If you want to prove your prowess as the best hunter in the west, then there's no better demonstration than collecting trophies from all of the Red Dead Redemption 2 legendary animals. Although hunting these beasts is one of the many side activities you can take on away from the main story, you'll get a taste early in your adventures through Red Dead Redemption 2 when you encounter and fight with a huge bear.
There are 16 of these magnificent creatures to discover, with each roaming their own patch of land spread far and wide across the Red Dead Redemption 2 map. Hunting them down so you can collect their individual trinkets requires a knowledge of both their location, and the tactics to employ when you come face to face with them so they aren't scared off – or they don't tear you to shreds – depending on the size of the foe you're dealing with. Our Red Dead Redemption 2 legendary animals guide will provide all the details of where to find these creatures, as well as some handy tips for getting the best of the beasts.
Spoiler warning: Three of the legendary animals are in an area of the map that is a huge spoiler itself. There will be a spoiler warning before we detail these locations. You can also watch a walkthrough of the legendary animal hunts in our video below:
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1. Legendary Bharati Grizzly Bear
Location: Grizzlies East, Ambarino
This utter unit is a damned sight more homicidal than your average bear. You first encounter it in Chapter Two, while hunting with Hosea during the “Exit Pursued By a Bruised Ego” mission. As you’ll probably only have a pistol and bow when starting said mission, there’s a good chance you won’t be able to kill the bear. Worry not. Just return to its hunting spot north of O’creah’s Run in Grizzlies East a few hours later when you’ve got the likes of the Springfield or Rolling Block Rifle in Arthur’s arsenal, and a few well placed shots of Express ammo to the heart will floor the brute.
2. Legendary Buck
Location: Big Valley, West Elizabeth
The buck hangs out in the wilting forests of Big Valley, which you can find a short ride northwest from the town of Strawberry. A Rolling Block Rifle loaded with Express ammo should take this noble animal down with just a single shot to the heart.
3. Bighorn Ram
Location: Cattail Pond, New Hanover
The sizable sheep graces to the east of Cattail Pond, located a short ride from Valentine. Like most of the other legendary critters on this list, a rifle will kill the ram with the least fuss possible. We put ours in the ground with a heart shot, then a second round to the head.
4. Legendary White Bison
Location: Lake Isabella, Ambarino
This beefy customer resides in the chilly climes of Lake Isabella, to the north of Grizzlies West. Make sure you dress in warm clothes before travelling to the frigid region, or Arthur’s health will start to drain more rapidly. The bison’s clue trail usually spawns on the slopes near the frozen lake. A high-powered rifle is the only way to go with such a burly piece of prey.
5. Legendary Wolf
Location: Cotorra Springs, Ambarino
You really can’t miss this wolf’s hunting spot. The graceful predator can be found among the geysers of Cotorra Springs, southwest of the Wapiti Indian camp. Thanks to the beast’s close proximity to the reservation, it’s likely you’ll stumble upon the springs while completing one of Rains Fall’s story missions. A single shot to the heart with the Springfield Rifle should put wolfie down in one.
6. Legendary Moose
Location: Roanoke Ridge, Ambarino
Built more like a giraffe than a moose, this colossal heribove demands a powerful weapon. We suggest using the Carcano Rifle if you want to take the moose down in as few shots as possible. You’ll find the moose near a wooded lake near Roanoke Ridge. It’s surprisingly swift for such a massive critter, so make sure to use Dead Eye and aim for the heart and neck.
7. Legendary Beaver
Location: Butcher Creek, Lemoyne
You can kill this upsettingly cute albino beaver with one good shot from the Varmint Rifle. Predictably, it can be found near a small dam on the riverbanks near Butcher Creek, which lies just west of the Van Horn Trading Post. Killing the adorable critter is bad enough, so at least be semi-humane and use the aforementioned bunny-butchering gun, or a bow.
8. Legendary Boar
Location: Blue Water Marsh, Lemoyne
Pumbaa’s seriously cranky pal can be found in the marshlands north of Lagras, in the Lemoyne region of the map. The beast will happily gore you on sight, so make sure to take a weapon with a fair bit of fire power. A bow with poisoned arrows or the Springfield Rifle are both good candidates for the oinker-skewering job.
