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Eligible for Boone and Crockett records -- no high fences

Alberta outfitter excels at producing trophy-class whitetails

We consider this hunt our best opportunity for a rifleman to take a truly trophy-class whitetail deer, and by that we mean one that is eligible for entry in the Boone and Crockett Club's record book. You won't have a bad taste in your mouth if you get a wallhanger on this hunt because you'll have taken a truly free-roaming buck, one that has never been constrained by high fences.

If you don't mind shooting a pen-raised animal that was released before your arrival or if you can take pride in a buck shot on a high-fenced preserve, you have plenty of other options. But if you want to comply with the B&C Club's fair-chase requirement, this hunt is the best opportunity we have found in 25 years of consulting hunters.

Click on photos to see larger images

Some places in Kansas are probably your next best choice, but the problem there is that the rifle hunt is after the rut, which is why we suggest that hunters heading to Kansas go during the November archery season. The rifle hunt in Alberta, on the other hand, takes place during the November rut. Even during a warm year, such as 2009, hunters on this trip tend to do extremely well on big bucks.

Why is this hunt so good? Simply put, the outfitter does everything necessary to maximize your chances. Though provincial law prevents him from leasing private land, he works very closely with ranchers and farmers to ensure that you'll be hunting deer that are not bothered by locals. This exclusivity allows him to justify feeding deer during severe winters, so his population of big bucks does not fluctuate wildly.

THunter success over the past 20 years has averaged 80 percent even though some of the repeat customers are getting extremely selective with some of them even passing on bucks that would score in the 170s. The average score has been 158 Boone and Crockett points.

This hunt offers an excellent chance to take a buck in the 160s, 170s or even bigger if you can hold out. We have one customer who has taken two in the 190s. There's even a chance of exceeding 200 B&C inches.

 

 

"We feed the deer after the season during the winters to make things easier on them," the outfitter said, "This way they can put more nutrition into antler growth, plus we save a lot of bucks, and so our ratio of bucks to does and of big bucks is excellent."

The province has changed the rules regarding Sunday hunting in this area, so now you can hunt Sunday if necessary. The hunt is scheduled to last six days, however, running from Monday through Saturday.

When comparing this hunt to others in Canada, keep in mind that most outfitters take bucks averaging 130 to 140 B&C points, with very few scoring more than 160. Because hunting leases are illegal in Alberta and Saskatchewan, when you hunt with most outfits you can expect to have competition on both public and private land. This outfitter, on the other hand, has developed good relationships with landowners, many of whom he hires to guide his customers, and so they don't allow others on their property. Thus, the bucks have a better chance to get big, and it is worthwhile for the outfitter to feed the deer through the winters, so that severe weather has a minimal impact on the deer.

The number of truly big bucks that this outfitter produces is especially impressive when you consider that he takes only 18 to 26 hunters a year when compared with some of the larger and better publicized outfits, which take 75 to 100 hunters a year.

"My goal is to produce the highest quality trophy whitetail hunt possible," the outfitter said. "Because of the great deer country we hunt and because of our preparation, you should have one or two chances to shoot a 160-plus buck and possibly much bigger. You must do your part, however, and make a good shot. Unfortunately, missing is part of hunting, and we have had our shares of misses due to poor marksmanship. So practice before you come up and get ready to get a shot at the buck of a lifetime."

Hunt WD5216

Hunt Price per person
6-day trophy whitetail deer $6,250 plus license plus tax
Hunter success Trophy size
About 80% for the past 20 years. Virtually all hunters have good shooting opportunities at mature bucks. Over the past 20 years the average buck taken has scored in the high 150s with lots of bucks in the 160s and 170s, quite a few in the 180s, and a few in the 190s and 200s. 2009 avg. was 155 due to warm weather.
Licenses Lodging/meals
Over the counter licenses are not included in the price of the hunt. Click here for updated license cost. Accommodations in a 4,000-square-foot log lodge and meals are included in the price of the hunt.
Dates Notes
Six day hunts in November. No extra charge for wolf. Taxes, license and tag fees not included.
Travel Area
Fly to Edmonton, rent car for the drive to the camp Lac LeBiche area of northern Alberta