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Thread: Seaplane From Homer to Kodiak?

  1. #1
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    Default Seaplane From Homer to Kodiak?

    Has anyone flown from Homer to Kodiak for Deer/Goat hunting? It seems like a better option than flying to Kodiak via ERA/AK Airlines? Plus you could take your propane tanks with you. I have also heard some sad stories about deer meat that rotted on the ramp in Kodiak?

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    Sounds like a good idea if you could get enough people involved for a charter.

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    I would think the costs would be the same or close to it? Plus no threat of your meat spoiling?

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    I did a little research and apparently the air charters out of homer tend to stay away from that as the weather plays a big roll, especially later ini teh season..

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    I flew out of Homer and hunted Afognak in 1995 with two other guys. We left Homer around the 5th of October planning on a return on the 15th. That was the year a major fall typhoon hit and the Kenai flooded. We were rain delayed flying out by one day and when a break in the weather happened we went for it. We had two nice days to hunt then the heavens opened up and it poured torrential rains for the rest of our time there. We didn't make it home until the 22nd of October. We figured our costs to be slightly cheaper than flying out of Kodiak. Our meat started to go bad by the time we were picked up, with the torrential rains it was almost impossible to keep anything dry. It was a very memorable trip but the next time I go I think I will take the ferry down and catch a flight out from Kodiak or take a boat.

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    Member akgun&ammo's Avatar
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    I would think the ferry over to Kodiak, then a flight from there would be more practical...

    Homer is further, so if weather is normal- you have to wait for a longer window "good flying" weather to get picked-up

    flights out of Kodiak, fly hunters all the time, and most know their limitations..

    I wouldn't want to be waiting on a plane that wont fly, and see aircraft fly by...


    Chris

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    Yeah but the only thing about the ferry is you have to allow for more time. Which is valuable hunting, I mean vacation time for other hunts..

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    The other problem with the ferry is the last time I checked it only ran one day a week. Half the time we hunt blacktails we were not picked up on time by the air charter due to bad weather. Miss the one day window and you are going to sit in Kodiak for an extra week.

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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    No way that would be cheaper, add weather sounds like a bad idea. The way I go is airmiles to Kodiak I only buy a oneway ticket because I have had to change it every single time except the last trip in which I got lucky. Alaska lets you take 3 bags in state, send your gear over in large plastic totes and pack a couple old army duffel bags for the return trip.

    When you come back pack the meat, hide and horns into the totes and place your gear in the duffles. Alaska allows up to 99lbs for a 50 buck fee, so that is about 50 cents a pound and all your gear and meat travels with you. Cheaper than flying it back as cargo I have done both and the excess baggage route is how I do it every time now.

    If you go with a buddy use one gun case for both your rifles to save a bag that way.

    The best Western will allow you to store the totes in their walk in cooler if you stay there.

    Both Seahawk and Andrews will provides transportation from the airport as well as running you around town to shop, get tags, eat etc....

    Both also sell propane in the 20lb BBQ size tanks, just call ahead to reserve or tell them how many when you book.

    If you do buy a round trip ticket and get a weather delay, both Air Taxis will give you a letter to take to the ticket counter to rebook, I was told for no cost. I got the letter but I rebooked online before I knew about it, so I cannot confirm this, but keep it in mind. Like I said I just book my return as soon as I land and that has worked for me better than paying the change ticket fee.

    This is the cheapest way I have found after doing trips for several years.

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    Great advice except I was told if you go over (up to 99#'s) it's only $50 charge but will have to fly as freight and usually DOES NOT fly with you as most flights are full with hunters and their checked bags. Something to be keep in mind. Although they usually have cold storage to keep meat and hides.

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    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    Non-starter at the moment. Beluga lake is frozen and planes don't operate out of the harbor.
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    Quote Originally Posted by trailblazersteve View Post
    Great advice except I was told if you go over (up to 99#'s) it's only $50 charge but will have to fly as freight and usually DOES NOT fly with you as most flights are full with hunters and their checked bags. Something to be keep in mind. Although they usually have cold storage to keep meat and hides.
    I have never seen bags get bumped, I'm sure that is possible. About the only time it gets really packed is during bear season. If I did have to bump bags I would just bump my gear and fly my meat.

    They are strict with the 99lbs, we have had to repack while in line. I now always pack a travel scale, this comes in handy for a lot of things, this year we weighed packs, heads, hides, meat bags, we weighed all our gear on couple fly outs to know exactly what we were flying no guess work.

    Predrill your totes and use zipties to hold the lids on or pack duct tape and tape them down.

    We weigh all bags and repack as needed to keep the 50lbers under 50 and the 99lbers under 100.

    The exact one I have is no longer sold but one like this, just make sure it goes over 100lbs, I keep one in my carry on to save the hassle whenever I fly, have saved the cost in bag fees many times over and worth the cost not to have to repack at the ticket counter.

    Another tip is to fly your rifles in a lockable golf or sports hard case and pack it with stuff to make it 50lbs as well.

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    I am planning this hunt for the next fall goat hunt. I like to start early and be prepared

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    Member akgun&ammo's Avatar
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    take the ferry at night...
    me personnally like the idea of all my gear being in my truck getting to the flight out to hunt

    then ability to pack the meat in the back and head home..

    I bring 200 to 400 pounds of salt down with me for the guide (as a tip/favor)
    also, this year the guide asked if I could bring him some extra goods..mostly SOFT TOILET PAPER
    No extra cost to me in the hualing down...

    Made a great "tip" to the guide of the toilet paper and such..
    remember there is no Sam's or Costco in kodiak..

    So there are lots of considerations in the trip.. well, any trip

    Chris

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    I/ we like to combine the ferry with the airline. One person drives vehicle to Homer with all the gear and gets on the ferry. All others in the party fly on ERA/Alaska and meet in Kodiak. All the gear, including propane, arrives in Kodiak. Fly out with Seahawk or Andrews. All gear and meat go back on the ferry and the rest of the party fly back. Ferry usually has a deal where driver goes free. No need to weigh gear or worry about firearms not making the flight. If the Seahawk/Andrews pickup is delayed and the ferry is missed, the driver spends a couple of extra days in Kodiak. Normally the ferry runs 2-3 times a week to Kodiak, so just a short wait.

  16. #16

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    I did it once on a long weekend hunt in early October to a cabin I used to own. It worked great, left Homer in the am, had deer back to the cabin around noon, got three more full days of hunting, got picked up mid-morning, back to Homer by noon. Price was quite a bit cheaper than any other way down for that amount of time, we went light and brought back plenty of deer. That being said, I agree with the bring a rig on the Tusty and take a boat or plane out of Kodiak method. Pretty fool/weatherproof. Good luck.

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    I think you'll find that choosing the bag(s) you want bumped when a plane is overloaded won't work. All bags get checked, and then a bit later they decide to bump. I'm pretty sure they bump oversize bags first, and I remember being warned of this when I've had oversize. With that said, bumping bags isn't really frequent, but if weather backs up travelers, then flights are full. That's when they are most likely to bump the extra bags. I also think you'll find this to be more of an issue on Era than on Alaska airlines jets. With that said, I fly Era 90% or more of the time.......more choices of flights and no clearing security.

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