Dream hunt: hunting in New Zealand, South Island

New Zealand hunt guide

Warren Broad, now a UK-based Head Keeper on a Wiltshire Estate, was a hunt guide in NZ. He is an avid hunter who enjoys travelling and embraces the challenge of hunting in harsh, changeable weather conditions. Warren told all4hunters, "New Zealand offers a range of species including the Himalayan tahr and chamois, a dozen or so deer species including Whitetail and Sambar if you really know where to look. The terrain of the southern alps is like no other but the hunting is not to be taken lightly, you need to be physically fit, aware and completely ready for a gruelling high alpine challenge."

Be prepared for the ultimate hunting experience

Preparation is key to hunting in NZ, the mountainous landscape has an exceptionally changeable weather system. If you are contemplating a DIY hunt you must undertake lots of pre-planning and ensure you have the correct kit and safety equipment, like a satellite phone or personal locator beacon. The Department of Conservation website offers lots of information regarding hunting areas and access. Warren advises, "for a first time hunter I would recommend using a reputable guide as this greatly increases your chances of success and ensures all safety precautions are covered. Glendene hunting and fishing offer a wide range of animals and hunts on private ground or public wilderness hunting."

Eyre mountains looking for chamois and stags
A day trip into the Eyre mountains looking for chamois and stags. This was after spending 3 hours sat fogged out. The wind chill was -7.
Climbing around the pinnacles 
Warren Broad climbing around the pinnacles overlooking the Hopkins valley and river on a four day tahr hunt. Roughly 4500ft above sea level.

High-altitude, three day hunt

Warren Broad with its first chamois from public hunting ground
Paying respects to my first chamois from public hunting ground. A three day trip where I felt the full effect of the mountains and terrain. Only a stone's throw out of Queenstown.

"Depending on your experience, it is not unusual to climb 3000-5000ft above sea level. I regularly hunted the same area which was around 4700ft. My first chamois, and personal favourite, was a solo, three day hunt. The first day I climbed up to an area I had in mind, on the first night camped on the tops next to an Alpine lake. I hunted around the head of a basin and spent the second day glassing the area. I spent my second night in the same location where the temperature dropped to -4, then I hunted my way out the third day via a different ridge."

Challenging hunt of a lifetime

"This was to be the most challenging hunt of my life and a complete eye opener to the harshness of the Southern Alps. I secured my first chamois on the third morning after glassing a sunny face while heading down a branch of the mountain range after a very wet and windy night on the tops."

Be a fit, knowledgeable hunter

all4hunters asked Warren what were the biggest challenges of the hunt: he told us, "the hunt challenges were being mentally prepared for what was ahead, and the physically gruelling climb to the top and every part of your body aching. The obvious dangers are inclement weather, being under prepared and not knowing the limitations of yourself and the ground you are hunting. Never underestimate the power of Mother Nature: NZ weather is the most extreme I’ve ever come across and changes in the blink of an eye."

Hunter Warren Broad with a stag
The end of a seasons guiding with Glendene and the given opportunity to hunt and find my own high country stag to take home with me.

Distance shooting and .308 rifle choice

The landscape dictates longer distance shots. ‘"If you are able to get under the 200m mark to shoot an animal it’s great but I found most shots were between 250-450m so understanding your rifle or having the right set up from the guide is essential.  7mm seemed a popular calibre but all season I successfully used my Tikka T3X in 308 shooting with 180 soft points, topped with a Zeiss 3-12x50 scope and a pair of Zeiss Victory range-finding binoculars. A good spotting scope is also suggested for finding the animals at distance."

Warren's dream hunt

Warren shared his dream hunts with all4hunters: "I love NZ, it will always be the place I want to return to, however, my dream hunt is to secure a Rusa stag in Mauritius or a Sambar stag in the Victorian high country in Australia. I have a passion for deer which is borderline obsession. The Rusa strain from the island is superb and the Sambar are a mysterious with amazing senses so the challenge of securing a mature wise stag has a huge appeal."

Warren Broad in Instagram @wozzerb

Here you will find links to all other contents of our "Dream Hunt series" on all4hunters.com:

Who is Linda Mellor?

Linda Mellor is one of Scotland’s foremost shooting, fishing and hunting female writers and photographers. She is the product Ambassador for Venator Pro, a premier hunting company and stockist of the European brand Hillman. With a lifetime of countryside experience, Linda’s passion, enthusiasm and respect for the outdoors and hunting is explored and shared across her writing and photography. 

For more information on Linda Mellor, please visit Linda Mellor's website, Twitter (LindaMellor) and instagram (linda_mellor)

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