Magazine Articles
Alberta Moose Hunting
Norway Meets Canada - Safari Magazine of Safari Club International
by: Mike Ukrainetz
We hadn't been settled into our makeshift hay bale ground blind for long when the big bull came trotting out of the trees and into the field, hot on the trail of what he obviously thought was a good looking cow moose. "Hey John," I hissed. "A good bull. He just came out from behind that patch of bush." My hunter, Jon Vestby, immediately went on red alert and looked to me for direction on what to do next. From his spot in the blind, Jon couldn't see the bull "Quick!" I urged, "Let's jog over there, use these bales for cover, and cut down the distance." We were a good 500 yards away and the bull and his cows had no idea we were there. Fortunately, the randomly placed bales and a group of trees covered our fast approach. Both of our hearts went into overdrive from the anticipation. "There he is," I whispered as we slid up behind the last bale, a solid 200 yards from the moose, "Wait 'til he turns broadside and then let him have it"probably necessary advice to the seasoned hunter, but I wasn't taking any chances. A few tense minutes passed while Jon waited for a clear shot and tried to get his breathing under control. Finally, the bull separated ...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
I Hate Opening Day - Trophy Hunter Magazine
by: Mike Ukrainetz
Yes, that's right, Sometimes I hate opening day... It is full of nervous anticipation, strategizing and worry. It is a great day for hunting deer in our area, but for me it's a lot of pressure to make it all happen for several hunters. I was guiding Bill End from Maine. He had been with me the year before and on opening morning he'd killed an old, heavy, clean typical scoring 189 inches - a beautiful deer with a huge, 360 pound body. This year he was after whatever I told him was a good buck that he should pull the trigger on. Perfect, all the pressure was off me. I decided we would go after a big, drop tine buck that I had first seen August 14th. He had been very elusive since then, hiding a a huge, flat, waist high wheat field. He had been very elusive since then, hiding in a huge, flat, waist-high wheat fIeld. It had a few, small, bush patches and a brush'-choked drainage ditch in it. Easy to hide, hard to hunt. He was another old deer, very massive with a huge, four-point typical right antler and a smaller left antler that had a rare drop tine....
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Long Lost Cousins - Muley Crazy Magazine
by: Mark Hampton
As I reflect on the Alberta hunt and pen this story, I wish I could tell you of how I located a huge buck in the summer range, watched and tracked him all summer, named him, patterned him, devised a plan to "out-smart" him on opening morning, sneak in from downwind for a few miles, uphill both ways, and then take him with one well-placed shot...However, that is just not so with this year's hunt in Canada. Does the fact that this buck was never seen by the outfitter and guides all year, take anything away from the experience of my Alberta hunt? Not on on your life!...This hunt met and exceeded my expectations from beginning to end...From the minute I got into the "bush" of northern Alberta I was impressed. We were hunting along the Peace River drainage, in the second growth canola fields...On the evening of the first day of the hunt, after looking over many bucks that were in the 165-170 inch range, we rumbled down the dirt road toward a "hidden" field of second growth canola...As we peeked into the "secret hole", Sam was the first to see the dark antlered buck, "this guy may be a shooter, " he said as I struggled to make out what he was so impressed with...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Consistently 180 - Muley Crazy Magazine
by: Mike Ukrainetz
Where is the best place in North America to consistently kill 180-inch plus mule deer, without spending a fortune? I would dare say that is the number one question that avid mule deer hunters want answered. So where do you think they should go? I would firmly state that the answer is Alberta, Canada. Now those of you who know me or my business might counter with, "Of course you would say that Mike...you outfit in Alberta." Yes, as an owner and operator of Mike's Outfitting Ltd, I do outfit in Alberta Canada. However, I can back up my bold statement. You see, for the past 16 years I have taken between 20-30 mule deer hunters a year, most of which i guide myself. During that time, I have talked extensively with these countless hunters about their widely traveled mule deer hunting experiences. Some of these guys take multiple trips annually to the US, Mexico and Canada - and all are in search of trophy mule deer. What my conversations have let me to believe is that there are many, many places that produce big deer; however, when it comes to "consistently" killing 180-200-inch deer, year after year, Alberta just can't be beat...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
The Heavy Buck - Bow & Arrow Hunting Magazine
by: Dylan Forsyt
This guide and hunter combo had their sights set on a big Alberta mulie, but this one exceeded their every expectation

How 'bout one of those big ol' heavy bucks? was Bob's optimistic request as we packed the last of the gear into the truck. His Arkansas accent emphasize "big ol' heavy" in a slow, drawl, I smiled and just gave him a cautious, "Well, we'll just have to see what we find." Bob Ward was back up in Alberta for his second mulie bowhunt in two years with Mike's Outfitting, and his sights and mind were set on a pretty good buck... My attention was on a wide, old buck, massive in body and antler but short on fork length. We watched as this high-170's buck worked his way to the coulees with a half-dozen does... A glance toward the coulee tops, several sets of antlers appeared, including a great typical. Both of our eyes lit up at the sight of this 180-class buck. They fed down into the coulee, and our minds were made up...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Peace Country Mulies - Petersons Bowhunting Magazine
by: Jay Strangis
Looking at this forsaken northern country for the first time, you might not expect big mule deer, or lots of them, for that matter. This is the kind of "bush" that Canada is famous for, with stunted aspen trees, fir, spruce and willow, where winters are exceedingly long and bitterly cold. Oil wells and gravel pits dot the countryside but so does agriculture, and those crops may be the biggest boon for the big-bodied, big-eared deer that live in Alberta's Peace Country.

