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Thread: Ptarmigan hunting

  1. #1
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    Default Ptarmigan hunting

    I am headed to Delta Junction and am wondering how th bird hunting is on the way up.

  2. #2
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    Ptarmigan are to be found in the subalpine areas along the drive. You may have to burn up a lot of boot leather to find birds, or you may get lucky. If you don't have a dog then I suggest you use a good binocular to help you locate birds. A drive down onto the Denali Highway might be a better bet?

    Good luck!

    Jim

  3. #3
    Member SkinnyD's Avatar
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    I drove across from Cantwell to Paxson on Tuesday and saw nary a bird. They were as thick as fleas in May, though, so I'd imagine they're somewhere... higher up the mountain maybe? Speaking of higher up the mountain, there was quite a bit of snow on the road around Maclaren Summit, so be careful out there.
    Passing up shots on mergansers since 1992.


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    Do tell more about how you use these bino's to bird hunt. i would suppose that you are glassing for movement just as in any other hunting??? Do you have much success with this? I have burnt some leather today. used the wheelers to take me from place to place but man oh man did some walking. paid off but not as successful as I wanted to be. They stick so tight that they get up behind you -- had a retriever pup but she not much use unless you shoot them down. They would get up and fly off and she would look up at me like "man you suck" quite funny how a dog can talk to you with their eyes.

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    oh yea anybody had any luck with ptarmigin in the anchorage area. I have seen a few up on the south fork of the eagle river but definately more the further north I go. Have I just not been looking or is tha population greater up there.

  6. #6
    Member lynch's Avatar
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    I got into ptarmies today. They where up high. I think with the late onset of winter we are having they still have not moved down the slopes yet in many cases. With colder weather and snow coming start to look for them in the bottoms of high mountain valleys just above, or at, tree line. When the weather hits they like to seek shelter in the brush in the creek bottoms. Each population will have slightly different habits though. Check out likely spots and when you find them make note of the date, weather, and maybe even the time of day and over the next few years you will start to see patterns. After a while you will be able to check the calender and weather forecast and combined with many hours of past scouting you will be able to think of spots that should be good for that time, place etc. Eventually you will be able to start stacking the odds in your favor.
    "Bark,bark,bark,sniff,sniff,bark,and bark" - Lynchs Blue Roan Lynch E.C.K.

  7. #7
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    NDH,

    You can often spot a ptarmigan, or fifty, from a long way off. Ptarmigan are a different sort of white than their surroundings, and you get used to seeing shapes that might be birds, and you should be looking for birds up in the willow branches. Certainly, if you see something that looks like a ptarmigan, you can use those binoculars to check it our without having to cross another bit of steep terrain afoot. I don't use an ATV and walk wherever I go, so I can tell you that if I didn't have a team of good pointing dogs I'd be using the binocular a lot.

    Jim

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