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B&C World's Record - Quebec-Labrador Caribou

World's Record Quebec-Labrador Caribou

Zack Elbow's World's Record Quebec-Labrador caribou was donated to Boone and Crockett's National Collection of Heads and Horns in 1951. 

This fine caribou trophy, and the story behind its discovery, makes a person wonder how many potential big-game world’s records were taken by Canada's native Inuit during their long tradition of hunting in North America. This is one of the few specimens of the rare caribou race from Labrador. It was shot by native Inuit Zack Elbow, near Nain, Canada, during the winter of 1931 and later picked up by Charles Ray Peck, who recorded the following account of his find.


“During the summer of 1932, I was cruising home from Norway on a chartered Norwegian sealing vessel," Peck said. "When we reached Nain, a small village on the Labrador coast, we had our first sight of trees and of continental North America. So we decided to explore a fjord that ran inland for, perhaps, 50 miles to the northwest. As a sort of guide, we took along from the village an Eskimo named Zack Elbow, for we had gathered that we might see some caribou and find some good trout fishing. We stayed at the head of the fjord for several days. While some of the party were enjoying the fishing, my friend, Hoff Benjamin, and I went caribou hunting with the Eskimo, who understood no English.

“Mosquitos were extremely bothersome, but the first day we saw two or three small caribou, which I did not shoot," Peck said. "This seemed to irritate the Eskimo. However, by the next day I had succeeded in conveying to him that I was hunting for ‘big Tuktu.’ So we proceeded overland, I would say about 12 miles, to a spot where Zack had shot a couple of bulls, for meat, during the previous winter. When he led us to this place I could see two huge heads lying on the ground, 50 yards away. Foxes, of course, had eaten everything that Zack had left, except the bones. We tossed a coin to see whether Benjamin or I would be the possessor of the larger head. I won.”

Presented by Peck to the Boone and Crockett Club’s National Collection of Heads and Horns in 1951, this head, scoring 474-6/8 points, is the largest caribou rack ever recorded. As the picture above shows, these Quebec-Labrador heads often differ markedly from caribou races in the western part of the continent.

Note: The people of the Canadian Arctic used to be called Eskimos. They are now called Inuit. Peck's Eskimo references date to a time when that collective term was used frequently.




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