The 5 World Record Caribou By Subspecies

By author of Brow Tines and Backstrap

Can You Name All Five Record Holders?

Woodland Caribou

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1 | Woodland Caribou

Hunter: Gift of H. Casimir de Rham

Location Killed: Newfoundland

Date Killed: 1910

Score: 419 5/8

This great bull is the epitome of what woodland caribou have to offer. Taping out at 419 5/8 inches, this is the biggest of its kind. Its main beams are 50 1/8 inches (right) and 47 3/8 inches (left). The inside spread is 43 2/8 inches and sports 19 points on the right side and 18 points on the left. It gets better, though. The length of the brow points were 20 (right) and 17 7/8 inches (left).

Simply put, this is a beautiful specimen. And it deserves the respect coming to this great representation of the species. Talk about big, this bull is just that. It was killed in 1910 and still hasn’t been topped. That’s pretty special.

Photo credit: Boone and Crockett Club

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Barren Ground Caribou

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2 | Barren Ground Caribou

Hunter: Daniel L. Dobbs

Location Killed: Lliamna Lake, Alaska

Date Killed: 1999

Score: 477

The Dobbs bull is the No. 1 Boone & Crockett entry in the barren ground caribou category. Coming in at 477 inches, its main beams are 55 5/8 (right) and 57 7/8 (left). It sported an inside spread of 38 3/8 inches and has 17 points on the right side and 25 points on the left.

This bull was taken in 1999 and has held up for going on 20 years. That’s pretty incredible. And it was taken in Alaska, too. This bull is what hunters dream about when they pursue the barren ground subspecies.

Photo credit: Boone and Crockett Club

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Central Canada Barren Ground Caribou

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3 | Central Canada Barren Ground Caribou

Hunter: Donald J. Hotter III

Location Killed: Humpy Lake, NT

Date Killed: 1994

Score: 433 4/8

As the reigning Central Canada barren ground caribou, this 433 4/8-inch bull has a 48 7/8-inch right main beam and a 49 4/8-inch beam on the left. Its inside spread is a whopping 40 3/8 inches and it has 29 points on the right side and 26 points on the left.

The Hotter bull is a beautiful representation of the species. It carries a classic rack that hunters spend years in search of. It’s held on as the biggest bull for 24 years now. And it has the potential to hold that status for much longer.

Photo credit: Boone and Crockett Club

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Quebec-Labrador Caribou

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4 | Quebec-Labrador Caribou

Hunter: Zack Elbow

Location Killed: Nain, NL

Date Killed: 1931

Score: 474 6/8

Wow. That’s all you can say about the Elbow bull. It’s been the largest Quebec-Labrador bull caribou for almost 90 years. That’s impressive. With a score of 474 6/8, and an inside spread of 58 1/8 inches, they just don’t get bigger than this. (Obviously.) It has 22 points on the right side and an impressive 30 points on the left.

It’s bulls like this one that carry this status for so long that they become truly legendary. Anytime a record is so large as to have the impact this bull has had, well, that’s something. And for those who chase trophy caribou, this is the gold standard and what everyone is shooting for. Might be a while before someone gets there, though. Or it could be this season. You never know.

Photo credit: Boone and Crockett Club

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Mountain Caribou

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5 | Mountain Caribou

Hunter: Gregory B. Smith

Location Killed: Finlayson Lake, YT

Date Killed: 2016

Score: 460

The Smith bull is truly impressive. Sure, you can say that about any record animal and it sounds cliché. But the bull Gregory Smith harvested in 2016 is really special. It dethroned the Deuling bull that was taken in 1988. That’s something.

This bull scores an incredible 460 inches. It also sports truly incredible character. You don’t see mountain caribou any prettier than this one. Simply put, it’s iconic. And it’ll go down in the history books as the largest mountain caribou in the world. For now, that is. Because as we all know, records are made to be broken.

Photo credit: Boone and Crockett Club

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The great migration. It’s something thousands of hunters have witnessed and enjoyed as they chased these mammals in the great Far North. Fascinating creatures, caribou captivate hunters, yet remain off the grid due to their secluded nature. Few humans go where these critters live. And even fewer see the trophy animals like the five found in this gallery. Thanks to the Boone and Crockett Club, we can show them to you.