Moose season coming but are there any left?

With the annual moose season just around the corner, hunters like our pal ‘Iggy’ (shown in the above photo) are chomping at the bit to get back to nature for the annual pursuit of the beloved swamp donkey known as Bullwinkle.

For those enthusiasts who still hunt moose in Northern Ontario, it will be interesting to see how this fall turns-out given recent changes set forth by the MNRF, following the announcement that moose pops. in the north are in rough shape. Even the QC side has seen its share of decline in some areas, from reports I’ve heard.

All this to say that the status of the herd and moose numbers will not deter those who enjoy it…

In recent years, my father and members of our deer gang have taken-up hunting moose with crossbow during the brief ‘bull only’ season which runs for little over 1 week in the Quebec Laurentians, around our deer camp. Although I haven’t taken-up crossbow hunting yet, I do join the gang on the first weekend of the season(Oct 2), put up some trail cams for deer and try out a few calls with the boys. Of course this fall, the QC Government will be slashing our bush all to hell with a ‘selective harvest’ planned for the entire mountain beside our camp.

There goes the country for a few years…but I digress

For those who still make the effort to hunt moose each fall, the reward can be as little as enjoying the sights and sounds of the northwoods during early fall, while for others it may be as successful as one, or even two, moose harvested in camp. Either way you look at it, pursuing moose is a special and longstanding tradition enjoyed (sadly) by less and less people these days.

For those about to moose hunt – we salute you!!



21 thoughts on “Moose season coming but are there any left?”

  1. actually two years ago I had to take my time getting out of my chevy truck to get a small baby moose across the off ramp where the new tanger mall was and force it to back into the field.The little guy looked like a tasty snack but my wife made me make him run back into the field until he was at a safe distance

  2. Our moose hunt in Northern Ontario has been in bad shape for about 5 years now. Year after year, it has been getting progressingly worse. Last year, we did not get even a sight of one – not even at a distance. We saw only a few sets of fresh tracks, and not a sound of a bull anywhere. We’ve changed locations, changed our timing, and even adopted new tactics (like having a presence in the field all day long.)

    This year, I’ve decided to take that vacation time and money and save it for a trip to Jamaica in February. One other guy in our group is also taking a break this year, while the three others have decided to make it a week-long fishing trip. I’m sure they will explore the field somewhat – but essentially we are taking a year off.

    It’s a sad state of affaires. We all love the hunt and have the best of times at the camp, but we just can’t justify the cost of time and money towards something that has left us empty handed for the 5 years.

    I would like to know what is causing the decline in sightings. we have a theory that the weather has been one to two weeks late (warmer) than in past years. we are hitting 20 degree sunshine when there should be a dusting of snow on the ground. That’s the best that we have come up with. We don’t believe there are more hunters out there creating more pressure on the moose – in fact we beleive we are seeing less hunters every year.

    What are your thoughts on this?


    1. GPG, it is both sad and discouraging to hear that you’re ‘hanging up the moose gun’ for this year. Sad because of the joy and camaraderie you’ll be missing out on, and discouraging to see how bad the moose situation, in some areas, has become.

      I feel for you buddy. I mean, I haven’t moose hunted in probably 6 years, but its not for lack of moose..just lack of time, and I still do join my guys at camp to partake in the camaraderie portion of the trip.


  3. Lol, that Jeff is probably the smallest bull moose we’ve ever taken. I figure in 24 years of moose hunting we’ve taken over 50 moose and half have been bulls.
    Anyhow, my clothes are now hanging on the line airing out after being washed in no scent soap, my meal is made ( we all make one dinner) and it’s supposed to be a meal of pride. I’ve got some odds and ends to tend to but other than that I’m pretty much ready to go next week. Pretty disappointing but we won’t get into camp until next Friday around noon. We asked to go in a day early but they want 300 bucks a night so we passed even though it would have been fun to scout before the season officially opens on Saturday. I guess the outfitter needs to make a buck too. Scouting on the job works too.
    Anyhow it’s all exciting and I plan to do a diary so that I can look back and remember the whole trip

    1. And Yes, Outfitters aren’t cheap and tend to charge for everything..should you do well there this year, I wouldn’t be surprised if they ‘assist’ you on subsequent hunts. This would ONLY work if you hunt the first week..after that, you’re not likely to be allowed to show up early. All the outpost camps are usually booked from week to week.

