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Thread: Haul Road Hunt First two weeks of Sept. ???

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb Haul Road Hunt First two weeks of Sept. ???

    Ive hunted the Haul road between P.station 2 and 3 several times in early Aug. We always managed a couple bulls between 5 of us. never did see to many caribou.They all came after alot of hard walking...like I gotta tell anyone who has hunted the tundra that.
    Well anyway guys here are a few questions I would like to ask. Do you feel we will do better on the amount of caribou we should see by coming later in the migration. Do you feel the amount of hunting pressure at that time will be greater ? Should we be prepared for snow or freezing weather ? These are questions I ask because the latest Ive ever hunted the Dalton Hwy. was the 15th of August. This will be a month later.
    For you guys that have hunted it many times, Do you think this is a good idea to come during this time frame ?
    Thank you to whoever takes the time to responed .

  2. #2
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    You will likely see more caribou during that time, though there are certainly no guarantees. The migration isn't really happening in any real sense in early August, but by September the caribou are moving around as they prepare for the rut and the onset of winter. Hunting pressure will likely be similar. Early August sees folks that are there because nothing else is open, while September will find those folks elsewhere in the state focusing on moose. You'll have company, but I wouldn't expect it to be significantly different than early August. As for snow and freezing weather, yes...absolutely yes, you should be prepared. Frankly, such weather is possible up there any month of the year, but especially so from September on. You might get lucky on avoiding snow, but it will certainly be below freezing at night (which is ideal for meat care anyhow).

    Good luck to you!

  3. #3
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    The later you go the more you will see, I have hunted it as early as 8 Aug and went as late as 29 Sept. Last year we went up 19 Sept and there were not many hunters but it was cold, and lot of bou running around. As Brian said be prepared for the cold no matter when you go.

  4. #4
    Member Roger45's Avatar
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    You don't say if you have a boat or not...if so, the later you go the skinnier the water gets. Morning ground fog can get worse the later you go as well. Take tire chains "just in case". Have fun too!
    "...and then Jack chopped down the beanstock, adding murder and ecological vandalism to the theft, enticement and vandalism charges already mentioned, but he got away with it and lived happily ever after without so much as a guilty twinge about what he had done. Which proves that you can be excused just about anything if you're a hero, because no one asks the inconvenient questions." Terry Pratchett's The Hogfather

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    Yes we will be taking a raft with us. Id never wade the SaG.

  6. #6

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    the thing about caribou is this..there is no predicitablity. One year they may favor the sag drainage, the next, the big herd migh tpush through ATP. One week 5000 might be there, tomorrow, nothing! Weather, pressure, time of year are all going to play a factor.

    Last fall we got onto a migration and had loads of fun..minus the rifle hunter who busted a group on me at 3 miles out and proceeded to 'hunt' them. Either way, it was a zoo!

    We've had blizzards aug 9th, snow many times the 2nd week with 60+ temps by mid day. figure that one out lol.

    The real problem with planing for that time of year, is planing for winter AND fall....you'll have gear and loads of it! especially if you plan on taking a raft along, snow tires, chains shovels wood, yadda yadda yadda.

  7. #7
    Member gutleap's Avatar
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    Tradbow is correct; there is no predictability when it comes to caribou. I drive the haul road for a living. This past November I saw the largest herd of caribou I have ever seen in my life. Around the first week of November, the herd came through around Atigun camp area and hung around the area for a few weeks. The herd was at least 20,000 caribou and probably more. As far as the eye could see there were caribou. It was quite a site while it lasted. In addition to the gear that has already been mentioned you should have for a hunt up the haul road, I would add a CB radio to that list. Use it to ask the truckers going by if they have seen any caribou and if so, where. So many times I have seen hunters walking up a drainage looking for caribou when just a few hillsides away were a small herd of them.

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