Crops like oats, wheat, alfalfa and canola, carved into the countryside by generations of tenacious farmers have benefited the deer, no doubt, yet for the untrained eye those mule deer, whitetails, elk, moose and bear might go completely unnoticed in the relatively flat, broken brush country. Blink and you'll miss 'em, as the old saying goes, because when the animals are in the fields the crops are high, and when they're in the bush, well, you'd never know...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Something Like That - Bowhunter Magazine
by: Dwight Schuh, Editor-At-Large
In 1992, I first hunted bears in Alberta with Mike Ukrainetz. Mike had done some guiding for other outfitters, but this was his first year of outfitting. To get some mileage out of an unfilled slot, he invited me up to write about his great bear hunting. Well, for me, it didn't urn out so great. For six straight days, eight hours a day, I sat at a bait trampled with five inch tacks. A big bear was pounding that site. Yet I saw only one small bear, a 100 pound female. However, that hunt forever changed my perspective on bear hunting. When Kevin Hayden, a bowhunter from Texas shot the biggest bear I'd ever seen, I wrote in my journal: "Kevins's bear was the most awesome animal I've ever seen. Mike estimated its heat at 20 1/2 ", the hide over 7', the weight over 400lbs. I just couldn't believe how much animal was there. You have to go see on on the ground to get the real import of the size of an animal like this. I inspired me to try even harder to kill a big bear. sometime I have to get something like that!" With 2,000 square miles of prime bear country to hunt, Mike Ukrainetz can assure hunters they'll see big bears...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
The Greatest Hunt - I Set A Goal And I Reached It - Eastman's Bowhunting Journal
by: Mike Ukrainetz
You would think a story titled "The Greatest Hunt" would have to be about a new world record animal or some other phenomenal hunting feat. Well this isn't. It just has all the elements that you would want in a perfect hunt. At least everything I could ask for. It has adventure, extreme effort, persistence, family, and fulfilling a long time goal hunting a very treasured species. That species is the majestic bighorn sheep and the hunting method is with the only way I hunt, with my bow. One of the first things that I can brag about on this great hunt is how privileged we are in Alberta. We can hunt bighorn sheep on a general over-the-counter tag that costs $50.00! We can buy it every year and hunt all September and October throughout almost the whole mountain region spanning hundreds of miles. If we kill a sheep, then we have to skip just one year and then get to hunt again enabling us to kill a bighorn every second year...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
The Old Man and the Old Deer - Trophy Hunter Magazine
by: Mike Ukrainetz
Do you think you can get my dad, Tony, a good deer?” inquired Rich Baalman from Oregon. “He is an older guy and he has some physical issues.” Without even knowing what his limitations were, I said “Yeah it shouldn’t be a problem. Our area is pretty easy to hunt, mostly farmland and the walking is on fairly level ground, not too far to go most times.” Even knowing that, I thought I better ask what he meant by physical issues though. “Why? What are his issues?” “Well he is 66 years old and pretty heavy, around 285 pounds at 5 foot 9 inches. “Okay, that’s not too bad,” I thought. “He also has some bad arthritis and his left hip especially causes him quite a bit of pain,” explained Rich. “Well, that might make walking tough,” I imagined, “but we should be able to do it. Is that it?” I asked. “Oh yeah, he is also missing his right leg,” said Rich. “What the heck!?” I was shocked by that one! “Well, he does have a prosthetic leg,” Rich countered. I was used to taking out hunters who are not in very good shape but this was a new one for me. I was a bit nervous about it, but I thought, “Why not?” Actually I enjoy the challenge of helping out guys with physical limitations- makes a guide feel good knowing you can get almost anybody his animal...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Alberta Brutes - Trophy Hunter Magazine
by: Mike Ukrainetz
The first couple of hunters this past fall were Charlie Rehor and his son, Matt, both from Massachusetts. They came on a bow hunt and Matt, who had never take a mule deer, killed a fairly young buck, but it stilled scored 171 inches and had a modest 25 inch wide spread. It had 19 inches of mass on each antler though, which is heavy for most places, but really only average for northern Alberta. It was a great first muley and matt was thrilled. After Matt's kill it was Charlie's turn. We set out in search of a giant Alberta typical that we had scouted out earlier in the summer...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Alberta Mule Deer Hunt with Mike's Outfitting - Trophy Hunters Magazine
by: Jim Hunnicutt
After booking a mule deer hunt in Alberta Canada with Mike's Outfitting, I arrived at the Schnell Echo Ridge Ranch in late afternoon on the day before my hunt was to start...We left the ranch the next morning and within ten minutes we came upon two bucks. If we'd been hunting in Washington we would have shot them without hesitation, but I wasn't in Washington, I was in Alberta. Soon we were sitting on the highest point around for scouting deer. there were three of four more small herds within spotting scope range, so we began to look them over...I looked through the spotting scope to see a drop-tined buck, and then my heart began to pump just a bit harder. Jim (my guide) asked me if I thought that would be something I would like to take. It didn't take long to answer that question...
 
Alberta Moose Hunting
Trish's Buck - Trophy Hunter Magazine
by: Mike Ukrainetz
This was Trish's year to get the big buck. Mark had gotten the trophy mule deer the previous year, a heavy, 195" gross score giant so now it was Trish's turn...I gave them a run-down on some of the 170-180's bucks we had seen over the previous two weeks. The area has a reputation for huge mule deer but we hadn't been able to locate any of the real giants. Luck was on their side and they located a couple of very good deer in a new part of the zone...I gave my opinion that just because the tine length I though he would quite easily break the 200" mark. He then became the main deer Trish was after...