New Zealand Stag, Tahr & Chamois Hunt #248

New Zealand Stag, Tahr & Chamois Hunt #248


Butch’s 21 point stag on this hunt

Butch and Joan hunted with this very fine outfitter a few years ago. They had a wonderful hunt and left feeling they also had made a good friend. They took Stag, Arapawa Ram, fished some great trout waters, toured his whole area seeing giant stags (500 class) and saw some huge 380 to 420 class elk, some very big fallow deer and more. He also has tahr and chamois and those were abundant as well!

Within a couple years after Butch and Joan got back, the outfitter killed the #1 SCI stag of 615! And he killed a number of others in the 400 to 575 class, as well. He recently started his own guide company to get more flexibility and freedom on how to do things. He will hunt you on foot, by helicopter, whatever it takes or whatever you prefer, and with your weapon of choice- rifle, or bow. If you want free ranging red stag, he has them – and we believe that right now he has the best and biggest free range stags on the two islands of New Zealand! If you want a giant estate stag- in the 500 to 600 class – he has them. If you want to climb glaciers for tahr- he will do it, or you can use a copter. If you want to hunt elk, sambar, rusa, turkey, wallaby, possum, a night rabbit hunt (Butch says awesomely good fun- but nuts!)- he will accommodate your needs. And do it well and with great good humor. Best hunting times are as follows: Stag March thru July- (roar is March and April).

Tahr March thru July- best hair is after May 1.

They have 100% success rate on all species with the exception of chamois, which has been running at about 90%. He hunts 5 free range properties and 7 fenced operations, including the property where Butch shot his stag. He has what we truly believe is the FINEST FREE RANGE STAG HUNT ON THE ISLAND! If you want a free range SCI book stag, this is the hunt! Stags run up to about 350” class on his free range hunts. And if you want GIANT ESTATE STAGS, HE HAS THOSE TOO.

New-Zealand-248-CTS-350-CLASS-STAG-300x225 Client report: “Hi Joan & Butch. My hunt in New Zealand could not have been better and was a dream come true. Outfitter was simply awesome. Just fill out the trip report form for me, and give him an A+ in every category. Feel free to use me as a reference. Thanks again for all your help. Kevin C.”

Another report- 6 clients:  Butch: Thanks for another awesome hunt. I killed a 390 stag and a record book tahr. He’s 13 inches and 9 inch bases. Dad killed a 400 stag and a 12 inch tahr. We swapped a Texas guided aoudad sheep hunt to this outfitter in exchange for the upgrades on our stags. (BUTCH’s note- Toby is one of our best aoudad outfitters)  The hunt was simply awesome, and the tahr hunting was the most exciting experience that I have ever had. Butch –You sure do know how to find them! WE all took our stags, boars, tahr. Thanks so much, Toby” (Toby is one of our premier elk outfitters in New Mexico.)

Another report: “Butch: I am sitting in Auckland airport as I write this email and I am so excited to tell you what a great hunt I just finished with Hunt #248. The hunt was everything that I could have hoped for with a 340″ plus red stag free ranging and a 9 year old Tahr that is just fantastic. If you have clients that are thinking about this hunt, they should jump on it. Good price, good animals and great people. Please use me as a reference, I would hunt with him again, anytime. Thank you, C T Martin”

And one more:
“Hi Butch. Had a great hunt with him. I highly recommend him. See the pictures below of two great trophies, including a huge free range stag. Feel free to use the photos, and I would be glad to be a reference. Thanks again!”

Species Available: Red Stag, Wapiti (Elk), Fallow Deer, Whitetail Deer, Sika Deer, Sambar Deer, Rusa Deer, Tahr, Chamois, Feral Goats, Arapawa Rams, Wild Boar, American Bison, Small Game, Water Fowl, Upland Birds AND Wild turkey.

Fishing: They have high quality fishing for most wild trout species; helicopter fly in trips; boat trolling, and even king Salmon available. Excellent water, highly qualified guides.

Lodging: Lodging varies with area hunted. For Stag accommodations he has a house in Hawea.  Four Bedrooms. Depending on how the hunt runs, either the guides cook meals at the house, or you will eat at the local pub. For Tahr, you overnight on the night before/after the hunt, at a local B&B.

