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Thread: Back from the Koyukuk, YEEHAW!!!

  1. #1

    Default Back from the Koyukuk, YEEHAW!!!

    After 1,240 road miles, a little over 900 miles on the Yukon and Koyukuk and 13 nights on the boat we are home. On September 18th at 3:45 PM We were tied up in a slough and my wife climbed on the boat and walked to the back after I handed her my rifle. I was on the bow getting ready to enter the cabin when she comes back and said, BIG MOOSE! BIG MOOSE! I said where and she said right behind the boat. I looked down the side of the cabin and here he comes walking down the beach about 40 yards away. She gives me the old Ziess glasses and .338 and I do a cow call, the bull turns and I see the big palmated brow tines, 4 and 5 per side. He keeps walking so I do another cow call and he stops to turn and look at me. Lots of paddle and points. I am thinking he will go over 60" but not 65". My son-in-law is standing by the bow of the boat filming the bull. He has never hunted moose and I ask him how big he thinks it is. He said, "shoot it". It is the third day of my 10 day hunt in the land of big bulls. The bull keeps walking a way from us and down the beach. I do another cow call and he turns to look at me giving me a really good look at him and steps into the water and swims to our side. He has every thing I wanted in a Koyukuk moose and I tell them to watch their ears because I no longer care about the other 7 days left to hunt and I want this bull. I also know we can get the boat with in 10 feet of him. He comes out of the water and is angling a way from us at about 50 yards. I am watching his progress and waiting for him to clear the horrible mud at the waters edge. When I think he is far enough I do another cow call. He stops, turns his head to look back at us and I thought, what a big and wonderful animal. Everything is perfect. I press the trigger and a 250 grain Barnes X bullet goes through his neck bone. He is on the ground and one leg barely moves. As I watch him through the scope I know he is dead and my dream of a big Koyukuk moose has been fulfilled. My son-in-law and I walk over to him and I sat down for a smoke and stare at him. After about 5 minutes my wife who is still on the boat asks how big he is. That must mean she is done crying for the dead moose that she spotted and prayed for months I would get. That is just the way she is. I almost hate to tape him. A tape really does not tell the story of a trophy, yet it is still a part of this hunt. He tapes at 62.5 inches. He is a wonderful. There are moose out there that are bigger then the one I got. I do not care. He is the moose we were given and as far as moose hunts go it was almost to easy. That is moose hunting. I am content and do not need to ever shoot another big moose. It started raining after the picture taking. I did not care. We filmed our visit with 92 year old Sidney Huntington who wrote, "Shadows on the Koyukuk". A great book. We caught Sheefish and a couple of small pike, picked blue berriies and got some Diamond Willow. Brought back a part of a big chunk of birch tree so my wife can make birch bark baskets that come form the Land of the Koyukon. We spent 3 days in Galena visiting with Uncle Max and Aunt Bev while I waited for a water pump from Fairbanks. I will carry a spare from now on. Stopped by Tanana where my wife was born. Last night we made the ramp at the Yukon River Bridge and left at 8:30 P.M. It was snowing and blowing. I drove until 6:00 AM and my son-in-law drove the rest of the way to Kenai. It was a great trip and will be a great memory. I hope the pictures look ok and I want to share them with you.
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  2. #2
    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Wow that is a great looking moose. Talk about some good palmation and nice brow tines! Glad your hunt went so well for you and your family. I am sure it will be one that you remember for the rest of your lifes. I hope to take my family up on the Yukon next fall.

  3. #3
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    That is so awesome.I happy for ya'll and congrats on such a beautiful animal.Daniel

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    Member RANGER RICK's Avatar
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    Congrats
    Great story and huge moose to boot . Great color on the rack ..
    The Koyukuk has been on my must do list since my father-n-law bought a river boat made just for that type of hunting .
    Thanks for sharing .

    RR
    Practice does not make perfect !!!!!
    Perfect Practice makes perfect !!!!!!!!!!


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    What a nice story

    Congratulations on your moose, and thanks for sharing your story and pictures with us.

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    you are indeed fortunate to take a trophy that is far bigger than the spread of antlers.....sharing that experince with those close to you makes you the luckiest man alive congrats

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    New member AKDSLDOG's Avatar
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    Awsome Bull! Sounds like a great trip with the family too! CONGRAD'S!

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    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default fine trophy

    That is one fine bull!! What taxi are you using? Final expense for a beautiful hunt.

  9. #9

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    Were you passing thru Soldotna around 1 or 2 on the 27th with chevy pickup pulling a aluminum boat with the moose rack in the bow ? If so I saw ya headed to Kenai. Nice bull thanks for sharing the story.

  10. #10
    Member Dan in Alaska's Avatar
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    Great looking moose! Thanks for sharing the story. Sounds like you had a good time.

