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Thread: A purely academic question

  1. #1
    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    Default A purely academic question

    But, I would appreciate the input...


    I was invited to go on a moose hunt in the Livengood area, in a case of the blind leading the blind (the guy offering has never hunted there either).

    First question is vehicle, I have an:

    Argo avenger with rubber tracks, winch, fully enclosed, etc.

    Yamaha Rhino 450 with either ITP tires, or TJD Cattracks.. fully enclosed, winch, etc

    Honda Rancher 350 with ITP tires.

    Given the terrain, any input on which vehicle to take?


    Also rifle...

    I have a Kimber 8400 Montana in 30-06 with a pet load shooting 180 gr barnes Tipped TSX's to 1MOA@ 2730 fps with a Zeiss 3-9x 40 scope.

    I also have a Ruger Hawkeye 35 Whelen which throws 310 gr Woodleighs to 1.75 MOA @ 2300 fps which I feel comfortable with out to 250 yds with a Burris 2-7 scope.

    Any preferences? I feel comfortable with the Kimber out to 400+, and of course the Ruger to 250... based on the local terrain, any advice?

    I think that any one of the above combinations will probably suffice, but I'm the kind of guy who over prepares, and over researches for anything I'm not intimately familiar with.

    Thanks

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    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Boy that is a tough choice I love both calibers and rifles.

    Have to go with the 35 Whelen

    Use whatever vehicle you are comfortable with and you will be happy. The Argo is a great machine but very slow.
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    Take which ever vehicle that will get you the farthest off the road - You will have lots of company in that area.

    Nothing wrong with the 30-06 for moose hunting.

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    The .30-06 with TSX's will get it done just fine. As far as choice of access/support vehicle, it depends. If your friend drew one of the early or late season cow tags for that area, I'd say take a four-wheeler and leave the argo at home. If he did draw one of those tags you'll be doing mostly road hunting in your truck (four-wheeler in the box), and you should take alot of extra gas with you because it's a long way to the nearest gas station.

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    New member akhunter02's Avatar
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    I fly that area a lot, I personally would find another area, WAY too few moose and WAY too many hunters, if you are just looking for a place to go camping and so some off road run its as good as any, but for moose Not so much

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    You listed the argo and 30-06 as the first choices.

    What time of year are you planning? What part of the Livengood area do you plan to hunt? What is your buddy bringing? (ATV, rifle). And I would take the things to diversify (different rifle: go big if he goes small, go small if he goes big) or compliment (similar ATV/UTV) the hunt.

    I would prefer the Argo (or ARGO equivalent) as they get one where they want to go, and can get one away from people....and when it comes to moose hunting, I'd rather not have to pack a critter out more than 5 steps. In Alaska I can be less than 1/4 mile or 1/2 mile from the highway in territory that other ATV'rs do not want to go .. and be very comfortable with the Argo.

    Sure, ATV's can go far on the better trails.... and others have said, there will be plenty of others travelling them. Don't now if you have a trailer behind the ARGO, but with the ARGO trailer combination you can haul plenty of gear, fuel, and a moose. But if your buddy has an ATV, you'll want to stay caught up to him if he plans to drive fast and for a long ways.

    I would prefer the 30-06 due to the accuracy advantage. 180 gr bullets are adequate for moose. If you buddy doesn't take a rifle, I'd take both rifles. Leave one at the truck if you have to ... but would potentially save a trip back to the pennisula if a backup firearm was needed.

    With your experience and assortment of machines ... which combo do you think would be best? Hopefully, you can make a run up there to scout trails/options beforehand in order to formulate some sort of plan.

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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    Planning on the middle of September... as far as vehicles, I havent any idea what the terrain is like up there. If it's swamp/tundra, the decision is pretty easy. If it's a lot of rocks or trees, the Argo wouldn't be my first pick. Down here, I only use the Argo when necessary (very wet conditions, etc) because it's a really rough ride, and always seems to cost $300 every trip (something always breaks). My friend will be bringing a 450 grizzly wheeler, and a .308. Down here, I use the Whelen, just because a 200 yd shot is very much a rarity... usually 100 or less. I have a dual axle trailer that tows well behind both the Argo and the Rhino (not so well behind the Rancher). I don't foresee an opportunity to scout much between now and then unfortunately.

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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akhunter02 View Post
    I fly that area a lot, I personally would find another area, WAY too few moose and WAY too many hunters, if you are just looking for a place to go camping and so some off road run its as good as any, but for moose Not so much
    Well that sucks. The main reason I wanted to go up there with him is that the Caribou Hills down here are a 3 ring circus every moose season.... was looking to go somewhere with a little less pressure (on the road system- guess that's a bit of an oxymoron)

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    Too bad, you've had things break on your ARGO. What type of things break on your ARGO? Is the ride more bumpy with tracks or without? I don't like the cobbles/boulders either as the sharper ones poke holes in tires and/or ding the rims. They say you can run with a flat Argo tire... and I've done that with a loaded machine without adverse affects.

    I've heard other machines have had difficulty (mechanical issues) also. For planning purposes, I wonder if it is worse to be 10 or 25+ miles in on some ATV trail or just a few miles on or near a swamp. If a machine breaks down (non usable), which hike is worse? Hopefully, it will stay a conscious thought so that I don't get to far out there and so I am adequately prepared for the potential hike out.

    I haven't been to Livengood specifically, but from the google picks seems like the common wide variety of potential territory that is encountered in the many other parts of the state. And with the range of country between the KP and Livengood, ok I am biased towards the Argo (or argo equivalents).

    For a first trip, ATV's may allow you to see a lot of country. If you went the ATV route with your buddy ... then you could decide if the time/distance was worth it for getting in there with the Argo.

    Quote Originally Posted by Akheloce View Post
    Well that sucks. .... was looking to go somewhere with a little less pressure
    That's a goal for most of us. You have many advantages.

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