Agassiz Outfitters-Manitoba Moose Hunting

Pictured below is Scott Hofmann from NE and guide Bryan Minnis with Scott’s first Manitoba bull moose. The very first full day of hunting, Bryan called in a monster 50+ bull less than 100 yards for Scott. But due to long grass, Scott was not able to see him clearly and unfortunately that did not work out. The fourth day, September, 22 the lo’s hit -2 Celcius, a good frost but it was very windy with winds out of the south-west. That afternoon in tough weather conditions(rain squalls, flurries and high winds) guide Bryan Minnis and Scott agreed to spend the whole day out. At 3 p.m. they saw a cow and big bull and while trying to move the bull, had another big bull come running into Bryan’s call. Bryan worked this bull for 3 hours and 45 minutes and called him back 2 times after he had left for 30 minutes each time, until he finally committed at 6:45. Scott made 2 good shots and they found his 56″ bull exactly where they expected the next morning. Congratulations Scott!

 

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Scott and Bryan with Scott’s 56″ Bull Moose, fall 2015

Agassiz Outfitters-Manitoba Spring Bear

The count down has begun to the 2016 Manitoba spring black bear season! Pictured above is John Petersen from MN who started the 2015 spring season with us with this gorgeous 7 foot boar that scored 19 1/16 b+c on the very first night. John showed great patience, and passed on 5 other good bears before this big boar came in real cautiously, almost not presenting a good clean shot. But at the last second, when it was about to back out of the bait site after it winded something and knew something wasn’t right, gave John the shot he wanted. Congratulations John! NOTE: The bears denned up a little later than normal this past fall as warmer than normal temperatures hung around well into Mid November. As we approached the beginning of January, the Northern Interlake had received approximately 5-6 inches of snow in total. It is already the end of January, and sows should be starting to give birth to their cubs in their dens at this time. The early spring and late fall of 2015 will really be beneficial to the sows(putting on weight before denning up) and 3-4 cubs will not be un-common, as usual, along with the great genetics our area has to offer……Rick :)

bear hunt ad 3                                                                                 John with his 7 Foot Manitoba Black Bear

Agassiz Outfitters-2016 Great American Outdoor Show

We are looking forward to seeing everyone real soon at the 2016 Great American Outdoor Show that runs from February 6-14/2016 in Harrisburg,PA. We are in booth #1231, so please stop by to talk the great outdoors!

Agassiz Outfitters-Manitoba Moose Hunting

Pictured below is Pat Hall from Wisconsin with his very first bull moose! Pat was hunting with our guide Jimmy Dickieson who has guided since the beginning out of the scenic, “Up River” Camp. Jimmy and Pat could tell this story much better but on the very first morning of Pats hunt, Jimmy was working a small part of the river behind camp and called out a monster 55+ inch bull to 35 yards but unfortunately due to all the excitement, Pat forgot to put a shell in the chamber and after a faint “click”, the big bull ran not giving Pat a clean second shot! Sorry Pat, i wont let you live this one down, lol!!! These big bull moose will do that to a guy! But just think, he will be bigger in 2017 when you are back again! Jimmy and Pat had lots of action all week as they worked several different bulls and even another big bull well over 50 inches that was with 2 cows and 2 calves but didn’t work out either as there was too many eyes. Pat however connected on this real nice 44 inch bull on the 5th day of his hunt. Congratulations Pat!!

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Pat with his 44″ bull moose, fall 2015!

Agassiz Outfitters-2015 Fall Moose Hunting

Here is a picture from this past fall of one of our guests, Mr. Wayne Ives from Illinois who was up on his 4th moose hunt. Wayne’s guide was Mr. Bob Hyshka once again. On this particular evening, Bob and Wayne set up on a point between a couple big islands where the moose like to go where they are safe from predators and was always real good to Bob in the past. Well it wasn’t long, and 2 calves came out and started feeding along the edge of the one big island followed by a big cow. Well we all know what was following this big cow and it didn’t take long and Wayne’s 52 inch bull was down!! In total, Wayne saw 17 moose during his hunt and a few other bulls that were well over 50 inches!! Congratulations Wayne and great work Bob!