During the Tahr hunt you stay in a Cabin in the mountains, right in the hunting area. It is basic, but very comfortable, with open fire and bunks. He can supply Sleeping Bags, if hunters do not wish to bring their own. For some hunts and species you may also stay at other facilities. Elk are done in the elk hut-sleeps 8. Many other options are available.









OUTFITTER STATES:  “On the tahr foot hunts, we use a mountain cabin. We get bulls from 11.5 inches up to 14 inch plus. We try to get 12 inch minimum. For the tahr heli-hunts, we use three different locations, depending on weather. In two of these locations, we stay at the local pub. The third has a lodge at the heli-base. For the red stag hunts, I use three different locations, depending on weather and availability of good sized stags. We stay in a local pub, motel or a hotel on these hunts. On the game estates that I use, I pay the owners the same fee for sizes ranging 300-350, so we always try for the biggest available within that size range. Same with free ranging, so within limits clients can try for the biggest one they find. It helps to be in good condition for the stags, as the hills can be a bit steep. The roar/rut varies from year to year depending on weather/temperature, but is likely we will get some noise by early to mid-March. This helps to locate the big stags. So it will be spot and stalk with the assistance of roaring to locate animals. The chamois are walking hunts, but helicopter gets us up to elevations first. We target mature animals with 9”+ horns.”

One of the areas he normally hunts is privately owned land (approximately 25,000 acres) and is bordered by government land of over 100,000 acres. It is not a fenced area. There are good numbers of deer, and it is not uncommon to see 100+ deer in a day, with 6-10 mature stags in a day. There are also chamois and wild boars in the same area. There are some pigs (free), so you may shoot one if seen (they are good eating and always fun).

This outfitter is a worldwide hunter in his own right and is a very experienced mountain hunter and guide around the globe. He has guided hunts on all the South Pacific species, and achieved a number of world record trophies for his clients, plus many that have made the Top 10 of SCI. He has also hunted extensively in the more unusual destinations of the world: Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Mexico, Slovakia, Spain and Mauritania, plus Alaska to name a few. His personal passion is mountain hunting. He has over 300 guided tahr hunts to his credit, with 100% success to date. And of course he has taken many hundreds of red stag, elk and the other common New Zealand animals with his clients. And uniquely, his background is in mountaineering and search & rescue, so he is well qualified to offer a safe but challenging hunting experience in the mountainous wilderness of New Zealand. Through training and experience, he has developed a great skill set to consistently perform with success in the extreme environments that tahr and chamois live in.

Hunts are normally based out of Queenstown (depending on exact area, about 1 hour drive). Non-hunters can stay in Queenstown while you are hunting. Ask for details about what to do in Queenstown; great fun place.

Many clients choose to rent them from the outfitter, as airlines are charging up to $300 round trip to transport firearms. If you decide to bring your own then follow this link:   You’ll find all information required to bring a firearm into New Zealand. You need to secure a visitor’s license for firearms and a permit to import firearms. DO NOT wait until the last minute, as this can take 45 days and more. Download the forms now.
If you choose not to bring your own, the outfitter has high-quality and suitable bolt-action rifles (Remington 700, etc.) with quality optics available for rental for about $30/day plus ammunition.

BOWHUNTERS: No need to go through the gun permitting process. If you want, you can reserve a firearm as a backup to help ensure success. This is wise, especially on tahr and chamois which are very tough in the mountains.


Gear, most important is good boots…this is your #1 priority. No soft soled tree stand hunting boots, they just don’t cut it in the rough. He himself likes Miendl (Island Pro or the like.) Kenetrek or any other high quality Mid weight hiking boot with a good strong sole and solid ankle support is fine. You may get into some steep and rough rocky country at times, so it is most important to have boots with firm edges that will hold you on the hill. Also possible is wind and possibly rain. So layered clothing is the way to go. Regular hunting clothing is fine (avoid cotton). Typical temperatures are 40-70 degrees F. Good binos are a necessity, usually around 10X40.

PRICES 2023 (subject to change without notice until deposit received)

Free Range Silver Medal Stag up to 350” SCI – $6,000 for 3-day hunt
You get your lodging, your meals, 1×1 guiding, and your trophy fee for your big stag all included. Any stag up to 350”, and most will be 330+”. We honestly feel he offers the best deal in New Zealand. This is cheaper than most high-quality elk hunts in the U.S.

Free Range Silver Medal Red Stag/Tahr Combo – $12,000
This hunt is for 5 days and it includes red stag (expect 320”-350” class) and tahr. This price is for a walking/hiking tahr hunt. If you prefer, you can add a helicopter to get to the tahr at extra cost.

