I'm a trophy hunter now - Finland Whitetail

My bag didn't arrive at Helsinki, so wanted 5h for it to arrive on next flight. Cheers KLM... guaranteed to screw up something every trip.

Cold and snowy drive in the dark to our B&B.

10pm-3.30am first night. Saw a doe and calf. A mature buck came out but was pretty wise and didn't hang around. We don't use the heater in the high tower. Visibility very clear and easy to make out deer and the odd hare. I don't feel the cold but am shivering uncontrollably when we return to the 4x4. Roe deer look big next to the road on our way back home.

Get 4.5h sleep after 23h awake.

Great breakfast.

Next day, visit gunshop for some decent deerskin gloves and a go on shooting simulator. A breath of fresh air compared to the chancers in Perth and Tain etc. I eye up a Tikka T3X on the wall in 9.3x62, made only about 100km away I believe .There are 10.3x68 cases on the shelf for reloading...hmm

2pm eat an amazing traditional dinner.

4.30pm back in the high tower with an extra pair of socks and additional motorcycle trouser thermal liners on top of my first ever pair of long johns I bought from decathlon a week ago.

5.45-6.45pm watch 6 whitetail doe's/calves come to the feeder for wheat, potatoes and sugar beet. -6 Deg outside and maybe 6in powder in the field. Discuss shooting the next calf or whatever steps out or leave by 10pm latest to get a decent sleep. Discuss leaving by 9pm if it's remains quiet. Visibility quite poor despite snow, and hard to determine sex of deer at 50m. Visibility gradually improves as evening gets brighter with moon. My host spots a deer at about 100m - it looks big compared to calves and hinds we've seen up until now. Buck confirmed. I move curtain to expose scope already in outside air. Switch on red dot on huge Zeiss 72mm?? objective scope. Deer turns away from trees and broadside. Safety off and I've got as comfortable as possible shooting RH GRS stocked Tikka 595?? 308 Win left handed. Aim high and forward on the chest and send a well mannered 150gr Sako Blade on its way. Thump. Deer hits the deck like a sack of spuds. Win! It's a monster with big thick antlers, bigger than any of the the average young Aberdeenshire hill reds I shoot. Blind in one eye and with some recent battle scars. 6 years old, 85kg larder estimate (in rutted condition). My toes are frozen! Back to larder to see how it's done here - skinned and ready to sell to dealer. Time for a dram or two.

Thanks to our hosts! We got them some sika and a red in Scotland over the last 2 seasons and this was our turn. Great to have a total wind down and change of scene, while experiencing an altogether different culture.

Here's to next Autumn 🍻

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I was issued an import permit for a .22 target rifle and a .38 spl revolver by the local Uusikaupunki police in 1986 as I was working at Saabs convertible factory there and they had a range in the roof. I filled out the application form gave it to the policeman in the cop shop and he said "oh I have a .38 too" he took his loaded revolver out and handed it to me for a look see. That might not happen today.
 
Congrats to OP from Finland!



Regarding legalities, if you're UK native you don't need any paperwork (since UK doesn't have any), you will be given Finnish hunting license and shooting test certificate (cost about 60 Euro). You can use a firearm next to a license holder (he should be able to "control" you). If you were to have FAC, now that EU Firearms Pass is no longer an option you could apply for temporary import permit (cost 35 Euro). Theoretically you wouldn't even need to bring your own rifle (save the hassle), since the permit enables you to hold ("loan") one from your host. But the import permit is obviously not meant to be used like that.

I try to give some figures, considering more or less commercial point of view.

Trophy fee for such mature buck could be 500-2000 Euro. On the high end of spectrum, if you want any kind of guarantee to have a mature beast. Other possibility would be spend a good amount of time like one week. Some kind of daily or outing (ambush) fees would probably be added. Of course flights, pick-up from airport if needed, accommodation costs. Then there are eye watering options like this, 2000 Euro for the hunt/accommodation and 1500-6000 Euro for the trophy:

Any idea how the cost compares to the US? Seems like w more obvious destination for whitetail :)
 
Shot Finland many times.
Moose and Whitetail. Just sold 2 hunts for this year for Whitetail in Finland.
All Whitetail are controlled by the Finnish government. So you need a licence or tag fir each one.
 
A western Canada hunt for whitetail deer would be 3000 lbs .six day’s hunting with all meals and room. Some will be higher priced of course and a few lower.
You could expect at least horn size that the photo shows. You should also expect cold. In Saskatchewan you can also shoot a wolf if seen while deer hunting. Not common but does happen.
 
Sounds like a fantastic trip congratulations high on my list to do ! What are the cost like getting the head back ?
 
Chancers in Tain ! Always found them very helpful think you could have left that comment out of your report spoilt it for me ….
 
We just sent a 80x120cm Euro pallet from Helsinki to London. It was not a trophy, but size wise would match a full mount mature buck. Skull mount would be smaller, but not necessarily cheaper. The weight is not important since I think this size packages will be anyway billed by "volume weight" that is something like 250kg per cubic meter.

Fedex usually charges about 4000 Euro for this kind of size, but they have on-going "flash sale" for about 200-400 Euro (depending on exact size, date etc.) But their service was kind of dubious, you cannot reach them by phone, cannot find if price covers customs and other paperwork etc. The quote for us was 230 Euro. A large company that moves people's furniture etc. offered 2000 Euro and they would do the packaging.

We ended up with smaller freight company that specializes in European freight. The price was 550 Euro including all the paperwork and delivery to door in London. In Finland we made the packaging, fully enclosed OSB board and timber attached to the pallet, it did cost about 50 Euro in materials. And we delivered the pallet to freight company ourselves, easier and cheaper that way. The size of package was not so important, we could have used larger than Euro pallet for same fee (so I think we actually paid some extra).

I think you can regard that 550 Euro as upper limit for full mount, and if you can do the customs declaration yourself (or there's only reasonable fee for that) you might get away with half the amount for skull mount. Remember that the packaging must be robust and the mount fixed or padded securely. One option might be to send it to France and pick up yourself during a weekend holiday or something?
 
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