Having been on many hunts all over the states and Canada I thought i was a seasoned traveler until my trip to Greenland this past September/October. Most trips to Greenland have you fly from the states to Iceland to Greenland. Not mine! All flights from Iceland to Greenland had been canceled this late in the year for whatever reason. I had to fly from Boston to Iceland, Iceland to Copenhagen, Denmark, overnight in the airport, Copenhagen to Greenland, and then 2 more flights in Greenland. Then we needed to overnight twice before our charter boat was to leave to Franks camp. The guys that hunted the week before got stuck in Greenland for three additional days and still didn’t know how they were getting home due to a snowstorm that canceled all flights going out.
Once I arrived in the hotel and got settled in I met up with the other hunters. A husband and wife from Texas and a father and son from California. Great group of people. With that much travel we were due for a good night sleep. Charter boat picks us up in the morning.
In 1980 I navigated a P-3 Orion from Keflavik to the North Pole, then down to Thule for fuel What I remember most of all was the runway paint white to keep it from thawing in the summer sun. Have a great trip. Bet you've got a bad case of airline butt.
Charter boat picked us up right on schedule at 8am. 5 of us crammed into the cabin of the boat for the 4 hour boat ride to franks camp. I will never forget seeing icebergs for the first time and rare all blue chunk that we were able to drive up to and touch. Simply unbelievable.
We arrived at franks camp and all I could think was this is crazy. The camp is kind of up on a hill with water what looks like all around it. It was neat to say the least. We settled into camp and drew straws on whom was going to hunt first. I secretly didn’t want to draw first but of course I did. Lol. I seriously had no idea what I was getting into but super excited!
I would do that trip in a heartbeat but I already have two ox. From the first time pat did this and with every article and TV show that has highlighted it since the whole thing just screams A D V E N T U R E. The prices have really skyrocketed and the extras a not unsubstantial. This is about 15K all in right?
I've been to Greenland 3 times for MIA recovery work. It's a very remote and rugged place. Flew out to the crash site in a helo a few times. You do not want to crash or do an emergency landing. The below is part of a longer documentary that was done. Some good helo footage. The last time I was there, we camped on the ice cap and polar bears were a concern. I slept with my .300 WinMag. I would love to go hunting there and Iceland.
Grant, I was fortunate to get into this hunt for just a bit over $10k. The travel and the taxidermy has proven to be the most expensive part of the whole thing! Getting these critters home is STUPID expensive
We drove the boat only a short distance from camp before Frank spotted a few bull musk ox. We parked the boat and the stalk was on. We traveled maybe 10 minuets before we were within 5 yards of a bull that we got a bit to close to. He startled and ran before I could get a shot. This was my first time seeing one of these beasts. Huge! To be honest I didn’t know if it was a cow or a bull. Ten more minutes we were able to circle around and get in front of him. I shot him at 18 yards getting a full pass through using a 200 grain soLid VPA. He was dead in thirty more yards. I had been out of the boat for 20 minuets! Coming off a 10 day fly in moose hunt in Northern Alberta and never seeing a moose I was completely ok with this early success
The next day we all gathered early to look for bulls along the fiords. We broke ice the entire way. The landscape in this part of Greenland is breathtaking. No trees. Just rock, water, and mountains. We saw a bunch of immature musk ox bulls and cows. Constantly moving to find bulls we spotted a patch of caribou high up in the hills. The wind was wrong to make a stalk with a bow so Chad opted for the guides rifle. After about a 45min hike he shot the bull at about 100 yards. It was neat to watch unfold. First time seeing a caribou and I wanted one bad. The realization of how hard it would be to get up to them had me concerned and excited.
Just got my animals on the wall this month from an August 2015 hunt! It was a cool adventure and I’m glad I did it but wish I’d known the costs up front. The number of steps to get them home and number of steps of travel is crazy.
What are the costs to totally take care of trophy from field to taxidermist door (not mounting and shipping finished mount to you) . and what are total travel costs.............all in flights hotels. etc.
