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Well, looks like we have a space on the forum now to talk about hunting in this great land.  Marshal has asked us to get the ball rolling, and I'm not really sure where to start.  I've hunted in lots of different places around the state for all kinds of game, but there are many more places that I haven't.  Coldfingers, if I'm not mistaken is from around the interior, and Doug I believe is from out around Bethel (correct me if I'm wrong) so they've got a much better handle on the situation in their neck of the woods than I do.  I'm sure each of the Alaskan members of the forum have a wide ranging set of experiences and are much more qualified than I to comment on their particular area they hunt.  I've hunted in the Chugach, Wrangells, Talkeetna's, Alaska range and once in the Brooks.  I typically do my moose hunting all over the place, from the Kobuk to the Revelation Mountains to the Cape Suckling areas.  Done some on the Kenai too, though it's getting a bit crowded down there.  For sheep, well, the biggest ones I found to be over in the Wrangells, though I believe I like to hunt the Chugach and Talkeetna's the best.  I'm not a trophy hunter, but try to find a nice mature ram with lots of character.  Caribou, I've hunted the Mulchatna herd a bit, I'm just not a huge fan of the taste.  Please don't take that to mean that I think they aren't good, I just prefer moose, deer and sheep.  My goat hunting exploits have mostly been around the Prince William Sound as has my deer hunting.  I really love deer hunting on Montague and Knight Islands, but have hunted Hinchinbrook, Afognak and Kodiak.  I've yet to draw an elk permit for Afognak so don't know too much about it.

I guess I'm getting a little long winded so I'll close by asking you guys to feel free to post your hunting stories and experiences, your preferences on tatics, gear, animals and if you have any questions, please ask.  There's quite a few Alaskans on the forum here and I'm sure we rustle up some kind of answer to help out.  There's a lot that I didn't cover and is hard to come up with at the moment, so feel free to add what you feel is deserving.

I surely felt that this first post should have waxed poetic, but thought we could just open the floor.  How 'bout a good hunting story from Coldfingers, DouginAlaska, FA18CUB or someone?



<!--EDIT|alyeska338|April 18 2002,14:32-->
 

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I've got to go coach my Baseball team, (Mustangs, grade 3-4, they rock&#33<!--emo&;)--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=';)'><!--endemo-->, but I'll be back! My brother lives in Nome Alaska, been hunting up there quite a bit. Nothing comes close to the Great Land.
 

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I do understand that Nome has some great hunting.  Would love to hear about it, never have been there myself.
 

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to anyone who lives there, i am interested in moose hunting off the rivers. definatly from a boat. i do not wish to pack any further than i absolutly have to. due to some back problems. what do you folks consider a decent shot? what is a long shot, 200 yards? i have never been there, but know i will some day! just don't know when. i have a moose hunting video, that shows most moose taken at about 100-150 yards. but 1 was taken at 300 yards. is this real or television? just curious for a while. thanks halfbreed
 

