6-day backcountry hunting skills course November 11, 2023
This is a 6-day backcountry hunting skills course for people interested in learning how to locate wild game and safely navigate in New Zealand’s remote backcountry.
6-DAY BACKCOUNTRY HUNTING SKILLS COURSE OVERVIEW
This 6-day backcountry hunting skills course focuses on fundamental bushcraft, navigation and hunting skills. On this course, we spend the first two days wild camping and learning how to navigate using a map and compass on and off track. Followed by a day spent refining river crossing techniques and hunting theory back at the lodge in Arthurs Pass Village. Days 4 & 5 are spent fly camping in Arthurs Pass National Park, learning how to locate, track and stalk wild game.
This course is suited to hunters wanting to improve their ability to find wild games and confidently explore more remote terrain.
Please note: This hunting course does not involve firearms.
*At the bottom of this page, you will find a more detailed course outline that can be downloaded.
Prior skills and experience are not required before attending this course. Everyone is welcome to book on this course even if you have little or no experience.
Not sure if this is the best course for you? Have a look at the recommended hunting training pathway on the side or bottom of this page. Alternatively, you are welcome to give us a call or email.
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 COURSE?
No, you do not need a firearms licence to attend this course.
This course does not include any firearms training. This course focuses on the other important skills needed to hunt safely in the New Zealand backcountry.
CAN I BRING MY RIFLE TO THIS COURSE?
This course does not involve the use of firearms. Please do not bring a rifle to this course.
If you plan on going hunting after your course, we can organise the storage of your rifle in Christchurch while you train with us.
BACKCOUNTRY HUNTING SKILLS COURSE LOCATION
This course starts and finishes in Christchurch. You will visit multiple locations throughout this course. The first two days are delivered in the Craigieburn Forest Park. Days 3 through 5 are delivered in Arthurs Pass National Park.
1st day – Craigieburn Forest Park. Near Castle Hill Village, Canterbury
2nd day – Craigieburn Forest Park. Near Castle Hill Village, Canterbury.
3rd day – Mt White bridge, Arthurs Pass National National Park.
4th day – Arthurs Pass National Park.
5th day – Arthurs Pass National Park.
6th day-drive back to Christchurch
Accommodation is provided for the duration of this backcountry skills course.
You will stay in a variety of locations and accommodations throughout the course.
1st evening – Wild camping (tenting) in Craigieburn Forest Park.
2nd evening – Lodge accommodation in Arthurs Pass Village.
3rd evening – Lodge accommodation in Arthurs Pass Village.
4th evening – Fly camping, Arthurs Pass National Park.
5th evening-lodge accommodation in Arthurs Pass Village.
The lodge has bunk beds across three bedrooms and can sleep up to 20 people. It has a kitchen stocked with utensils, cookware, a fridge, and ovens. You will also be treated to power, bathroom facilities, hot showers and heating. All you need to bring is your sleeping bag, pillow and food.
This course’s camping and fly-camping locations are situated away from away marked tracks or facilities. Tents and fly camping equipment can be hired if arranged in advance.
GEAR AND EQUIPMENT
A complete packing list is available to download
This is a self-catered course, please pack all of your meals and snacks for the duration of the course. Evening meals can be purchased at the local pub in Arthurs Pass Village on the nights that we stay in the lodge.
Return transport is provided from Christchurch for all of the OENZ hunting courses.
Free transport is available from any Christchurch accommodation if you’re travelling from out of town to attend one of our courses.
If you live in Christchurch, 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 7:30 (see on google maps)
*Darfield Bakery 8:00 am (see on google maps)
Castle Hill Village 8:45 am (see on google maps)
*Our preferred meeting location is Darfield Bakery.
THIS BACKCOUNTRY SKILLS COURSE INCLUDES
Reading Topographic maps (NZ topo50)
- Colours and symbols
- Learning map features
- Scale and distance
- Orientating a map using features
- 6 figure grid references
- Spacial awareness
- Using a GPS/Smartphone GPS
Interpreting contour features
Using a compass
- Finding North
- Orientating map with compass
- Follow a compass bearing
- Field: map bearings
- Map: Field bearings
- Taking resections/triangulations
Gear & Equipment
- Clothing & Equipment selection
- Walking poles
- Personal clothing
- Emergency communications
- Selecting a suitable campsite
- Tent pitching
- Fly camping set-ups
- Mutual support
- Solo crossing
- River characteristics
- River crossing principles
- Decision Making
- River crossing methods
- Scat ID
- Footprint ID
- Bush Stalking
- Glassing (use of binos)
- Spot searching
- Grid searching
- Staking out
- Hunting photography
- Species identification
- Trophy potential ID
- Planning a hunt
- Sessional habits of animals
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 SKILLS COURSE FAQ
Do I need a firearms licence to attend this course?
This course doesn’t involve firearms use. You do not need to hold a NZ firearms license or have any experience using firearms to attend this course.
6-DAY BACKCOUNTRY SKILLS COURSE DOWNLOADS