4-day Backcountry Hunting Course June 13, 2024
4-Day Backcountry Hunting Course Overview
This 4-day backcountry hunting course will teach you all the skills needed to become a successful hunter in the New Zealand Backcountry.
Starting at midday in Christchurch (or meet in South Canterbury in the afternoon). With guidance from your hunting guide, you will plan and execute a three-day, two-night backcountry hunting trip. Delivered on open permit public conservation land in South Canterbury. This course is designed to give participants a realistic backcountry hunting experience and help them acquire skills along the way. On this course, you will stay in tents and/or in a fly camp set-up. You will learn bush stalking, tracking, animal behaviour, glassing techniques as well as trophy identification.
*At the bottom of this page, you will find a more detailed course outline that can be downloaded.
Adult Price $1999* (minimum age 18 years)
Youth Price $1049** (16-17 years, accompanied by an adult)
There are no prerequisite skills required to attend this hunting course.
A reasonable level of fitness is required & the ability to carry a 12-15kg pack all day in rough off-track terrain.
To attend OENZ hunting courses, the participant must be 18yrs or older on or before the first day of the course. Persons 16 yrs or older may attend OENZ hunting courses if they are attending with a legal parent or guardian.
Do you need an NZ firearms licence to attend this backcountry hunting course?
To attend this course, you do not need to hold an NZ firearms licence or have any experience using firearms.
If you do not hold a current firearms licence, you will be able to shoot under the direct supervision of our guides. Under NZ law, an unlicensed person may use a firearm under the direct supervision of a current NZ firearms licence.
Can I bring my rifle to this course?
Yes, you can. However, you do not need to.
If you wish to bring a rifle, you must hold current NZ firearms or have organised a “visitors firearms licence” (if travelling from overseas).
Back Country Hunting course location
This hunting course starts and finishes in Christchurch. You may visit multiple locations throughout this course.
The course is delivered in multiple locations in South Canterbury.
Hunting course Logistics:
1st day – Drive or meet in South Canterbury. Theory and plan trip
2nd day – Travel to the multi-day hunting location. Begin a multi-day hunt.
3rd day -Multi-day hunt/fly camping.
4th day – Hunting/travelling back to Christchurch.
Accommodation is provided for the duration of this hunting course.
You will stay in a variety of locations and accommodations throughout the course.
1st Night -Farmhouse or backcountry hut, South Canterbury
2nd Night – Camping or Fly Camping, Conservation Land
3rd Night – Camping or Fly Camping, Conservation Land
Farmhouse South Canterbury
The farmhouse we use in South Canterbury is fully self-contained. Includes kitchen, hot showers and sleeps up to 12 people.
Please note depending on the weather you may not stay in this farmhouse on the first night but this is our first option.
This course’s fly-camping locations are situated away from marked tracks or facilities. Tents and fly camping equipment can be hired if arranged in advance.
Gear and equipment
You will need your outdoor clothing and boots for this course. We can supply everything else required for the course. You’re welcome to bring along your rifle if you have one. A complete packing list is available to download at the bottom of this page.
On the first day of this course, you will have the opportunity to shop at a supermarket.
This is a self-catered course. Please pack all of your meals and snacks for the duration of the course.
Return transport is provided from Christchurch for all of the OENZ hunting courses. You may travel in your own vehicle if you wish.
Travelling from out of town?
We offer a Free pick-up service from any Christchurch accommodation if you’re travelling from out of town to attend one of our courses.
If you live in Christchurch and have transport or can get dropped off, please meet us at one of the following locations. From here, you’re welcome to drive your vehicle out to our training location or jump into one of our vans and ride with us.
Meeting locations (catch a ride with us)
Yaldhurst McDonald (see on google maps)
This 4-day Backcountry Hunting course includes
Gear & Equipment
- Walking poles
- Personal clothing
- Emergency communications
- Selecting a suitable campsite
- Tent pitching
- Fly camping set-ups
- Scat ID
- Footprint ID
- Bush Stalking
- Glassing (use of binos)
- Spot searching
- Grid searching
- Staking out
- Trophy potential ID
- Planning a hunt
Hunting ethics & regulations
- Hunting areas
- Private land
- Doc land
- Permits, licences & permissions
- Herd management
- Ethical kill shots & distances
*A full course outline is available to download at the bottom of this page
Backcountry Hunting course FAQ’s
Can you fly domestically around New Zealand with a firearm?
Yes, It’s quite simple to fly domestically around New Zealand with your firearm. You will need a current NZ firearm licence or a Visitor’s firearm licence & import permit if you have travelled from overseas. Also, make sure to inform your airline in advance.
Travelling from overseas?
If you travel from overseas and wish to bring and use your rifle, you must organise a “visitors firearms licence” and “import permit” with the NZ Police in advance.
You can find out more information about travelling with firearms in New Zealand from the NZ Police and Air New Zealand websites:
Will I get to shoot an animal on this backcountry hunting course?
As this course is delivered on a public DOC open hunting permit block, it is not guaranteed that you will have an opportunity to take an animal on this course. If the opportunity arises then of course, we will take an animal or two, but we can never promise the whereabouts of wild animals in the backcountry.
Hunting on wild public land in New Zealand is extremely rewarding, but it can also be fickle. Recreational hunting pressure, WARO (Wild Animal Recovery Operations) and pest control measures used on public land add to the challenge of successfully hunting in the New Zealand Backcountry.
If you’re looking for a course that promises animals and the opportunity to shoot, then you should have a look at our 4-day shooting, stalking, and butchery course. We guarantee to give everyone an opportunity to take an animal on this course and can always deliver a few animals for the butchery sessions.
What is “fair chase”?
FAIR CHASE, as defined by the Boone and Crockett Club, is the ethical, sportsmanlike, and lawful pursuit and taking of any free-ranging wild game animal in a manner that does not give the hunter an improper or unfair advantage over the game animals.
“‘Fair Chase’ is the term given to a hunt that takes place on public or private land, either free-range or game estate, where the hunted species can express natural behaviours and has a reasonable and realistic chance of evading the hunter.” Source -NZPHGA (New Zealand Hunting Guides Association).
To deliver our range of hunting courses, we use a mixture of public and private. By carefully selecting our partners, we can ensure that we offer experiences that align with a “fair chase” hunting experience.
4-DAY BACKCOUNTRY HUNTING COURSE DOWNLOADS