Where to hunt Chamois
Chamois is a European species, and no wonder most chamois hunting opportunities are located in the Old World. The Pyrenees (Spain and France), the Balkans (Macedonia and Bulgaria) and the Carpathian (Romania) ranges are world-famous chamois hunting destinations, and the animal can also be hunted in the north-east of Turkey. In addition, chamois was introduced to New Zealand, where many outfitters offer chamois hunting trips.
Chamois hunting opportunities in Europe start at about $1,200-$1,500, but you should bear in mind that these prices often don't include trophy fees, which can add from $1,500 to $4,000 to the price, depending on the size of the antlers. Chamois hunting in New Zealand may cost about $8,000 or so, but that's usually a flat fee that covers everything or most everything. Combination hunts where chamois is included in a package with other species (like tahr) are more expensive, but usually provide more value per trophy.
When to hunt Chamois?
In the Old World, chamois hunting seasons typically begin in September and run until January. The best chamois hunting, as with many ungulates, is the rut time, which usually falls on November-December in the Northern Hemisphere, and in May in New Zealand (where chamois hunting is open the year round). Another factor is that in the summer chamois dwell in alpine meadows where they are easier to spot and stalk, while in the winter they descend to lower, wooded altitudes, where other hunting methods are possible.
Hunting methods All hunting methods (8)
Chamois hunting is, with a few exceptions that will be mentioned below, as pure a mountain game hunt as it goes. It's all about spot-and-stalk. The animals spend most of the day lying about chewing cud, so you'll have to be up the mountain by sunrise to catch the "happy hour" when they move from feeding to bedding areas. Then comes the stalk, where escaping the creature's powerful eyesight is as difficult as navigating through rough mountain terrain. A chamois is a small target, and mountain winds are proverbially treacherous, so even if you are a confident long-range shot, a close stalk is advisable. Some European outfitters take advantage of the chamois's seasonal migration to wooded areas, and may arrange hunts from blinds, high seats, or driven hunts.
Hunting chamois up in the mountains is one of the purest forms of mountain hunting, and anything you would read about sheep hunting in your Jack O'Connor applies to the chamois. This little creature is a good introduction into mountain hunting for someone who can't afford a bighorn or Marko Polo yet, and its tiny horns may be the start of a long, challenging, and exciting journey.
Why hunt Chamois?
In old Europe the saying that someone would "climb the mountains after the chamois" had a definite, if broad, message. It was a bit of looking down on recklessness of risking life and limb, and spending so much effort, to secure such a small animal. But it was also a sign of respect for the strength, agility, courage and marksmanship that it took to bring the animal home, especially when armed with a crossbow or a primitive musket. It was the chamois hunters that made the glory of the Swiss marksmen. But chamois hunting is not only about immersion into an ancient tradition. Hunting chamois up in the mountains is one of the purest forms of mountain hunting, and anything you would read about sheep hunting in your Jack O'Connor applies to the chamois. This little creature is a good introduction into mountain hunting for someone who can't afford a bighorn or Marko Polo yet, and its tiny horns may be the start of a long, challenging, and exciting journey.
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