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Wayne walking up to his 52″ Bull.  

Every Moose Hunters Dream Bull!

Bob Kaleta’s Bears of Agassiz Outfitters

Thank you to our good friend and avid bear hunter Mr. Bob Kaleta who we have hosted on many black bear hunts for sending us this awesome colleague of his bears he has taken over the years while representing Zeiss Optics and now Remington Arms. We look forward to hosting you on many more!!

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Agassiz Outfitters-Merry Christmas!

We would like to take this time to wish all of our family, friends and guests a very Merry Christmas and all the best during the holiday season! :)

Rick, Colleen, Brendan and Jordan Liske

 

AGASSIZ OUTFITTERS MANITOBA MOOSE HUNT 2015 CLIP

Please enjoy this short clip of John Wheeler from Michigan from this past falls moose hunt.

 

AGASSIZ OUTFITTERS – 2015 MOOSE HUNTING REVIEW

The previous owner and I flew up to check out a “new area” for a place to set up moose camp #5 on August 14.  As the float plane left the Thompson base and headed north, needless to say I was pretty excited as this was the first time other than pictures and video I was actually going to see what we actually bought in person.  Well at least part of it!  On our way over to check out the area for the “new” camp, we would be dropping off some supplies/equipment at the “main camp” for the up-coming fall moose hunt which wasn’t far off.  It was only going to be a day trip as I had to get back to my black bear territory in the Interlake that night to keep preparing for the 17 bear hunters that were coming in for the fall bear hunts that stated the following week, just before the moose hunting would begin!

The plan was to meet all the guides at Lyle’s at 8 a.m. on September 15th so getting out of bear camp on the 14th, get home to pack and pick up my clothes for moose camp was going to be rushed as our flight out of Thompson and into camps on the 16th was at 7:00 a.m.  However, due to poor visibility (Fog, rain and heavy winds, etc.…), our flights into camp were delayed, therefore we all had an extra day and a half to spend up in Thompson.  Now instead of these days to set up camp and prepare for the hunters, we had only a day and a half left to do all this but we all knew things would fall into place like it always does.  Setting up camp in the rain is never fun but just being up in camp finally was a huge relief to all of us!

Finally once we all had “Main Camp” set up, Guides Bob Hyshka and Bryan Minnis left to set up their “Down River” camp and guide Jim Dickieson and myself left to go set up his “Up River” camp while Lyle organized the “Main Camp”. Once Jimmy and I had the “Up River” camp set up, we then had to go carry one of the outboards and get it put on one of the boats behind camp on a beautiful stretch of river that Jimmy loves to work.  Once we had the boat all set up, I looked at Jimmy and said “this is just gorgeous back here and can’t believe the moose sign!” he told me to “walk to the edge of that small island.”  Well I couldn’t believe the moose tracks!  I turned back and saw Jimmy grin from ear to ear but probably mine was bigger!  When I got back to where the boat was on shore and where Jimmy was waiting, he asked me what I thought and I told him that I think that someone forgot to close the gate and all the cattle got out! Jimmy just smiled and said that its like that every year as they go across to the island where they are safe from the wolves.  When we returned to “Main Camp”, Bob and Bryan had excellent reports too except for the fact that a bear destroyed the door on their main camp and it had to be replaced.  But they had seen a huge 50+ inch bull with a cow and calf and another cow and calf by their self and a smaller bull by himself.  Six moose in total just going to set up camp!  Everything is looking great with lots of sign and sightings so far! Guide Scott Smith checked in on the radio that night and also said lots of tracks and good sign around his camp over at “Broken Horn“.  Things looking real good by him too!

