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Kyrgyzstan is quickly becoming one of the most popular Asian destinations for hunters, and for good reason. The quality of mountain hunting is incredible with a value that is hard to surpass. The people of Kyrgyzstan are very hospitable, and eager to share their culture with foreign hunters. This small Central-Asian country is filled with spectacular mountains with many rising to more than 20,000 feet, leaving those who are in their presence in awe. Sound game management has allowed the species that live here to thrive, allowing for very high success rates for all species and truly fantastic ibex and Marco Polo sheep hunting. The experience for the mountain hunter here is simply great!
What to Expect
Hunters can expect to see good numbers of game, with great trophy quality for those who are patient and selective. Marco Polo are plentiful in our private hunting territory with new exclusive access inside a former National Park available starting in 2015. Historical success rates on mature animals are very high, very close to 95% long term with 100% success over the last two seasons The average trophy size for Marco Polo sheep in this area of 47 to 51 inches.
Although Marco Polo sheep hunting can be successfully pursued at any point in the season, late October to the end of November and during the winter months of January and February are the preferred time period. Post rut hunting in January can be exceptionally good as the animals recover from the December mating season and is the recommended period for those with any physical mobility disadvantage.
Due to the elevation of the hunting areas and the ruggedness of the habitat, it is strongly recommended that hunters arrive in good physical condition, as this will help you have a more enjoyable and successful hunt. Although hunters need not be Olympians, the altitude will affect nearly everyone—most of the camps are located at approximately 9,000 feet above sea level, with the majority of the hunting conducted between 9,000 and 11,000 feet. Hunters traveling from sea level may want to consider taking Diamox during their hunt to prevent altitude sickness. Although the horses do most of the work and can typically be used to get hunters very close to the game animals some climbing and stalking should be expected, particularly when hunting ibex in combination with a sheep hunt. These hunts are not recommended for any persons significantly overweight or with physical disabilities.
Our outfitter controls several exclusive hunting concession with a size of more than 600,000 combined acres and offer some of the very best habitat for Marco Polo and Ibex. Each hunting areas are approximately 350 miles from Bishkek to the Karakol region for ibex and to the Naryn region for Marco polo or Marco Polo/Ibex combination hunts. A drive of 9-10 is typical to reach either location from Bishkek.
Hunting cabins serve as base camps in each hunting area. These camps are very comfortable and warm, and provide electricity to recharge electronics. Hunters will enjoy traditional Kyrgyz national dishes during their hunt including soups, ibex and Marco Polo meats, rice dishes, and of course, tea. It is recommended that hunters bring a modest supply of snack food to supplement as needed.
Spiking out may or may not be required depending on the time of year and weather conditions experienced during the hunt. Clients have the option of returning to the cabin camp each evening or may choose to spike out in tents with their guides if traveling more than 10 miles by horseback.
Duration of the Hunt
Marco Polo argali hunting expeditions are scheduled to include ten full hunting days. The suggested itinerary may be lengthened or shortened upon request or due to any of the variables that hunters may encounter during their hunt. Hunters need to expect two weeks in Kyrgyzstan from arrival in Bishkek to departure. It is also necessary to allow one to two days in Bishkek at the end of a hunt for the preparation of trophies and paperwork. It is common for hunters to have ample opportunity to harvest a Marco Polo and an ibex over the course of a ten-day hunt.
Most hunters will arrive in Bishkek via Turkish airlines through Istanbul early in the morning. It is possible to reach the applicable base camp the evening of arrival. Depending on the time clients arrive in camp the following morning may be spent resting, acclimating and sighting in rifles before starting the hunt.
After hunters harvest their animals, they have the option of either adding additional species or returning to Bishkek. Several days will be required for all trophies to be properly prepared for travel as checked luggage for the return home. The outfitter will need one to two days to arrange all export permits, veterinary certificates, and CITES permits before the hunters return home. While in Bishkek hunters can shop, sight-see, dine out, etc. while the trophy and paperwork preparations are finalized.
The staff members who will accompany hunters are very experienced, and it is important for hunters to listen to and trust their guides for a successful hunt. Most Marco Polo hunting will be conducted on a ratio of two guides per hunter. Hunters must understand that most of the camp staff does not speak English. An interpreter will be in camp for the duration of the hunt, but it is uncommon for the interpreter to accompany hunters while in the field.
Hunting Marco Polo sheep and ibex require rifles capable of shooting accurately up to and beyond 400 yards. Crosswind and angle compensation are always variables while hunting here. We recommend flat-shooting rifles in the .270 to .300 caliber, but it is strongly recommended that hunters arrive with a weapon that they are intimately familiar with shooting. Most shots will be between 200 and 400 yards; however, more opportunities will present themselves to hunters who have the ability to extend their range beyond 400 yards.
Tags & Licenses
All necessary licenses, tags and export permits will be provided to the hunter prior to departure. The cost for all hunting licenses, veterinary certificate and CITES export permit is $550 per Marco Polo and $350 per ibex. These fees must be paid in CASH directly to the outfitter after harvest. Firearm import permits are included in the base hunt cost.
CITES import permits for citizens of the United States are required for legal import of Marco Polo trophies (Ovis Ammon Polli) and are issued by the USFW service. The application period begins May 1st of each season with permits sent out after processing in late July. Global Sporting Safaris will submit applications on behalf of clients with a booking deadline of late April for US citizens. The USFW service charges a nonrefundable fee of $100 per applicant. All past clients of GSS have obtained their CITES permits the first year they applied. Only export CITES permits from Kyrgyzstan are required for Mid-Asian ibex and Asiatic wolf and will be supplied by the outfitter at the conclusion of the hunt.
Call today or fill out the form on the right and let us know what type of experience you’d like to have while Marco Polo sheep hunting in Kyrgyzstan. We’ll send you information on opportunities that match your goals. Our experienced outfitters are second to none and we’re happy to share personal experiences with you. If you would like more information on Mid-Asian Ibex hunting in Kyrgyzstan, click the active link.
14 Days with 10-full days of hunting. Hunters should expect two days total for transfers, one day for acclimation and rest and one day for paperwork in Bishkek at the end of their hunt for a total itinerary of 14 days in Kyrgyzstan.
Hunting is by foot and horseback, the jeeps are only used for transportation to the camps at 10,000′ to 13,000′ plus elevation.
Marco Polo Argali hunt special $16,995 plus $10,000 trophy fee if successful. Ibex may be added to a Marco polo hunt for $3,850 in advance.. Trophy fees should be paid in cash after harvest and include all CITES, licenses and permits for that animal.
August through November and January through February. The season is closed in December.
Airport pickup and drop-off services on arrival at and for return to Bishkek, transportation to the hunting areas, all guiding services, all meals and accommodations while in the hunting field, firearm import permits, licenses, tags, veterinary certificates and Kyrgyzstan export CITES permits for the species hunted, preparation of trophies for return on airlines.
Marco Polo trophy fee ($10,000), trophy fees for species not contracted in hunt package, meals and accommodations while in Bishkek, international airfare to Bishkek, excess baggage fees, gratuities to guides and staff, personal spending funds, entry visa purchased upon arrival in Bishkek (citizens of the United States and Canada are no longer required to purchase an entrance visa, only a valid passport is required).
Fly to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan where you will be met by the outfitter.
For detailed Information or to arrange this hunt please contact Derek Amadio at 888-850-HUNT, Ext. 705 or 307-473-1268.