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A tahr hunting PE

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I know this is the wrong forum, but I know most of you don't visit the big game forum and have been asking me about hunting here in New Zealand. So, here is a little PE of my first hunting trip in NZ.

I made a video, that will be coming shortly, hopefully.

Over the past few weeks here I have done my best to meet other hunters and let them know how eager I was to go out. Well this time last week I got a message letting me know there was an outing planned, and asked me if I wanted to go. Obviously I said I did. A plan was made, but one hunter had to drop out. It would be me and another kid from my university. We would be hunting tahr, New Zealands version of a mountain goat. It is a very demanding hunt, as they are high in the mountains. This would be primarily a meat hunt, as it is the end of summer here, the coat quality isn't great.

We left school at 4:30 Friday afternoon. After a 3.5 hour drive, we turned off onto a dirt road.


We drove a few more kilometers and parked the car. The walk in would be 7 kilometers, just under 4.5 miles.


We made it in after doing the last few Ks in the dark. Across NZ much of the public land has huts for hunters/backpackers etc. They are fantastic places to stay. Many are old, and are decorated with the writings of past visitors:

"Men came to mend the fence on Oct 16(?)-25 1896"

<img src="http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee203/Ahowe88/Tahr Hunt/DSCF0086.jpg" border="0">

We got settled into the hunt, and tried to sleep. Excited for the next day.

Morning broke with a heavy fog:


We were going to wait for the fog to clear a bit before going, but we were too eager, so glassed a bit and set out.




We set out sights for the top of a mountain, and climbed fast. It was a tough and long push up the mountain, but the views from the top, at 1300 meters, were worth it. The climb took a lot of energy out of us, so we had lunch as we glassed the surrounding slopes.



Part way through lunch we spotted a group of about 7 tahr. Pumped at the sight of game we put away lunch and formed a plan. We stayed low and used small ridges to our advantage. We snuck to within 270 yards, but we unable to get closer, as it was in open view. My hunting buddy, Pete, insisted I shoot first. I put a pack down as a base, and breathed deeply. The .243 spoke, and the tahr did a death roll down the mountain. The shot was good, taking out one shoulder and both lungs. The other tahr scattered, but I handed the rifle to Pete, hoping he would have a shot. One paused at 300 yards, and that was all Pete needed.



Two hunters, one gun, and two dead tahr. Not bad.

There are no salvage laws in NZ, you take what you want or can carry. I loaded my pack up with a bunch of meat, and prepared for the difficult walk back.


The ascent was VERY steep, and we stopped frequently to rest and enjoy the scenery.


We finally made it to the top, and headed back down to the hut. We found a nice gravel slide to aid in out descent. When done correctly, you can ride the gravel wave to the bottom without expending much energy.


Round trip, from leaving the hut to getting back, took us around 11 hours. We were beat, so sat back and enjoyed the scenery.



We devoured the tenderloins, and hit the sack early.

We woke up around 8am the next morning, not wanting to leave. It would be a long, heavy walk out, we opted to go the long way. First flat pasture walking:


Then along a stream:


But still plenty of pretty views:


Back at school, I'm excited I now have fresh meat. Hope you enjoy the goofball shot:


Total cost of the trip: $45US. Not a bad way to spend the weekend...

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You are turning into a fake Hemmingway. You are living the dream. Great PE. Glad you are having fun, but I still haven't seen any topless beach photos.


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I think you had your way with the goat (like the sheep) and had to kill it to keep it from talking.

Just kidding, nice to see you got some hunting in! Great photos as usual!

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You are the man! The Tahr is a spectacular looking animal!!  The scenery in your posts has been unbelievable!  Terrific job on another well earned trophy.  Seems you are getting addicted to mountain hunting; Chamois next??

Anything for the taxidermist?

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Awesome man, just awesome.

How much meat do you think you were able to pack out?


About 40 lbs probably, bone included.

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You are the man! The Tahr is a spectacular looking animal!!  The scenery in your posts has been unbelievable!  Terrific job on another well earned trophy.  Seems you are getting addicted to mountain hunting; Chamois next??

Anything for the taxidermist?

Not sure what is next. Hope to make a trip to the north island to do a marlin charter and try for a sika stag. I will try for chamois at some point. My buddy here has a farm and he says they sometimes have red stag on them, so that will probably be the next trip.

Nothing for the taxidermist yet. The tahr we shot were young: short horns and no mane. I am signed up for a tahr hunt in May, where you get dropped off way into the back country by helicopter. That is a 5 day trip, and all told will cost me less than $200 US, flight included. Hope to take a  tahr for mounting then.

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Alex, my man, that is one great hunt but I loved your scenery shots. That is one country on my bucket list. Spectacular!!
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That makes my little hermit like existence here in Maine seem....little. :glare:

Seriously--thanks for taking us along.

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