Contributors to this thread:
CCBG Caribou Outfitter
Hello everyone. This is my first time to ever post as the OP here, and it's because I've got an open question for anyone and everyone.
I want a Central Canada Barren Ground Caribou.
Who have you hunted with? Where was it? Would you go back?
Seems simple enough, right? I've hunted for them once before unsuccessfully in Nunavut on the mainland. If I go that far north again, I'm leaning towards the hunt on the island as I understand that to be more of a "slam dunk" than a hunt on the mainland. On my previous trip, we literally saw 5 caribou, and all of them were females.
With the variability in caribou opportunities lately, I'm cautiously optimistic that I can pull this one off to complete my collection prior to a closure of any kind. Any advice is appreciated. -Matthew
I will be following this topic...
Ned, I was just looking at their website last night
If I needed a CB, I wouldn't hesitate to try Webbers. I took mine with Monroe Lake Lodge in Manitoba the last year they really came into Manitoba. If you want another great adventure, go North to the Island.
This used to be an easy answer as there are many great outfitters in Manitoba....but with the Caribou not showing up lately hunting has been rough. Kyler Kelson still has some good hunts for them
Close friend going mid-August. He booked with BSC!
I also have a friend going for Moose and Caribou in September. His outfitter told him that the area they hunt in only has 1 or 2 tags and both hunts for 2018 sold for three times what they normally charge. Has anyone else experienced this?
I will be hunting with Adventure Northwest in August.
At this point in time I would go Webbers simply for the reason that they will be mobile and move you to the caribou as they also have tags in Nunavut. So they will move you to nearest camp OR do tents. With MB and Nunavut available you are pretty much guaranteed to be in caribou.
I've booked plenty of hunts through agents, two this year in fact, I'd just rather book with an outfitter directly when possible.
Adventure Northwest is a contender for sure. That appears to be who BSC is booking with (last time I checked).
When I was in Cambridge Bay last time, there were multiple guys conducting hunts based from there. Anyone know of an operation there besides Canada North?
Mad Trapper- I will up there the last week of August. Good luck!
I'm excited to see what sort of results you guys get at Adventure Northwest.
It's just a tough thought for me to drop the cash on a caribou hunt that will be over $10,000 when a barren ground grizzly isn't much more at $13,500.
I'd sure like to get all 29 species, but my priorities are shifting pretty rapidly and it just might have to wait a while. I'm a hunter, not a bird watcher, or a "lister", and I'd rather go back to Spain or explore Asia if I'm in the 5 figures.
I'm lacking a CCBG Caribou, stone sheep, desert sheep, and Brown Bear to get my 29. Hopefully, that list will only be 3 critters long after October.
This used to be an easy answer as there are many great outfitters in Manitoba....but with the Caribou not showing up lately hunting has been rough. Kyler Kelson still has some good hunts for them
It's gotten to the point where outfitters in Manitoba probably should look at booking hunts on an "On Call" basis. That is, book hunters but only have them come if the caribou have moved down. This might work for some hunters and outfitters, but not all. A person would need to be flexible, but it's pretty tough to lay out several thousand dollars for a hunt when the recent history of the caribou migrating down is so poor. I lucked out when I hunted in 2013 with the Lodge at Little Duck. The caribou were there and everyone killed nice bulls and most all took two. Since then, it's been tough.
I went in '95. Things change and I would encourage anyone on the fence due to options shrinking to go ASAP. Its not likely to get easier.
We went in 2014 and even with a bow it was fairly certain you would take 2. There had been a history of all hunters taking 2 bulls each, except for the occasional hunter that would kill a respectable bull and hold out for a real giant and end up taking only one.
Pretty sour for someone to spend around $12k for a camping trip to the high tundra.
Already booked a CCBG caribou hunt with Frank Feldmann in Greenland for 2018. He may a few openings this year?
CJ... just be careful as the designation of CBGC has changed in Greenland. I truly believe that many of the herds are Caribou but SCI has recently changed their listing to Reindeer. GSCO uses the SCI record book for most of their area listings....so this could change things. I dont know about P&Y or B&C.
Chris, I agree with what you've just shed light on. It's unfortunate that the introduction of reindeer to Greenland has diluted the genes of the native animals.
I have tried to research the Greenland animals as CCBG caribou, and I've found some mixed information.
Basically, they used to allow animals admission as "caribou" if they were north of a certain point, remainder were reindeer. Considering you can hunt a Greenland animal for less than half of what it costs in Canada, that option was for sure under consideration.
