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Thread: Caribou Island?

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Default Caribou Island?

    I am looking at some property on Caribou Island in Lake Skilak on the Kenai. Is anybody familar with it?
    Please give me your comments, pros and cons. Thanks for your help
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    As I recall there is a member here who used to live on the Island, maybe still does.

    As with any remote land in Alaska, you need to thoroughly understand all the implications of accessing it.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    As I recall there is a member here who used to live on the Island, maybe still does.

    As with any remote land in Alaska, you need to thoroughly understand all the implications of accessing it.
    Thanks Paul, I already know that it has an airsrtip but not sure what shape its in and that the only other access is by
    boat but would like to know how close a ramp would be and its location. It looks easier than my property at Canyon
    Lake as highways and towns are not far.
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    I never heard of an airstrip on the island, so I thought maybe it was new. I just did Google Earth and no airstrip that I can see. From all I've ever heard you have to use a float plane. I don't really know what kind of a ramp you are talking about, but as far as I know there are no public ramps or boat launches if that's what you mean. People have built their own docks down from their cabins. You do realize there are quite a few cabins on the island......right? I know some people that own one.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Supporting Member bullbuster's Avatar
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    There was a book written about a life on the island. The name escapes me and I can't find it now.
    When I do I'll post the name. Spooky stuff.
    Live life and love it
    Love life and live it

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    Member tustumena_lake's Avatar
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    From looking at the Kenai Peninsula Borough Parcel Viewer website
    http://mapserver.borough.kenai.ak.us/kpbmapviewer/
    it looks like when they subdivided they allotted for a runway on the island but I would bet it was never actually put in, just chopped out on paper.

    This seems to say the runway is not constructed but don't know for sure though. http://www2.borough.kenai.ak.us/plan.../F1/1r/3SR.htm

    The best historical book about the Anderson family that homesteaded Caribou Island at Skilak Lake (and why it is private property within the refuge today) is called "Two Against The North" by Ada White Sharples.

    I'm not an expert on Skilak Lake...
    But keep in mind the winds will primarily blow off the glacier so the best property for protected water will be on the lee side of the island.
    Access to an island will be difficult during freezeup and breakup, so you will lose some use of the property during those times.
    You will need to have good boating skills if you are going to be on any large glacier fed lake but you can pick those up if need be.
    I would go to the property and give it hard thought, you know remote property can be nice, but accessible property is nice too.
    Skilak is absolutely gorgeous, love the color of the lake water.

    Owning any property can become a trap to your explorer side, you will find yourself going to the same spot and perhaps missing out on other places to go. You have to know in your heart Skilak is where you really want to be before you commit.

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    I never heard of an airstrip on the island, so I thought maybe it was new. I just did Google Earth and no airstrip that I can see. From all I've ever heard you have to use a float plane. I don't really know what kind of a ramp you are talking about, but as far as I know there are no public ramps or boat launches if that's what you mean. People have built their own docks down from their cabins. You do realize there are quite a few cabins on the island......right? I know some people that own one.
    Thanks Guide, The airstrip is plotted but thats about it. I did know cabins were there and would be very skeptical if
    thier was'nt. The "ramp" I was refering to would be a public type ramp within reasonable distance to the Island. The entire
    Island is plotted for 1/2 Acre to 1 Acre lots.
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    I have friends who have a cabin out there. They use it as weather permits all summer, but rarely venture out in the winter due to ice conditions (too thick for skiff, to thin for snowmachine). Still people do drive out there in cold winters both on machines and even cars. They like it on the island and tried to get me talked into a sweet owner-financed deal, but it would not be my cup of tea for various reasons, but mostly limited fishing and hunting on that particular lake.

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sayak View Post
    I have friends who have a cabin out there. They use it as weather permits all summer, but rarely venture out in the winter due to ice conditions (too thick for skiff, to thin for snowmachine). Still people do drive out there in cold winters both on machines and even cars. They like it on the island and tried to get me talked into a sweet owner-financed deal, but it would not be my cup of tea for various reasons, but mostly limited fishing and hunting on that particular lake.
    Thanks Sayak.....I would have thought fishing would be great in the area.......Tell me more!
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabmarine View Post
    Thanks Sayak.....I would have thought fishing would be great in the area.......Tell me more!
    Fishing is fair to great at the inlet and outlet depending upon the time of year. Rainbows, small lake trout, and probably dollies and whitefish can be taken (I haven't personally caught either of the last two). I don't think you can target salmon in the lake. There is duck hunting near the mouth, and people do black bear hunting near the glacier. That is about all I know. I ice fish up there toward spring.

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabmarine View Post
    Thanks Guide, The airstrip is plotted but thats about it. I did know cabins were there and would be very skeptical if
    thier was'nt. The "ramp" I was refering to would be a public type ramp within reasonable distance to the Island. The entire
    Island is plotted for 1/2 Acre to 1 Acre lots.
    There are 2 different boat launches off of Skilak Loop Rd. which is how you access the lake. One up higher on the lake and one down lower, closer to the end of the lake the island is at.....
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    The boating part should not be much of a problem as long as your boat is say 50' to 60' that should take care of most of the wind and waves.

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Bend View Post
    The boating part should not be much of a problem as long as your boat is say 50' to 60' that should take care of most of the wind and waves.
    50'-60' boat? Is Skilak Lake like the Bering Sea?
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Sometimes worse. It kicks up in a heartbeat and the water is COLD year round. There are signs at the launch that describe the conditions as less than favorable and be extremely cautious when boating. The wind off the glacier whips that lake up in a hurry.
    I have personally pulled a party of four out of the lake only minutes after they capsized in 3' waves and they were about done for when I got to them.
    BK

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Yes, but just like Tusty, you just have to be careful and know when, and when not to be, out there.....
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Hiyas Tab, I thought you moved already, still down in florida ? hope all is well .
    Alaska bound !

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    The biggest obstacle I see with the lake is as pointed out the freeze and thaw times and for that matter access in the winter.. As far as hunting goes it just depends. Blackie is phenomenal in arear around there if you know where to go. Water fowl some other big game species as well but don't want to talk too much. Sayak covered the fishing pretty well. Skilak is one of my favorite places an one of the most beautiful on the peninsula but honestly don't think I would ever consider buying land there but that just me of course.

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rumbarr View Post
    Hiyas Tab, I thought you moved already, still down in florida ? hope all is well .
    Hey Rum! Yeah still here.....If I could get enough for my boat(Home) I would be there but with work so slow and or non-existant
    and being a bad time to sell. I have to delay the move for now.......If I could get one of these fine Alaskans to trade My comfotable
    Liveaboard Houseboat located within walking distance to the Beach for a small cabin on some land......I'd be there!
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Member tabmarine's Avatar
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    Thank you guys for your input. I really appreciate it. I'll skip this opportunity for now.
    If we all agreed....this would be no fun

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabmarine View Post
    Thank you guys for your input. I really appreciate it. I'll skip this opportunity for now.
    Maybe buy it. At the very least, rich California ex-patriots are always looking to buy waterfront property. You probably couldn't really lose on it, and you might be able use it until you did sell it. She is a pretty lake, it's just that the glacier winds can make her into a witch short order. Doesn't stop people from living and playing on that lake, however. There may be good moose hunting in the future with all the burned off country regrowing browse, and if you like mushrooms, those areas may be hard to beat.

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