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December 2023
Author: Matt White

One of the most common hunt inquiries we get at Huntin’ Fool is cow elk. There are a few reasons for this. It is a cost-effective hunt, they typically have a very high success rate, the meat is great, and they take place over two to three days most of the time, so people don’t have to fill up their already busy schedules even more. I have talked with some Huntin’ Fool members who have gone on 20+ cow hunts over the years and keep doing it year after year. I have shot cows on damage tags, and they serve their purpose wonderfully.

However, I just went on a “meat” hunt that blows the doors off of a cow elk hunt! That hunt was private land oryx in New Mexico. Josh Harris and I were invited to New Mexico to hunt with one of our Endorsed Outfitters who insisted that oryx was the best meat on the planet. In two days of hunting, we saw well over 300 oryx! I had never seen one before, so I was having a blast glassing up these exotics. We were watching trophy bulls, cows, and broken-horned oryx. Josh and I both shot cows during our hunt. I was blown away by the size of these animals. They carry so much muscle in the front half of their body. A mature cow oryx will weigh roughly 450 lbs. That is very comparable to the size of a cow elk. The meat yield is negligible between the two. During our hunt, we ate oryx steaks, oryx tacos, and oryx lasagna, and it was all phenomenal. It was as good as any meat I have ever eaten. It is a lighter color that is almost in between beef and pork.

Oryx is not on most people’s minds because it is an exotic, but I think it will be the next meat hunt for the outfitters that have enough private land. The hunts will be within $1,000 of each other, and when a person shoots an oryx, they will have the opportunity to have a mount. Another very cool part about shooting broken- horned oryx is that any reputable taxidermist will be able to fix a broken horn. Next time I shoot an oryx in New Mexico, it will without a doubt be a broken horn. They all have a unique and different look. I don’t think they can be beat for an extremely high success, great tasting, OTC meat hunt!