View Full Version : buffalo "hunt"

January 5, 2009, 10:17 PM
has anybody done a buffalo "hunt"?

my dad and his bud are talking about a buffalo hunt this year.

i realise its basically a big "pen hunt". but as far as i can find out this is the only way to hunt them.

the prices seem to be on an average:
$1700.00 cow hunt(500lb-900lb cow)
$2500.00 meat hunt(1000lb-1700lb bull)
$3500.00 trophy hunt(2000+lb bull)

i think it would be cool to have a buffalo hide blanket, not to mention 500lbs or so of buffalo meat.

what do you guys think?

January 5, 2009, 11:00 PM
Ever eat buffalo? 500 pounds would last me a lifetime.

On the bright side, you'd get that authentic Wild West experience... kind of like dynamite fishing.

January 5, 2009, 11:06 PM
I am thinking of harvesting a young bull myself. Try shooting one off horseback with a bow for the ultimate in authenticity. :D

January 5, 2009, 11:32 PM
I knew a guy who donated XXX,XXX dollars to the state dept. of wildlife and they "thanked" him by allowing him to take a bull from the state managed herd. The "hunt" consisted of them driving out with a pickup to the herd taking five minutes to "pick the one he liked" and taking a shot from the truck bed (granted with a T/C Contender) at 40 yards.

If you really just want meat or a mount or both I'd get a hold of a bison rancher. I know a few and find they are very accomodating. Some of the ones I know do offer hunts but they laugh because it's a similar experience to what I described above. You may come out cheaper just buying the products directly from them.

Archery IMHO would be a bit different story than firearms. Ask yourself "How difficult is it to shoot/arrow a cow?" because that's about the challenge of it IMHO. I'm not trying to bag on you or anything like that. To each his own. I'm just simply stating what my opinion is.

I would say explore your options but first define for yourself and nobody else what you consider to be a "hunt."

January 6, 2009, 01:28 AM
i looked around at just buying a buffalo from a ranch, but they were wanting from $900-$1500(depending on the size).

with the "hunt" you get to stay in a cabin, get fed, and on a few, if you get your animal on the first day, they take you to shoot coyotes or prairie dogs.

January 6, 2009, 04:50 AM
For my 2 cents

I think maybe there is a buffalo hunt and then there is a buffalo shoot.There are semi-domestic buffalo and then(at least I hope!) there is the big country on foot black powder wild buffalo hunt.

I guess I'm saying maybe it doesn't have to be quite like shooting an Angus.

And,I suppose if I bought an Angus for the table,maybe I wouldn't shoot him through the slats with a 50-90 in the field.Might take him someplace with a concrete floor and a front end loader,and do it more slaughterhouse style.

I guess I'm thinking of ordering a 50-90 barrel for a rolling block action soon

I'm thinking of a more wild hunt.

January 6, 2009, 06:55 AM
i looked for a "more wild" hunt. the best i could find is a place on 2700 acres with 2 50 head herds. you horse/ATV up to "the area" and walk in to get your shot.

i plan on using a encore in 45/70(if i do the "hunt")

hibc, so far from what i have found what you are hoping for doesnt exist.

January 6, 2009, 07:15 AM
I have a buddy who was telling me he knows where I can shoot an old bull for around $1500. I guess this ranch that his brother used to work for has sold off all the bison and has a couple of old cranky bulls that they can't get in to ship off. All these old boys would be good for is the hide and horns as I can't imagine the meat tasting any good on these old SOB's. I guess these old boys are pretty cautious and it will not be as easy to get as you think. Both of these old bulls are over 2000+ pounds and the ranch just wants the gone, only thing they will help you with is a tractor if you can get the bull down where the tractor can get to it.

Same buddy and his brother just got back from a trip to Utah to hunt free ranging bison as well. Said it was the toughest hunt he ever did, chasing these beasts in dark timber and above timberline. He said these animals were far tougher to hunt than any elk he has ever chased. It was a cow hunt and they didn't fill their tag, as weather didn't cooperate. I think this herd runs some where in the Henry Mountains of Utah. If you ever want to hunt a bull in that State you better start applying as soon as you can, my friends brother gave up trying to get one after 10 years of applying and got his cow tag. He is in his late 40's and figured that he better hunt it now or he might never draw a tag in his lifetime.

