Where to hunt Mid-Asian Ibex
Mid-Asian Ibex is a variety of Siberian Ibex (Capra Siberica) that inhabits the mountain ranges to the north of Himalayas and to the south of Siberia, including the Tian Shan and the Pamir (a.k.a. The Roof of the World) ranges. They are located on the territory of the former Soviet republics, now independent states, most notably Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. The former is a destination well known to international mountain hunters (the country, however, is toying with the idea of a trophy hunting moratorium for 10 years starting from 2020). The latter is a recent addition to the mountain hunter’s map, due to an award-winning community-based conservation program.
Hunting trips for Mid-Asian Ibex in Tajikistan typically sell for $5,000-$6,000. If you purchase a package for two to four hunters, it is possible to reduce the price by a few hundred dollars. This could be one of the best bargains in the adventure mountain hunting trips to a true wilderness category. Comparable hunting in Kyrgyzstan usually costs about a thousand dollars more, and combination Marco Polo + Ibex hunts are the most expensive.
Learn more from our blog story
Ibex hunting in a different country will be not only an exciting and unusual hunting experience, but often an eye-opener into a different culture, and into the role that modern, regulated hunting plays as a powerful conservation tool. Read the first-hand voices of American hunters and their experience hunting ibex with an outfitter that carries out a community based, trophy hunting funded, conservation program in Tajikistan.15 Mar 2018 To the Roots of Mountain Hunting: Americans in the mountains of Tajikistan
When to hunt Mid-Asian Ibex?
The hunting season for the Mid-Asian Ibex runs from August 15 to March 1 in Kyrgyzstan, and from November 15 to February 28 in Tajikistan. The best time for hunting is usually considered to be the rut, which takes place in November-December. However, there are areas which are inaccessible in mid-winter, after the mountain paths are closed; best to make sure with the outfitter.
Mid-Asian Ibex hunting is the classic mountain hunt, and the hunting method employed is spot-and-stalk. The hunter and the guide will leave early to get to high elevation - Ibex don’t expect danger from above, so it’s best to get higher than them. After an Ibex, or more often a bachelor’s pool or mixed herd during the rut, is located, the hunter and guide(s) estimate horn size and if the hunter is satisfied, begin the stalk. Modern rifles with laser rangefinders are great precision tools, but with the treacherous winds of the mountains, it pays the effort to approach the animal within the classic 300 yards or less.
Why hunt Mid-Asian Ibex?
The Ibex, with their pair of horns that may reach up to 150 cm in length, curving like scimitars over their backs, have attracted humans from the dawn of times. In the Pamir and Tian Shan mountains you will see ancient cave paintings and improvised shrine that prove the deep connection between Ibex and the local populations that run well before civilization. Soviet influence is still felt in the capital cities of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan, but up in the mountains hunters still perform the rituals that have been practiced for thousands of years. What drives people into the mountains? The horns? The skin? The meat? Or some inner drive that we can’t yet give a proper name to? Whatever it is, people who once caught the fever of mountain hunting will never be completely cured of the drive to ascend a tall ridge and put the majestic animal in their sights.
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