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Thread: Raft selection questions

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    Default Raft selection questions

    I've got a group of 4 guys. We're looking at hunting 14days. We're planning on using our backpack gear plus a 8man Kifaru tipi with a med stove for shelter. Total pack weight for food and gear is right at 70lbs per guy. We're not bringing any sort of food outside dehydrated meals (we're accustomed to this) and add in some ptarmigan (with the bow) or other ground critters plus if we're lucky enough to take a caribou or 2.

    we're looking at Unit 23 so we'd want to plan on 2 caribou a piece (i like to prepare for the best case scenario for this

    i'm pushing 170lbs
    #2 187lbs
    #3 163lbs
    #4 191lbs

    i know raft design is gonna depend on what river we choose to float, but what would be looking at for a given Class 1-2 river. I figure it's going to be 2 rafts for the 4 of us. would we be well served to get a cataraft to haul meat (if we're blessed) and one round boat for gear?? and if so about what size should we look at getting for the given weights above and 2 caribou a piece??

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Jordan:
    As you saw in our float we had one of each and we found either one would have worked equally as well. They both handled about equal weights. Our boat was the round one and we were glad we used that one, the other guys said the same thing about their cataraft and was glad they had that instead of the round boat, for us it boiled down to each others preferences.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingfisherktn View Post
    Jordan:
    As you saw in our float we had one of each and we found either one would have worked equally as well. They both handled about equal weights. Our boat was the round one and we were glad we used that one, the other guys said the same thing about their cataraft and was glad they had that instead of the round boat, for us it boiled down to each others preferences.
    that's actually my wife's name, we have a shared email account. lol

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Won't make that mistake again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingfisherktn View Post
    Won't make that mistake again.
    that's not the first time that's happened, HAH! you've been more than helpful, so i'm sure i can let it slide. lol i was just curious if it would be a better idea, given the fact that everything i've read has said it's easier to spread your meat load out on a cataraft to get better air flow. This is our main concern for the trip, not just because of the law but because this is a meat hunt for us. I'm not much for trophy hunting, the first LEGAL animal i see and have a chance to kill is gonna take a dirt nap.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Yes, you would get more airflow on the raft.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Pick up a copy of Michael Strahan's book from Amazon. It's called Float Hunting Alaska's Rivers. It's the best $37.95 invested on the subject.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_no...unting&x=0&y=0

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    i actually ordered that, the Larry Bartlett book, and Hunt Alaska Now: self guided book. day before yesterday i ordered another Self guided planner book, i forget the title off the top of my head.

    Now the wait begins.....that's the tough part for me. I'm ready to get reading now. hah I've been picking apart this site for the last few weeks, and watched Michael's 3 float hunt how-to Youtube videos. those are good for a guy like myself. Thank God for this site

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Don't forget to thank Michael too for the site.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingfisherktn View Post
    Don't forget to thank Michael too for the site.
    good point...lol Thanks Michael.

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    I would like to also point that rock solid honest assesments are also nice. Mr. K.F. as always your insight is always appreciated. Enjoy the not so needed rep point. I know I know but someone has to be the third wheel.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueMoose View Post
    I would like to also point that rock solid honest assesments are also nice. Mr. K.F. as always your insight is always appreciated. Enjoy the not so needed rep point. I know I know but someone has to be the third wheel.

    Thanks Moose.....

    Beastmodebwhunter::: If you really want excellent help picking a raft check with BlueMoose, he can supply you with all of your float equipment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kingfisherktn View Post
    Thanks Moose.....

    Beastmodebwhunter::: If you really want excellent help picking a raft check with BlueMoose, he can supply you with all of your float equipment.
    I planned on contacting him or Michael very soon. I'd like to be a little more self educated before I start putting down deposits so i don't sound like a complete idiot and have to ask a ton of questions about what they're recommending.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Both know their stuff. If you are flying out of Anchorage Michael could outfit you if he has any available and if you are flying out of Fairbanks Richard-BlueMoose could outfit you.

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    Thanks for the Plug eh! Word of advise if your leaning towards larger Cat's for your rental choice don't wait to much pass the End of Feb. as an example I have 4 now i.e. larger cat's two are already spoken for. Don't know what Mike's and or Larry's situation is this year nor what AR&K has to offfer. Just word to the wise if your looking local in Anch and or Fairbanks sometimes the Larger Catarafts go early. Round Boats from Otter's / Sotars / Soars and options lots to be had IMO in either location.

    Best wishes! Dean have a very very good day.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    I am, I'm in Portland and sunshine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueMoose View Post
    Thanks for the Plug eh! Word of advise if your leaning towards larger Cat's for your rental choice don't wait to much pass the End of Feb. as an example I have 4 now i.e. larger cat's two are already spoken for. Don't know what Mike's and or Larry's situation is this year nor what AR&K has to offfer. Just word to the wise if your looking local in Anch and or Fairbanks sometimes the Larger Catarafts go early. Round Boats from Otter's / Sotars / Soars and options lots to be had IMO in either location.

    Best wishes! Dean have a very very good day.
    thanks for the tip. I'm sure I'll have it booked up well before 2012 is even over and we're not going til 2013, lol. I'll be contacting you pretty soon as i'm pretty sure we'll be flying out of Fairbanks.

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    Oops 2013 so You have time. :-) Remember we all have opinions and asking questions is a good thing.

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    I would definately get two rafts, gets too crowded with three or four guys and equipment.. I have done a trip with three guys and gear for caribou and once we shot our animals it was doable but uncomfortable... I have a sotar radical but this fall rented a soar leviator from Larry B and was very happy with it too. I prefer the radical for it sits lower on the water and floated faster in the windy conditions, but the leviator would be okay where there was higher banks to block the wind, hellva raft...good luck

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    I have used both a self bailer raft and a cataraft. I have my cat set up with a rack system on the bac kand it is on top of the pontoons.I like this as the meat goes there and the rest of the raft has room for gear.With the rack set up I can get good air flow both on top and the underside of the raft. But as far as rowing no preference.
    Dan

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