IIRC there is a free ranging herd up in Montana that a person could hunt as well.

January 6, 2009, 08:10 AM
I met a guy who had just completed a buffalo "hunt" in Wyoming. He said he showed up at the ranch and the buffalo was in a pen. The owner said, "You want me to turn him loose in the pasture or just shoot him here?" The hunter said "Whatever is easiest for you."

Turns out - shooting him in the pen was easiest for the owner so the hunter shot him right there.

To me, that isn't a hunt. And while I'd love to go on a buffalo hunt, and I've researched it myself, shooting a animal in a pen just doesn't work for me and I've more or less marked buffalo off my hunting list.

January 6, 2009, 11:12 AM
Shooting a buffalo isn't a hunt. The ranchers I know call it a "cull".

There's an ol' boy in northern New Mexico that runs a ranch, and I've bought a couple of buffalo from him. They're usually shot on open range to some extent, but it's not a "sporting" hunt.

It's for the meat and hide, just like it was back in the 1800's. They weren't all that hard to "hunt" then eithier, I'd imagine. Any difficulties on a buffalo shoot don't usually start until the animal is down. That's when the work begins.

The guy that went up after buffalo meat with me last year wants another one this year, so I'm going up with him next weekend as an extra skinner. My freezer is still full enough that I won't need another one 'till next year.

If you want a hunt that's sporting, try the wilderness hunt in Arizona. It's said to be the toughest hunt in the state. If you just want a buffalo for the meat and hide, try one of the private ranches. A large cow buffalo can be had for less than $1000.00, and it's good meat IMO.

January 6, 2009, 12:27 PM
my father took a nice bull bison in west texas near shafter...which by the was free ranging not a "canned hunt". Hunt Texas.

January 6, 2009, 12:54 PM
hi troy,,,check out Lee Haws ranch,,,he does a buff hunt in the old west style,, you stay in tee-pees or dugouts right in the buff camp,,he hauls your stuff in on a truck and then it's you and 3-4 other hunter the guides and skinners,,and the horses,,,,a step back in time for sure,,,,,i think the herd is in the 150-200 animal range on 12,000 acre ranch in Kansas,,, near dodge city,,everything is included in the price except the butcher

i have hunted with him twice and it was a great experiance both times

his no. is 1-620-369-2204

give him a call,,, he is a great guy


January 6, 2009, 04:00 PM
Troy, do it, you probably won't regret it! Been on two such "canned" hunts, one of them was for wild boar (trapped in Georgia, shipped to Tioga, PA)...don't let anyone tell you it's a canned hunt!

Got charged by a 200 pounder from 60 yards, snarling and slashing and bent on putting me in a world of hurt...finally dropped it at 30 yards.

That was a serious adrenaline rush!



buddy got a 400 pounder with a bow; this is just the skin!

Lots of meat!!

Dr. A
January 6, 2009, 04:17 PM
Several years ago in my area the bottom fell out of the Bison business, and several were culled. I have a friend that had me to cull the herd a little at a time so he could sell the carcases down the road at our exotic meat butcher.

Anyone that has hunted real wild game will no doubt be dissapointed, and you will certainly understand how the bison of the 19th century got shot up so easily and fast. They are slow to move unless something really upsets them. It was nothing for me to shot all five within 30 feet of each other. These herds were maintained on pastures that were well over 3,000 acres, and would probably be considered "wild" by some of these hunting ranches. It is much more of a buffalo shoot. I still learned alot, and appreciate a 2 or 3 year old cow for their tender meat as apposed to shooting the biggest bull on the place. 600# of meat didn't last long in my family:D Go shoot your Bison and realize that you are saving someone from having to haul a live Bison and then humanely euthanize before butchering. Shooting is just much more safe.

January 6, 2009, 04:25 PM
Here is a quote I found on a guy who has hunted bison in the Henry Mountains of Utah.

