Subscriber Leo W. Mack Jr.'s report in the January, 1998 issue on a "Governor's" auction tag hunt for free-ranging bison in Utah's Henry Mountains (see pages 10-11) generated so much interest that we looked a bit deeper into the subject of free-ranging bison. What we found is, there are also free-ranging bison that are eligible for the Boone & Crockett Record Book in southwestern South Dakota's Custer State Park, located in the Black Hills. The current B & C Record Book (10th Edition, 1993) lists four bison from this hunt in the all-time top-25.
Here is the text of an information sheet we recently received on this hunt from Ron Walker, Resource Program Manager for Custer State Park: "The 1998/99 season for bison bulls will be proposed in March of this year. Traditionally, we propose a total of 10 permits; however, the number for the upcoming season has yet to be determined. After the seasons have been proposed and finalized, applications will be prepared and mailed out in May, 1998. We will be proposing two types of hunts again this year. Our traditional three-day guided hunt is conducted from a vehicle. The permit fee is $3,000. The deadline for applications will be mid-September 1998, at which time the drawing will be conducted and the applicants notified of their status. Hunts will be scheduled beginning approximately November 23, 1998 through January 15, 1999. Our five-day guided horseback hunt will be held the week of October 18, 1998. The hunt is conducted on horseback out of an outfitted backcountry camp. The camp is remote - accessible only on foot or horseback. Permit applications and deadlines will be announced. The permit fee is $10,000, accommodations included. Please call us if you are interested in this hunt. The only permitted arms are center fire rifles capable of generating 2,200 foot-pounds at the muzzle. The black powder 45-70 meets this criteria. Muzzleloaders and archery equipment cannot be used on this hunt. Both hunts include the bull in its entirety, field transportation, guide and field handling of the animal to its processing point. Taxidermy work including caping is not included.".........(continued)