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Thread: Horseback Hunts

  1. #1

    Default Horseback Hunts

    I was talking to a new aquantance who has hunted in Alaska on horseback. Does any one have any info. on this? Thats the first I've ever heard of it.

  2. #2
    Member H_I_L_L_B_I_L_L_Y's Avatar
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    Default Horseback

    I beleive there is a outfit that does horseback hunts out of Healy into the wood river area. Also a few that operate in the wrangles but i dont know any names. Hillbilly

  3. #3
    New member akhunter02's Avatar
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    Default Brooks

    There is a outfit that operates on the south side of the Brooks on Chandalar Shelf, dont know the name

  4. #4

    Default Kenai too

    Therre is an outfit called Alaskan Saddle Safaries based in cooper landing. I took the wife for a great day trip with them and would recomend them. I know they do trips all over the Kenai Pen for moose and bou. Looks like fun, but I need to save $$$ for that one. Good luck hope it helps
    Pick A Spot

  5. #5

    Default # of people who guide using horses

    Terry Overly out of Chisana uses horses. SO does Urban Rahoi out of Ptarmigan Lake, and I believe Dick Peterson operates out in the same area with horses also. I believe that Coke Wallace and Brent Keith out of Healy do too.

    I am looking at hunting next fall with horses, so it will be my first opportunity with them. I am SURE I will enjoy every second of it!

  6. #6
    Member mod elan's Avatar
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    WARNING!!!! They don't have an off switch like your wheeler does Mike!!

    I have seen horses where the Little Delta river flows into the Tanana and there used to be a guide using them around Tonsina lake. Using horses for hunting was very common before wheelers came along.

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    "Using horses for hunting was very common before wheelers came along."

    And it still is for some of us. Very fun way to hunt, but I wouldn't recommend getting some for just hunting. Think you'd be money ahead by paying someone or knowing someone. Sort of like an airplane.
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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by mod elan View Post
    WARNING!!!! They don't have an off switch like your wheeler does Mike!!

    I have seen horses where the Little Delta river flows into the Tanana and there used to be a guide using them around Tonsina lake. Using horses for hunting was very common before wheelers came along.
    That was funny! Kind of like the airplane thing. A buddy owns them and is bringing them up. I don't care if I ride them at all, I will walk, I just want a couple around to PACK for me! Now that is hunting!

  9. #9
    Member SoggyMountain's Avatar
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    Default

    I think horses are used at Shell Lake, Rainy Pass, and the Meekins had some up there below the Majestic Valley compound.

  10. #10
    Member SperBear's Avatar
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    Default Packing Limits

    How much can a horse carry weight wise? If 2 guys want to do a moose hunt and happen to take a 55" bull, how many horses/trips are required to haul out the meat? Any major problems/issues when hunting with horses? Any tips or advise? Seems interesting to me just don't know much about it, thanks for all info and help in advance.

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    Default in my limited experience....

    we've packed out a handful of moose in the last few years and this is what I've found. Three horses, one moose without too much problem. Rule of thumb is 25% of the horses body weight. I've heard 1/3, but stick with the 1/4. Dont need a lame horse. We have done it with two horses, but ended up carrying some of the load ourselves, but not too much. Our packs range from 4 to 12 miles (one way). Horses are in good shape and worked in the hills all summer. Every trip is a learning experience, and we've had a few minor wrecks along the way, but nothing serious. Read books, talk with experienced horse people (that hunt and use horses for hunting). MAKE SURE you know how to rig the antlers so that no one (that means the horse) gets stuck. That will cause some excitement. Theres a guy that runs a pack clinic every summer, I can give you the info if your interested.

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    Default How much can a horse carry

    A horse can carry 20% of it body weight and a mule can carry 25% that includes a pack saddle and rigging. It is wise to limited the load between 160 and 200 lbs. It takes 2 horses to carry a large bull elk and one if it is a small bull or cow and the trip is short. I have pack a Sharis moose in Southern BC with 2 horses; BC only requires the quarters and straps to be salvaged. In 2000 I shoot a bull on the Yanert Fork and we pack the moose out in 3 loads boned. The loads were very heavy for the horses as were the loads in BC.

    If an Alaskan bull weights 600 lbs plus antlers and cape it should take 4 horse trips or 3 mule trips. If the hindquarters weight between 100 and 150 lbs then one should bone the quarters or use a mule. Also, remenber that a horse can carry more live weight than dead weight.

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    Here's a good link for information.

    http://www.packsaddleshop.com/PackingTips.html

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    Default Some more information

    In the winter of 1974, I was a senior at the University of Montana and took a course in packing horses and mules taught by Smoke Elser, Smoke is one of the early menbers of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. In 20 hours Smoke cover some very difficult infomation and techniques and at the end of the course one could pack a horse or a mule using old time methods mannies and decker pack saddles. In the early 80's Smoke wrote a book called "Packing in on horses and mules".

    Today, Smoke is 74 year old and still does some outfitting and guiding. In the off season he teaches packing classes and is teaching special forces packing before deployment to Afghanistan. In May and early June Smoke teaches 2 classes and is assisted by 2 Forest Service employees at the Nine Mile Range Station, 30 miles west of Missoula, Montana. If one wanted to learn about packing horse for pleasure or hunting I would try to attend one of his classes. They are 5 days long which includes a 2 day back country trip.
    http://www.fs.fed.us/r1/lolo/resourc...dex-nwtc.shtml

    I have been around horses all of my life but I am not a good horseman. On 10/8/07, I will be getting my a horse which is currently hunting in Bob Marshall Wilderness. The years have gone by and the mountains are getting steeper. Gone are the days when I could hike up from the mouth of the West Fork of the Nizina to the Glacier in one day and shoot a goat the following day and hike out.

    Everyone has different ideas on what a horse can do and how to do it. One must remember that a horse can not talk (except Mr. Ed for those who remember) and it is better to error on the conservative side than hurt an animal. I have been involved with 2 horse hunting operations in Alaska one as client of a transporter and one as an assistant guide and 2 in BC as a client. Both of the Alaskan operators treated there horses very poorly as one did in Northern BC. This was and is unexcuseable.

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    Default Horses

    I've hunted with Coke Wallace a couple of times and had a blast. He hunts out of Healy & no one knows that area of the Alaska range better. He knows sheep and is a greeat horseman.

  16. #16
    Member SperBear's Avatar
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    Default Thanks

    Thanks for all the help and information, very useful and interesting. In the future I'd love to do a horseback hunt and try it out. Thanks again

  17. #17
    Member SoggyMountain's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SperBear View Post
    How much can a horse carry weight wise? If 2 guys want to do a moose hunt and happen to take a 55" bull, how many horses/trips are required to haul out the meat? Any major problems/issues when hunting with horses? Any tips or advise? Seems interesting to me just don't know much about it, thanks for all info and help in advance.
    The biggest problem with horses is the individual personalities, and, how frequently they get handled. Multiply those issues by 100 with a mule.

    Some are gentle, but stupid. Some are smart, but mean. Some are in a hurry, others like the scenic route to camp. Most know a "dude" and will test him.

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