This time of year I like to check back on some of the hunts I wrote about earlier in the year. One I looked forward to reviewing this year was that special trophy hunt up in Quebec (See August, 1998 issue, pages 4-5) on offer through Dunn's Sport Hunting. This was the hunt that was to be fielded with the express purpose of taking a new world record caribou. Well, I'm sorry to report that this hunt had to be canceled because the caribou hadn't migrated into reasonable proximity of the main camp by the season's end. This outfitter was very much up front about the possibility of cancellation if the caribou did not cooperate. He says the most likely explanation for the herd's change in behavior this year was unusually hot weather, though errant behavior of caribou in that part of the world has become almost the norm of late. At any rate, he says the intended hunting area didn't receive frost until the beginning of October. The outfitter didn't see even a cow caribou until mid-September. By early December, however, when he faxed me an update on the hunt, he had an estimated 250,000 animals in his immediate area! The good news is, he is planning to conduct this special trophy hunt next October with the same understanding that it may be canceled with advance notice.
I believe this opportunity is so unique it deserves another brief review. Continuing subscribers will remember this hunt is a collaborative effort of two different outfits from the James Bay region. Both have extensive experience in guiding and outfitting caribou hunts. They are hunting in the newly-opened western sectors (LeGrande) of Quebec and they are targeting the Leaf River herd, which is recognized by many to have the genetics to produce world-class bulls. The hunting territory covers 1,514 square kilometers. These are native-controlled lands, too, which are not open to outfitters from the Schefferville and Fort Chimo regions. Outfits from these regions are not allowed to cross the 73rd meridian. The upshot is, there are only three outfitters in this region, compared to 23 in the........(continued)