader to step into the shoes of one of the greatest sheep hunters and conservationists of all time. The campfire stories of friends and adventure found within entertain and captivate readers. These anecdotes also offer valuable insights and tips into successful sheep hunting techniques. 

From his own experiences, Pastorek draws a wealth of useful information for the sheep hunter. It’s easy to glean useful tips from this book. He discusses topics such as identifying prime sheep territory and how best to plan for sheep hunts in British Columbia. 

Dream Rams of British Columbia presents something for both the new and seasoned sheep hunter. For this reason, it should be on your shelf.

3. The Big Game Animals of North America by Jack O’Connor

Book cover for The Big Game Animals of North America by Jack O’Connor

Yet another legendary O’Connor book, The Big Game Animals of North America, gives the other works featured on this list a run for their money. By featuring a collection of his best articles from Outdoor Life magazine, O’Conner transports the reader into the vast world of hunting.

Though somewhat dated, the book still offers valuable information on North American hunting. O’Connor, being a sheep enthusiast, devotes several chapters to sheep hunting across the continent. Within these chapters, he tells stories of incredible backcountry hunts and expeditions. He crafts these stories to entertain and inform the reader about techniques and strategies while keeping the tone upbeat.

What sets this piece apart is O’Connor’s attention to conservation issues and the effects of logging and mining. With a style similar to safari books of the 1920s, The Big Game Animals of North America is digestible even for the modern reader. The big plus is that aside from sheep, O’Connor discusses most other major North American big game species at length as well. He even includes a section about polar bears!

Despite its age, this piece is certain to ignite your passion for sheep hunting.

4. Rampages Vol. I, II, & III by Lew Bradley

The book covers of Rampages Vol. I, II, & III by Lew Bradley

The ultimate authority, by some accounts. Rampages I, II, & III by Lew Bradley is a collection of exhilarating stories and research. The books follow Bradley in his pursuits across North America to both hunt and understand the majestic Dall sheep. The research done for this collection is astounding.

Bradley himself has bagged over 9 Boone & Crocket qualifying sheep during his 50 years as an Alaska resident. Rampages represent his 11-year-long project. Bradley collected stories, data, and gained first-hand experience hunting sheep over this time. Condensed into 3 volumes, Rampages spans over 1800 pages, over 1200 photos, and dozens of stories.

It’s easy to see why most sheep hunters consider this the holy grail of Dall sheep research. Aside from being informative, the stories and photos contained within are enough to excite any hunter. Bradley does an excellent job of combining research and history with exciting stories. 

Even while learning about the technical aspects of sheep hunting, it keeps the reader engaged.

These books will keep you entertained for months or even years, which is why they have a higher price point than other options on our list.

5. Mountain Sheep: A Study in Behavior and Evolution by Valerius Geist

Book Cover of Mountain Sheep: A Study in Behavior and Evolution by Valerius Geist

Mountain sheep can be difficult to understand, living as remote as possible. This book addresses that exact issue. Mountain Sheep: A Study in Behavior and Evolution offers a wonderful insight into the creatures. Geist’s book is more scientific and information-based than some of the other story-driven books on this list. This doesn’t mean it isn’t as entertaining as the others, though!

In this book, Geist prioritizes the study of the unique and intricate behaviors of mountain sheep. The book examines social structures, mating rituals, and feeding habits at length. Most hunters will understand why grasping these topics is crucial come season.

Geist also does an excellent job of discussing the evolutionary traits that drive sheep behavior. This topic still serves as an interesting insight, though some hunters find its field-use minimal. It is in part revered thanks to this rigorous dissection of mountain sheep, which helps hunters appreciate the animal.

While slightly drier than other books featured here, Mountain Sheep: A Study in Behavior and Evolution remains an excellent choice. Hunters looking to research sheep, or get inspired by this amazing creature, must have this book.

6. A Portrait of Sheep and Sheep Hunting by Roy Schultz

Book cover for A Portrait of Sheep and Sheep Hunting by Roy Schultz

Roy Schultz’s A Portrait of Sheep and Sheep Hunting provides the reader with wonderful tales of sheep hunts. It prioritizes the discussion of sheep habitat, and the best techniques for hunting them. 

Schultz also provides a look at one of North America’s greatest hunting stories within the pages.

This story is about the legendary Chadwick ram. Harvested in 1936 in British Columbia, the mighty Rock sheep still holds the top spot in the Boone & Crocket books to this day. Many hunters still consider it to be the greatest hunting trophy ever taken in North America.

Schultz does an excellent job of portraying this story in his book. With stories such as this, A Portrait of Sheep and Sheep Hunting is certain to incite powerful emotions. It will ignite passion, just as it will also teach some critical aspects of sheep hunting.

This book is a classic hit.

