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Idaho Elk, Mule Deer and Black Bear Blog

Here you will find information about our Idaho Elk, Mule Deer and Black Bear hunts. We will also blog about our area, as special offers, issues that affect us or are important to us.

Cavanaugh hunting in Idaho 2019

Castle Creek Outfitters Welcomes Joe Cavanaugh: Our New Blog Writer

Cavanaugh with jaguar in ParaguayIf you hadn’t already noticed, Joe’s been writing our blogs since the January 31st post. Cavanaugh comes to us with a wide range of experience in the outdoors, and he’s also a graduate of Boise State University, with a BA in English/writing. He worked professionally as a copywriter for Bass Pro Shops before joining us, and his book The Jungle Hunter was published by Safari Press in 2000 (now out of print). Cavanaugh started guiding big game hunts in Idaho in 2013, and he will be guiding for Castle Creek Outfitters and Wild Idaho Outfitters this year, full time.

Marsh deer taken in Bolivia

Cavanaugh’s hunting experience started in the north woods of Minnesota, hunting whitetail bucks and black bear. At the age of 20, he traveled to Central America where local hunters introduced him to hunting in the jungle. He expanded his range to the jungles of South America, where he organized a series of DIY hunting trips, always in the company of local market hunters, Indians, or cowboys, into some of the largest expanses of wilderness left on Earth. These DIY hunts resulted in taking 3 jaguars, numerous tapirs, all 3 species of peccary, 5 species of South American deer, water buffalo, and numerous species of birds and medium-size game that most people would only see in zoos.

Cavanaugh skinning elk in Idaho

During the 1980s, Cavanaugh embedded with the Guatemalan Army as a photojournalist in the mountains of Quiche province. He also lived in an Indian village in Eastern Bolivia for 3 years, where he fished for the local market; and later he worked as a fishing guide in the same area. In Bolivia he survived a severe case of malaria, which took him 10 years to recover from. The bushcraft and survival skills Cavanaugh has picked up along the way would be difficult to match.

Tapir taken by local hunter, Peru

Joe Cavanaugh did not grow-up hunting the West—he came here as an adult and started from scratch. Since then he’s learned the terrain, the habitats of our game animals, and the license/tag process. George McQuiston, owner of Wild Idaho Outfitters and co-owner of Castle Creek Outfitters, met Cavanaugh in a remote corner of the Frank Church Wilderness, where he had backpacked in all alone and shot a bull. We’re sure Cavanaugh’s insight on going West and learning to hunt new species in new habitats will be beneficial to all our readers. Cavanaugh offers practical advice, based on years of hands-on experience. He values woodsmanship and an understanding of nature over high-tech equipment. Castle Creek Outfitters hopes you enjoy reading Cavanaugh’s blog posts, and that his advice helps you enhance your hunting success.

Good hunting,
Castle Creek staff

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