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I've shot Moose at 50 yards to about 250 yards. The terrain in Alaska is so varied that it's hard to say what you might get your shot at. I hunt North of Nome in the Tellyalater Drainage, mostly off of the Tellyalater River!!!, right next to Notellum Mountain!!!take the turn at Catch me if you can Creek!!! and you'll be right there!!! So all of my hunting is in the Tundra. The last Moose I shot was bedded up in some willows, we had spotted him from about 1 mile away. We stalked up to him, but I wasn't sure exactly where he was. He jumped up out of the willows he was bedded in like a Whitetail deer and took off running, highly unusual for a Moose. I caught him right behind the left shoulder, he turned, then I slipped one in right behind the ear. The one at 250 yards was completely different. Spotted him 2 days before I shot him, looked for a nicer bull, but never found him, then came back and found this guy tending his harem. Stalked from about 3/4 of a mile, got as close as I could, but the closer I got, the more the willows interfered with my shot. I actually had to back off a little to get a better shot. The tundra is very deceiving, it's hard to tell your range. I'm a firm believer in bringing a gun that shoots flat, has the energy at that range to penetrate to the vitals. Moose aren't hard to kill, but it can be hard to get their attention. I watched my brother hit one of the biggest Moose I've ever seen 4 times. I think my brother has shot 10 himself, and as best I can remember, he's been there for over 30. He's a good shot, and he doesn't get excited. He hit that Moose 4 times with a .300 Weatherby. The shot was about 300 yards. I've got that Moose on film getting knocked down, getting back up and going in the wrong direction, back down, back up, then getting hit, going up on his back legs and over,... and he got back up. Unbelieveable, still going in the wrong direction. When we got over to him about 40 mins later he was still alive. Don't let anybody tell you that they are a pushover, they aren't like an Elk, he'll run over 2 ridges if you don't hit him right, but Moose are big. Which brings us to the fun part. What do you do with an animal that you can't move? Pull out your axe and play like Paul Bunyun, wishun Babe the Blue Ox was some place close. We don't even gut Moose. Get yourself some meat cutting knives, the kind meat cutters use. Boning knives. After you get a spot cleared to work, take a break. Then pull on your 99 cent cloth gloves, and cut down the back with your knife, go down clear to the rump, then make a cut down each leg. then skin him, and "keep the hair off of the meat rookie". Have one guy pull on the hide as you cut, make slits in the hide for handles for him to pull with. Now you've got this side done, start boning. You've already cut the knees off with your Wyoming saw, so take off the front shoulder, put that one in your meat bag, thats made out of heavy cotton or light canvas. "And keep that meat out of the dirt rookie!" Get the rear quarter, hey that one is heavy isn't it, better get your buddy to help you while somebody opens the bag. So now lets get that neck meat, all the meat thats around the front shoulder, get the rib meat too. Well that should have taken you 1 hour and 15 minutes, depending on what kind of a logger you are, if your from anywhere besides the Pacific Northwest, your probably still trying to knock those willows down! The axe bounces right off of them doesn't it! Now you can flip the Moose over and start on the other side, repeat previous instructions and you should be done in about 2 1/2 hours. Takes 5 big game bags, 6 is better. You've got ...hmmm...maybe 600 lbs of meat, maybe a little more or less depending on the size of the animal. All done? "You hold on just a second rookie". You going to leave them Tenderloins for the Grizzlies? Nope, you need to reach in there with your knife and get them out. Best part about this method is you don't have to get into those innards, unless your one of those "sickos" that eats the heart and the liver. Yuck!

Ok, I'll stop, if you've got a bad back, go the river trip, you just don't have any idea how big these guys are. A 30-06 will work, just make sure you've got good bullets, and wait for the shot. Expect to have to shoot 300 yards, but hope for 75. Shot a Grizzly last year at 275 yards, couldn't get any closer. Knew the rifle, know the cartridge, .300 Weatherby., made the shot. 1 shot, lights out.

Ckeck out this forum, Alaska forum. If you post the same question there you will have Outfitters respond and they can get you fixed right up.

http://www.outdoorsdirectory.com/forum/akhuntforum/

I'm leaving Friday the 26th to go Grizzly Hunting. The ultimate Big Boy Adventure, jeewhilikers, can't believe some people like to do drugs!
Yeeha! See Ya
 

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Well,
this might sound kinda wimpy but all of my moose hunting trips have ranged from uneventful hike to downright disasters...now I've only gone 4 times and these were 2 day trips at most but I could tell you more about what NOT to do than what to do to be successful!
The last moose I "almost" shot was about 100 yds away and I consider that to be an easy shot. however he was standing in a boggy swamp up to his chest and we were on the edge of that swamp on the side of a hill. here's how the conversation between my partner and I went down...

Me: wow, he sure looks big!
him: yep
Me: legal too
him: yep
Me: he's about 100 yds, not moving, nice easy shot.
him: yep
Me: ya know, we're gonna have to get him outta there if we shoot him.
him: yep
Me:lets wait awhile and see if he comes closer.
him:eek:kay
now about 4 hours later as the sun is setting (about 10-11 pm)
Me: he's not any closer
him:nope
Me: well I'm certainly not gonna shoot him and then spend all night up to my neck in this water trying to get him out
him: me neither

that was one of my more pleasant trips, maybe later I'll tell ya about drowning the truck....

I've spent most of my time hunting grouse and squirrels but this fall I'm gonna go gunnin' for moose again. I can hear 'em laughing already...

Trackdog
(Fairbanks)
 

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Well,
this might sound kinda wimpy but all of my moose hunting trips have ranged from uneventful hike to downright disasters...now I've only gone 4 times and these were 2 day trips at most but I could tell you more about what NOT to do than what to do to be successful!
The last moose I "almost" shot was about 100 yds away and I consider that to be an easy shot. however he was standing in a boggy swamp up to his chest and we were on the edge of that swamp on the side of a hill. here's how the conversation between my partner and I went down...

Me: wow, he sure looks big!
him: yep
Me: legal too
him: yep
Me: he's about 100 yds, not moving, nice easy shot.
him: yep
Me: ya know, we're gonna have to get him outta there if we shoot him.
him: yep
Me:lets wait awhile and see if he comes closer.
him:eek:kay
now about 4 hours later as the sun is setting (about 10-11 pm)
Me: he's not any closer
him:nope
Me: well I'm certainly not gonna shoot him and then spend all night up to my neck in this water trying to get him out
him: me neither

that was one of my more pleasant trips, maybe later I'll tell ya about drowning the truck....

