Hunting Buffalo.


March 2, 2003, 09:44 AM
I have always wanted to go on a trip and hunt a buffalo, and yesterday my dad and me went to our friends store. Our friend owns his own meat store. And hanging in the cooler was 1017 pounds of buffalo. This just makes me want to hunt one even more. So I was wondering if anyone here has had any good experiences. I was also wondering about how much a buffalo hunt would cost and what states offer the nicer buffalo.

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Art Eatman
March 2, 2003, 10:15 AM
All I know is from gunzines and hunting-rags. From the articles, there's all the thrill of walking out in the pasture and shooting a cow. There's no "hunt" to it.

Somebody takes you out to where they already know the herd is grazing. The buffalo stand around, grazing, or maybe just looking at you. Take aim, "Bang!", dead buffalo. That ain't much of a hunt.

Now, if they'd let you saddle up and shoot on the run, that might be different. With a bow, not a rifle. Buffalo have been known to do bad things to horses. Running horses have been known to fall down, with occasional problems for the riders.

Sorta like the difference between golf and car racing. There's no risk in golf, which makes it about as interesting as watching ice melt.

:), Art

March 2, 2003, 10:50 AM
And I understand the "cost per pound" is sometimes right up there with fishin' for really big bass ... :D

March 2, 2003, 11:00 AM
Ok so lets say I want to kill a Buffalo. And there is a risk in golf. I have been playing many times when I very glad someone yelled Fore.

March 2, 2003, 11:18 AM
Talked to a fellow who went on a hunt locally. Basicallly, you buy an animal at current market rates (per lb?). It is turned loose on about 5000 or so acres of pasture land a week before your hunt. You gotta go find it and kill it.
According to the person I talked to it's not as easy as it sounds. First time they approached it they were spotted. He said they run a lot faster than you think they can. Took an hour or two to relocate it.
I could probably get a phone number or other info if you'd like.

March 2, 2003, 12:18 PM
When I posted I didn't notice you were from Michigan. Ever check out Sunrize Acres? You can hunt buffalo with Ted Nugent as your guide for a mere $4,000.

March 2, 2003, 01:14 PM
There are several states in which you can put in for a draw to hunt wild Bison on public land. Wyoming and Arizona are two that i know of I think Montana has a draw for them as well. New Mexico used to have a draw for it's wild herd but the Anti's got it stopped a few years ago.

The way I look at "ranch" hunting one is just a little more enjoyable way of going to the meat department and buying a half ton of meat. But if you really want some buffalo meat, and it is great meat, why not??

There are several place in NM that will let you shoot a cow or a young bull (AKA tender meat). for like $800 or $900. My buddy and I were thinking about spliting the cost and shooting one just for the meat it's actually a pretty good price per pound for Buffalo. Of course I'd have to shoot t with my .45-70 or my .54 great plains rifle just because I'm a geek..;)

March 2, 2003, 01:37 PM
Alaska has a couple herds of wild woodland bison. I guarantee you it's not like "walking out into a pasture and shooting a cow."


Art Eatman
March 2, 2003, 11:10 PM
Keith, what part of the state? Are they legal to hunt? Are they wild enough to really be a fair-chase challenge? For sure, the mag-writers haven't written anything that I've run across.

It's good to hear of "real" bison...


March 3, 2003, 08:58 AM
Thanks for the information. And Sisco I don't need a number but thanks anyway. I am only 16 and I hope to one day hunt/kill a buffalo. Weither it is when i am 60 or 25. It is just one of my goals in life.

March 3, 2003, 11:25 AM

There are two herds; one in the Delta Junction area and another in unit 19, a roadless area west of the Alaska range.

And yeah, they are legal to hunt on a drawing permit and totally wild. One of the worst areas the Iditarod race crosses is a place they call the "buffalo tunnels". It's a forested region where some of these bison winter and plow deep trenches through the snow. Lot's of scary and funny stories about dog teams running into buffalo in these trenches (the tunnels).


March 6, 2003, 10:41 AM
First time they approached it they were spotted. He said they run a lot faster than you think they can.

They ran? Never saw that before. I wish this guy would have run or at least walked a bit quicker.

March 7, 2003, 02:44 AM
5pt,pop over to accurate arms forum and do a search there are several post on them,some are as Art says a "shoot" but there are some hunts out there,
Ray Atkinson, has one thats will just wear you out according to those who have done it.

