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Looking for some Moose hunt ‘25 advice.
Contributors to this thread:
Matson1855 07-Mar-21
t-roy 07-Mar-21
Bou'bound 07-Mar-21
Inshart 07-Mar-21
GLP 07-Mar-21
Straight Shooter 07-Mar-21
elkmtngear 07-Mar-21
Ollie 07-Mar-21
Rickm 07-Mar-21
Rob in VT 07-Mar-21
Mike Ukrainetz 07-Mar-21
Realwarrior 08-Mar-21
wildwilderness 08-Mar-21
Slate 08-Mar-21
BullBuster 08-Mar-21
APauls 08-Mar-21
Potro 08-Mar-21
scott7030 08-Mar-21
PMO 08-Mar-21
From: Matson1855
Booked a trip with the guys at Caesar lake for 2025 and looking for a little wisdom. Trying to make it once in a lifetime hunt mostly Bc I don’t think i can afford it more than once. With that being said does it make sense to bring a rifle just in case for a little insurance In case I don’t get one in bow range ? I have never moose hunted before only elk so it’s all new to me.

If anyone on here has been with this particular outfitter I’d love to pick y’all’s brains on some other questions as well. Thanks!!

From: t-roy
One comment I’d offer is, if you do bring your rifle, the probability of you killing your moose with that rifle vs your bow, is exponentially higher. (And not just because of the obvious reason). I know several guys that planned to kill their bull with a bow, but ended up killing it with a rifle instead, most of them within bow range.

From: Bou'bound
the bow gun thing is a pretty easy calculation.........it just differs for every individual.

If you would rather come home empty that get one with a gun take only the bow If you would rather get one with a gun than come home empty take the gun

of course anyone would prefer to get one with the bow, but the answers that only you can provide to those two questions will make the decision for you.

one thing...........don't assume that you can just decide to take the gun out on day 8-10 and polish one off. Things happen, weather, movement, equipment breaks down, people get sick, game cycles, etc. Sometime guys think they can have more control over the outcome than they can.

honestly, if you are truly willing to take one with a gun you may just want to plan that from day 1 and hunt accordingly and selectively based on that. how would you feel about passing a monster on day one while you had the bow and then on the last day killing something much less with the gun?

I have done it both ways.......a couple last day moose with a borrowed gun in newfoundland for the freezer (would never have filled a tag with the bow those two instances). Also some trips where i decided to hold out until the end and eat the tag.

personal choice no right nor wrong. do what you will regret the least should the least attractive outcome be what you are faced with

From: Inshart
For me, due to the financial commitment, (once in a lifetime for sure) AND I love wild game meat, I would take the gun as well as the bow. Have the guide carry your gun. Did I mention I love wild game meat.

From: GLP
I think bou’bound,s post is spot on! Make a decision and enjoy the hunt! Greg

Agree with T-Roy, if you want to kill one with a bow then you need to be 100% committed to the task. If it’s more about killing a moose then I would start with a rifle day 1. When the two of us went to AK, we decided it would be a huge success If we went 1 for 2 with a bow and decided to not have a rifle in camp. Good luck and have fun.


From: elkmtngear
x3 Bou'bound.

Haven't killed big game with a rifle, in over 30 years, but I'm leaving the bow at home, for a SE Alaska Moose hunt this Season. Took a bow up there in 2011, had a great adventure, but couldn't seal the deal.

I'm going up there to Harvest this Year. That's just me.

From: Ollie
Do you want to gun hunt or bow hunt? If all you care about is killing a moose then leave your bow at home.

From: Rickm
And Dj went 2 for 2. Same with last year Utah shiras. Gun was left at camp in case it came down to the last day of a true OIL tag. Never reached for it. If you take the gun out of its case it most likely will get used. No shame in that, just depends on what your goal is. Guide will have a rifle anyway. Handy if you bump into a wolf.

