Contributors to this thread:
Kelly and I are headed to New Zealand in a couple weeks to hunt Tar and chamois. Looking for any tips or must haves from the guys that have been to New Zealand.
I will be following this closely. We are headed there next May. Good luck Forest!
Forest...you going DIY or guided? Just wondering. Kevin
I just got back a month ago . It was my second bow hunting trip there. I would be happy to answer any specific questions.
Watch out for all the snakes, Forest!
What did you take the 2nd time you didn't have the first time
Forest, Take the time to rent a car and drive around that very beautiful country! There are Bed and Breakfast places all over that country. The Tasman sea on the west coast is beautiful. Also, there is a boat trip out of Queenstown that you should think about taking. It does involve a bus ride to get to the point where it starts. You will see tall waterfalls, dolphins and just plain beautiful scenery. Good luck on the hunting! Look for the banded cows.
Good luck to you and your wife! Should be a great time.
I would certainly second the idea of traveling the country, but I assume your itinerary is already set. I was hunting red deer again after 14 years between trips. One big difference is in trophy exportation. The cost and complexity have both gone way up. I suggest checking out alternatives on getting stuff back before you shoot something. Shop around on who will export stuff and negotiate a price beforehand. You may not do better but at least you will have the satisfaction of having checked into it. I suggest boot top gaiters to protect your laces. The brush is some stiff stuff. Good luck.
Make sure your hunting boots are scrubbed spotless (including any stickers removed from laces) and packed on top of your bag where they are easily accessible, as they will be inspected. Having them right on top within your bag will speed up the process and keep the agent happier.
Keep your broadheads packed in a separate case from your bow on the return trip home so you don't have to rip apart luggage and repack in the airport at security.
Flying domestically within New Zealand you can virtually take any type of food item/beverage/etc on with your carry-on. Don't get used to that and forget to put those types of items in your checked luggage on the return flight home, or it will get confiscated and tossed at security.
Wear comfortable shoes and bring an extra sweatshirt or something for the flight. It's long and was the coldest I've ever been a plane during the overnight hours.
Get ready to be asked a million times if you are transporting a firearm when they see your case within their airports.
Spend or convert any NZ coin currency you may accumulate before you get back into the US, including the $1 and $2 coins. Only NZ paper currency will be exchanged when you return.
Traveling that far, its an injustice not to take in as much of the local culture that you can. It's an amazing country!
I second spending some extra time. If you do, look at the option of renting one of their "mini-RV's"--more like an old VW bus. The roads are narrow and you don't want to be driving the big RV's--even their "big" RV's pale in comparison to American Behemoths you see here. There are so many cheap campgrounds that are pretty empty for the most part. Usually have places to shower, BBQ, etc... Plus there are tons of backcountry huts that are stocked with firewood and such that are really cheap. NZ can be super expensive--or you can save tons of money by "roughing it" and doing your own cooking. I wasn't impressed by their food any way and service is crappy to non-existent anyway (because they believe in the "living wage" concept and no tipping). We ended up cooking most of our meals, except when on the road. It was truly an amazing place. We'll be back there someday when we retire and can spend more than a two week vacation. Have a blast!
Depends what kind of Thar/chamois hunt you are doing. Backpack hunt hiking in, heli in back pack hunt, heli in drop off and heli musters animals past you, or shoot from the heli. Also depends on location of hunt east coast versus west coast, very different terrain. I lived in NZ for over a year and hunted both species unguided a fair bit and can help out with more specifics if you need.
Yes, clean the treads on your boots. All mud and manure should be scrubbed out of the cleats.
Another plus on the boots. Pull your laces and scrub where the tongue meets the boot to make sure there aren't any little seeds hiding in there.
What if I'm wearing my boots? We will be archery only backpack in for both species.
Been long time since been there. However the trip to Milford sound and an overnight on a ship there was great. I wish I would have went during waterfowl season, as it is the only place, as far as I know where you can hunt paradise duck and black swan. We spent several days just walking and touring queenstown and that was very relaxing and enjoyable. We also did the help, jet boat and whitewater rafting and was fun. Would love to go back on day and jealous of you. Enjoy the trip
Have a fun trip. I'm sure we'll see some pictures and a story soon!
Will you be hunting west coast or east?
Forest, if you're wearing them and they look like hunting boots, be prepared to have them inspected. Like INSPECTED inside and out.
Australian Customs confiscated both of my Selway bow quivers because they somehow thought they were "rawhide".
They are pretty strict down there about anything that might possibly carry something invasive. You'll have to fill out a form before you land that asks if you've been in a wilderness area or around any animals besides dogs and cats within the past 30 days. If your arrows are fletched with feathers you may or may not get hassled. You're supposed to declare feathers for inspection (and possible confiscation). I left mine in a capped tube in the bottom of my duffel and they didn't ask to look inside the tube. The whole Customs gang was so excited with the bow quivers that I could have had a rattlesnakes in that tube and they'd have missed it.
