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Rifles, Shotguns, Muzzleloaders, and Crossbows – Oh My!

10 July 2018

If you’re lucky enough to have a big game hunt coming up in Quebec for whitetail, black bear, or even moose, you may be in a quandary trying to decide which hunting tool to use in pursuit of that north-of-border buck, boar, or bull. That’s understandable – Quebec really gives you so many choices!


Here are a few considerations in making the decision which to choose:

What Not to Use

That’s pretty simple. You won’t be hunting with a handgun. You can’t take one across the border, and those hunters in Canada who own handguns do so under many restrictions and limitations. It’s safe to say, you are not going to see anyone legally hunting with a pistol on Canadian, not to mention in Quebec.

The restrictions regarding AR-15 style rifles (semi-auto rifles in general) are hazier, but there are definitive limitations on magazine sizes. In the U.S. we have every right to choose from legal firearms for our hunting preferences, but you aren’t going to be in the U.S. for this hunt – so do as the natives do. Hunt with a bolt-action or lever-action or pump-action or break-action and save yourself the headaches and the sideways looks.

Consider the Crossbow

For years – decades – Quebec has been ahead of the curve when it comes to allowing hunters to pursue its big game with a crossbow. That means your crossbow will be welcome there. Outfitters in Quebec have had more experience with crossbow hunters than about any place in North America so they know how to set stands and make stalks for their crossbow hunters. They also know what to expect when it’s necessary to trail up an animal that’s been hit by a crossbow bolt and broadhead.

Consult Your Outfitter

Nobody knows the terrain and location you’ll be hunting as well as your outfitter. He’s going to be able to tell you what kinds of shots you’re likely to be taking. Will your moose stand be in the woods or on a huge expanse of grassy marsh? What’s the average range at which hunters have taken whitetails previously? Are there any special restrictions on bows, firearms, or muzzleloaders in the particular area you’ll be hunting.

Muzzleloaders on Our Own

If you’re flying into your hunting destination and/or the city from which you’ll be “jumping off” consider forgoing the smoke pole. It’s just too hard to deal with the logistics of getting primers and powder to where you’re going. Some outfitters are willing to do the groundwork to help you out, but there’s always the possibility of mistakes when you’re not buying the stuff yourself. Imagine getting a thousand miles from anywhere, you check the camp for the pre-arranged supplies to find they indeed got in 209 shotshell primers when what you actually needed were percussion caps.


By Bill Miller

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