9. Legendary Coyote
Location: Old Greenbank Mill, New Hanover
Aside from the panther – more on the infuriatingly reclusive big cat in a bit – there’s no legendary animal we had more trouble getting to spawn than this coyote. You can find this skittish predator in the hills of Scarlett Meadows. Should you spook it, the beast will show off its Roadrunner-shaming sprint, so make sure you put it down with a single clean shot using the Springfield Rifle.
10. Legendary Fox
Location: Mattock Pond, Lemoyne
Make this foxy customer less than fantastic by filling it full of lead from the Varmint Rifle. You can find the fox near Mattock Pond, which lies just north of the town of Rhodes. Try to get the jump on it, because if the sneaky customer eludes your first shot and scurries into the bushes, it can be really difficult to catch up with.
11. Legendary Elk
Location: Bacchus Station, Cumberland Forest
The gorgeous grazer can be found just east out Bacchus Station, in the Cumberland Forest region. Once you track its first couple of clues, you’ll have no trouble spotting the herbivore thanks to its blisteringly white coat. A Springfield Rifle loaded with Express or High Velocity ammo should take the animal down in two or three shots provided you aim for its vitals.
12. Legendary Bullgator
Location: Lakay, Bayou Nwa
The bullgator is an utter b**tard. More dinosaur than gator, this gargantuan swamp menace can be found in Bayou Nwa, west of Lakay and just a few minutes ride north from Saint Denis. To get the creature to show, you first must complete the Chapter 4 story mission “Country Pursuits”. The bullgator is the strongest animal in the game, so we advise sniping it from a distance using the Rolling Block Rifle. Just be warned the monster will charge you… and it’s terrifyingly quick.
Warning, the last four Red Dead Redemption 2 Legendary Animals are either found in absolute spoiler territories, or are the most elusive beasts in the game. So only scroll on if you've revealed the entirety of the Red Dead Redemption 2 map, or don't mind the spoilers.
Ready? Okay, you have been warned.
13. Legendary Cougar
Location: Gaptooth Ridge, New Austin
This furry fiend can be found on the prowl near Gaptooth Ridge, a little west of Tumbleweed in New Austin. Once you make it spawn by tracking its various fur remains and paw marks, stay alert; the cougar is extremely difficult to hit outside of Dead Eye mode, and if you’re all out of slow-mo sauce, you can expect a swift mauling. While you should really use a rifle for a clean kill, we’d also take a semi-auto shotgun, just in case you find yourself within nibbling range of the big cat.
14. Legendary Pronghorn
Location: Rio Del Lobo Rock, New Austin
You can find this antelope hybrid near Rio Del Lobo Rock in the Rio Bravo region. Annoyingly, our one was rather too fond of life, escaping from us several times. To give yourself the best chance of a clean kill, use a scent remover so it doesn't sniff Arthur out as the outlaw approaches. A clean and true strike with the bow should put the animal down with a single arrow.
15. Legendary Takana Bison
Location: Mantea Falls, New Austin
This serious slab of beef grazes to the northwest of Manteca Falls in New Austin. We found our bison to be surprisingly docile, and it barely batted an eye in our Arthur’s presence… well, until we started shooting the poor beast in the face with our trusty Springfield Rifle. Four rounds of Express ammo should be enough to get the job done.
16. Legendary Giaguaro Panther
Location: Bolber Blade, Lemoyne
The most elusive legendary animal in the game, and the one you’re going to have to invest most time into before you can proudly take its pelt to the trapper in Saint Denis. This stealthy cat only spawns once you reach rank 9 of the Red Dead Redemption 2 Master Hunter Challenges, whereby you can find it prowling to the west of Shady Belle in Lemoyne, not too far from a certain New Orleans-inspired city. Take a rifle and shotgun just to be sure kitty doesn’t get murderously overfamiliar. Once the panther has been put down, treat yourself to a glass of XX whisky to celebrate the fact Morgan has successfully hunted RDR2’s 16 most incredible critters.
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