7. Mountain Sheep Hunting in British Columbia by Wilfred W. Klingsat

Book cover for Mountain Sheep Hunting in British Columbia by Wilfred W. Klingsat

With something for everyone, Mountain Sheep Hunting in British Columbia is a must-read. Klingsat offers superb insights into hunting sheep in the deep country of British Columbia. Both thoughtful and fun, this is an excellent read.

This book offers entertaining and educational stories featuring hilarious and wholesome scenarios. Interviews with local guides provide readers with insight into the technical aspects of sheep hunting. Amidst this, lively anecdotes from Klingsat’s expeditions add a touch of energy and humor, ensuring the narrative remains engaging without becoming dry.

One of the biggest selling points of this book is the beautiful color inlays. Pictures of the Canadian backcountry and huge rams grace the pages. Klingsat also devotes an entire section to educating hunters on what to expect and how to act during a guided hunt. Newer hunters who might feel intimidated by the concept of a guided hunt will find this section helpful.

8. Trophy Rams of the Brooks Range: Plus Secrets of a Sheep and Mountain Goat Guide by Duncan Gilchrist

Book Cover for Trophy Rams of the Brooks Range: Plus Secrets of a Sheep and Mountain Goat Guide by Duncan Gilchrist

If you want advice straight from a seasoned guide, this is where you’ll find it. Trophy Rams of the Brooks Range: Plus Secrets of a Sheep and Mountain Goat Guide is excellent reading. It provides hunters with interesting insights into high-country hunting in Alaska.

Gilchrist himself was a distinguished sheep and goat guide who spent most of his time in Alaska. In this book, he discusses the vast and untamed beauty of the Brooks Range. He also provides excellent advice on how to find, track, and harvest both goats and sheep.

Most hunters will find it difficult to find information on the Brooks Range that isn’t either sloppy or confusing. This book does an excellent job of avoiding both pitfalls. Drawing on his own experiences and accomplishments, Gilchrist provides the aspiring sheep hunter with tactful advice. Provided with class and intelligence, this advice makes the reading very smooth.

Featured within the book is superb information on gear and logistics choices. This helps newer sheep hunters make informed gear decisions. A man holding Gilchrist’s title of Alaska sheep guide has some incredible tales. As such, this book mixes expert advice with entertaining stories of the hunt to keep the reader engaged.

If you want to hunt the Brooks Range, there’s no better material.

9. Memories of a Sheep Hunter by Rashid Jamsheed

Book cover of Memories of a Sheep Hunter by Rashid Jamsheed

More of a storybook, Memories of a Sheep Hunter details Jamsheed’s journey to bag some of the most prestigious sheep trophies. Jamsheed himself holds several sheep records and has been hunting the elusive beasts for decades. Here, he ingeniously portrays his journeys through this book.

Follows Jamsheed’s travels, the reader is teleported to an amazing world of global sheep hunting. Jamsheed is careful to focus on the exciting parts of his hunts without ignoring the stale or less interesting aspects as well. This helps the aspiring sheep hunter grasp the absolute magnitude of some of his exploits.

The book also presents photos of some of the most enormous sheep imaginable. This is thanks to Jamsheed’s careful target selection and his very thoughtful hunting process. The information this book discusses about sheep hunting struggles and rewards provide great lessons for any sheep hunter.

If pure inspiration and excitement are what you’re after, this sheep-hunting book is for you!

10. Wilderness of the Denali by Charles Sheldon

Book cover for Wilderness of the Denali by Charles Sheldon

Wilderness of the Denali is perhaps the greatest story ever told for the modern-day mountain man. Written as a series of memoirs over 3 years, Sheldon documents his time hunting sheep and grizzlies in the depths of the Denali wilderness.

Sheldon’s raw, poetic writing shines through in this book as the reader envisions his daily journeys. He documented his day and wrote about the beautiful landscape around him by firelight each night. In these stories, he recounts many exhilarating tales of chasing sheep.

The book presents a tale of struggle and success, ss of unique encounters, the book presents a tale of struggle and success. Sheldon would write of unique methods and techniques he used to hunt sheep. He even discusses the merits of sheep hunting during that period.

As immersive as it gets, this classic adventure story puts the reader right into the heart of some of the most incredible land in North America. Endless sheep hunts and true survival efforts present themselves to the reader, prodding them to make an adventure of their own.

If you want action, inspiration, and an entertaining read, this book is for you.

In Closing

Amidst the growing popularity of hunting, many hunters feel the call to embrace fresh adventures. Few experiences rival the alluring uniqueness of sheep hunting. Sheep hunting embodies the spirit of challenge and reward, something that is lost on many modern outdoorsmen.

These books exemplify the hunter’s resilience and determination to surpass boundaries. While informative, many of these books serve an entirely different purpose. To inspire and enliven. After all, there are few pursuits as noble and electrifying as pursuing sheep high on mountain-tops.

So, if you’re yearning for a thrilling challenge and decide to dive into one of these enriching titles, don’t be surprised to find yourself in Alaska or British Columbia next season, scanning the mountainsides for your trophy ram. Until then, happy hunting!