In looking through the "what's new" section of the 2012-13 regs, I see that GMUs 24A and 25A now require that caribou meat must be left naturally attached to the bone of the front and hind quarters and ribs. These areas encompass the Dalton Highway (Haul Road) from a bit north of the Yukon all the way up to Atigun Pass. This regulation is similar to what they instituted in Unit 13 several years back. What is the purpose of this regulation?
I have hunted the Dalton 4 times, bringing back meat 3 of the 4. All caribou were killed in GMU 26B; however, we did give the Chandalar Shelf a serious look two of the times, and this area is in unit 24A or 25A, depending on where you start and how far in you go. And every time, we have hiked (or skied) out the 5 miles in order to use rifles. It's a tough hunt, but it's a great hunt if you're up for it, and plenty of folks do it.
Packing meat out the 5 miles is strenuous enough as it is. Now they have added the requirement that we need to pack out the bones too? Why? Did they consider the fact that these units affect people hiking in from the road? Will they add unit 26B next (the entire stretch from the top of Atigun Pass to Deadhorse)?
I am planning to write a letter to the Board of Game bringing my discontent to their attention and asking for a justification for this new regulation. I would appreciate any support you can give me. Even the archery crowd should know about it, as some of you guys hike a little off the road for your caribou, and for even a mile in that tundra, any efficiency in pack weight would be welcome!
Please let me know if you would like to help write or cosign my letter, or if you have some intel on why this regulation was imposed and what we can do to overturn it or limit its area to omit the vicinity of the Haul Road. Thanks!