The wild buffalo herd on the Henry Mountains in Utah is about as wild as they get. We spent 3 4day weekends down there hunting Buffalo. Those animals are like mountian goats. Many times we saw herds of buffalo on 12,000 ft mountain peaks, just like Goats. We had horses down there and followed a herd which covered over 26 miles in 1 day. Rough country to say the least. We had several in range on different occasions, but never tagged the right one. My Father-in-law had a tag on the Henries a couple years before we went down and they hunted for 5 days before they even saw a buff, which he shot (3 yr old bull).

January 6, 2009, 04:45 PM
We are talking about what might be the dumbest animal in existence. In the 1800s they sat on hills and hunted a herd for hours or days without the herd noticing. Wild cows don't move much either.

January 6, 2009, 06:31 PM
A feller in CO, has a big ranch and has Buffalo etc. He processes most as meat but does let some folks pay to "hunt". Most often the hunter will "stalk" one but usually he hauls them on the truck and they shoot out of the bed. One time the hunter wanted to "bow hunt" one... Well after the guy had missed a couple times and failed to kill the animal clean with one arrow left, he used his heavy "brushguard" to knock down the buffalo HARD and hollered at the hunter... "Ya think you can kill the poor bugger now?"...:eek:

January 6, 2009, 07:18 PM
every video i've seen of 'hunting' these animals... is not even a hunt. i've seen videos of them in wide open land, have a truck drive up not 50 yards from them and take a shot off the hood of the truck to down the thing.

I'm going to have to agree that this animal is really dumb. videos of them being shot... seemingly not even caring that they just got shot, and then after a bit collapse. gun shots going off, the heard barely lifts and eye. i honestly dont know how these things didnt get wiped out sooner.

its like they stand there waiting to get killed and really dont care that you are there, nor that their buddy just got dropped, nor that guns are going off not 50 yards from them. let alone a pickup driving up to them. and then even when hit they dont even seem to run. i've seen like 5 videos or more of these animals shot where they dont appear to be in a pen...and they get shot, have basically no reaction to it, its almost like they keep grazing until their blood pressure drops enough that they pass out.

heck i'd shoot one and utilize its meat/get the head mounted/tan the hide ect...but wouldn't ever consider it a hunt. a slaugher, a killing, a 'cull' , 'getting meat' ect but the word hunt would never come up.

January 7, 2009, 08:30 PM
Ive know a couple of ppl who have paid to do these One worked out a deal that the owner kept the hide and skull to sell and all he had to pay was by the pound not sure what the tally was on that one but the tbone steaks sure were good. The meat seems like it would be well worth the price dont get and old one even the gravy would be tough.

January 7, 2009, 10:24 PM
The truly wild herds of buffalo are probably the smartest animal I have ever seen. The herd in the Henry mountains of Utah is as wild as they come. I personally know two hunters who after over a decade of applying finally got their tags. Both hunted for over 10 days, never got one. They saw them almost every day, Could never get into range. If its just a meat hunt go for it, the meat is great. If you wanta real hunt, check out some of the bigger ranches, they are still fenced but some of those ranches are 10,000 plus acres.

January 12, 2009, 10:20 AM
You city boys and your ideas about hunting! :D

You think an Indian would complain about how docile those plains buffalo are?

Hell, no. They'd just run the entire herd off a cliff! :D

January 12, 2009, 11:11 AM
has anybody done a buffalo "hunt"?



January 12, 2009, 10:59 PM
Oh honey, the prices really went up in the last 4 years. But then I live fairly close to areas that have bison hunting. 4 years ago, I did a bison hunt in southern Montana for $650. It was supposed to be a cow hunt on an open range type ranch, but the cows had yet to come down from the mountains in Nov, so I got to shoot a 2year old bull for the same price. 1 shot at 82 yards from my Marlin 45-70 with a Winchester Partition Gold 300gr, a through and through, brought him cleanly down. They gutted and loaded it onto my Dodge Dakota, and I had him skinned and quartered at a processor in Bozeman for $100.. Then drove home to southern Wyoming, where friends helped me butcher and pack. 2 families and me ate well for a year. Plus a European mount skull and hair on hide made for a great experience.

January 12, 2009, 11:51 PM
from what ive been seeing its approx $300 for skinning, and processing.

