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Thread: Pro Pioneer rentals?

  1. #1
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Question Pro Pioneer rentals?

    I am doing a drop off up north this fall and would preferably like to use the Pro Pioneer for its obvious advantages in braided, shallow rivers. I found that Alaska Raft and Kayak and Pristine Ventures rents them, but I was curious if there is anywhere else that you guys know of. I also tried contacting Pristine Ventures through email as they also sell used gear from time to time but haven't heard back. Thanks in advance!

    AZinAK

  2. #2
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    the out fit on the chena river in fbks rents them...i cant remember thier name at moment...theyll open again in May
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  3. #3

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    I do.

    Walt
    Gulkana River Raft Rentals
    family floats and Fishing on the Gulkana & Delta Rivers
    www.gulkanaraftrental.com
    Northwest Alaska Back Country Rentals
    Float hunts and drop camps unit 23-Kotz
    www.northwestalaska.com
    907-259-4290

  4. #4
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Appreciate the info gentlemen. Found a place that will rent me a Pro for $70 a day. Can't beat that. Had another place that only had rafts offer me no charge for the first and last days as he knows they are travel days since I'm going north of the Brooks. Thought that was pretty awesome and commended him for his fairness and help. All the places I've called have given a lot of tips and info pertaining to my plans. If I had more than the 600 lb limit I have, I may have taken the raft over the Pro. It was a SOTAR SP Elite with a drop stitch floor. 250 lbs total, which is entirely too heavy for my trip. There are more questions coming gentlemen and ladies. I have a lot to plan. Thanks again!

    AZinAK

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    Member bigdog's Avatar
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    I would rent from Pristine Ventures, Larry is probably just out in the field or on vacation... Try him again

  6. #6
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigdog View Post
    I would rent from Pristine Ventures, Larry is probably just out in the field or on vacation... Try him again
    Yeah, I got a hold of him the other day. Super nice guy with a WEALTH of knowledge. He charges $30 more a day than another place I found which equates to $360 over the course of our hunt. Thanks for the info either way though.

    AZinAK

  7. #7
    Member bigdog's Avatar
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    He was real good to our group this fall we needed another raft and ended up going with the levitator, I wish I would have tried one of the Pro Pioneers but then I would like to try every raft out there... Well good luck hope all goes well for you...

  8. #8
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    You could also check with Jerry Sisemore of Alaska Downstream. He's been renting Pro Pioneers and several other designs for several years now and he offers some really good deals.

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
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    Member Brian Richardson's Avatar
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    Was good to speak with you the other day... For clarifications: The 14' SOTAR SP with Drop-stitch floor is a premier package for certain. This offers the least draft of any 14' self-bailer and is the most rugged. The optimum character is no flex rigidity to the floor so it will not conform/stick to river bottom structure, rocks or logs. It is high performance with less drag. There is weight gain for this feature, however on water it will act much lighter/nimble at the oars. It will also haul more over a given footage than an I-beam floor (more inner volume and less draft w/ no flex).

    Probably could have gone the way of a different floor.... this would bring you to 185 pounds and bit more compactness on a 14'-15' of lesser but more than adequate construction (I-beam floors). Unfortunately the 14' w/ Drop-Stitch was too heavy and maybe an I-beam type floor on a 14'-15' is also too heavy. I did not want to recommend canoes and kayaks because of the 4 animal and fishing factored in.

    Of note on Drop-Stitch construction: Comprehensive package defining the 250 lbs. is a 14' Raft in bag, 3-bay frame (2 side-rails 4 crossbars w/ U-foot-bar, stands, and locks) 3 oars, commercial grade Big-Foot pump, repair kit, 1 custom aluminum Dry-box, box-drops, cam-strap kit, and cargo nets. (so we are not talking just a boat... this is sum-total for everything in the package). On fly-outs, this kit is most suited to 2 people plus all their stuff in a Cessna 206 or 3-4 in a DHC-2 Beaver.

    If going Cessna 180 to 185 or Heliocourier (around 700 lbs. useful) it gets to be a squeeze for first timers floating Alaska and often you'll end up with a Super Cub chaser for just the raft or personal gear. Experienced floaters can work around the weight restrictions taking only what they really need.