  4. GPG
    We have seen the same nunber of moose and the weather has been about the same. One year it was warmer but most years we are getting below zero some nights. However our tags have dropped off so drastically that it’s not worth the time effort or money to travel that far. So we switched to Quebec. We are guaranteed two tags, one third the driving time. No flights to restrict gear and a change of scenery. We’ll see how it goes
    Only one issue really so far. The Quebec government raised non resident tags by one hundred dollars per person

    1. Iggy wrote; “So we switched to Quebec. We are guaranteed two tags, one third the driving time. No flights to restrict gear and a change of scenery”

      Funny you should mention that is the subject of this week’s Pembroke Column!

      And hey, don’t be knocking that little of yours..a lot of hunters would give their eye teeth to even SEE a moose during the season!


  5. we have lots of moose where we hunt never had a problem seeing them .. we have tons of bears lots of wolves and lots of moose.. and we have natives that have a controlled hunt . these are all the issues that other areas have and the only difference is controlled native hunt

  6. We have lots of moose where we hunt (east of Sudbury). We never had a problem seeing them or shooting them with the camera. problem is getting tags for bull or cow. Numbers don’t appear to be down were we hunt but we are still affected by these new changes. re moving the calf hunt during the week before the deer hunt and the first week of the deer hunt. Still no tags this year but scouting around a few weeks ago a couple of calves were seen. so we aren’t giving up and for our group of six and the bonus is its mostly a time a year we get together because of the “joy and camaraderie” since we have been hanging around since grade school. Not ready to give that up. 🙂

  7. Well, we tried in vain to get a surplus tag after we drew blanks for the regular application.

    Between 2 of us, we had over 1800 attempts on the phone – each having 2 phones going non-stop. Unbelievable. The real teaser was getting through at least 6 times each and then right after it asked for French of English, it cut off . Talk about rage! lol

    It’s interesting that 1900 of the 9000’ish tags were issued for 21 A & B. Of those, 1000 were for cows! In the surplus tag period, they had 133 cow archery tags and 43? I think cow rifle tags.

    Odd that a province in dire loss of moose population wants to decimate the moose in 2 specific areas.

    Oh, that’s because they want the woodland caribou on 2 islands from Lake Superior to come onland and moose & caribou don’t exist well together (apparently brain worm).

    Very curious decisions by the MNRF. Oh to be a fly on the wall in their offices!

    So we’re not going moose hunting this year. Too frustrating and I can’t justify shooting a calf when they say the population is hurting. They should have cancelled that altogether.

    We’re looking at PQ for next year or going further North in Ontario.

  8. Hey OutdoorsGuy, good to see you at a home of your own! Speaking of moose, there have been multiple sightings in the Spencerville, North Augusta area now. Pretty soon I may be sitting on my porch calling them. We can only hope! We are back to the home camp at Kaladar this year after a successful fly-in last year. We will go back to the fly-in next year as the fishing was also crazy good in addition to filling a bull tag 5 minutes into opening morning, 100 yards behind camp, before half the group had even put got their boots on. I was happy to put my bull tag on it; that is until 3 days later when I had a monster, magazine cover, bull at 50-75 yards for about 10 minutes. Go figure! The other group on the lake took a huge bull, not the same one I saw, 2 days later. We never bothered to try to fill the cow tag after that as it was too warm, and we were worried about losing what we already had down.

    1. Well Tim, with the current moose troubles up north, perhaps the southern hunts will be the new thing. In our QC deer camp, we’ve been moose hunting with crossbow for past few years.
      Lots of moose in our deer country too, so why head 5-8 hours north to hunt them??


      1. I just received trailcam pics of a young bull moose that were taken 20 minutes from my house. Definitely a healthy young bull. I may not have to travel at all! 😉

        1. Right on and I guess if you have access to the area, you’re all set. Lets just say your ‘cost per pound’ would be considerably lower..


          1. Just saw another pic of a bull moose posted on flakebook. It was not the same moose as I saw a pic of month ago. There was also a sighting at the end of my road. Might be a good time to sit on my deck and call.

          2. There is that one minor detail about moose season here. I suspect one or more of these animals will end up with a tag on it.

  9. I heard one of the moose in this area got smoked on the 416, not sure if it’s true or not. Or gang successfully filled 2 calf tags last Monday, so I got to spend the rest of the week working in the woods at home. Nice when you can get moose so close to home!

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