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Thread: Caribou Hunt Out of Bettles

  1. #1
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    Default Caribou Hunt Out of Bettles

    I was wondering if any one has used Bettles Lodge and Air Service or Brooks Range Aviation for a caribout hunt? If so, how was your experience (the flight, the hunt, etc.)?

  2. #2
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    I have not, but in researching a sheep hunt I asked a few people that I really respect about Brooks Range Aviation and I received glowing reviews. I am not using them due to logistics issues, but based on what I heard about them and in my correspondence with them, I wouldn't hesitate to use BRA.

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    seems their for sale....on todays c list

    http://fairbanks.craigslist.org/bfs/2898622067.html
    "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

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    Member AK Wonderer's Avatar
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    Went out with BRA three years ago. Had an absolutely great experience and would use them again without a second thought. We wanted to avoid the Kotz. headaches that seemed to be rampant a few years ago and Bettles was a great route. Jay and Judy are great people and will treat you right. I'm not a plane expert but their planes looked well taken care of. We spent the night back in from the field in the bunk house and used the kitchen and large counter in the back of the hanger to bone out our meat for the trip home.

    They dropped us in a nice location where we saw no other hunters and only two planes the six days we were out and one of those was the BRA plane headed further down river for a pickup. They know the common migration routes but still they talk to the hunter coming in or calling in from the field to get reports where the best number of animals are moving. Of course the migration can start and stop without notice, but hey that's hunting. We hit a decent period and saw around 1200 caribou on the trip (not all at stalkable distances of course), along with 3-4 grizzly and a wolverine.

    I talked with some other hunter who flew with Bettles Lodge and they had great things to say. I talked to Bettles Lodge during my planning and pricing was virtually the same between the two. I'm yet to read anything bad about either operation operation. The two operations have their own usual drop points so they aren't dropping clients on the other operation. Both operations should treat you right. It's a great trip.

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    Wish I could help you as a voice of experience with BRA.....but you'll have to wait until mid-September for that!

    Seriously, this time last year I was soliciting personal recommendations and contacting potential transporters. Took a couple months to narrow my list to four. Took another month's worth of emails and phone calls to make the final decision.

    Anticipation is high to say the least!

    Good luck with your decision.

  6. #6
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by inarcher View Post
    Wish I could help you as a voice of experience with BRA.....but you'll have to wait until mid-September for that!

    Seriously, this time last year I was soliciting personal recommendations and contacting potential transporters. Took a couple months to narrow my list to four. Took another month's worth of emails and phone calls to make the final decision.

    Anticipation is high to say the least!

    Good luck with your decision.
    so who did you wind up going with after all of the research?
    Semper Fi and God Bless

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tboehm View Post
    so who did you wind up going with after all of the research?
    Sorry, guess that wasn't clear. Flying out with Brooks Range Aviation (BRA).

    My last four were BRA, 70 North, Sportsman's Air, and 40 Mile Air. Would be confident booking with any of the four.

    Final deciding factors:

    - 40 Mile Air (40 Mile Herd) offers only one caribou tag.

    - Sportsman's Air is fully outfitted with a premium charge for less than three hunters (there will only be two of us)

    - 70 North, logistics to and from Bettles appear less complicated than to and from Deadhorse.


    All that said, I've never been to Alaska....so I would advise anyone reading this post to decide what they want in a hunt and research for themselves. This site is a great place to start!

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