Tahr can be hunted in 3 ways: (a) either on a private estate by spot and stalk (it’s about 7,000 acres); (b) via helicopter in the glaciers/remote mountains; and (c) in the mountains on foot, but perhaps allow for extra days.
If time is pressing or physical issues apply, then do the helicopter. It means you will probably end up using about 1.5 hours of helicopter time at approx. $1,400/hour.

Free Range Silver Medal Stag, Tahr and Chamois – Only $15,000 for all 3 species!
This is a free range hunt. No fences. 7 days. You may take one trophy red stag. It will be between SCI 300” and SCI 350” (equivalent to a High Silver medal). Normally you would pay around $7,000 or more for this size free range stags – if you could even find them! Please note that free range stags over 300” are very hard to find, but this guy is producing them! Anything you shoot over 300” will go very high in the SCI book. Probably top 5 to top 10! Also included: one trophy tahr, hunted on foot, no helicopter required, so reasonably good fitness is a must. And then you hunt for your chamois on foot, but you get dropped off at the higher elevation by helicopter into the hunting area. If you need more than a day, then camp in tents. Includes guiding, meals, lodging and trophy fees.

Non-hunter rate is $300 per day per person.

Please ask for trophy fees for estate hunts for red stag, elk, fallow deer, Rusa deer, Sambar deer, Sika deer, whitetail deer, Arapawa rams, goats, boars and birds.

Tours and Activities can be arranged and include:
Wildlife viewing (penguins, seals, whales, dolphins, etc.), wine tasting, shopping, adrenaline stuff (bungee jumping, jet boats, skydiving, etc.), walk on the glaciers, hiking, general sightseeing (Lord of the Rings filming sites are popular), thermal pools/spa/massage, skiing (June to October), horseback riding, mountain biking, museums, scenic flights, boat cruises.

A few questions and answers:
• Can the ladies go along in the copter, on the Tahr hunt, and is there any additional fee for that? YES NO PROBLEM AND NO EXTRA CHARGE.
• The Ladies may want to tag along on the stag hunts some days, can they go along? YES THEY CAN, and any additional fees?? NO ADDITIONAL FEES
• If the hunters tag out early and want to hunt extra animals -is there any additional fee except the trophy fees for additional animals??? JUST TROPHY FEES

New-Zealand-248-View-from-Luxury-Lodge-300x100 CLIENT COMMENT: “Over the last 45 years, I’ve hunted with at least 50 different guides and outfitters, and not a one outshined this guy when it comes to making their guests feel welcome and providing exactly what they advertise. The lodge, though modest in size and appearance, was quite comfortable. My hunting partner and I never lacked for anything we needed during our stay. And if we asked for something, we got it. Like the accommodations, the hunting was also top-notch. With a variety of game available to us, we were able to pick and choose our quarry for the seven days we spent on the south island of New Zealand. My companion and I each shot a trophy tahr, red deer stag, two NZ bronze turkeys and various other critters from possums and hares to wallaby and waterfowl. I also garnered a nice chamois buck and an outstanding feral Arapawa ram. On a scale of 1 to 10, these Outfitters get a 12!” TM

TRANSPORT: Varies – This is general information, but your hunt dates and location will determine. He hunts red stags near Wanaka (about an hour from Queenstown.) The tahr foot hunts are conducted near the Rangitata Valley (about 2.5 hours’ drive from the red stag area), which the helicopter hunts are out of Fox Glacier (again about 2.5 hours from the red stag area).

AIRFARES: Qantas usually offers the cheapest deal, but is not the best airline to travel with guns. We usually recommend Air New Zealand, even though it’s a little more expensive. Going via LAX is often cheaper than SFO.


HUNT TIMING: The order of the hunts is weather dependent. When they get the right weather window, you will go tahr hunting. Red stag can be done in almost any weather. Seasons for both run from mid-March until August. The stag rut is finishing by early May, while the tahr rut is mid-May to late July. Tahr pelts improve (get thicker/longer/more color) as the season progresses, so the best time is a balancing act. Stag hunting is always good, though. In our opinion, the best time to go is late May to August. During this period red stag hunting is still good, just no roaring. Compromises are mid- to late April – some roaring, and pretty decent hair on tahr. Think it over, and when you decide on a suitable time slot, we will advise on availability.