PS- thanks for commenting everyone.
On Feldmann's Bowhunting-Greenland website is the following statement, in reference to Greenland 'bou: "Pope and Young added them as 'Central Barren Ground Canada Caribou' and minimum is 300"
. I booked last year for 2018 based on that assumption. If someone here, like maybe an official P&Y measurer, knows that to be incorrect, I'd sure like to know about it!
By the way I'm not sure that Greenland is a cheaper alternative for 'bou. Feldmann lists his hunts at 9450 plus a 2500 trophy fee per animal, plus crating and shipping of trophies that must be routed through Europe, plus the potentially higher cost of getting there, and so you're in pretty deep!
PS: My understanding of the term "reindeer" has been that it's a generic name used for any/all species of caribou, not an indicator of one particular species of caribou.
All caribou and reindeer are the same genus and species. The categories are defined by the organizations, and don't seem to coincide with one another very well. This for sure leads to confusion, and false claims by outfitters. One prime example is multiple outfitters offering "mountain caribou" in the Ogilvie Mountains. I guess they're caribou in the mountains? They're sure well outside the clearly defined geographical borders for mountain caribou.
There was a guy advertising muskox and reindeer hunts in Greenland semi-guided for something like $3500 plus a $1600 trophy fee for the second animal. I don't see his ad anymore, so he either sold out or was unlicensed. Either way, it's not listed anymore.
I'm booked with Webbers for this Sept.
I heard SCI classified the caribou in Greenland as Artic caribou? If I recall, my research from last year showed the Artic "reindeer", which lived in eastern Greenland became extinct in 1900. I'm pretty sure the caribou living in western Greenland should be classified as barren-ground. Why P&Y and B&C classified them as CCBC is interesting? Maybe they have current genetic data? Scientific paper: https://www.jstor.org/stable/40510239?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents
I ate caribou in Grise Fiord that was of the bona fide Peary strain. Had it frozen and uncooked with soy sauce.
It's not very far across the ice from there to Greenland and doesn't seem unreasonable for animals to go back and forth, especially bears.
I'll make some phone calls today and see if I can get a firm response from someone regarding classification of Greenland "caribou".
To me, they should be CCBG caribou if they have never been handled by a human and aren't fenced in. I make the argument regularly that the morphological differences we use to distinguish "this from that" can be attributed more to habitat than genetics. Besides that, the racks in Greenland are relatively small by any standard, so why not include them as caribou.
It's certainly interesting to ponder.
Best deal I could find offered during a brief search yesterday was 3800 euros. Since Greenland is effectively European, the best price will always be in euros. There is a gigantic markup when dealing with an American agent pricing in dollars for literally everything in Europe and Asia, at least in my experience.
The Caribou in western Greenland are for sure CCBG....but with recent introduction of Reindeer from other countries there is no way to designate one or the other. Or how do you know which is which??
For example (kind of a stretch but...) if I were to take a population of Mountain Caribou from NWT and plant them in the mountains of western Newfoundland....how long until there were mixes?? How do you determine one from another without blood test??
I have heard that the government in Greenland was going to supply "tags" for Caribou and for Reindeer. So if your bull came from an area where the outfitter was supplied with Caribou tags then you have a CCBG. If your outfitter was supplied with Reindeer tags....then you have a Reindeer.
I dont know this will ever happen as the European market could care less about the subcategory
Most of the Europeans I have spent time in camp with want to hunt/collect as many species as possible. I wouldn't be at all surprised by someone offering a "combo hunt" for caribou/reindeer and the hunter shooting both bulls within sight of one another.
Results of my phone calls this far:
Pope and Young accepts animals from anywhere on Greenland as CCBG caribou
Boone and Crockett does not accept any caribou entries from Greenland at all. They do accept muskox from there, but they consider all the caribou to be reindeer.
GSCO seems to accept Greenland animals as CCBG caribou for the Super Slam. I am still waiting on a call back from "an expert" to confirm.
I have requested e-mail confirmation from all three organizations and will post screen shots of the correspondence once I have them.
B&C was the first to send me an email, apparently responding immediately. Their language is clear in this document, which does not appear in their "boundary descriptions" section of the record book.
B&C also does not accept animals from Banks or Victoria island as CCBG Caribou as shown on this map and in their language. No islands except Baffin Island are admissible.
All of the organizations have been ready and willing to answer my questions timely. I have now spoken with all 3 and should have an email soon from all of them to post. GSCO has the most complicated boundary description. They share the same boundaries with SCI, making the need to contact SCI unnecessary.