March 7, 2003, 10:50 PM
Chuck Adams has an article about archery buffalo hunts in the Jan/Feb issue of Bowhunter magazine. From what he says in the article, sounds like a great hunt opportunity if you get a chance to draw a permit. The hunts were in Arizona (Kaibab Palteau) and Utah (Henry Mtns). Talks about how the buffs are super alert, and one that was a little "pi$$ed off" that he got an arrow in him - came after him and almost gored him in the leg.


Dave McCracken
March 8, 2003, 05:23 AM
I'd love to take a Bison under Fair Chase rules with an old firearm like a Sharps Big Fifty or a Hawken style Mountain rifle. Even one of the Italian replica Rolling Blocks in something like 45-90. Too many Wild West movies, I guess.

If my shoulder wouldn't act up, I'd even like to do it with a bow. Or, to get really atavistic, flint tipped darts from an Atlatl.

March 9, 2003, 02:48 PM
I have a good friend that did a South Dakota "ranch" hunt for bison. said it was alot like hunting a bulldozer and he'll never do it again. the most important thing is WHERE the bison dies. You gotta get him into a truck or something.
Bison meat is great. I've bought some at a locker in Casper WY and also in Sturgis SD.

March 9, 2003, 03:11 PM
Why do you have to get him into a truck or something? If people are too crippled up to pack meat, maybe they should take up fishing. That sounds like an excuse to road hunt penned cattle, er, bison...


Dave Renn
March 13, 2003, 01:41 AM
Arizona has buffalo. Tags are on a drawing basis and cost $750.00 residents and $1000.00 non-resident. (refundable if you do not draw.

Our buffalo are located in 2 parcels. Raymond ranch is truely "pasture" buffalo. They are easy to kill and Game & Fish will usually assist in recovery.

House Rock Ranch is another story altogether. 60,000 acres of land. NO fences. In fact the buffalo herd tends to migrate on and off of an adjacent wilderness area. This is tough hunting; you actually have to find 'em, hunt 'em and hopefully kill 'em. If you are lucky enough to kill one, YOU are required to recover YOUR animal YOURSELF. No help from game and fish. Worse yet, some parts of the ranch are closed to vehicles. It should be noted that area horse packers have their "shingle" up at the game and fish office on the Ranch. Usually a couple pack strings hangin' out waitin' for rough country work. Ain't Capitalism great.

For those interested, the Phoenix Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation has a special Buffalo tag issued by Az. Game and Fish. It will be auctioned at our banquet on May 10, 2003. It is good for 30 days of hunting on House Rock Ranch only. If interested contact me at

Watch yer 6!
Dave Renn

Art Eatman
March 13, 2003, 10:02 AM
Aw, now, Keith! If a gutted-out buffalo weighs a thousand pounds, how many trips would it take you to pack him out? By the time you got done puffing and panting, either the last of the meat would be spoiled or something big, mean and full of teeth would be arguing with you over property rights!

Heck, I've been known to let Bambi wander a bit closer to a jeep trail before I touched off Ol' Pet, just to save on hauling! Why add unnecessary work to the day's load?

:D, Art

March 13, 2003, 01:40 PM

How much does a moose weigh? Thousands of people fly into remote country every year to bag one and they pack them out on their back in country far worse than anything in North Dakota.
My objection is based on the flat statement that you "gotta" get him into a truck. The implication is that the only way to hunt a large critter is next to a road.

Sorry, but that's just baloney, an excuse.


Art Eatman
March 13, 2003, 05:38 PM
Never having been a moose-gooser...

Anyhow, all the stories I've read about moose hunts and elk hunts and suchlike, where the critters are pretty sizable, usually involve several people, often with horses, and all that sort of community effort.

But I've always pretty much been a solo hunter. The hunting is fun. The final shot is fun. Then the fun's over and the work begins. I'm admittedly on the lazy side, so I generally try to figure out how to minimize the workload. :) Once in a while my bright ideas even work!

It seems to me that 1 fella + 1 back-of-beyond bison = a bunch of work, a bunch of miles.