The first groups of hunters all flew in on September 19th and the weather was decent with a high of +10 Celsius.  The plane was on time with the hunters so everyone could get in the afternoon/evening hunt.  The water levels this year on the river were extremely low so getting around was going to be a challenge.  But who isn’t up for a challenge right?  The 9:00 p.m. “check in” couldn’t come soon enough for me.  Finally it was here and we heard Scott from the “Broken Horn” camp and his hunter John Wheeler from MI passed on a good 40 inch bull that was with a cow.  All the other camps had no action the first evening but reports were lots of sign and tomorrow was looking good!  That very next morning Jimmy at the “Up River” camp called in a huge 55+Inch bull out too 35 yards for his hunter, Pat Hall from WI.  Unfortunately, this bull is still walking as throughout all this excitement, Pat unfortunately didn’t put a shell in the chamber and after a click; the big bull didn’t like what he heard and ran.  Suddenly, a cow appeared!  Those big bulls will do that to a guy!!!  Pat would redeem himself a couple days later as he saw plenty of moose and shot his first bull ever.  A real nice 44 inch bull a few miles from camp Jimmy called out across the river.  Congratulations Pat!  Meanwhile back at the “Down River” camp, Bryan was working another huge 50+ inch bull for Scott Hofmann from NE that late afternoon.  Bryan called him in less than 100 yards but due to long grass, Scott was not able to see him clearly and that did not work out.  Bob and his hunter Chris Hunt from NE saw a cow and calf.  Should have been 2 – 50” bulls shot today! (These two bulls were never taken throughout the whole season).  Great start so far, lots of action!!

On the third day, the morning was prime for calling.  Very light breeze out of the west and the water was like glass with cloud cover. Beside the odd small bull and cow/calf sightings, the action was slower today at all camps.

The fourth day, September 22 the lo’s hit -2 Celsius, a good frost but it was very windy with winds out of the south-west.  That afternoon in tough weather conditions (rain squalls, flurries and high winds)Guide Bryan Minnis and Scott agreed to spend the whole day out.  At 3 p.m. they saw a cow and bull and while trying to move the bull, but had another big bull come running into Bryan’s call.  Bryan worked this bull for 3 hours and 45 minutes and called him back 2 times after he had left for 30 minutes each time, until he finally committed at 6:45.  Scott made 2 good shots and they found his 56”bull exactly where they expected the next morning.  Congratulations Scott! Guide Bob Hyshka and Chris saw a 45+inch bull and a 50+ inch bull and a cow.  They also had a cow calling and had bulls grunting around them in the thick spruce.

On the 5th day, we had frost again.  We still had a lot of leaves on the trees and willows but with the last couple nights of frost and heavy winds, they were finally starting to fall.  All the leaves on the trees and willows this far north for this time of year, is not normal and makes it real hard to see in the bush.  That morning, guide Patrick Ferens and hunters Jason Bucholz from WI and Mike Crosby from OH were flying into our “new” camp/area to the North of the Churchill River.  I also saw a nice 45+ inch bull walking the shoreline that morning on my way to the “Down River” camp.  Lyle and his hunter Dave Hofmann from KS saw a bull swim across the river tonight too.  Bob and Chris saw a monster bull with a cow.  Guide Bob Hyshka claims it could have been the biggest bull he has ever seen in all the years he has been hunting and guiding moose! WOW!!!  Lots of sign were they saw him too.  Made a long scrape line and lots of rubs.   The guys in our “new” camp shot a real nice  40” bull as soon as they un-packed and started calling, yes that quick!  Congratulations Jason and Mike on your first bull moose ever!!

On the sixth day, Guide Scott Smith and John Wheeler over at “Broken Horn” down a real nice 46 inch bull early that morning that was also with a cow.  Guide Bob Hyshka and Chris Hunt shoot a 38 inch bull that they called from a long way as he came running hard right to their decoy.  Bob took excellent footage the whole time.  Bryan saw a cow while checking bear baits.  Bob took Chris and Scott to hunt for wolves over Chris’s moose carcass towards the end of the week.  They didn’t even get to where they wanted to set up and Bob noticed 3 wolves already on the carcass.  A white, black and grey wolf!  Wow!!!  Bob quickly put the boat into shore to try and come up with a plan and also get out of sight of the wolves. However, to make a long story short, all the belly crawling and hand gestures almost paid off as Chris did manage to get a shot off at the white wolf but the three lucky wolves are still too running around.

