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At-large Alberta outfitter offers economy whitetail hunts

Hunt WD5247

Hunt, guide ratio Price
whitetail, 6 days 2x1 $4,500
Hunter success Trophy size
Varies according to weather -- usually 40% minimum and up to 100%. Average is 75%. Bucks taken on this hunt average in the 140s with the biggest bucks most years scoring 160 or more.
Licenses Lodging/meals
Over the counter. Click here for the latest prices. Wall tent camps in remote areas. If you're hunting near a town, you can stay in a motel or bed and breakfast at your own expense. Meals are included in wall tent camps.
Travel Area
Airport pickup at Edmonton is included in the price Zones near Whitecourt, Slave Lake and Lac La Biche
Season Notes
Archery: Aug. 25-Sept. 16
Rifle: November
You need a group of two hunters to book this hunt.

Here's a chance to hunt Alberta whitetails at an excellent rate. Here's why. Outfitters in Alberta must have an allocation of non-resident tags for their customers. Some of them have purchased their quota from the government when they were originally auctioned off in the '90, others bought them from other outfitters, sometimes huge amounts per hunter allocation, and still others lease the allocations they need from year to year.

This outfitter falls into the last category. With the slow economy this year, he said he should be able to get tags in almost any area a hunter wants to hunt at a reasonable rate. He estimated that there are at least 1,000 tags available this year due to fewer hunters booking hunts in Canada. What that means is that he should be able to get an allocation for much less per hunter than normal. If you have a group of two or more hunters, he is willing to negotiate an excellent price, possibly as little as $2,500.

In 2008 he took only one whitetetail hunter, and he elected to hunt with bow and arrow. He hunted from a tree stand overlooking an oil lease that had been reseeded with clover and took a nice 145-class buck. He has lined up four archery tags for 2009 and can offer that hunt for $2,500, but if you want a rifle hunt, he is confident he can line up tags in zones he knows well and areas where he has permission to hunt private farms and ranches.

During the early archery hunt, he places stands over feed sources, water holes and mineral licks.

"One thing good about that time of year," he said, "is that the bucks are in bachelor groups, and in a lot of ways they're easier to hunt then with a bow than later on. My bowhunter last year was in a stand that I had placed where I had found feeding trails into the clover.

Rifle hunts can be conducted from stands over likely feeding and traveling areas, or you can do spotting and stalking and stillhunting along the edges of fields. Most hunters get a chance to shoot bucks in the 140 to 170 range, and every year some bucks in the 160 to 190 class are killed in these areas.

Some of the areas where he can accommodate whitetail rifle hunters are Whitecourt, Slave Lake and Lac La Biche.