    Couple things to keep in mind from what you had described to me: 2 guys, fishing/hunting/camping gear, figuring 4 Caribou (2/guy)... The inflatable canoe will draft way more water, has considerably less space. When people tend to overly load this boat (like you see in all the hype of possibilities) what you get is a less-forgiving stability issue, handling becomes sluggish at best, center of gravity gets higher than desirable in all sorts of conditions, and you are cramped with little margins for error on all accounts. Furthermore, adding things up it is easier to inflict damages to this boat if going the very reasoning mentioned above - potentially overloaded with so little space.

    I'm not saying do not go with a PP... what I'm saying is maybe going with two (oar-rigged) and make life on the trip much more enjoyable and safer. I feel it is dressing for success more fitting of taking 4 animals, fishing, camping multi-day, and so on.


    Quote Originally Posted by AZinAK View Post
    Appreciate the info gentlemen. Found a place that will rent me a Pro for $70 a day. Can't beat that. Had another place that only had rafts offer me no charge for the first and last days as he knows they are travel days since I'm going north of the Brooks. Thought that was pretty awesome and commended him for his fairness and help. All the places I've called have given a lot of tips and info pertaining to my plans. If I had more than the 600 lb limit I have, I may have taken the raft over the Pro. It was a SOTAR SP Elite with a drop stitch floor. 250 lbs total, which is entirely too heavy for my trip. There are more questions coming gentlemen and ladies. I have a lot to plan. Thanks again!
    Quote Originally Posted by AZinAK View Post

    AZinAK

    Brian Richardson

  10. #10
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Mr. Richardson,
    I really appreciated your help on the phone the other day. You obviously know your stuff! Four caribou was something I was hoping for, not a necessity. I'm planning this trip for the adventure as much as the hunt. I've grown up with my dad showing me the way in the outdoors growing up in Arizona hunting everything from Quail to Elk and look forward to showing him the way this beautiful state. I'm flying in a Helio Courier and have 600 lbs to play with. We are used to packing light, but 600-250=350. Then the hunters weight going from 350-340=10. That's 10lbs for everything else. Not going to work. The PP should be about 90-100 lbs, so that gains me 150 lbs from the raft. I can easily have our gear fall into that number. Once again, thanks for your respectful opinion and experience! You seem to be a class act.

    Thanks again everyone for the suggestions and info! Really appreciate it.

    AZinAK

  11. #11

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    My wife and I did a trip similar to what you're describing last year. Two people floating a braided river in the Brooks Range with a Pro Pioneer. We went fairly lightweight. Not 'sheep hunting' lightweight but only took mostly essentials (I even made my wife leave the box wine behind). We flew in a Helio. We brought out two caribou in the PP. Maybe I could have put three animals on, but the meat would have been stacked higher. Four caribou stacked on? Probably not. For comparison, two guys flew out after us with a Sotar Radical. They had a slightly larger camp than us and still fit it all in the Helio in one load. We leap-frogged with them on the river throughout the week and would stop and chat as we passed so I had an opportunity to look over their raft set-up. The Radical definitely had more cargo space than the PP.

    Good luck,

    Jeff

  12. #12
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shearej View Post
    My wife and I did a trip similar to what you're describing last year. Two people floating a braided river in the Brooks Range with a Pro Pioneer. We went fairly lightweight. Not 'sheep hunting' lightweight but only took mostly essentials (I even made my wife leave the box wine behind). We flew in a Helio. We brought out two caribou in the PP. Maybe I could have put three animals on, but the meat would have been stacked higher. Four caribou stacked on? Probably not. For comparison, two guys flew out after us with a Sotar Radical. They had a slightly larger camp than us and still fit it all in the Helio in one load. We leap-frogged with them on the river throughout the week and would stop and chat as we passed so I had an opportunity to look over their raft set-up. The Radical definitely had more cargo space than the PP.

    Good luck,

    Jeff
    Tried PMing you shearej...said your messages are full. Wanted to ask some questions and figured it'd best be done in PM mode.

    AZinAK

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by AZinAK View Post
    Tried PMing you shearej...said your messages are full. Wanted to ask some questions and figured it'd best be done in PM mode.

    AZinAK
    Thanks for the heads-up, I cleared up some space in the inbox.

