Alaskan Moose Arrives In Time For Thanksgiving

375 Ruger Fan

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I have a few more things to be thankful for this year. Yesterday, I received a text message from my taxidermist that my moose mount was ready to pick up. I was using Outdoor Images Taxidermy, which is located about 15 miles from my house. Chris did the work in less than a year and I am pretty happy and excited to get it. Chris even loaned me his enclosed cargo trailer to get the moose to my house. The timing is actually perfect, because I will have three sons in law in town for Thanksgiving and they can help get the beast up onto the wall.

One thing I am slightly disappointed in was the Alaskan outfitter's handling of the original cape. The moose I shot had a lot of black in the shoulders. Due to the outfitter not properly salting and keeping the cape dry, the hair started slipping, and became unusable. The taxidermist in Anchorage that handled the shipping to the lower 48 had some extra capes. My outfitter, to his credit, took care of and paid for the replacement cape. It is more brownish in color.

To give you an idea of the space requirement for a moose shoulder mount, the photo below shows the moose hanging on a brick wall in my backyard. The wall is 64 inches tall. You need about 5 feet from top to bottom. The nose sticks out right at 4 feet and the antler spread is 55 inches.

This is a link to my hunt report:


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With 3 sons in law in town for Thanksgiving, I thought we'd start a new holiday traditions. Hanging new taxidermy on the wall!

I have a 8 and 10 ft step ladder and we borrowed a 12 footer from a friend. Yes, I am the guy who fell off an extension ladder 4 months ago and seriously hurt my back. So I did the engineering and planning of this operation.

Step 1: Remove the elk in the center. Take it to the taxidermist to touch up the nose. Hope to get it back before the free labor leaves. Maybe by Friday or Saturday.

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Step 2: Take measurements on the moose and drill a new hole and insert a 3 inch lag bolt. The walls of my man cave are backed with 3/4 inch plywood, making it easy to hang anything, anywhere. I then made a plumb bob to help position the hanger on the back of the moose mount and the bolt. I made another plumb bob and stapled the string, right below the hanger hole and adjusted the length to match the one hanging from the bolt. Theoretically, when the two are lined up and even, the moose should be positioned to hang on the bolt. The length on the plumb bobs was such that they were 5-6 inches below the base of the moose.

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Step 3: Positions ladder and step stool and go over the plan with each person.

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Step 4: And then a miracle occurs! The two plumb bob alignment system worked great and with very little adjustment was able to hang it. Slight adjustment after securely on the bolt. The antlers are not symmetrical so with the body straight, the antlers look a little out of whack. Call it character!

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Step 5: Wait to get the elk back from the taxidermist. Rent scissors lift and hang it above the mule deer and nilgai. Might need to lower the mule deer a few inches to make it all work.
 
Well done sir! I love the space you have for trophy display. Congratulations and enjoy your holiday!
Where are the sables going to end up?
 
Tentatively, above the zebra on the left. Will discuss with the taxidermist about various poses and grouping.
 
That is awesome. I’ve done the same thing as far as plywood behind the sheet rock in my place as well for hanging taxidermy. For my moose I had the spot reenforced when I was building the house because we knew exactly where we wanted it in the house. We rented a scissor lift because it was going about 15 feet up. It still took 3 of us quite a bit of effort but the house will come down before my moose will. Congrats on such a wonderful trophy moose and your other trophies.
 
Looks great Dave
 
That is awesome. I’ve done the same thing as far as plywood behind the sheet rock in my place as well for hanging taxidermy. For my moose I had the spot reenforced when I was building the house because we knew exactly where we wanted it in the house. We rented a scissor lift because it was going about 15 feet up. It still took 3 of us quite a bit of effort but the house will come down before my moose will. Congrats on such a wonderful trophy moose and your other trophies.

Thanks for the comments. On the opposite end of my man cave is the fireplace. On the centerline of the wall above the mantel, there is the 3/4" plywood and an additional 2x6 behind the plywood. I did this for extra support. Had I been a little smarter, I would have done the same thing on the centerline where the moose is now located.

While we had the tall ladders set up and lots of manpower available, I took the other mounts down, took them outside and used an air compressor to lightly blow off the dust. I used a Windex soaked rag to wipe the antlers. Lastly, I gave them a light spray of permethrin to keep them bug free.
 
I just got the notification that my trophies from my 2022 safari are now in the states. Once the taxidermist is done with them I will be taking down most all of my mounts and doing a complete rearrange of everything. I’ve got a couple of pedestal mounts that will be getting converted to hanging on the wall as well. Even with planning to do all that, the moose will get dusted off but will not be coming off the wall.
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I like the plumb Bob idea

Nice pictures.

I’m remolding the front entrance room and beefed up the load bearing vertical support and the header.

Heavy mounts could be hung, and on the outside 8x8” red cedar beams are attached for a new Portico
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@Fatback that moose is a stud. I certainly can relate about not ever taking it down. Are your antlers removable? On my moose, they are not removable and I am regretting it.
 
Thanks. I wish we had it wrapped up before the snow was flying.

But best laid plans of ….

So back at it today. To get the beam framing buttoned up this weekend. Then rafters, sheeting and steel roof on the Portico.

The inside, I hope to duplicate how I did my Ud room
 
Your trophy room looks great! A wall full of cherished memories.
 
375 Ruger, unfortunately I share your regret, my moose antlers are not removable. I wish that I had, it would have made hanging it much easier.
 
Latest update. I got my elk mount back from having it touched up by my local taxidermist. He re-did the black part of the nose, cleaned the eyes and a few other minor details. Unfortunately, all my free labor (three sons-in-law) went home after Thanksgiving. The challenge was also getting the elk up on the wall in a new, higher location. Beyond the reach of a 12 ft step ladder. I have two extension ladders, but finally wised up and got the right equipment for this job.

I went online to United Rentals website and they have a scissors lift that goes up to 13 ft and the machine is only 30 inches wide. One day rent is about $120 and a tilt trailer was $80. Renting it over the weekend, only charged for one day. The United Rental place is about 15 minutes from my house, so everything about this deal made sense. While the machine is designed to squeeze through a standard door, I opted to bring it into the house via my double patio door. Worked like a charm!

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A neighbor came over and helped me set the elk mount across the railing on the lift. He then climbed in and up we went. We very easily got the elk onto the hanger bolt.

The final result...............I am very happy with the look.


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Congrats on having the sense to rent the appropriate equipment. I wish I did. :>)))

Years ago I hung two big bull Moose mounts in my house. The first one off of extension ladders. then I got a little older and used scaffolding on the second.

Then with my buffalo mount. While preparing to raise it into position. It rolled to its right, from resting on its chest. Landed on its right ear. And broke the corner of the ear.

Luckily my taxidermist is :30 away. And we fixed the broken ear tip in the house.

I have a 30” mule deer in the works that was started before our self induced taxidermy ban. No more mounts. :>))))
 
That looks awesome. Great job and the lift is the only way to go on big taxidermy pieces that need to be hung high in my opinion.
 
Beautiful room and I love the symmetry. What is the dimension of that wall the moose is on? I'm building a very similar room in my new build right now.
 

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