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Thread: North Slope walk in-float out hunt

  1. #1
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    Default North Slope walk in-float out hunt

    I am trying to plan a late summer caribou trip this year with the idea being that I could hike in the 5 miles, rifle hunt for a couple days, then float back to the highway. One area that I have been looking into is the Lupine River drainage that is south east of Happy Valley. This would require crossing the Sag somewhere close the the highway near happy valley, then hiking out the 5 miles and setting up camp. With any luck, we could hunt for a few days and float ourselves and filled game bags back down lupine and save ourselves several miles of packing meat. Does anyone have experience on this stretch of river, or other ideas for a similar style hunt that may be a better option? I've done the 5 mile hike in and out a couple of times now, so I am prepared to walk in, Im just looking for an easier way to get out!

    Also, I see from the topo that there are many access roads shooting off of the highway. I have utilized a couple of them to give myself a mile or so of easier walking before really hitting the tundra, but does anyone know the story with an access road on the map that crosses the sag and heads east from happy valley and looks to lead to a radio tower? It looks to run 3 or 4 miles and I was thinking that may be a good spot to walk in, then head over to Lupine when Im ready to float out.

    Thanks for the input, this I just joined the forum and this is my first post! Looking forward to swapping some stories with everyone

  2. #2
    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    Shhhh this is a secret plan no one should attempt it. OK sorry! It has seen many more people over the years and that is not to say it is not a good plan and or viable plan just that it has increased traffic so don't expect solitude. Group from Eielson has been going up there for the last 6 years or so however I do believe the last one PCS'd out last year. I will email Tim W on your behalf via the global and see if he is willing to PM you with some information.

    Regards.

    RMM

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    Thanks BlueMoose. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that I am not the first to think of this trip, pretty obvious if you spend some time studying the maps. I look forward to getting some more info

  4. #4
    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    Well Bummer Tim is TDY so plan B I will email his friend. Give me a day or so.

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    No problem, I appreciate your help!

  6. #6
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    There's no caribou in that drainage... Or at least they were far and few last year. I hunt the lupine drainage every year and every year it seems like I see more and more people. This past year we had six different groups within that drainage in five days. Some hunt for a couple days, others were there when we arrived and were still there waiting on a caribou when we left. If you hiked in 8-10 miles you'd most likely be above the majority of other hunters and then could float out once you've punched your tag.

    What are you planning to cross with and use to float out? Two years ago we watched a guy and his wife/gf drag a beat up canoe miles up the river only to drag it back out once they flipped it. Also met two guys that were dropped off 15 (?) miles upriver and floated out two days later once a grizzly tore their tent to pieces while they were out hunting...

    Shoot me a pm if you'd like to discuss in more detail.

  7. #7
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    Once you try hiking in the tundra up North, you walk over and pay the air taxi to fly you in.

  8. #8
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    How about the Ribdon drainage? Have people had any luck hunting up and/or floating down toward the sag/highway? Seems like I heard somewhere that a group long lined a canoe up the Ribdon, and then floated themselves and their bou back to the road. I't'd be great to know how the river is for floating and how popular this drainage is for hunters

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