They say that timing is everything. Maybe that’s a bit of a stretch, but it’s hard to deny that timing in hunting, as well as almost every other aspect of life, is critical if you are trying to stack the odds of success in your favor.
If you are trying to figure out when to go to New Zealand, there are three basic criteria that I suggest considering in order to make your decision -- the seasons, the weather and the rut. Let's take a quick look at each one and I'll offer my recommendations on how to prioritize each one.
One of the most exciting aspects of hunting in New Zealand for the Northern Hemisphere (American) hunter is the ability to hunt prime fall hunting seasons during the off season.
In case you didn’t know...March, April and May are fall in New Zealand, while September, October and November are New Zealand’s springtime.
To add to the list of opposites, in New Zealand the sun rotates...
Mountain hunting can be a disease for those afflicted.
If you have ever been on a true mountain hunt, then you might know a bit of what I'm talking about.
Here is the way I see it...
Goats and sheep live in the mountains, usually above treeline and often in crazy, cliffy, gnarly, high mountain country. Pursuing goats and sheep in that amazing country gives the hunter a rare glimpse into a landscape and ecosystem that as humans we just don’t venture into often. This is the mountain hunting experience.
Once a hunter has gotten a taste of those high windswept ridges, craggy peaks, and alpine basins dotted with tarns and scree chutes, it's hard to get the memory of that hunt -- that amazing country and the beautiful animals that live up there -- out of your head.
Combine that experience with the hard physical exertion that is required to reach those places, which produces endorphines in your brain - kinda...
If you are wondering how much a DIY hunt in New Zealand is going to cost, the answer might surprise you...
There are so many variables that go into estimating a hunt cost that it's hard to give you more than just a broad range for the total hunt cost.
For instance, I don’t know if you are thinking of staying in NZ for one week or for three weeks. Will you eat out every meal? Stay in hotels or camp on the roadside? Take a couple helicopter rides into hunting grounds or hike in from the road? Expedite your trophies through a taxidermist or boil them in the driveway of your Airbnb?
Obviously, you can take a minimalistic approach and spend as little as possible, or you can take advantage of your ‘holiday’, as they say in New Zealand, and treat yourself to some comforts.
The bottom line is, if you like adventure and you are on a budget, then you are going to love New Zealand.
Hey there! Welcome Welcome!
Ok, based on comments on Instagram and email responses it seems that the interest for a New Zealand hunt planning guide is just a smidge more than for a general info Alaska guide.
Sooooo, here we go! (BTW, if you had your heart set on the Alaska course, hang in there. It will be coming next)
This here outline is how I'm thinking about laying out the course content. If you saw the email, you might remember that I described this as a general info, high level course that would teach you all the info that you would need to know to plan your own adventure in New Zealand, but without a lot of the super nitty-gritty species and location specific detail that has gone into the likes of the Haul Road Caribou Guide, Adak Caribou Guide and Kodiak Sitka Blacktail Guide.
That said, there will still be plenty of info about each game species plus where to find them in New Zealand. So...