Submitted by Joe Omara
While on my British Columbia moose hunt this past fall I was able to do the most exciting stalk of my life! Right into the center of a herd of moose!
The day began as normal – busting my butt climbing a steep ridge trying to keep up to my guide, Les. I’ve hunted British Columbia moose with Les several times in the past and have had good success, but this was different – we were hunting during “prime rut” for the monstrous northern Moose in British Columbia. After we made the daily climb and reached the top of the ridge we counted four different huge bulls below us and watched through our binoculars as one of Les’ guides and his hunter stalked and shot one of the bulls. The story played out before our eyes a mile or so away and below us.
We watched the other bulls for quite some time, freezing our butts off on top of the ridge. Les decided none of them were approachable due to wind and terrain so we headed off along the ridge paralleling the valley. We walked several miles and then decided to follow a hogsback down towards the valley bottom. As soon as we started off the main ridge, we jumped a family of four grizzlies. This got the blood pumping as I also had a grizzly tag!
No sooner had the grizzlies run off than we were able to spot the next big bull! Unluckily for us he was surrounded by four cows. They were at least a mile away and below us so we planned our stalk and started downwards. Les had been through the trip before but neglected to mention I would be climbing through two extremely steep washes where I had to hold on by my toenails! One false move and I would be “wolf bait.”
We got to within 300 yards of the moose but had to use the wind to cover the sound of our approach. We knew exactly where they were but couldn’t see them because of the stand of willows in front of us. We skirted a small hill and slowly crossed below the ridge line to where we could see, only moving as the wind blew. Luckily we had the wind or we could never get close enough to see them, let alone get a shot. Les was in front and whispered, “There’s one of the cows!” I crept up to where he was but couldn’t see her until she moved her ears. Les whispered, “The bull is right behind her, there’s one of his antlers.”
By looking very closely, I could see part of one antler. From what I could see, it was huge! At this point, we were able to cross to a better position because we could see the bull, although we couldn’t see any of the other three cows we had seen from on top of the ridge. The cow that was immediately in front of the bull saw us and stood up. So did the bull – but he was behind her! Les said, “When the cow steps to the side, take him!”
Before the words were out of his mouth, there was a thunderous roar reverberating throughout the valley! The monster teetered for a bit and then fell over. From 40 yards away, how could I miss the 58 incher? The other three cows stood up and charged off along with the cow that was with the bull. It sounded like a stampede as there were moose running everywhere!
Now the work began, four miles from main tent camp and getting dark. Good thing Les has a cabin at the end of the valley we could get to before dark.
Learn more about this British Columbia Moose Hunt: