Newfoundland Bowhunter Kills Potential World-Record Woodland Caribou


Photo Courtesy of The Gander Beacon

For Newfoundland hunter Jeff Samson, what started out as an ordinary blueberry pick with his wife quickly became much more than that — a bowhunt for an extraordinary 376 3/8-inch caribou.


The Pope and Young Club announced on Thursday that if the initial record book measurements are verified, Samson's bull from Sept. 5, 2013, will shatter the current world record score of 345 2/8 inches, a 31 point difference.


The standing record for woodland caribou, also killed in Newfoundland, is held by Dempsey Cape, who took his bull near the Victoria River in 1966.

After spotting the exceptional caribou — Samson had spotted and hunted the massive caribou multiple times but never came within range — the lifelong hunter abandoned the blueberries for his compound bow and set out on a stalk for a close shot.

"I was taking a few steps at a time and just waiting more or less. It takes a bit of patience really," Samson told The Gander Beacon.

Samson was able to get within 15 yards for the shot. After hitting the caribou, it wasn't long before he was the new contender for a world record. Waiting about a half hour before tracking, Samson didn't have to go far before he found his trophy.

"I knew it was big when I killed it, but I didn't think it was world-record material," Samson said.

Though many people approached Samson about the size of the caribou, he didn't originally intend to measure the rack. However, curiosity got the best of him. He accessed Boone & Crockett's online measuring tool and after inputting in the measurements, he found that he had a potential world record on his hands.

That's when Samson decided to have the rack measured by local B&C officials in Deer Lake. They informed him that his caribou was going to be the new world record.

Story told, it wasn't the rack that caught Samson's eye, it was the meat.

"It feels kind of hard to believe, 'cause I'm not a trophy hunter. When I hunt, I hunt for meat — ¬†whether it be moose, caribou, other big game ... or even small game like ducks or rabbit," Samson told CBC.

Samson's one of the lucky ones: he gets to have his trophy cake and eat it too.

With a historic range stretching from the  Northwest Territories and British Columbia, all the way east to the Atlantic and even south into the northern United States, a significant portion of North America's woodland caribou population currently resides in Newfoundland. As the benefactor of this population, Newfoundland is one of the only places in the world offering non-residents a chance at hunting the woodland caribou.

However, despite populations numbering 90,000 in the 1990s, woodland caribou populations in Newfoundland have significantly declined. Last estimates from the Newfoundland Labrador Department of Environment and Conservation place the population around 32,000 woodland caribou currently on the island. The most likely cause of the substantial decline is heavy predation by black bears, lynx and coyotes.

Recommended for You

Camping

What's In Your Backcountry Pack?

Tracy Breen

Having just the right amount of lightweight gear can make or break a hunt. Find out the best...

North America

Bear Hunting Makes Quebec the Ultimate Springtime Destination

Lynn Burkhead - February 01, 2019

Hunting in Quebec offers plenty of quality outfitters, affordable hunting options, great...

How-To

How to Supplement Antler Growth with Food Plots

Jeff Johnston

Boost antler growth on your deer property with these food plot tricks.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Camp Chef at SHOT Show: Elk Venison Slider Burgers Recipe

Have a freezer full of ground elk venison from your fall hunting trips? Never fear, the folks at Camp Chef have a great SHOT Show recipe that is lean and mean, easy to prepare, and a crowd-pleasing favorite!

2018 Petersen's Hunting Episode 8: Midnight Sun Grizzlies

Kevin Steele and CZ-USA's Jason Morton return to Alaska's arctic tundra for Kevin's second and Jason's third attempt on the legendary species. Things are looking up on day one but time will tell if the boys will get a shot a the king of the tundra.

2018 Petersen's Hunting Episode 10: Snowbound Chamois

Host Brittany Boddington gets more than she bargained for on what turned out to be a grueling, snowbound and extremely physical hunt for chamois in Romania's Carpathian mountains.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

Ammo

Is The 6.5 The Perfect Hunting Caliber?

Mike Schoby - August 18, 2017

The current 6.5 (.264 caliber) craze, is best attributed to the,'6.5 Creedmoor, but once...

Ammo

Is the .308 the Perfect North American Big Game Cartridge?

Richard Mann - January 26, 2015

Books have been written, stories have been told and lies have been concocted in an effort to

Ammo

America's Top 10 Big Game Cartridges

Joseph von Benedikt - September 19, 2016

These rounds have proven themselves most worthy in the field.

See More Stories

More News

News

The Ticks Making Hunters Allergic to Meat

David Hart

A new wave of allergies threatens to turn hunters into vegetarians.

News

10 Things You Can Do to Ensure the Future of Hunting

Keith Wood - October 18, 2016

We live in an extremely fluid world where public perceptions and opinions on issues can change...

News

The Hunter Decline and How We Can Fix It

Andrew McKean - August 20, 2018

We've lost 2.2 million hunters since 2011. Here's how to help save hunting. Photo Credit:...

See More News

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save.

Temporary Price Reduction.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

×