I've spent most of my time hunting grouse and squirrels but this fall I'm gonna go gunnin' for moose again. I can hear 'em laughing already...

Trackdog
(Fairbanks)
 

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Sounds to me like you are the thinkin sort of man. Funny how a guy will wack a deer and not even think about how to get it back to camp, The Big deer cause you to ponder that situation. The year I shot the Grizzly was also the year I shot the Moose at 50 yards. Didn't tell you about the 4 wheelers. 8 day trip,... second day in rolled one 4 wheeler about 15 times down "Way To Steep Hill".  That sure is hard on gun barrels by the way, unless you like to shoot "down round yonder". Next couple of days it rained,...the tundra's like a sponge, soaks up water, then when it doesn't feel like soaking up anymore, them little creeks become "big water". That wouldn't be a problem, unless you were of Polish heritage and decided that, that should be the day to go out and spend the night on the tundra, and your brother who also happens to be of Polish descent decides that the hunting looks better on the other side of "little creek". Seven times we cross "little creek". Next day, "little creek" no longer "little creek". If you want to know a good 4 wheeler, buy a Honda, they don't swim worth a hoot, but by gollie, you pull the plugs out of em, pop in a new one, away you go, quickly, because "little creek", that became "Big Water", awful cold, times seven. You need to be careful when you go hunting with the Babcock boys, the Polish blood runs deep. So 3 rifles, 2 fer shootin straight, and one for shootin, " round the corner". Well, Shoot the Grizzly, lets go back now, say thats not " Still To Steep Hill" is it? Sure is, now we have 2 rifles that "shoot down round yonder", and little brother? He decided to take up handgun hunting, course I don't think a .300 Weatherby is the right cartridge to try this with. And I sure think that a saw would have made a cleaner cut...
 

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Joel and Trackdog,
Those experiences pretty much sum up my moose hunting adventures.  Moose aren't necessarily that tough to kill, but boy howdy they take a long time to die.  They are really big animals.  And they always die where you don't want them to.  Either its on the wrong side of a swamp or right in the middle of it.  In lots of places we have the "spike, fork or 50" rule.  You can shoot a spike, a fork horn or greater than 50" inside spread.  That is a summary, if they have 3 brow tines on one side or more they can also be legal.  This is the case in most but not all places.  Our reg book is just that - a book.  A 50" or larger moose is one big animal.  I love moose meat, but that is a lot of moose meat for just my wife and myself.  Usually I go after the spike fellers.  I know that is not what you want to do if you come up to Alaska and spend all that money on a once in a lifetime trip, but moose hunting is laced with all kinds of other fun variables especially if are trying to do a float trip up north near freeze up conditions.  Get too much weight in your freighter canoe or raft and you've got a whole other set of issues to deal with during low water.  Been there and done that a long time ago.  I think trackdog turned a potentially "I'll never go moose hunting again as long as I live" type hunt into a merely "[email protected]#$% moose" aggravating hunt.  <!--emo&:D--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=':D'><!--endemo-->

I have to admit I'm a meat hunter when it comes to moose, those great big ones are just an incredible amount of work and frustrations.  However I guess if it was a once in a lifetime hunt, I'd surely hold out for one of the big boys, I guess.

Just to put my on 2 cents worth in, I've seen some incredibly large moose while on hunts for sheep, caribou and on meat hunts in the south portion of the Alaska range, in the storm washed northern gulf area, and up on the south side of the Brooks.   There are some real bruisers wherever you hunt moose, on the Kenai, on the west side of Cook Inlet, on the Alaska Peninsula, north of Tok, just about everywhere.
 

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Yeah,
I'm planning on hunting somewhere around Fairbanks this year. I'm up here working for the RailRoad and don't want to spend a lot of money/time to go anywhere else.

However,
even though I have 4 kids (5 by moose season) I'll be hunting for a "small" moose....legal but small. gonna find out what my 45/70 can really do....

Trackdog
 

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I've got this stupid little bull that moved into the woods behind my house this winter and he seems to think that my ornamental trees are his own private dessert stand.  He's really beginning to get on my nerves.  I bet I've ran him off dozen times or more this winter and he keeps coming back.  He finally got to one of them a couple of weeks ago and made a nice little stick out of it.  He better watch it or he'll be a dinner guest.
 

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Hey Trackdog,
When describing the conversation between you and your hunting partner didn't you leave out a few words about mosquitoes, no-seeums, black flies or white sox?  <!--emo&;)--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=';)'><!--endemo-->

It's been my experience that is the first and most oftern thing folks comment on during the hunt but the first thing they forget after the hunt.  Good bug dope always helps.
 

