Hunting in a paradise of our dreams

Favourite destinations of our team

Whether you're a fresh convert or a long-time enthusiast, you're probably already dreaming of your next hunting adventure! To make this dream come true, you need to be well prepared and book your stay as soon as possible. In the article below, our team will reveal its favourites in the Sépaq network as a source of inspiration to help you choose your next destination. Discover the offers that make our enthusiasts' eyes shine bright!

Sépaq Anticosti Sépaq Anticosti
Sépaq Anticosti Mikaël Rondeau | © Sépaq

Harvesting a first moose… in Matane

Matane is in eastern Québec, the paradise of the royal moose. The concentration of moose in Réserve faunique de Matane is one of the highest in Québec. In 2021, there were some 32 animals per 10 km2. A real gold mine! It's also a place engraved in the memory of Ariane Laurin, hunting enthusiast and Sépaq marketing consultant. And why’s that? Because it's where she harvested the first moose of her life!

It was late in the day, after a stormy morning. She and her boyfriend, Charles, had been stalking game for a few days. When they spotted a female, everything suggested that a male was nearby. "I was in a good position to shoot, and Charles took care of calling the buck to bring him into my line of sight. After a while, he made an antler hand signal to let me know that the male was approaching! I stayed in position, trembling with excitement," says Ariane.

She knew that the next few seconds were crucial. "I'll never shoot an animal if I'm not sure of hitting a vital zone. And at that moment, there was no doubt about it: the moose, a massive bull, was perfectly aligned. My head began to spin with what’s known as buck fever. It felt like my heart was going to burst, like everything was moving too fast in my line of sight. The sensation lasted no more than a minute, but it felt like an eternity," she recalls.

After regaining her composure, the hunter pulled the trigger and then cocked her ear. The call of the stricken moose was soon heard; she’d hit the mark! "By the time we left the woods a few hours later, the clouds had disappeared. Filled with emotion and pride, we looked up at the sky and, in that magical moment, the Milky Way and thousands of stars lit up the night," Ariane describes. A moment of connection with nature that the couple will long remember!

Réserve faunique de Matane
Réserve faunique de Matane © Sépaq
Réserve faunique de Matane
Réserve faunique de Matane Yan Kaczynski | © Sépaq

Hunting by the sea in Anticosti

Anticosti Island is a deer hunting jewel. From late August to mid-December, white-tailed deer are everywhere on this exceptional territory, a prime habitat for these creatures. There are around 21 deer/km2. Anticosti is also one of the few places where each hunter can take home two deer (male, female, or fawn), and the only site in North America where you can hunt by the sea.

Jean-François Bernard, sales representative for Anticosti, is often asked to identify the best hunting sector on the island. "The entire island is the best sector in all of North America. You're already in the right place," he replies each and every time.

 But make no mistake: while the success rate is high, hitting the mark does require a certain level of preparation. Hunting on Anticosti is very different from hunting on the mainland. Still-hunting is practiced here, which entails pursuing deer wherever they gather, including swamps, wetlands, dense forests, and seashores.

According to Jean-François, knowledge of the territory and the island's characteristics is essential. He also recommends packages with a guide. “The American plan with meals and guide is truly the trip of a lifetime," exclaims the expert. “Our team takes care of everything, while you concentrate on the hunt.”

Conversely, the European plan without a guide and with accommodation in a rustic shelter will please the most daring visitors, those with an insatiable thirst for adventure. In addition to being affordable, this package offers a unique self-guided experience.  

No matter what type of stay you choose, there's always something fantastic to experience at Sépaq Anticosti. Jean-François remembers the day in November when he harvested his first buck. The magic happened in McDonald sector. "What's amazing is that we spotted the male, a beautiful eight-point buck, on the side of the highway, the Route Transanticostienne. I'll always remember that moment – it was the day before my birthday, and I was a happy man," he recalls.

