Every moose is big, but the Wyoming moose is the least big. Most record-keeping organizations have the Wyoming moose living south of the 49th parallel, west of the Great Plains. Hunting one of these moose can be expensive if you don’t draw a limited-entry tag.
Odds of drawing are low, especially in good areas. I was drawn in a “once in a lifetime” area of Wyoming for moose and didn’t see a moose hair in my area, let alone a whole moose.
Rather than wait the 80 or so years to draw another tag somewhere, I bid on a Utah Governor’s-type tag at a Foundation for North American Wild Sheep banquet. The money that I spent for it went toward conservation efforts in Utah, and the hunt was every bit as exciting as a moose hunt anywhere.
Although smaller than its northern cousins, the Wyoming moose that I tagged was impressive. But then I figure that any animal that stands a foot taller than me at the shoulder and has 50-inch-wide antlers is impressive. The largest Wyoming moose ever recorded had 53-inch antlers and scored 205 4/8 points. Wyoming has been the hotspot, but from what I saw, Utah gets my vote.
Canada moose are the middle-sized of the moose subspecies. They inhabit the forest and swamp country north of the 49th parallel and are the most affordable of the moose subspecies for nonresidents to hunt.
A Canada moose hunt can be had in Newfoundland for less than $3,000 if you aren’t interested in big antlers. Whoever said that you can’t eat antlers is correct. Moose meat, on the other hand, is some of the finest eating to be had.
If it’s big-antlered Canada moose you desire, then British Columbia is my pick. I’ve hunted moose across the province and have taken half a dozen with my Knight muzzleloader that top 50 inches-the magic number for big Canada moose. The hunts in this province tend to be more expensive, but the chance for a big bull are better. The biggest Canada moose ever recorded was taken in British Columbia in 1980, a monster that scored 242 B&C points. It had antlers that measured 63 inches wide with 31 points. The minimum score for entry into the B&C record book is 195 inches.
The biggest of the big is the Alaska-Yukon moose, the giant creature that lives north of the 60th parallel in Alaska, the Yukon Territories and the Northwest Territories. These great beasts are also, by virtue of supply and demand, the most expensive of the moose to hunt for nonresidents.
A good hunt in a good area will cost upward of $7,000 and can be as much as $11,000 in a high-quality trophy area where a hunter might reasonably expect to see a bull with 70-inch-wide antlers.
In spite of the extra cost to hunt them, they don’t taste any better than their southern cousins. It’s just that there’s a lot more of them to taste. A giant bull can tip the scales at nearly 2,000 pounds and have antlers that span 80 inches.