Nuuk is what I'd consider to be in the far south of Greenland, at least based upon my phone's map.
GSCO is all that matters if you care about the "super slam". Everything else is just interesting, at least to me anyway.
It's interesting that Seth said that about SCI as there is no boundary specified. The record book, which is what Seth is referring too, just had a meeting confirming that all Greenland entries were to be Reindeer.
Well, GSCO sent me that email about 30 minutes ago. Let us hope that's actually their position. If you've got something from SCI, please post it on this thread. I guess I'll call them too.
So I phoned SCI and they confirmed what Chris said above. As of approximately a year ago, they consider all animals from Greenland to be free ranging reindeer. Basically, they align with Boone and Crockett.
I requested an email stating this, and they refused to send me one since I'm not a member. I am not a member of any of these organizations, and yet, they've all been very cooperative with my line of questioning with this single exception.
In short, if you want a bona-fide, verified, certified Super Slam, it might be best to steer clear of Greenland for your CCBG caribou since it appears to be in flux.
Just confirmed with Record Book.... SCI considers all Greenland entries to be Reindeer.
Prior to March 2016 SCI had created a line... north and south of Nuuk.
SCI will need DNA evidence samples to change back to a divided line.
Sorry about the email policy but as you can imagine SCO Record Book has been attacked many times since Cecil. We have to be very very careful who we provide emails
Talked with Seth at length again. The boundary is what I posted for GSCO with regards to Nuuk as the designated southern end of CCBG caribou on Greenland.
That is ALL that matters for a Super Slam, period. Everything else is just an interesting study in boundary designation and sub-species differentiation.
It's been really cool discussing this with all these folks today. Seth was really willing to give me his time, which is above and beyond.
I joined GSCO.
For my own preferences as an archery hunter, the official P&Y position is the only one that counts for me.
At the same time, I'm curious as to the line of reasoning for the other orgs coming to that decision. Especially SCI, given that they're notoriously loosey-goosey on measurer requirements, measuring policies, and documentation requirements, and that they accept "ranch" trophies, and so forth. Not being critical, that's just how it is. Even still, I'm sure there's some kind of basis to it, just wondering about the specific details and logic.
SCI changed a year or so ago. GSCO had defined their boundaries to match SCI. Since it's possible that someone has a CCBG caribou from Greenland as a part of or in pursuit of a super 10 or Super Slam, GSCO will never move the boundary. Never.
I think it's awesome that you're a bow hunter and that you value Pope and Young's interpretation above all others.
If you want a Super Slam, the road goes through GSCO. So, if you must hunt Greenland, be sure to go north of Nuuk.
Here is the final word on the subject as pertains to the Super Slam.
If a guy just wants to go hunting in Greenland, that's great. If a guy wants to hunt for a CCBG caribou that counts towards a Super Slam, this pertains to that guy.
Chris, to address your question about a mountain caribou dropped in Newfoundland, I'd suggest something completely different.
I'd argue that if all caribou were gone from "the rock" and new ones were planted there, from anywhere, that they would morphologically resemble woodland caribou within just afew generations.
At the very least, this would be true of antler configuration and coloration within my hypothesis.
It is my opinion that the differences in size and shape are a result of habitat, predation, and nutrition more so than genetics.
Thanks for your work on this Matthew. Very valuable info for those chasing a "slam" especially considering the state of the caribou herds in general. I was fortunate to be able to take two CBGC in Manitoba one of the last years they decided to have a presence.
Thanks Cory! Maybe we should go for a visit to Greenland back to back weeks and meet up in Iceland? That'd be just as crazy a place to see you as Iqaluit!
Matthew and sticksender.... the story I was told was that a few outfitters in Greenland were willing to call the Caribou/Reindeer whatever you wanted to call it as long as you paid.
So... an outfitter that knew he had Reindeer would tell you it was a Caribou even if he knew it wasn't.
Since there is no rules or regulations to be tracked of moving Reindeer or Caribou into different areas.... an outfitter could purchase a giant Reindeer and take it above Nuuk... bring in a client and call it Caribou.
I know this sounds crazy but if there is no line in the sand then someone will surely work the system.
Look... I was just in Kangerlasuaq in March and can tell you that they are surely Caribou in that area. But... an introduced Norwegian Reindeer in Danborg (western Greenland) would be considered a Caribou to GSCO.