    Jeff

  14. #14
    Member Brian Richardson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZinAK View Post
    Mr. Richardson,
    I really appreciated your help on the phone the other day. You obviously know your stuff! Four caribou was something I was hoping for, not a necessity. I'm planning this trip for the adventure as much as the hunt. I've grown up with my dad showing me the way in the outdoors growing up in Arizona hunting everything from Quail to Elk and look forward to showing him the way this beautiful state. I'm flying in a Helio Courier and have 600 lbs to play with. We are used to packing light, but 600-250=350. Then the hunters weight going from 350-340=10. That's 10lbs for everything else. Not going to work. The PP should be about 90-100 lbs, so that gains me 150 lbs from the raft. I can easily have our gear fall into that number. Once again, thanks for your respectful opinion and experience! You seem to be a class act.

    Thanks again everyone for the suggestions and info! Really appreciate it.

    AZinAK
    More than welcome anytime. Thank you for compliments here - always appreciated and can go a long ways lending a hand to others on this forum.

    Going the ways of super-light yet dependable gear will really pay dividends using an inflatable canoe for two on your multi-day float hunt.

    Things I see gear-wise functional that can shave pounds and space, highly increase safety margins, and still provide comfort day and night are:

    1.) Good 4-season 2-3 man Tent... something like a Mountain Hardwear Trango 3.1 in a free-standing or an expedition-type floor-less Go-lite Shangi-la 5

    2.) Sleeping mats... ExPed Downmat 9 or similar.

    3.) Sleeping Bags... modern synthetic around +15-20 F comfort is adequate this time of year (highly compact in compression sack) Mtn. Hardwear Lamina or Marmot CloudBreak are reasonable choices.

    4.) Dry-suits... this is your goto gear river, stream crossing ,Foulest weather rain and snow suit and provides a monster safety and comfort value vs. kit for each condition.

    5.) 3 OR 4 piece fly-rods or a couple unbreakable med. size Ugly-stick spin-rods.

    6.) GPS and Waterproof/shockproof camera. A combo can be had in a Garmin Oregon GPS or a Panasonic Lumix Camera.

    7.) Stove... Hard to beat an MSR Dragonfly

    8.) Riverbags... No question WHEN USING CANOES would be WaterShed ZipDry (made in USA!)

    9.) The most simple sets of single layer fleece gloves like inexpensive Columbia -- no need for anything fancy that will not work as well anyway.

    Some of this is spendy at first & ya do not need a lick of it... on the other hand, sticking to light weight restrictions on flights and considering keeping to best boat performance --- it's a good way to go.
    Brian Richardson

  15. #15
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Once again, great info Mr. Richardson. Here is my plans to your suggestions...

    1.) Hopefully a Hilleberg Terra or a far second, a North Face Mountain 35.

    2.) I have a Big Agnes insulated mummy pad, not sure what my dad is going to end up with.

    3.) I have a Wiggy's Ultima Thule and a Wiggy's Ultra Light bag. Should do the trick.

    4.) Dry suits for now would be a bit much as far as new random gear goes...especially for my dad coming from AZ.

    5.) I will be taking a medium action Ugly Stick with a spinning reel and an assortment of spinners.

    6.) We will be taking two GPS's. I will be taking a 35mm in a waterproof case, and my dad will be bringing his waterproof camera.

    7.) Jetboil Ti for our meals with a MSR Pocket Rocket as backup.

    8.) Sea to Summits for my dry bags. Already have some, and as nice as those WaterShed bags seem...a bit much for now.

    9.) Will get some fleece gloves as I'm sure they are for good reason...

    Piecing together our meal plan right now...

    AZinAK

  16. #16

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    Hey AZ, if i missed your email, sorry. Sounds like you got squared away with another outfit. Happy to offer suggestion on gear types and sizes so that you can get 4 caribou inside with your buddy and gear. I've done it several times, but it takes going a little lighter on bulk.

    Brian offered some really sound advice. he's been there, obviously...

    good luck on your hunt, bud.

    larry

  17. #17

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    Makes me want to go float a river, four bou ? thats a lotttt of hot dogs !
    Pick A Spot

  18. #18
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikthestik View Post
    Makes me want to go float a river, four bou ? thats a lotttt of hot dogs !
    Not following...hot dogs?

    AZinAK

  19. #19

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    many people eat caribou by way of sausage sticks, hunter sticks, or hot dogs...hence the pun about hot dogs...

  20. #20
    Premium Member AZinAK's Avatar
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    Huh...I didn't find caribou meat to be that offensive. Guess that's why it didn't cross my mind. I have family that will be grateful for the meat along with my own household. Some summer sausage does sound good though.

    AZinAK

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