:), Art

March 13, 2003, 09:45 PM
Buffalo is just a cow in drag. I've read several newspaper stories recently about stockyards selling them to raise. Like a cow you just call it for supper one night and get it with a nailgun or a .22 in the forehead. :rolleyes:

March 14, 2003, 11:08 PM
In my younger years I'd go anywhere to get a whitetail and wound up with some memorable drag-outs. Lately I find myself getting real picky about location, even in archery. When I spot venison two things come to mind - (1) How close am I to a four-wheeler trail and (2) Can I drop it without having to chase it too far.

This year at the last light, on the last Friday of the firearms season I filled both anterless tags on two shots within 50 yards of the camp. I had to let the second one clear the building before dropping it. Beautiful. I still got the four-wheeler to retrieve 'em.

Art Eatman
March 15, 2003, 09:27 AM
M&M, did you know that at one time, every person who'd tried to work with buffalo to tame or domesticate them was either seriously injured or killed? This was back in the 1890-1920 period. Every person.

"There's cows, and then there's cows." I've worked cows out of mesquite thickets that could give "wild" lessons to deer. That ain't fun. And down in the cane brakes along the lower Rio Grande are feral cattle that have been known to charge pickup trucks and men on horseback. "What's that in your saddle-scabbard?" ".416 Rigby."

:), Art

March 15, 2003, 06:19 PM
Well, apparantly they've succeeded. I think the entire north american herd is descended from just a few individuals and all across the south there are domesticated herds and herds of 1/2 to 1/4 bison and 1/2 to 3/4 cow. And a nail gun is pretty formidable at close range. :D

Actually in the original post I suppose I should have put in a smilie face denoting tongue in cheek humor but these smiles aren't as good as the old TFL ones. .:p

March 15, 2003, 08:51 PM
1000 pounds of Buffalo would yield about 250 pounds of Jerky.

Need about 110 Gallons of Kikkoman Soy Sauce, 55 Gallons of Lea & Perrins, 5 pounds garlic and 10 pounds black pepper to. Maybe add 10 pounds of ground cumin or oregano for just a bit more kick!


March 19, 2003, 12:14 AM
And 'bout a pound of habanero.


St. Gunner
March 19, 2003, 09:59 AM
Art the feral cattle are not just in the canebrakes anymore. Place we hunt put 100head of cows and a couple bulls onto 2,000acres. That was 30yrs ago, they worked em for the first time a couple years ago, trying to get them all out. They got the ones stupid enough to go into a huge trap they built, then pushed em into pens on bulldozers and tractors with blades. Those that didn't get trapped or jumped the 7' fence to escape are not the nicest critters in the world. We went to work some young pups one day and bayed one of those beasts, it was not pretty.:D I set a new record in the mile run another day when a cripple decided to hunt me and I didn't want to have to shoot it. You know a 12 gauge with slugs looks about like a .22 when 1500lbs of pissed off rogue bull is coming at you from across a cactus patch. :uhoh: The guy I work with put 3rds of 20gauge #3 buck into ones head from 15yds away and the sucker never flinched, the tranquilizer they had hit him with finally took effect shortly after and they got him tied and loaded. Sold him 3 days later, no ill effects from that buckshot. :what: We've had some other less fun events with those rogues over the years, but the nice thing is most of the time they are spookier than deer and run like crazy at the sight, scent, or sound of a person. You'd be more likely to shoot a 10pt buck in that pasture than get within range of one of those rogues.:D

March 20, 2003, 12:33 AM
Why not sell "Buffalo Shares?"

1 Share = 100 Pounds of Buffalo Meat.

I would Buy 2 Shares.

Art Eatman
March 20, 2003, 08:42 AM
I started traipsing around behind my grandfather on his ranch back around 1940. I figured out early on that anything that's 20 to 50 pounds heavier than I am is not something to trifle with, whether two legs or four. Even an old muley cow can demonstrate an uncomfortable bit of mother-love.

I later read of the trials, tribulations, injuries and deaths of bison tamers, and then about the sometimes-sad interactions of hunters and African buffalo. Sometime in the 1980s I read of the "canebrake cows" of the Rio Grande.

"There's cows, and then there's cows." Some never do more than stand around and stare at you, thinking only of the next mouthful of grass. There are those others that stare at you, speculating on the pleasures of stomping a mudhole in your sorry butt. :)

Use enough gun.


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