The first week saw lots of action and saw us go 4 for 5 on the river with a lot of big and younger bulls seen.

For the start of the second session, we had strong winds out of the south and south-west again.  As the evening went on, the winds picked up which makes for poor calling conditions.  The activity was slow on the first half day; however guide Bob Hyshka and his hunter Wayne Ives from IL saw a real big bull just before dark.  Bob mentioned on the “Radio” that they were going to go back in the morning and try and do some calling, if the wind died down.  Bob also mentioned that the wolves were real active on Chris’s moose carcass from the week before as it was totally gone.  Not only was the carcass gone from the wolves but they had also taken his trail camera, LOL!!!

Well the wind didn’t let up through the night as a wicked storm came through with heavy rain and tornado like winds ripped through “Main Camp” while we ate supper.  Lasted most of the next day too while everyone was out hunting hard.  Action was slower but some camps had good action still. Guide Scott Smith and Dan Willet from IL at the “Broken Horn” camp saw a cow and calf swim across the river. Guide Bob Hyshka and Wayne saw a smaller bull and cow and Lyle and Jim Meister from WI hunting out of the “Main Camp” didn’t see a moose this day.  Wasn’t the best hunting conditions that’s for sure!

September 29th, 2015, the third day of the second session (week) finally saw the heavy winds we had for two straight days, start to finally die down.  Leaves really dropped last couple of days with heavy winds. Can see really good in the willows now. Guide Jim Dickieson and Scott Meister from WI passed on a real nice 40+inch bull today.  Scott has never shot a moose before so give him a lot of credit for passing up a nice bull, especially for a first one!  Bob and Wayne saw a cow all day by herself and guide Bryan Minnis and Marty saw 2 bulls today, a 40 inch bull and a smaller bull.  This was Marty’s 4th hunt with Bryan, having taken 2 very large bulls and a smaller one last time so was holding out for hopefully a much larger one.

On the 4th day, September 30th, Scott and Dan over at “Broken Horn” see a big bull that is a definite shooter that is with a cow but can’t get a clean shot at him!  With the low water conditions in the river this year, they are having to walk far from camp and can’t even access a lot for the good areas this year.  Jim and Scott at the “Up River” camp called in a young bull to 15 yards that wouldn’t leave.  Jim had to finally chase him away.  Bryan and Marty didn’t see no moose today but Marty had a chance at a big wolf at 300 yards.  On Scott’s kill from the week before, there was considerable wolf action and at one point Bryan and Marty were between 2 howling wolves, but managed to blow a bunch of sand in his face and is still out there!

Bob and Wayne saw a cow, calf and a small bull and also had a bull come into the call, grunting and then walk away.

On the 5th day, it warmed up to +16 Celsius.  The afternoon was extremely windy out of the south and very warm.  Where did our rut go? Who turned off the switch?  Moose activity slowed down again today in pretty much all the camps which was expected with moose when the temperature rises this time of year.  Nobody saw moose today except Bob and Wayne saw a real good bull, cow and calf.  They also saw this bull breed the cow and then saw another small bull too!

The next day, I noticed where we put all our meat scraps from where we d-bone the meat, that the wolves took it throughout the night.  Now that was two camps; that had visitors throughout the night, “Main” and “Down River”.  The weather was still warm and +17 Celsius.  Scott and Dan saw a cow and calf in the morning by themselves.  Then just before dark, a huge bull that they couldn’t get a shot at again!  Bryan and Marty saw a cow and a calf.  Bob and Wayne saw a 50+ inch Bull and cow in the morning but couldn’t get a shot at either!  Then in the evening at 6:50 p.m., Wayne shot a big 51 inch bull!  First saw 2 blondish color calves come out on an island followed by a big cow which was followed by the big bull.  Wayne made no mistake and made a 350 yard shot! Bob and Wayne Saw 6 moose in total today and a total of 17 for the week.  Congratulations Wayne!