It’s looking like it’s currently going to run around 2,000-2,500 to get a musk ox from the field to a US taxidermist’s door depending on final destination. That’s for a cleaned skull and wet tanned and dried cape and back skin. As Greg said, there are lots of steps involved and lots of cargo expense on top of the prep work. Although Greenland is part of North America, getting trophies back to the US is more in line with hunts on a different continent.
My fees on my caribou and musk ox cost $800 to ship them to Hungry to have them capped off the skull and then transported to Denmark. The fees to have them tanned and skulls cleaned for the states cost me $1760. I still have a crating and shipping cost to the states that I have no idea what will be.
That afternoon it was Dreabon’s turn for a musk ox and we found him a bull rather quickly. The stock lasted about an hour before he was able to zip an arrow through a bull. While we waited by the waters edge for Dreabon to stalk his bull we found some caribou heads that the Inuit meat hunters had shot and we were all so excited to get after caribou more then musk ox. The caribou are huge!!
"Why can’t you throw it in a rubber duffel and fly home with it? "
Charlie, I believe it because Greenland is treated like Europe or Africa and you can't bring raw hides and such through US customs from those areas. Glad I did this hunt when I did(2016). The cost has shot up a lot in only a year. Folks are seeing how incredible this adventure is and demand is definitely driving it up. If I remember right, it cost me around 2000 to get the head/hide sitting on my front porch. That being said, it was worth every penny I spent. I'm enjoying the pictures Neubauer. Brings back great memories.
Mountainman....you are correct. The Denmark taxidermists have seen the trapped market and are taking advantage of it. I brought home 1 full body muskox, 1 arctic hare, 1 arctic fox, and 2 ptarmigan....by the time it is all home it will be around $3500!! And that is just salted....so it still needs tanned
I would love to do this hunt but they do not allow you to hunt them with Recurves or Longbows which is a real shame as they are every bit as deadly as compounds bows are. So I went to Victoria island and shot 2 of them on one trip brought back the whole hide on both of them, tanning was around $1300 each.
The next day I was fortunate to go one on one with franks partner Knude high up into the mountains for caribou. I absolutely love hiking in the mountains and Knude was like a mountain goat. He didn’t speak much English but we were able to communicate just fine. We hiked about 7 miles up into the mountains before we saw a group of caribou. It was amazing! We stalked up to them to about 80 yards and realized they were in the worst spot to try and get closer. We watched them walk around a smaller mountain before we could make another move. Getting the wind in our face we now were up on top of this small mountain looking down on them. We watched 72 caribou bed just 82 yards away. It was a sight I’ll never forget. There were 3 big bulls in the group. I wasn’t sure if I was gonna have to take a 82 yard shot once the biggest bull stood up or what we were going to do. After about an hour of just watching Knude decided to go down and straight at them. At this point I wasn’t that confident in this idea but don’t guide your guide. So here we go. There are rock boulders everywhere for stalking. It was surprisingly easy to get into 30 yards on 72 sleeping caribou. Knude stayed back as I closed the distance on what I thought was the largest of the bulls. I ranged his antlers at 27 yards. I drew my bow slowly stood up and drilled the bull while his head was laying on the ground. He slowly stood up and one more arrow through him. Watched him run about 100 yards and fall over. “Are you kidding me that just happened?” When I walked up on this bull I simply couldn’t believe the size of him. I shot a 326” elk and this caribou looked MUCH BIGGER! Beautiful white cape on him too. I was so blown away that this all worked out like it did.
For a possible better air travel route, it looks like Air Greenland is teaming with First Air to offer service between Iqaluit and Nuuk. That means you can go direct from Canada to the west coast of Greenland. The hop across the pond is a short one from those two cities. I have seen that service offered before. Iqaluit has a runway that can handle the space shuttle. Cold weather aircraft testing takes place there.