From: Rob in VT
I have a 2023 northern BC moose hunt booked and I am bringing my rifle. Chances are this will be my only high dollar hunt up there and I want to stack the odds in my favor. BTW, I am currently 0-2 with moose and really want to put one of the ground!

Best of luck on your hunt.

It’s a definite risk messing around with a bow when you’ll be happy killing one with a gun anyway. It can actually cause you to not get a bull at all. It’s often not easy to suddenly just switch to a rifle. We’ve had guys not kill a big bull coming in at less than 100 yds because he hung up and they tried to switch from bow to gun and spooked the bull off or a cow ran across in front and the bull took off after her never to be seen again etc, etc. Also the guide will usually be dealing with his own rifle at hand in case of grizzlies and probably won’t be happy dealing with yours too. And most guides just want the moose dead and as soon as they see you are open to the rifle it will probably be encouraged by him.

But with all that being said we killed two bulls this past fall with bows while the hunters had guns handy and willing to use them. The bulls just happened to cooperate and come right in to bow range, no hesitation and we killed them.

When we call moose for a bow/rifle hunter we just put the rifle at the hunters feet and leave it up to him. It can be a gong show of indecision.

From: Realwarrior
Ollie said "If all you care about is killing a moose then leave your bow at home" That's a condescending and elitist statement. When you were starting to plan this, were you booking a bow hunt, gun hunt, or moose hunt? If this is a once in a lifetime trip and your dream was Not a bowhunt then take the gun. If you were planning a Moose hunt, take the gun. If you have your heart set on a bowhunt and you decided to book an archery moose hunt, then only bowhunt. My advice don't look ahead for the answer, look back & there you will find the answer.

Wow, 2025... that’s like 4 years away- my youngest will start high school and GRADUATE before you go!!!

at least you are excited, but that’s a long way off and plenty will change before then. Maybe you will decided to try and spear one by that time ;) thus Covid has really screwed with planning Canada hunts!

From: Slate
The only thing I can say is what some others have stated. Make the decision on what YOU can live with and what will make YOU happy. I have killed many animals with both bow and rifle. I love the hunts the same for many different reasons. I never gave a rats ass what others thought and never will. I also have heard very good things about that outfitter. I like you book hunts pretty far in advance. Only way to get into a good outfit and pick your time frame. Right now I have hunts booked through 2023.

From: BullBuster
I’ve taken 3 moose with my bow. If I’d been a rifle hunter that number would be 6.

From: APauls
If you end up going at it with both weapons think of it as a rifle hunt and if it happens with the bow it’s a bonus. If you’re ok with that mentality you’ll have fun.

The last thing you want, is to go on a truly once of a lifetime trip, be successful and come home unhappy. Decide what success looks like and enjoy the ride. Just remember, even with a rifle, even with an outfitter a moose is not guaranteed. Weather delays etc can cut a hunt short and bad weather can shut moose down. Number 1 is you want to make sure you enjoy the trip of a lifetime.

My brother and I have done two DIY moose hunts with “combo” weapons. We killed 2 archery bulls and 2 rifle bulls. Our location inside a burn allowed for easier “backup rifle shots.” But with moose being the best wild meat on the planet we wanted to be sure we didn’t come home empty.

From: Potro
I had heard that Cesar lake I a Top Notch Outfitter. Definitive you are going to have a great hunt. taker only your bow, the guide will be carry a rifle anyway and you can use it if the moose is not getting close

From: scott7030
I am dealing with a similar dilemma. My best friend and I are planning a once in a lifetime Alaska hunting adventure (moose/brown bear 2023...) . We both love to archery hunt, but quickly decided that we may never go on these hunts again. This made the rifle our only choice, as ours wives like the better odds of bringing something home for the money we're spending :o). If for some miracle we get to do the trip again, we both will take archery equipment. Matson good luck with your decision.

From: PMO
Suggestion -- IF you plan on using the guides rifle or anyone elses rifle in Canada , fill out the required forms long in advance and have it approved by the RCMP ( Borrowing License) . Its against the law in Canada to use a rifle owned by others without it. Just a heads up .

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