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oh, the bugs were there of course but my memory has pretty much wiped out everything except that conversation and of course the fact that we didn't get anything that year.

The next year, I was lucky enough to spot a large moose right as I found a parking spot for my 4x4...

I got out real quite like and then trained my rifle across the hood of my Samurai, putting my front post right behind the front shoulder.....

However, I still couldn't see if it was legal or not. It's head was buried in the alders and although I swear I could see antlers I held my shot until I knew for sure. He kept wagging his head and I swear I kept seeing antlers....

Well, its a good thing I waited because just as I was starting to pull the triggger (Impatient!!&#33<!--emo&;)--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=';)'><!--endemo--> a calf walked through my field of vision right upto its mother (my current target) and began nuzzling her. The moose in question backed out of the alders to check on her calf and well...no antlers...definitely a cow.........

Trackdog
 

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I have enjoyed the posts so far.

I live in the North Pole area and guide for Denali Hunts (archery hunts only) here in the Interior.

Halfbreed...our clients kill their moose at less than 30 yards and oftimes at almost spear length. Be patient, watch the wind, and do not sneeze!

I ruined my oldest son for moose hunting many years ago with one well placed shot from a .223

The shot was from thirty yards. Our freighter canoe was a mile and a half back across the swamp...Bad Dad! It was years before I could mention moose hunting without him hiding under the bed.

Moose hunting is fun. Moose killing is plain old work!

Like others here, I look for the "lightweights" for my freezer but fully understand the clients desire for something that has palmations resembeling a sheet of plywood.

Joels little section on successfully parting out a moose was right on target...I NEVER gut one anymore. Using the method described, a moose can be dealt with singlehandedly (which it what happens the year after you kill one deep in the swamp and the kids have disowned you&#33<!--emo&;)--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=';)'><!--endemo-->

Scotty
 

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Since bear season is nearly upon us, would anyone care to start a new thread about bear hunting?  I don't want to stop this one by any means, just thought a timely article on bear hunting, either blacks or grizzlies would be a good thread to get started.  Anyone want to take a shot at it?
 

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I think that is a GREAT idea...

Get to it!

Hoping to get away for a short Grizz hunt before I fly out to black bear camp. Spring

Since I do not have the moxi to poke sticks at a Grizz, I figgure it would be a great excuse to wander up in the hills with the 45/70.

My only fear is that should I decide to kill one, I will not be able to utilize the "grizz tag" method of keeping those pests out of my caribou camp. Having an unfilled tag is better than pepper spray, clean camps, hand grenades and bear bombs.

Scotty
 

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Yessir,
I agree with you whole-heartedly.

I ain't much of a bear hunter, I'll be honest with you.  I'll take a black bear if a good'un shows up whilst I'm doing something else, but I've never set out specifically for bear.  So, I'm not the best person to open it up.  I was kinda hoping someone else would pick up my slack...
 

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Bear hunting? You mean like Grizzly Bear hunting? Oh man! Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday,...Thursday,....Friday,... 6:10am Seatac Airport...I can hardly stand it...
 

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Joel,

You know tha we expect a FULL report upon your return.

Can you tell us any specifics before you leave? Area? Outfitter/Guide?
 

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My brother lives up in Nome. He's lived there for about 15 years. He has a cabin that is down towards Council, thats east of Nome, about 80 miles I think. Anyway that's base camp. Because of Alaska's "near kin" law, I can hunt with him instead of coughing up the $7000.00 + for a guided hunt. The bears are the Barren Ground Grizzly. They fall into the same classification as Mountain Grizzlies. Last year my brothers hunting partner shot a bear that is top 50 all time, for Boone and Crockett. It scores 26 1/16". It squared 8' 10", that is a big Tundra Bear. I'll include the story that he wrote for a magazine at the bottom of this posting. Nome, and the Seward Peninsula area is experiencing record numbers of Grizzlies right now. Really playing havoc with the Moose population. They increased the season to one every year instead of one every 5. I shot one the year before last, so was thinking that I would have to wait another 4 years, but lucked out. The one I got was 6 1/2 feet. Not very large, but about average for the area. Sure looks good on the wall. That year the weather was really against us, rained like crazy, poor visibility. Tough hunting. I was fortunate to get him. Saw 2 other bears that were 7' + but they weren't in the area I had a tag for. The thing that impresses me about these bears is that they sleep for 6 months out of the year. Their not like the Brown Bear that has all of the feed available, to get one that is large takes a lot of luck, lots of glassing involved. Checkout this story...
 
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