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Karl Badger Big Game Hunting Tips

Karl Badger

Mossy Oak ProStaff

Big Game Regional Manager (UT, AZ, CO, NM, KS, OK and TX)
Q: Should I hunt Western Big Game on my own or with a guide or outfitter?

A: Many premium hunting areas are in wilderness areas, which require a licensed guide. Additionally, a guide will know the area and game habits.

Q: If I need a guide, how do I find a good one?

A: Request a guide and outfitter directory from the state association. Make sure the guide is licensed, ask for referrals, and call the referrals.

Q: I hear that a lot of Western outfitters are ranchers. Do they make good guides?

A: Many do. They hike the country on horseback and are familiar with the country like where water is and game habits.

Q: How much research should I do before booking a hunt out West or in Canada?

A: A lot of research! These hunts cost money and could be a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Q: Is fitness as important as I hear when it comes to hunting out West?

A: Absolutely! High elevation, steep terrain and short, hard days require fitness.

Q: Are combination hunts worth it? Example: Deer/Elk, Bear/Caribou or Moose/Goat.

A: Yes, if you have the time. Tags are expensive and you want to make sure you have enough time to get something on the ground.

Q: Can I hunt big game out West with the same set up I use back East for hunting, either bow or gun?

A: No. Western game like elk, deer, moose and sheep all have different habits and instincts.

Q: I hunt back East with a bow and only shoot 20-30 yards. Do I have to practice and be able to shoot out to 50 yards and beyond?

A: Yes, you need to practice shooting at longer distances.

Q: What is the industry standard for tipping your guide or outfitter?

A: 10-15%. You may also want to tip other help like the cook.
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