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Thread: New to Hunting Alaska

  1. #1
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    Default New to Hunting Alaska

    Hey everybody, I was just stationed up at Ft. Richardson earlier in the year. Had the pleasure of enjoying the great Alaskan outdoors with fishing and such. Well now that hunting is here I want to get in on the action.

    I'm deploying soon and would love to get a caribou (moose is too much meat, and a caribou will help out the family while I'm gone) and I have no idea where I need to go. I've read up on all the regulations and hunting areas, and I was thinking about going out around Unit 7.

    I've got a buddy of mine flying up from an army unit in florida and it would be awesome if we could get a good chance at bagging a caribou. We are planning on hunting around the 1st and 2nd week of November.

    Would anybody willing to share some decent areas that we wouldn't have to fly into? I should be able to rent snow machines from MWR.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Welcome aboard... 1st things 1st you will not be chasing caribou in unit 7 that is a draw area. The only chance you have at a caribou is on the haul road. You cannot use a firearm or motorized vehicle in the 5 me corridor that runs from the Yukon river all the way to prudhoe bay. You can use a bow but you need to be IBEP certified.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 323 View Post
    Welcome aboard... 1st things 1st you will not be chasing caribou in unit 7 that is a draw area. The only chance you have at a caribou is on the haul road. You cannot use a firearm or motorized vehicle in the 5 me corridor that runs from the Yukon river all the way to prudhoe bay. You can use a bow but you need to be IBEP certified.
    Thanks for the clarification. Now for another clarification, where and what the heck is the "haul road"? We plan on using centerfire rifles.

    Edit - Ah Dalton Highway, so basically around Unit 13?

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by _S2_ View Post
    Thanks for the clarification. Now for another clarification, where and what the heck is the "haul road"? We plan on using centerfire rifles.Edit - Ah Dalton Highway, so basically around Unit 13?
    You should recheck the game management unit maps. Unit 13 is way south of the Haul Road and is a permit-only area for caribou. The haul road is up to the North Slope. If you want to hunt with rifles, as you stated, on the Haul Road, you will need to get outside the 5-mile corridor around the highway. That means either hiking (some of the hardest hiking around, check out the haul road posts to get a feel for it) or getting flown out. There might be a way to get a boat charter on the Sag, but not sure about that. When looking through the regs, you are looking for hunting opportunities that are noted with HT (Harvest Ticket). If you see a DC### notation, that is a drawing permit. To get a drawing permit, you have to apply for the permit hunt lottery each year by the end of December, then see if your name gets drawn. There will be lots of new information on that in the upcoming months as the hunt supplements get posted.

  5. #5
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    The Dalton Highway is in unit 26 (I think...recalling offhand without regs in hand). Unit 13 contains the Denali Highway among others and is not open for you this year. Your other option might be a registration hunt on the Steese Highway in December. I say "might" because I'm not certain that it's going to open this year, and if it does it might only be open for a few days.

    Realistically, your best options short of flying out is black bear and/or small game such as hares and ptarmigan or grouse. You can get into some good black bear hunting in Unit 7 if you're willing to climb, but November might be a bit late. Through mid-October, though, glassing high mountainsides and chasing black dots can be productive.

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    yeah i just noticed I got the dalton highway area completely wrong.

    Well I dont think caribou is going to be feasible.

  7. #7
    Member kingman's Avatar
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    If your ever looking for a hunting buddy hit me up. (As long as you don't mind us Air Force types...)

  8. #8
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    You can hunt in unit 23.
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

    "Dam it all", The Beaver told me.....

  9. #9
    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by _S2_ View Post
    I've read up on all the regulations and hunting areas, and I was thinking about going out around Unit 7.
    You need to seriously read the hunting regs and look at a map pf Alaska showing the few roads and get a better understanding of what is what. You seem to be a bit confused.

    Yes MWR rents sleds but make sure you take the class prior to planning on renting one, they only schedule the class once or twice a month.

    Hunting the Haul Road or a fly out are your two best bets for caribou.

    Come block leave in Nov there are not many big game hunting opportunities. Guess you could go on a winter deer hunt in PWS or Kodiak but those take flyouts or boats and MWR does not rent boats then so that means chartering a boat transporter.
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    Before taking any of my advice for granted on here research the legal ramifications thoroughly I am not the Troopers nor am I the Judge that will be presiding over your case/hearing. Please read the hunting and sportfishing regulations and feel free to interpret their meaning on your own.

  10. #10
    Member Nanook 2010's Avatar
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    S2,
    Welcome to Alaska. Here are some things I learned during my time in Alaska:

    1. There are some cheap hunts in Alaska, but remember, Alaska is about access. There really aren't that many roads in AK (compared to the lower 48), so if you are hunting the roads, most likely you will not be alone. Unless you go to a non-motorized area, you will definetly see four wheelers, and in the winter snow machines in the more popular areas. Search "Chicken Ridge" and you might get a feel about hunting conditions in popular areas.

    2. My best piece of advice would be to try to befriend someone that has done a few hunts in AK, this was the most beneficial to me. I did some "discovery" learning during a caribou hunt as well as bear baiting and I came close to quitting hunting in AK until I met a great sportsman and experienced AK hunter, and it opended many doors for me.

    3. In my opinion you must decide what type of hunting experience you want. I do not like crowds or any type of drama when I am taking time off to hunt; I don't like competing for animals, and worrying that another hunter might not see me and try to stalk the same animal I am on. Again this does not happen all the time in popular hunting areas, but in my experience it happended more often that not. That being said, if you are of the same mind you must be willing to pay to access more remote areas in Alaska. Brother, this can be very expensive..but to me it is worth it to have a quality experience.

    4. Good gear: I was a firm believer that my Army issue Gore-Tex and cheap range finder would be fine for a Valdez bear hunt, until the third day of rain and everything I owned was soaking wet, and I could not get any returns from my range finder. Good gear (again, in my opinion) will make your hunt much more comfortable, sucessful, and safer.

    5. Good plan: Don't want to offend you, but have a good back up plan and be prepared for the worst. AK is a big place with brutal, quickly shifting weather. Hunting here is really more of an expedition that a casual event (mostly). It would really stink to walk over 5 miles of tundra and remember some forgotten piece of kit, or have your tent collapse during a wind storm (been there, done that!) it's not like to can just quickly walk back to the truck, or take a quick ride to Wal-Mart to pick something up, or have a buddy come pick you up Please plan for the weather! It most definetly can kill you quick.

    Hope this help, and I wish you and your friends great luck in AK..Stay safe overseas!

    RLTW!

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