Sépaq Anticosti
Sépaq Anticosti Mikaël Rondeau | © Sépaq
Sépaq Anticosti
Sépaq Anticosti Charles Boutin | © Sépaq

Soaking up the traditions of Ashuapmushuan

When we think of a mythical site among Sépaq's wildlife reserves, Ashuapmushuan immediately springs to mind. This vast territory of 4,487 km2 boasts a distinctive wealth of history. For many years, indeed for centuries, this region of Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean was a major social and economic crossroads. We're thinking, of course, of the fur trade, but also of a past steeped in Indigenous culture and traditions.

This culture is still alive today, thanks to the staff members we met at the wildlife reserve. Many are from the Pekuakamiulnuatsh community, but all have one thing at heart: to pass on their knowledge with benevolence and generosity, knowledge that includes many unusual facts.

In the eyes of Mireille Mailhot, an administrative and customer services manager at Sépaq, what sets this destination apart even more is the diversity of experiences being offered. On the fishing front, enthusiasts can land brook trout, pike, lake trout, landlocked salmon, and walleye, the reserve's prize catch. "What I like about walleye is that they’ll put up quite a fight, especially at the start of the season. River fishing is also quite a challenge," says Mireille of her favourite species.

And hunting enthusiasts won't be disappointed either! Réserve faunique Ashuapmushuan is a veritable playground for small- and big-game hunting. Like the walleye, the black bear is also famous here, so much so that Mireille recommends not hesitating too long before booking your stay.

Another special feature of the wildlife reserve is that in spring, the bear hunting season intersects with the fishing season. So you can vary the pleasures of the day, starting with walleye fishing and ending with bear hunting. What a haul! And don't worry: the success rate is close to 90%, and splendid creatures weighing over 300 lbs are not uncommon. Aren’t you feeling rather keen?

Réserve faunique Ashuapmushuan
Réserve faunique Ashuapmushuan © Sépaq
Réserve faunique Ashuapmushuan
Réserve faunique Ashuapmushuan © Sépaq

Becoming a small-game initiate in Mastigouche

Located close to major urban centres, Réserve faunique Mastigouche is one of the most popular destinations for our customers – and for the hunting enthusiasts working at Sépaq. The historical character, beauty, and diversity of the site make it an ideal place to experience (or relive) a small-game hunting holiday.

According to Nathalie Perreault , the wildlife reserve's customer service manager, the magic of Mastigouche is apparent from the moment you arrive. "As soon as you set foot on the territory, you really feel its history." And with good reason! For years, the land belonged to private clubs such as Mastigouche, Saint-Bernard, and Commodore. Their legacy can still be seen, for example, on the shores of magnificent Lac Shawinigan, where several large log cabin lodges have stood for a century. The jewels in the crown of the wildlife reserve, these cabins are available with both hunting and vacation packages. Convenient for groups with all sorts of preferences!

"While some will hunt small game by ATV, in their car, or on foot, others will choose water sports, hiking, or wildlife watching," notes Nathalie. The variety of activities on offer is much appreciated, not least by those who want to learn how to hunt small game. With a wide selection of activities, they can easily find a balance between stalking and the destination's other attractions.

And that's not all! Sépaq colleagues often say that Réserve faunique Mastigouche brings good luck to new enthusiasts... what we like to call the "Nathalie effect." After all, with a 100% harvest rate for some fifteen initiates, the good luck story certainly rings true.

"Even if everything suggests that we're going to come back empty-handed, someone in the group always stands out from the crowd. A shooting ninja or a hunting Rambo ends up harvesting a trophy creature! It's funny to say, but an introduction to hunting sometimes leads to a discovery of an unexpected nature. And just like that, without anyone anticipating it, you've created a whole new passion," enthuses Nathalie.

Réserve faunique Mastigouche
Réserve faunique Mastigouche Steve Deschênes | © Sépaq
Réserve faunique Mastigouche
Réserve faunique Mastigouche © Sépaq

Be Informed

Sign up for Sépaq emails to be the first to find out about our promotions, news and special offers.

Sign Up