That next morning as I was going down the river to help Bob with Wayne’s moose, I saw and took pictures of a young bull swimming across the river.  Great to see!  This same day as we finished getting Wayne’s bull back to “Main Camp”, Bryan and Marty where getting into moose this p.m., after pulling onto shore where they planned to set up, they heard a cow bawling like she was being bothered by a smaller bull.  On a chance, Bryan began calling like a bigger bull and eventually the cow came out, dragging the small bull, which Marty took.  Congratulations Marty!  And Scott and Dan over at “Broken Horn” shoot a big 51 inch bull that has it all!!!  At 10:30 a.m. this big bull was also with a cow and Scott takes great footage which you can see on our “Agassiz News”.  Thanks Scott and Congratulations Dan on your first bull moose!

In the end, we finished the season with 8 out of 12 moose hunters taking bulls home with them with the largest having a 56″ spread.  Obviously some moose were sighted more than once but our moose count (sightings) this fall between all the guides and hunters was 89 Moose.  These numbers are still excellent considering a lot of days we had less than ideal hunting conditions with the high winds and warm temperatures in the second week that slowed down the rut.  A lot of good young bulls and big bulls were seen and the best part is all the cows that were seen, pretty much all had a calf with them and some even twins!!  The genetics in this area, in my opinion, look healthy and strong and can see why Manitoba Conservation rates it as the best moose habitat and area in the Province.   With proper management, the future looks bright for many, many years and hopefully forever!

In conclusion, after the dust settled on my first fall up on the Churchill River I was kind of in awe.  I have hunted all over North America from Alaska, on the Tundra in Northern Manitoba and the Nunavut border to Texas, etc and to me, the scenery is breathtaking and un-like no other. I always wanted to own a moose operation and finally found probably one of the best ones, if not the best ones in North America. This isn’t the first fly-in operation that I owned so I knew the hard work, dedication and commitment that comes with it.  But I also could see the potential, areas where we could expand and how to take the operation to another level.  Best part of it all, the hard working guides who had worked with Lyle the past 12 falls, were staying on with us!  After working with them this past fall and seeing the dedication and commitment to the operation that they bring is second to none; so at this time I would like to thank all the moose guides!!  Truly blessed to have probably the best moose guides in the Province!  Anyone who has hunted with them knows what I am talking about!

Finally, thank you to all the hunters who hunted moose with us this past fall!  We hope you enjoyed your Northern experience here in Northern Manitoba and we hope to see you all again real soon!

 

Happy Hunting,

Rick

Agassiz Outfitters

 

P.S.  We will be in Harrisburg, PA on Feb. 6 -14 and in Madison, WI on April 1-3.  Please come down for a visit!!

 

 

AGASSIZ OUTFITTERS – 2015 WATERFOWL HUNTING REVIEW

Like always, our waterfowl hunting started on September 24th and the migration was a long ways away due to the exceptional warm weather central Manitoba was receiving.  The great thing about our part of the province and hunting areas is that when this happens, we always have lots of local birds to give us a lot of shooting that gets us through at least until the migration starts.  With family farming a lot of the country in the areas, local nesting birds and the guides putting on miles scouting well in advance before guests arrived would and did make for a lot of excellent shoots as always!

Finally by October 10th the migration heated up and new birds started showing up on a daily basis.  Mallards and greater Canadas were really coming down and stayed till November 20th!

In the end after all the hunting was done for the year, it was great to hear from some of the groups that had hunted waterfowl all over North America say that they had “never seen waterfowl hunting this good before”!!  Funny thing is, to us it was slower than most years due to the warm fall and slow migration.  As always I like to thank everyone who hunted birds with us this past fall, all of my guides who worked extremely hard every day and to each and every landowner allowing us permission to hunt your land!

 

Happy Hunting,

Rick

Agassiz Outfitters