Hunt Quebec – Anticosti Island Whitetails – Part 2: Gear Guide
Andy Husek 02.15.19
I hear this get thrown around a lot, but would be willing to bet it’s likely the norm for most locations.. That is, “if you don’t like the weather, wait a few minutes and it’ll change!” You can certainly apply that to the haphazard weather here in my home state of Michigan, and it’s also what I experienced on Anticosti Island first hand. To that end, allow this article to serve as your go-to gear guide for conquering Anticosti Island Whitetails.
On my recent trip, towards the end of November, we faced everything from sub-arctic blizzard-like conditions, to song bird sunny days, and everything else in between. One day, it was so windy the snow was blowing sideways at about 40 MPH. The very next day, it was so still you could hear the Gray Jays dropping pine needles on the forest floor..
Knowing how the weather can fluctuate greatly this time of year in the Northern Atlantic, I made sure to bring a little more gear than I thought we would need.
In addition, I also prepared for multiple styles of hunting..
I used a mixed bag of stalking and calling, along with my fair share of still hunting – waiting in funnels and prominent pinch points. Unfortunately, that means you need the warm puffy stuff to stay warm while sitting, but light breathable stuff for the sunny walk-and-stalk days.
Here are several lists that should help you get started, and you can fine tune based on your personal preference/available gear:
You need travel clothes for Days 1 and 2, and then again on Days 7 and 8. This should include some sort of house slipper or tennis shoe so you are not tracking mud and snow in the lodge with your hunting boots.
For days 3-6 you just need something comfortable to wear in the lodge for a few hours after hunting. You will basically be wearing these clothes for just a few hours during dinner and however long you hang out playing cards or shooting pool before you hit the sack.
-Thick Wool Socks
-Packable Puffy Coat
–Waterproof pants and Jacket: I used the Sitka Cloudburst pants and jacket for the first time on this trip and was blown away. I wore them every day even if it wasn’t raining or snowing because everything was covered in snow or wet. I have the sub-alpine camo and it match up perfectly with the confers covered in snow.
-Orange Hat and Vest
-Boots – I highly recommend bringing knee high rubber boots for all the deep snow and creek crossings. I know a lot of guys don’t like to hike in them, but they are an absolute must! I wore the LaCrosse Alpha Burly, and I must say even with the amount of walking we did, these boots were very comfortable and kept my feet dry.
–Rifle and 2 boxes of ammo: I brought my Savage 110 Long Range hunter chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor which was perfect for these Anticosti Island whitetails. I do recommend a variable power scope that starts around 2.5 or 3 power and goes up to at least 9. Be careful though, as a lot of the hunting in the timber is up close and personal where iron sites would be much more sufficient. The only real opportunity to see long ranges is on the ocean, and there is enough terrain there to stalk in to close ranges. I killed both of my bucks inside of 40 yards, but one member of our group did take one at a touch over 300 yards.
-GPS: Often times, the hunts are 2 hunters per one guide and you rotate who goes with the guide every day. On the days you are by yourself, it never hurts to have a little extra confidence in your ability to get out of the bush.
-Binos: Definitely not useful when you are in the thick timber, but I never leave home without them and used them occasionally on this hunt.
-Primos Shooting Stick
-Phone Charger Battery Packs
That about covers the absolute must haves for me as I reflect on this trip. I, of course, brought WAY more stuff than is listed here, and came in at about 74lbs and 15 ounces.. (including rifle and Case) just under the 75lb weight restriction. However, I could’ve gotten by with way less.
What I detailed above are the items I used just about every day I was there. The good news is Safari Anticosti is a top-notch outfitter, and anything you may have forgotten at home I am sure they have extras just to make sure your trip goes as smooth as possible!