January 12, 2009, 11:56 PM

If you guys want to read a fantastic book about
a modern "wild" buffalo hunt, pick this up --

One of the best books I have ever read.

American Buffalo: In search of a lost Icon



January 15, 2009, 10:20 AM
There are free range woodland buffalo hunts in alberta. Google Alberta bison outfitters hunt. Ive done some research the last few days and it is a true hunt.

January 20, 2009, 09:38 AM
Doctor, I was just about to type the same thing. I got the book for X-mas, it was a great great read. A young man who is in love with hunting and the history of the buffalo wins a lottery to hunt a buffalo on Alaska's public land. He documents his research, preparation, and experience pursuing the buffalo. It is great as a scientific read and from the perspective of a hunter.

January 21, 2009, 10:57 AM
I went on a buffalo kill in Oct. 08 in Nebraska. It wasn't much of a hunt compared to whitetail but I knew that going in so no big surprise. I picked a meat hunt and shot a 1 1/2 old bull about 1000 lbs. The meat from that young bull is as good or better than any thing you can buy in the supper market and is better for you. I did it for the novelty and the meat, plus I got a nice skull and a 7 by 9 ft. hide out of the deal. 400 lbs. of meat takes a lot of the sting out of the $1500 it cost plus, now I'm the only kid on the block with a buffalo. They are tough critters so take enough gun and if you can shoot it about 2 inches below the ear for a kwick kill and you don't mess any meat up, those ribs are too tasty to waste.

January 21, 2009, 11:30 PM
My partner drew a Delta junction area bison tag a few years back this is the road accessible hunt here about half the land there is private and most landowners charge fees, but the other half is public land,and until late in the season at least a few will be there, later they tend to move onto military land, and though this to is public access can be difficult. I went with him as back up,on the hunt a hunter orientation is required and the tag is for bull or cow only so one be sure off the animals sex or risk fines and losing the animal, this would not seem to be a problem until you see a bison furred up for an Alaskan winter. While I have heard of people driving up to the herd picking the animal and shooting I don't believe this is the norm with these animals , and certainly not on our hunt.Trip one we went for orientation with our two 12 yr olds spent the rest of that day and the next scouting, had to leave for school & work. Part two back at Delta spent two more days scouting and chasing herds, set up and ambush the next day at first light saw the herd moving our way but they cut into the spruce about 1/4 mi away, so we had to make a quick move while the herd didn't do what we hoped they did present a shot that yielded a large fat cow. The rest of that day and the next were spent taking care of and moving meat through knee deep snow.Lots of fun and as much of a hunt as any. Alex

January 24, 2009, 01:08 AM
Oh honey, the prices really went up in the last 4 years. But then I live fairly close to areas that have bison hunting. 4 years ago, I did a bison hunt in southern Montana for $650. It was supposed to be a cow hunt on an open range type ranch, but the cows had yet to come down from the mountains in Nov, so I got to shoot a 2year old bull for the same price. 1 shot at 82 yards from my Marlin 45-70 with a Winchester Partition Gold 300gr, a through and through, brought him cleanly down. They gutted and loaded it onto my Dodge Dakota, and I had him skinned and quartered at a processor in Bozeman for $100.. Then drove home to southern Wyoming, where friends helped me butcher and pack. 2 families and me ate well for a year. Plus a European mount skull and hair on hide made for a great experience.

This wouldn't be one of Uncle Ted's Buffs would it? He also offers a trophy bull hunt but it is pretty expensive.

January 25, 2009, 01:55 AM
Friend of mine, Jack Huntington hunts as much as he can, and, he's got a huge buffalo head on the wall. It's one of the most spectacular trophies you can get in the US, and, the meat is fantastic.

Here's a couple shots a shot of one of Jack's .500jrh taken buffalo:

Here's one of Jacks buffalos. This maybe the head on the wall:


I can't think of anything that is more a part of American History then a bison.

Jack's phone number is:
ring him up, and ask him what he'd suggest for a place to hunt.

Haven't done it, but, I might like one of those heads for a piece of history..

Here's a great link on the subject:
you might browse the below link, and find some information that's helpful