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Thread: Boat hunting around Skwentna?

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    Member Redlander's Avatar
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    Question Boat hunting around Skwentna?

    I know that I'm probably asking for lot, and I know that I'll be dealing with more people than I might like, but does anyone have any advice for moose hunting on the Yentna or Skwentna rivers? Our new little place is at Fish Lakes Creek and I'd like to see some of the country upstream of us this fall and possible shoot a moose if one was to make himself presentable. I'd most likely be using a shallow draft prop or jet rig (depending on if I use mine or a friend's boat or if I rent one). I've got the camping/gear stuff covered, but I'm clueless on the territory or the likelihood of getting on a moose, or useful techniques. Also, if anyone knew of of a tributary with some rainbows that might be helpful (but I don't really want to go down to Lake Creek). PMs are welcome if you don't want to share openly.

    Thanks for any advice in advance.

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Use the jet unless you spend a lot of time learning the ever changing rivers.

    It would be a rare thing to see a legal moose near the river with the hundreds of boats going up and down them. Not too many power boats go above Skwentna due to the canyon. However, some times airboaters go up to the Tal and fish. Once you learn the river you can make it up there with a jet. For moose you will need to get off the river and to an area where there is moose sign and then wait for one to show up, or keep moving away from the rivers.

    There are a lot of bears up there so plan on taking a few of them in the spring.

    From my own experience there are trout everywhere up there. Even in the silty waters of side sloughs there will be trout. They live where the food is. Side sloughs are salmon nursries full of trout food. Easy living for a fish. Hard fishing for a sporting man.

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    Member Redlander's Avatar
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    Okay, if not power boating, what about a short bush flight? Is there any place to land up the Yentna? Maybe float down?

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    lots of gravel bars. Fly to the edge of DNP and see how that goes.

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    Member Redlander's Avatar
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    Thanks, I may have to investigate that.

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    Moose density in that area is VERY low, very liberal bear regs though!

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    Member gutpile's Avatar
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    re Upper Yentna you're 25 years late...the winter of '88/'89 was very tough, and ever since the preditors have kept the calf survival rates too low for a recovery. Way more critters below you...go there or take-up bear/wolf hunting upstream.

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    Member Redlander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gutpile View Post
    re Upper Yentna you're 25 years late...the winter of '88/'89 was very tough, and ever since the preditors have kept the calf survival rates too low for a recovery. Way more critters below you...go there or take-up bear/wolf hunting upstream.
    So is it better downstream on Yentna, or south (more upstream) on the Skwentna? The reason for my initial line of questioning is that I'd heard that the moose stay up in the Yenlo hills during the summer and then filter down once the rut starts. I've seen fresh tracks around the cabin - okay one set, and what appears to be winter deposited droppings right near the cabin.

    Yes, I would love to harvest a bear, but since I'm a non-resident browns are out of my budget.

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    Member gutpile's Avatar
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    PM sent Redlander...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Redlander View Post
    So is it better downstream on Yentna, or south (more upstream) on the Skwentna? The reason for my initial line of questioning is that I'd heard that the moose stay up in the Yenlo hills during the summer and then filter down once the rut starts. I've seen fresh tracks around the cabin - okay one set, and what appears to be winter deposited droppings right near the cabin.

    Yes, I would love to harvest a bear, but since I'm a non-resident browns are out of my budget.
    If you talk to the people below you, I think they will say the best moose hunting is up river and that not because there trying to keep you out. With all the brush it's a hard place to find moose. If you learn everything you can about moose behavior and moose hunting along with where and when they travel between areas you will find you have a lot of moose in your back yard so to speak.

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    Supporting Member Old John's Avatar
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    Redlander
    back in the 60's and 70's upriver was the perfect place to go for "winter meat" it was any size, any sex, and the moose populations were up. Then in the 80's it became bull only, any size. Then in the 88/89 winter we lost a tremendouse number of moose to winter kill. The bear populations have kept the moose numbers down (and that Tier II BS hasn't helped either). Back in the 70's and early 80's it was possible to run way up the Yentna, and in the afternoon, simply do a drift down river, and chances were good, you could spot a moose standing on the river bank just waiting to be harvested. About 1990 they were going to have a 10 day season, then closed it after only 5 days. (If I remember right). In the 90's there was a year or two that there was no season for GMU 16B. and for several years it was Residents Only. When they publish the new hunting regs in July, you might want to pay close attention to whether or not the moose season is open to Non-Res or not in GMU 16B
    Re Boats: if you are planning on using a Prop.. take 2 or 3 spares. When you get down to the last one, start drifing back to deeper water.
    If you run a Jet, you are still going to find a few sand/gravel bars. The upper river changes channels regularly.
    In the FWIW dept. you have a cabin in a good area, look around for sign, find a spot with fair field of vision, learn how to call moose.
    In regards to good rainbow/dollie fishing. Fish Creek used to be one of the better creeks for 'bows" and Dollies. Many of those small streams "up there" have a very late run of small silvers in Sept. They are too faded to eat, unless you were really really hungry, but they are fun for C&R. But check the regs.. they seem to change all the time..

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