Our bison not only produce some of the best meat money can buy, they also make an impressive shoulder mount, european mount, or robe.
A Legendary Experience
You will love the hospitality, the camaraderie, the sheer excitement of going back in time to hunt the North American bison in a magnificent setting. At The Bison Ranch, you will find animals roaming in the on the native prairie landscape that looks much like it did 200 years ago. While we are a private ranch, this is no corral-shoot.
Our first and foremost priority is sending you home with the best bison meat and great memories.
We specialize in putting the best bison meat on your table. So our bison hunting packages are for prime-eating bulls and heifers (approximately 18-26 months in age) which are generally going to weigh in the range of 700-900 lbs. on the hoof. You can expect to put roughly 1/3rd of that live weight in your freezer (all boneless cuts), assuming a clean kill where nothing goes to waste. Not only are these bison the prime age for eating, they are 100% grass fed and all natural - grazing on a large expanse of native prairie. We hunt them where they live and, ideally, we will put you in position to make the most effective and efficient kill possible.
How we harvest bison.
Because bison are a herd animal by nature and they're not afraid of much, the universal truth, whether you're on 10,000 acres or 10 acres, is that finding and approaching a herd of a bison within rifle range in a vehicle is fairly simple. But it takes strategy, patience, and marksmanship to single out the appropriate bison from the herd and obtain a good, safe shot at a reasonable distance (we should be able to get you within 150 yards, sometimes within 100). We urge - if not require - our clients to take a rifle shot 2-3" behind the ear to put the animal down almost instantaneously. This isn't as easy of a shot as the vast majority of people think. You may likely be dealing with a variety of factors that impact your shooting, including cold, wind, movement, and traffic within the herd. Precision and velocity are more important than the kick of your gun and the size of your bullet in these regards. This approach yields the best possible meat on your dinner table and avoids an injured animal getting surrounded by the herd, which will actually attack and try to kill an injured bison. This is a very bad situation that we try to avoid at all costs. At the end of the day, our primary objective is to put the best possible meat in your freezer.
Shot placement is far more important than power. We strongly recommend, actually urge our clients to take a head/neck shot. With a well-placed bullet 2-3" behind the ear, a bison can be killed instantaneously by an average deer or elk rifle. We personally use .270s to take our own bison - - big and small.
The head / ear shot is not only the most humane way to take a bison, it also prevents waste and allows for an excellent bleed. The end result is more meat and better meat for your table. For our clients who insist on a body shot (and in bow hunting situations), a pretty good portion of a bison's vital organs are covered by their front shoulder (the heart is covered entirely). If the bison is standing straight and broadside, there is about a 6" window between the shoulder and gut to hit the lungs on a younger animal. In this scenario, it is important that your bullet does not impact the opposing shoulder. There isn't a very considerable margin of error because a shoulder shot destroys a lot of very good, valuable meat and in most instances won't even take the animal down. A gut shot won't take them down either. In either instance, the bison is likely to get excited and the rest of the herd will start to crowd and sometimes even attack the injured animal. This is obviously a very bad scenario because there's a risk of the meat filling with adrenaline, becoming bruised, or being tainted by stomach contents. A wounded animal also makes for a very difficult situation because when the other animals crowd it, there might not be a good, clear shot to take the wounded bison down.
We've had clients who have hunted almost every animal known to man and they overwhelmingly say that the bison is among the toughest, most resilient animals they've ever seen. So we really cant overstate that shot placement is the most important aspect of the hunt.
For the best results, we encourage our clients to become comfortable hitting a 4" target at a minimum of 100 yards while standing or kneeling (with or without shooting sticks) in open and windy conditions. Prone and sitting shots are few and far between out on the prairie, due to tall grasses, shrubs, rocks, and knolls.
What types of bison hunts are available?
We pride ourselves on providing the highest quality bison meat. This is why our clients overwhelmingly prefer our prime meat hunts. We frequently have customers who book a meat hunt on an annual basis because it's the only product they want to put on their table. Several of our clients have told us that they have hunted bison with other outfitters, but our meat is unmatched. We attribute this to our herd being 100% natural -- born and raised in their native habitat where you would have seen thousands of bison roaming 200 years ago. Our bison are 100% grass fed on native prairie -- no grains, no hormones, no antibiotics, no needles of any sort. This is the real deal.
Our bison hunts are for 18 to 26 months old bulls and heifers having a live weight of 600 to 900 pounds (depending on gender, age, and time of year). Both bulls and heifers are available. On average, our young bulls appear larger than the heifers, but choosing between the two is simply a matter of personal preference. However, the heifers tend to carry more fat, less hair, hide, and bone, and will often yield a comparable amount of meat and sometimes even more than a similarly aged bull. Both taste excellent when harvested appropriately.
Our clients will often choose a heifer if they are looking for a nice robe, or they will choose a bull if they want a shoulder mount or European mount. The bulls will also produce nice robes later in the season. Although these are young animals, make no mistake: these bison are awfully impressive to look at!
2020 Bison Hunting Packages
For Fall 2020 (Mid-September through Mid-December), we will be offering two different bison hunting packages, with discounted rates for returning clients:
Base Package (18-26 mo. bull or heifer): $3,300
Our Base Package includes one prime bison hunt (18-26 mo. bull or heifer) with field dressing, skinning, and handling, cooling the carcass overnight in our walk-in refrigerator, quartered, and ready for you to take to your home butcher; plus 2 nights lodging for you and a guest in our cabin or farmhouse. Total cost: $3,300.
Butcher's Upgrade: $4,000
Our Base Package plus butchering services in our state-inspected butcher shop, which is located on site, just steps from where our guests stay. Butchering includes all boneless cuts of primals and ground trim; packaged and flash-frozen, from our freezer to your coolers - ready to take home to your family. This package adds one night of lodging in our cabin or farmhouse for you and a guest (bringing the total to 3 nights). Total cost: $4,000
Returning Customers: Ask us about our discounted rates!
Additional non-hunting guests: $50 each.
There are no hidden costs or fees with either package; you own every ounce of the animal you harvest. So take the robe, skull, cape, bones, whatever. It's all yours. Both packages are also fully-guided. We are with you every step of the way to ensure a clean, efficient, and humane kill on the appropriate bison.
We do NOT provide taxidermy or tanning services, but we can provide you with recommendations in our area.
Our bison hunting season starts in mid-September and ends just prior to the Christmas holiday.
The Butcher's Upgrade also includes your option to waterfowl, upland game, and coyotes at The Bison Ranch during the 2 days included in the package (as long as your visit is during the appropriate season for each species and you've acquired the necessary licensing from the State). If you'd like to add additional days of combo hunting onto either bison hunting package, you may do so at a cost of $100 per day.