Thank you for booking your hunt with Moose Valley Outfitters. Your hosts are Ron and Wanda Steffey and four of their sons and their wives (Clayton and Rita, Leaf and Hannah, Brome and April, and Hawk). We live in Moose Valley, 220 miles from the nearest town, year round and we’ll do our utmost to ensure that you have a safe, enjoyable, and successful experience. The following information will let you know more about what to expect, our recommendations on what to bring with you, and suggestions for physical preparation for the hunt.
What to bring
* sleeping bag (rated to approximately 10 degrees Fahrenheit or lower)
* 2 pairs of gloves (waterproof and warm)
* personal hygiene items (towel, washcloth, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, hair brush, wet-wipes, etc.)
* rain gear (most folks wear Gore-Tex jacket and pants)
* boots (we suggest 2 pair of lace-up waterproof boots), slippers, moccasins, or socks for wearing in the lodge
* small day pack (it will be used to carry ammunition, camera, and camera equipment, spare socks, lunch, etc.
While riding horses it will be carried on the saddle opposite your rifle to balance the saddle. This is an important function.
* duffels (for carrying capes if you'll be taking them home with you on the commercial flight)
* flashlight and spare batteries (LED head lights work well for riding when its dark, and around camp
* warm clothing (temperatures can fluctuate a lot from morning to evening so layering usually works well with an outer layer that is waterproof)
Expected Weather Conditions
On clear days you can expect daytime temperatures in the 50’s or 60’s, and overnight lows in the 20’s. On cloudy days temperatures will be in the 30’s or 40’s both day and night and it can rain or snow.
Daytime high temperatures in the 40’s or 50’s on sunny days and 20’s or 30’s on overcast days. On clear nights the temperatures can be in the 10’s or 20’s. On overcast nights temperatures in the 20’s or 30’s.
It can snow or rain but a greater chance of snow.
During sunny weather daytime temperatures should reach the 40’s and the overnight lows could be as low as 0 degrees Fahrenheit. Overcast weather will likely result in temperatures in the 20’s and snow.
You have three options for getting to Moose Valley
*You can drive from your home to our lodge in Moose Valley. The final 220 miles from near Mackenzie, BC will be on gravel mine and logging roads. We provide a map and detailed driving instructions for your travel on the gravel roads. The last fuel available is at the junction of highways 97 and 39. We have fuel available in Moose Valley for your return trip to town.
*You can fly by the commercial airlines to Prince George, BC where you can rent a SUV or pickup and drive approximately 8 hours to get to Moose Valley. The final 220 miles from near Mackenzie, BC will be on gravel mine and logging roads. We provide a map and detailed driving instructions for your travel on the gravel roads. The last fuel available is at the junction of highways 97 and 39. We have fuel available in Moose Valley for your return trip to town.
*You can fly by the commercial airlines to Smithers, BC. We can arrange to charter an aircraft to fly you from Smithers, BC to the Moose Valley airstrip near our lodge. The 2016 cost in U.S. dollars was approximately $1,300.00 each for 2 people; or $950.00 each for 4 people.
Transport of capes, antlers, horns, and meat
*Capes, antlers, horns, and meat can be taken home with you on commercial flights. The airlines require that the capes and meat be transported in leak proof containers. The airlines will have fees and weight restrictions for extra baggage. Antlers can also be carried home on the airlines as extra baggage. The skull and antler tips must be covered. Often this can be dome with cardboard and duct tape. Horns can be carried in your duffel with your clothing. Check with the airlines you'll be flying with for their latest rules and regulations.
*Bring the rifle you're comfortable with and that you have the most confidence in with regards to your shooting accuracy. A well placed shot from a .270 will kill any animal in North America. We've seen cases where someone buys a new and bigger rifle just before the hunt and they make a poor shot because they're not experienced at shooting the new rifle. All of our personal hunting has been done with a Winchester .30 -.30 or a Remington .270. Everything we've shot has been killed on the spot. Shot placement is far more important than rifle size. Bring a rifle you're comfortable with and do lots of practicing before leaving home. We don't like ballistic tip ammunition; it doesn't seem to perform very well on the game that we're hunting. A bullet that will expand performs best. We expect safe firearms handling at all times. We will not tolerate carelessness. Carelessness will result in the termination of your hunt. The chamber is never loaded until the guide tells you to load, and after shooting you will be asked to open the action and show your guide an empty chamber.
*There are motels available for lodging in Prince George, Mackenzie, and Smithers.
Transport of meat
*Guests who fly by the commercial airlines have carried small amounts of meat home with them in coolers. Generally the coolers are restricted to 50 pounds maximum weight.
*Guests who drive carry meat home with them in large coolers or in a chest deep freeze carried in the bed of their pickup. It generally works out best to just keep the meat cool and not frozen.
