78th annual One-Shot Antelope Hunt concluded Saturday

Since 1940 the One-Shot Antelope Hunt has been held in Lander, WY. It was only briefly
interrupted during World War II from 1942-1945 and again in 2020 secondary to the COVID pandemic. Stephen Coonts, One-Shot Past Shooter and award-winning novelist, eloquently describes the event and city.

“Lander and the One-Shot remain what they always were, jewels on the sagebrush plains of central Wyoming, as gorgeous a place as there is in North America.  The Wind River Range on the horizon, the peaks wearing an early crown of snow yet indistinct in the haze, the vast open spaces with distant antelope, here and there grazing cattle and the occasional herd of wild horses… my favorite moment coming to Lander is pulling into the overlook on US 287 on the Beaver Rim, getting out, taking it all in, breathing deeply and filling my eyes with the magnificent view.  The opportunity to visit this holy place
once a year has always brought me to Lander with a happy heart. This, truly, is the American West that has a place in every American soul.”  -Stephen Coonts

The entire event is historically always hosted by the Wyoming Governor. During the Thursday evening Water for Wildlife Banquet over $112,000 was raised to benefit the pivotal role Water for Wildlife® plays in wildlife conservation, conservation education and the community. The Water for Wildlife® Banquet is hosted by the One-Shot Past Shooters Club, who founded the non-profit in 1975 and continue to be the major source of funding. The evening recognized many donors and sponsors who support Water for Wildlife®’s mission. Governor Mark Gordon and Wyoming Game and Fish Director Brian Nesvik presented two special awards to local Game Warden Brady Frude and Wildlife Biologist Stan Harter, who have supported the efforts of the nonprofit with their expertise and talents.

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One Shot Hunt Club President, Darin Hubble and Governor Mark Gordon introduced all the
2022 new hunters and presented them with the Official Scarf and Knife for the year at the Friday evening Western Bar-B-Que. Following the meal, attendees listened to the Legend of the Hunt and Blood Brothers and Sisters Ceremony narrated by Hunt Club Member Nick Hudson. The beautiful fireside ceremony is done by long time participating members of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe, Arlen Shoyo-Hunt Chief, Willie LeClair-Medicine Man and participating members of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe.

The hunt began early Saturday morning and the event concluded with The One and Only
Victory Banquet. The winning team title for 2022 goes to Charter and the Bird Hunters. The
team was greeted by One Shot Hunt Club member Sammy McRae. The team member who got an antelope with one shot in the fastest time was Jordan L.K. Martincich, who was guided by Hunt Club Member and Past Shooter Kent Schmidlin of Lander. Jordon has spent 26 plus years as a passionate upland, waterfowl, and big game hunter and got his antelope 30 seconds after the start of the hunt! Fellow team member Dax Hayden was guided by local Lander sportswoman Bralli Clifford. Team member Todd Baxter was guided by Past Shooter Bill Stovall of Casper. All total the winning team got their antelopes with one shot in a total time of 3 hours and 49 minutes. All 24 new team members told individual, colorful stories of their hunt experience.

In addition to the winning 2022 Hunt Team, awards were given to Past Shooters in various
shooting contest. This year the award for the Largest Horn-Individual and Best Hunt-Individual went to Cody LeClair, who is a third-generation Past Shooter Member. He and his cousin, Storm LeClair also won the award for Best Total Past Shooter Team Score. Their grandfather, the late Norman F. LeClair shot on the 1984 Lander Centennial Team. It was the late Norman F. LeClair’s wish that his ashes be spread in an area outside of Lander. The sons, grandsons and Hunt Medicine Man, Willie LeClair honored his wish at the hunt in 2019.

The event brings a large economic boost to the Lander community in dollars spent on airline transportation, hotels, restaurants, shopping, etc., The event sources all catering, venues, printing, etc., from local Lander businesses. The public is invited to attend all banquet nights and learn about the organizations and wildlife conservation work they support.

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