If you can fly west from Nuuk, Greenland to Iqaluit, Canada then on to Toronto, it may be easier and cheaper to get your animals back. It's something to consider if the route does open up.
The father and son team had just as much success killing two bulls with their bows high in the mountains with Frank in another location. I still can’t get over the size of these things. Two of the back times on Kevin’s bull are over 24” long! The husband and wife team spent the day fishing for Arctic char and cod for dinner. They caught more then we could eat.
The Arctic char fishing was impressive. I’m not to much into fishing but I enjoyed it. Almost every other cast you would hook up if you had the right color lure. There were big cod with the char and those were caught as well.
I think I was at franks camp between September 28th to October 2nd. Sometime around then. If I were going to go again I would go the same time or the next week. No bugs and cooler weather makes for easier hiking in my opinion. And the caribou are coming down off the mountains and ice pack.
I’m very surprised on how much money it’s costing just to get the critters back into the states to get mounted. I’ve paid thus far $800 to have the heads (caribou & muskox) transported from camp in Greenland to Denmark and then $1,700 for them to get caped, clean skulls, and wet tan the capes. I still have the cost for crating and shipping to the states, import fees, and then taxidermy. Pretty anxious for the wallet pain to stop....
Awesome hunt and photos! Congratulations on a spectacular adventure.
So far, it sounds like getting stuff back from there will end up less than what I was looking at from Argentina. I ended up telling them to keep my stuff down there when they finally told me what it would cost after over a year! More than the hunt cost me! Will never do another hunt without full knowledge of what the costs for getting trophies back will be.
Hell, I wanted to bring the meat back to Peru and couldn't do that either. Family was looking forward to some game meat after being stuck in Peru for a year. Hard to take for a guy that is used to eating what I killed...
I feel your pain on the trophy costs and we are at the same point in the process. Hoping to "save" a little by combining the shipping with my buddy. I agree that Frank would likely have no issue with not taking the skull and cape.
Look forward to reading about your hunt Ed. What outfitter are you hunting with?
What a grea adventure. Thanks for sharing. This has been on my list for a couple years now. I can’t get past the no meat coming home with me but...I am quickly thinking the Greenland experience might be worth it. Thanks again
Thought I would share my final costs associated with my musk ox and caribou shoulder mount taxidermy. (This is almost as bad as spending $21k on an elk hunt! imo)
Shipping trophies from Greenland to Denmark taxidermist $1000 Tanning capes, skulls bugged, and shipped back to states $2,931 Importer/broker fees $350 Taxidermy shoulder mounts on both animals $3,175 Shipping from taxidermist to my home $950
Total cost $8,406
I loved the hunt in Greenland and it was well worth going. Everyone should save and hunt there. However, I’m frustrated with the taxidermy part of the trip (not the actual taxidermist, he’s been great! ). I had zero guidance going into this chaos and Im now wanting to provide the information to others that might consider this trip. If someone asked me what I would do differently I would take tons of pictures and leave the antlers/horns in Greenland.
Andrew...I read your thread (as well as several others) several times this past winter (great write up and pics, BTW) and finally pulled the trigger and went this past August myself. It was an incredible adventure! My muskox and caribou are going to Denmark as well. Shoulder mount on the ox, plus the back skin and just a Euro on the caribou, plus the full hide tanned on it. Not sure what the costs are gonna be on them. Not looking forward to those fees, but still well worth it, IMO.
Again, congrats on a great trip and a couple beautiful animals!
Excellent writeup and great hunt! Just like Africa was the last time I went...more in shipping hides and horns home than the hunt cost. Never again for me on the huge shipping costs....photos are the way to go, plus meals from your animals while you are there. Use the saved $$$$ for another hunt.
Greenland is a true adventure at a time when there are far too few of these. The taxidermy part is insane crazy. I gave mine to another hunter in camp who was glad to have the extra animal. and I saved the money. I had two euros from prior arctic hunts and did not need a third. What a trip though. Better than advertised.