Good rain gear/cold weather gear would be my number 1. Its the time of year where it could be really cold and NZ or could be reasonable warm. NZ is known to get lots of rain. East coast is a bit more forgiving generally better weather and easier terrain. crampons are a must IMO they are one of those things you may not need but can sure help on steep grass slopes, glaciers or hardpack snow. An ice axe for fall arrest. Black diamond whippet poles are handy little things as they double as walking poles and got the pick to help in case of a fall/slide situation. Im sure your guide or outfitter has outlined all the basic essentials. and if you have previous experience mountain hunting you would have a general idea what to expect. a good angle finding rangefinder some shot opportunities are very steep!
My son goes every year and brings back all his trophies on the plane with his baggage. Just a couple forms you need to fill out to get them home.
Hunting dad, he brings raw hides/skulls back on the plane with him??
yes as hunting dad said. I have done this also. salted capes and boiled skulls put in my bags and brought back to Canada with No issues just need your permits.
Another thing I found handy in NZ was one of those sea to summit collapsible cups for in the pocket. there is lots of water around and rather then digging out a water bottle I just pulled out the cup and drank whenever I was thirsty at creek crossings or spots with run off.
Hunted wilderness Tahr near mt cook in Feb. this year. Spend some time touring, it is an amazingly beautiful country.We toured the south island only. Started in Christchurch and via rental car made a big figure eight. Initially going west across the island and north to Able Tasman (beautiful park/ beaches/hiking, cruise) for a few days then back east and south through Kaikoura (good rock lobster at the Pier Hotel restaurant) . Then south and west to lake Tekapo, down to Te Anau(bused to Milford Sound for a cruise which Kipling called the 8th wonder of the world, Milford track here also considered one of the worlds top hikes). We then swung back north to Queenstown, Wanaka, west to the glaciers Fox and Franz Josef then back to Christchurch. A day or two in each location was sufficient, good well marked roads. Not a foodies paradise by any means, but we did find a few decent restaurants, English fare mostly. Also, as mentioned, save some money and bring your trophies back on the plane. You need to complete the declaration for import form @edecs.fws.gov and have your export cert. from NZ.
MPN, excellent tips.I PM'ed you.
For those that brought the hides back with them after the hunt. How do you get around the following?
I pulled this off the CDC site under "Bringing Animal Products into the United States"
"Rendering Animal Products Non-infectious A veterinary or taxidermy certificate should be included with the trophy, stating that the animal has been rendered noninfectious by? •Heat (heated to an internal temperature of 70 degrees Celsius (158 degrees Fahrenheit) or placed in boiling water for a minimum of 30 minutes)
•Preservation in formalin
•Chemically treating in acidic or alkaline solutions (soaking in a solution below pH 3.0 or above pH 11.5 for 24 hours) •The use of hypertonic salts ?Soaking, with agitation, in a 4%(w/v) solution of washing soda (sodium carbonate, Na2CO3) maintained at pH 11.5 or above for at least 48 hours ?Soaking, with agitation, in a formic acid solution (100kg salt [NaCl] and 12 kg formic acid per 1,000 liters water) maintained at below pH 3.0 for at least 48 hours; wetting and dressing agents may be added.
•Gamma irradiation at a dose of at least 20 kilo Gray at room temperature (20°C or higher) •Ethylene oxide •In the case of raw hides, salting for at least 28 days with sea salt containing 2% washing soda (sodium carbonate, Na2CO3) •For bones only, the following methods are acceptable ?Dry heat at 82.2° C (180°F) for 30 minutes ?Soaking in boiling water for 20 minutes ?Soaking in a 0.1 percent chlorine bleach solution for 2 hours ?Soaking in a 5 percent acetic acid solution for 2 hours OR ?Soaking in a 5 percent hydrogen peroxide solution for 2 hours
•Or, any other method approved by CDC"
Appears a raw hide has to be salted for 28 days(or at least claimed that it has) Any help/info would be appreciated.
Only place I considered moving to...make the hunt secondary to the country and the people. You can shoot these a animals in other places, only one NZ, and nation of Kiwis. Hope you’re in the South Island.
I just got back.. Take your rain gear.. Especially if your hunting the west coast.. We had a blast but we got rained on 6 of 7 days.. The area we were hunting you pretty much couldn't hunt in the rain. The mountains would sock in with fog and the creeks would rise and go wild..
Take an arrow tube for your arrows while your busting brush and make sure you have cam and string covers on your bow.. We killed a giant on our trip.. I had one bull tahr at 130 yards and I randomly ran into a young bull on the track one day.. Made a perfect shot at 22 yards and watched my arrow go a foot over his back. First time I have ever not moved my sight back to 20 yards.. also first year using the spot hog double pin. Back to a 4 pin slider for me on mountain hunts..
Good luck guys! Enjoy...Post results please.
Leave a week from today!!!
Good luck and have a great time! Can't wait to see the results! This is a trip I'd really love to do with the wife and mix in all the sightseeing.
Getting on the plane at 4:20 in Grand junction this afternoon!!