North American Hunts

North American 29 Hunts

Quite often, we have clients ask us what is the North American 29?  Simply put, it’s a generally agreed upon list of the top 29 native North American big game species that are huntable.  Many clients see accomplishing this as the pinnacle of their hunting career.  And trying to harvest all 29 species certainly has led many hunters to travel to places they never would have considered and experienced cultures and friendships they wouldn’t have otherwise.  Some choose to pursue this goal and remain quiet about it. Others record this achievement with organizations who recognize it.  Either way, it’s fun to set goals that lead you to experience new and exciting hunts, meet new friends, see different cultures, and promote hunting and conservation throughout North America. 

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So let’s get down to it – what are the 29 species?

Here is the complete list of the 29 North American Big Game Animal Hunts that can be hunted.    

Bear Hunts  there are 4 types required.  

  • Black bear Hunts- widespread throughout North America, the black bear has the largest population of any bear species in the world.
  • Grizzly bear Hunts – smaller than the brown bear, they are widespread in interior Alaska and Western Canada
  • Brown Bear Hunts – found throughout coastal Alaska, big boars can weigh as much as 1,000 pounds
  • Polar Bear Hunts – hunt-able in the arctic regions of Canada, but currently not importable to the US.  Populations are at over 26,000 animals and increasing.

Caribou Hunts – there are 5 types required

  • Barren ground caribou Hunts- found in Alaska, Yukon and NWT and usually the most widely hunted caribou type.
  • Central Canadian barren ground caribou Hunts – found in the NWT, Nunavut, Northeast Alberta, northern Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and Greenland.  In general, slightly smaller than barren ground caribou.
  • Woodland caribou Hunts – smallest antlers of all caribou species, found only in Canada with Newfoundland being the top spot to hunt them.
  • Mountain caribou Hunts – largest bodied caribou weighing up to 600 pounds, they are found in BC, NWT, Yukon Territory, and Alberta.
  • Quebec Labrador caribou Hunts- note that sport hunting ceased for these caribou in 2017.  It is not known when this hunt may resume in the future.

Sheep Hunts – there are 4 types required

  • Dall sheep Hunts – pure white in color, this sheep is found in most of Alaska’s mountain ranges, Northwest BC, parts of the Yukon Territory and the Mackenzie Mountains of the NWT
  • Stone sheep hunts – there are 2 species that count for this type of sheep. 
    • Stone sheep hunts –  Differs from a dall sheep by not being white, these handsome grey to brown sheep are found mainly in Northern BC and the southern Yukon Territory
    • Fannin sheep hunts – found mainly in the Ogilvie mountains of the Yukon territories and occasionally Alaska and the NWT, they look similar to dall sheep but have dark haired areas of the tail, back and shoulders.
  • Desert Bighorn sheep hunts – there are 4 species that count for this type of sheep
    • South Baja desert bighorn hunts (weemsi).  They are found in Mexico on the south end of the Baja California peninsula and Carmen Island. 
    • North Baja desert bighorn hunts (cremnobates).  The largest of the 3 desert sheep in Mexico, they are found on the north end of the Baja California peninsula.  Not huntable at this time.
    • Mexican desert bighorn hunts (mexicanna).  Found in southern Arizona and Southwest New Mexico and in Mexico on Tiburon Island and in the Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts. 
    • Desert bighorn sheep hunts (nelsoni).  Found in the US states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, Texas, and Utah.  Tags are difficult to draw.
  • Bighorn sheep hunts – there are 2 species that count for this type of sheep.
    • California bighorn sheep hunts (californiana).  Smaller than the Rocky Mountain bighorn, California bighorn are generally found in southern BC and parts of Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
    • Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep hunts (canadensis).  Weighing up to 300 pounds, Rocky Mountain bighorn are more widespread and are found in BC, Alberta, and 13 western US states.

Deer hunts- there are 5 types required

  • Mule deer hunts – Widespread throughout Western Canada, Western US, and Mexico, mature bucks will have nice 4X4 racks or better.
  • Sitka blacktail deer hunts – found in the coastal regions of Southeast Alaska and Northwestern British Columbia, mature bucks will weigh about 150 pounds
  • Columbia blacktail deer hunts- smaller than its mule deer cousin, they are found in the coastal areas from British Columbia south to California.
  • Whitetail deer hunts – with an estimated 30 million animals in North America, this is the world’s most popular species for hunters to chase.
  • Coues deer hunts – small in stature, the gray ghost of the desert is found in Arizona, New Mexico, and Sonora.



Moose hunts – there are 3 types required

  • Alaska Yukon moose hunts – largest of all moose, weighing up to 1800 pounds.  Found in Alaska, the Yukon, and western NWT.
  • Canada moose hunts – includes what some organizations separate into western or eastern canadian moose.  Found throughout Canada from British Columbia east to Newfoundland.  Also includes Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.
  • Shiras moose hunts – Smallest moose species, found in Southeast British Columbia, Southwest Alberta and parts of Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado 

Elk hunts – there are 3 types required

  • Rocky Mountain elk hunts – wide spread throughout North America with trophy bulls sporting 6X6 racks.
  • Roosevelt elk hunts – the largest bodied elk weighing up to 1000 pounds, they are found primarily in Southwest BC, coastal Washington and Oregon, and Northwest California. 
  • Tule elk hunts- smallest of the elk species, found only in California

And the rest

  • Mountain lion hunts (cougar) – widespread throughout Southwestern Canada, the US West, and Mexico, large toms can weigh over 150 pounds.
  • Bison hunts – can be either plains bison or wood bison, large bulls can weigh over 2,000 pounds
  • Muskox hunts – there are 2 species that count for muskox
    • Barren Ground muskox hunts – found only in Canada on the north slope of the mainland from Cape Bathurst east to Hudson Bay. 
    • Greenland muskox hunts- smaller than the barren ground muskox, found throughout the Canadian arctic islands and Greenland
  • American mountain goat hunts – most hunting is done in Alaska, British Columbia and the Yukon.  They inhabit some of the most rugged mountain terrain in North America .
  • Pronghorn antelope hunts- widespread throughout the western US, the speed goat can sprint up to 60 miles per hour!

Here at Legacy Outdoors, we can help you put a plan together to hunt the North American 29.  We offer hunts for all of the species (except Quebec Labrador caribou – hunting is currently closed) with top notch outfitters. We would love to help you plan your journey to accomplish this amazing feat.