And believe me... this hurts as I sell hunts in Greenland for Muskox and Caribou. So I can advertise it as a Reindeer/Caribou Muskox combo lol.
Chris, the line in the sand is geographical. It's Nuuk. That is confirmed now twice by GSCO. As far as they are concerned (and they are the Super Slam organization. No one else) if it's north of Nuuk it's a CCBG caribou.
I don't have any idea why any of the other organizations would really matter for this particular case. If a guy just wants to go to Greenland, surely he'll just go and not care. If he wants a Super Slam eligible animal, it's got to come from north of Nuuk.
I'm NOT speculating. I spent an hour on the phone today and posted screenshots of the emails.
This matter is now put to bed and totally settled. There are tons of cases where your hypothetical applies. There are also tons of areas where it is known that the largest trophies come from one part of the range or another. That's absolutely normal.
I'm not arguing with you and if all you care about is GSCO then Greenland is a great option. Bowhunt can be tough as the bou live high. Good luck on your search.
I'm pretty sure I literally covered every record keeping organization in my series of posts, along with screenshots of the emails I've gotten in response. This is not something to speculate about any more on anything. I spent the time, made the calls, got the answers and settled the issue here on my thread.
I've never been to Greenland, and I certainly don't sell hunts there. If I did, I'd have already made those calls and known the answers. It's my pass time, not my job. I did it for fun while I was waiting on rock trucks today at a job site. It wasn't difficult and everyone I spoke with was really nice and patient, especially Seth Campbell.
Why would someone want to make sure their CCBG caribou was eligible for B&C, P&Y, or SCI? I'd argue that fully 100% of the hunters deliberately seeking the species are seeking the Super Slam. If they weren't, they'd go to Alaska, wouldn't they? Or maybe the Yukon, BC, or NWT? All those places produce far better trophies than Nunavut or Greenland. If a guy just wanted to "kill a caribou", the Central Canada variety is probably next to last on the list ahead of woodland caribou.
North American 29 was around well before the "Super Slam" that Dennis coined.
There are a lot people associated with the SCI Record Book, P&Y, B&C or don't care if they GSCO says it's eligible or not.
Take Bison for example.... one property can be acceptable to B&C and SCI and GSCO but not P&Y. So people wouldn't care that GSCO designates it that's way.
Either way... good luck on your quest for the "Super Slam"
I just like to hunt. I never presented myself as an expert on any of this, but I'll offer that I provided a whole bunch of valid, supported, free information for anyone that's interested.
You can try to somehow say I didn't, and that this thread isn't useful to you. That's fine. Feel free to go on in the world speculating about what's what.
B&C, SCI, P&Y, and GSCO are all covered here. Is there something that I missed? P&Y hasn't sent me an email yet. When that's shows up I'll post it. This thread is supposed to be helpful for hunters like me that want a CCBG caribou that's eligible for the Super Slam.
This thread isn't about bison.
I hope you achieve your Slam
I appreciate your research Halibutman, as I'm sure a bunch of other guys will when they come upon this thread in their own search for a caribou hunt that meets their expectations and/or goals. Thanks for putting the time in.
I think Chuck Adams coined SS long before Dennis.
Good luck to everybody that is chasing a CCBG caribou, most of us really like to hunt, whether we are motivated by the chase, the meat, P&Y, GS, SCI, B&C etc or not.....and caribou are a great archery animal. Hope they hold their own in the future.
I'm thinking of doing a winter/spring time hunt in Greenland to try to get my CCBG caribou and a muskox. There was a recent article in "Slam Quest" where Chad Lenz did that trip and had success.
The trip I've seen advertised (and plan to book) is 3,800 Euro and includes license/trophy fees for both animals.
At present, that equates to $4,500 +\-
I'm wondering aloud if anyone here has done that trip? I know the big caribou bulls have dropped their racks that time of year, but thought it might be fun/different/much more affordable than the Canadian options.
Anyone that would offer any insight would be appreciated. I've killed a whole bunch of caribou and I'm not terribly concerned about trophy quality. I also have two muskox, and I'm keen to eat some more of that!
Remember, you can only eat the muskox while there....you can't bring any back. Have they finally determined that the caribou are CCBG as opposed to reindeer or some other classification? Will you use COC broadheads, or mechanicals?
As far as classification goes, if you'll re-visit the thread here it'll explain all the different classifications.
SCI and B&C accept NONE.
P&Y accepts ALL
GSCO accepts north of Nuuk as CCBG caribou.
I'll be using a bullet for my hunt.