Although we are experienced at dealing with various circumstances and conditions, there are some things that you can do in preparation for the hunt that will make it more enjoyable for both you and us. These three words can’t be stressed enough “GET IN SHAPE”. In all of our years guiding we haven’t had many hunters that didn’t wish they were in better physical condition. We hunt in rough mountainous country and even though we use horses there is still a certain amount of walking required. A comment we've heard from several of our hunters is "this is the toughest hunt I've ever been on". All of our hunts require physical exertion with goat hunts being the toughest and bear a close second. For goats you should be prepared to climb a couple thousand vertical feet. For most people this means 2-4 hours of panting, sweating and wondering why they didn’t get in better shape. Some hunts are easier than others, but one thing always holds true; the better your physical condition, the more enjoyable your hunt will be. We realize that it’s difficult to adjust your routine to spend more time exercising prior to your hunt, but even as little as 15 minutes a day of brisk walking, running, climbing stairs or any other activity that gets your heart rate up will prove to be a big help when you're out on the mountain.
Our hunting area is a thousand square miles. We usually do lots of riding and searching to find the best hunting. An average day would be about 6 hours in the saddle covering around 15 miles distance. In some cases we've gone twice that far in a day. We've worked hundreds of hours at establishing and maintaining our trails, but they're trails in mountainous wilderness and therefore the riding is rough and tiring. Trails can be steep, rocky, muddy, swampy, thick with brush, etc. The horses slipping off rocks and roots causes a lot of jolts for the rider. Being able to ride well is a big advantage for both you and your horse. It will be much more enjoyable for you if you're “hardened in” a bit before the hunt starts. We suggest that you should do some riding prior to the hunt.
*We provide all you can eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Bringing between meal snacks is not necessary, but is left to your discretion.
*Tips are not built into our hunt fees. If you chose to tip those who work to serve you during your hunting adventure the amount of the tip is your choice. Many guests ask the outfitter what an average tip might be. That's difficult to answer, but it seems that many guests tip 10% to 15% of the total hunt fee, similar to what they might tip other service sectors; it depends upon the quality of the service provided.
Customs Firearms Declaration
*A Firearms Declaration form, required by Canada Customs, can be downloaded at the following link:
The form can be filled out prior to your arrival at customs, but you must wait to sign the form in the presence of the Customs Officer.
Taxidermy or crating and shipping
*Guests can generally take their capes, antlers, and horns home on the commercial airlines. Getting the trophies through the airports can be challenging and time consuming. Many of our hunting guests prefer to leave their trophies with us. We can get the trophies to a taxidermist for crating and shipment to the States, or for mounting, crating and shipping. When choosing a taxidermist be certain to see the taxidermist's work. Mountain goat are somewhat unusual mounts for many taxidermists. Even experienced taxidermists can do a poor job at giving the mount a mountain goat likeness. Often the final product looks like a long lanky domestic goat rather than a stocky mountain goat.
*Mountain goat and caribou require inspections prior to being transported from British Columbia. If you intend to transport your goat and/or caribou home with you an appointment can be scheduled for when you arrive in Prince George, BC or Smithers, BC. We can have the inspections done on goat and caribou that are left with us for later crating and shipping by a taxidermist.
* We usually have breakfast around 7:00am and ride out around 8:00am. We often don’t return to camp until dark or after. In the alpine the winds can be very strong and cold. When we travel from the lodge to a satellite camp you’ll be asked to pack what you’ll need in a 20” X 10” X 18” deep pack box carried on the side of a pack horse. Your sleeping bag will be carried outside the box on the top of the horse. Your day pack will be carried on your saddle horse. All of our camps have comfortable log cabins with stoves, and foam mattresses. If we camp out we provide all tarps, tents, and camping equipment. We also provide all equipment that has to do with horses and packing, including scabbards for carrying your rifle. Our scabbards will fit very large rifle scopes. Our saddles are rigged with the widest available stirrups and will accommodate very large hunting boots. We turn the ears, split the lips, and flesh and salt the capes of the animals that you kill to ensure that they don't spoil. We pack out all the edible meat from the animals you kill. We don't generally use meat bags, but if you would like to bring some with you to keep meat you are taking with you clean and protected from flies, the more durable cotton cloth bags work better than the cheap cheesecloth/gauze bags. Whatever meat you don't take with you, we will make use of here. We don't provide alcohol, but we do allow you to bring your own. We won’t tolerate excessive drinking, and there will be no drinking until the days hunting is over and firearms are cleaned and put away. For clients arriving in Moose Valley by charter aircraft, we ask that you try to keep the weight of your gear to a maximum of 70 lbs. Capes and antlers can add quite a bit to the airplane load on the way out. There is no legal requirement to wear orange, and we don't feel that it's necessary in the area we hunt. Sorry, but most of our area is closed to fishing, so it's not practical to bring a fishing licence.
We are hopeful that we are able to provide the type of experience that you are seeking.
We endeavor to provide excellence in all that we do. We hope that years from now, when you reflect back, you’ll conclude that your hunt with Moose Valley Outfitters was one of the most enjoyable and memorable experiences of your lifetime. Thanks very much for putting your confidence in us!