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    NICE moose! Congrats.... What type of boat is that?

  12. #12
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    Default What a trip!

    Great story and wow what a trip!


    Walt
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    Default Nice Bull!

    Congrats on the bull... sounds like just what you wanted.... one question for Bob. Did it hit a K-15 or 16?! and shouldn't you be lookin' for a 40+'' pretty girl down south by now? Congrats guys and have a safe trip south the 3 of you

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    Default .338 mag.

    great story wish i was there did bob have a good time? that was one great book thanks for telling me about it
    Last edited by kingfisher43; 09-28-2007 at 20:59. Reason: added more

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    Default Glad I live closer

    It is tough enough putting in 15 hours +/- on the Yukon then driving 4 hours to FAI and a warm bed. You guys from "down there" are tough as they come to add the extra distance, time, and expense to do that same trip. My hat is off to each and every one of you for making the effort and doing so safely.
    We met some good guys from Southcentral on the Koyukuk and saw some interesting boats. One guy had a drop front powered by 2 225 Honda's. It was huge. Then I found out where he was parked on a side slough and could not believe it. That was some rig. I was drooling.
    We did manage to hide out from the crowd, and found several nice bulls, one of which my partner got to within 28 yards of with his rifle before taking the shot (which I got on video). Me, well I got close with the bow, but the bull was a tad bit smarter than me. Oh well.
    Congrats on a good hunt that ended successfully and safely. Maybe someday we'll share coffee out there.

  16. #16
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    looks like a tough pack out nice moose
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  17. #17
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    I believe it was a K-338. Color called Momma Moose

    That was us rolling through town about that time, we half felt like Redneck central, but it was the best place for us to try to put that darned rack and we got a few laughs of the cell phone pix taken through Anchorage.

    I should be down in the Skeena Valley by now, but was a last minute fill-in for the other son-in-law who had to back out. I wasn't able to legally hunt moose as officially a non-res ... but I grabbed a wolf and grizz tag before we left and was to be the designated predator control man.

    Actually, it was the first time I've ever tromped around with a rifle in the woods ... all of my deer & elk hunting that I grew up around was with a bow or a couple of hunts with blackpowder.

    We found some wolf tracks and heard a few on our first night camping on the Yukon, but alas, never ran across any ... certainly no biggie.

    I had a blast ... running the Yukon reminded me a lot of running around the lower Columbia River hunting ducks. Although most of the time, river experience and readability told you where to go, you sometimes never knew where that sand / mud bar was gonna appear. We made out well with no major problems in that respect, although we ended up reversing course a a few times.

    The hunting reminded me very much of elk hunting during the rut, but you didn't have the far-off answers from the bulls audible like you do with the elk ... suddenly, you hear the raking and grunts nearby without having known the bulls were coming to your calls.

    The sheer size of a big bull lying before you for dressing was suprising, even when you tried to prep yourself for it. A little different than even the bigger elk I have dealt with before. I decided by the time it was over than a come-along and the toboggan we used to get sections out of the mud were the best pieces of equipment that we brought In hindsight, we should have given the bull two more steps up before stopping him with the cow call.

    In the days before the hunt, I got a 24 hour a day dose of moose hunting videos at their house ... I actually got pretty good at judging the spread at a quick glance ... so I got a good chuckle when my father-in-law turned to me as it walked the beach and asked how big I thought it was (the "Shoot It!" quote referenced in his original post), even though I'd never seen anything close to that size in the wild previously.

    We also saw the the Honda-equipped battle cruiser ... pretty decked out!! We ended up quite a bit upstream from where we saw them camped.

    I'd love to do it again sometime ... perhaps put in for the early drawing dates and then still get several weeks in steelhead Shangri-La. From all reports, I haven't missed anything down there this year though ... water conditions have been awful and few fish even when fishable.

    Most importantly, I guess I'm most fortunate to have in-laws that I could live in a boat cabin with for the two weeks

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    Default to bob

    Glad you could make it with the in laws on the trip i hope you and cory have a safe trip and hope to see you next summer

  19. #19

    Default The Koyukuk

    We are done cutting up the meat and the boat is cleaned. Work and more work! My son-in-law took over 300 pictures and 7 hours of film on the trip with his fancy high definition cameras. We got the moose kill on film as well as the Bald and Golden Eagles, beavers, grouse, moose, fish, sun sets, rivers, fish wheels, fish drying racks, and other shots of beautiful scenery. He will spend the winter making and editing a film of our trip. We will have a DVD that I will watch over and over. I was fortunate to have had the trophy tag but this was a group effort. The easiest part of the whole trip was pressing the trigger on a shot that any one could have made. We learned a lot and spent about 3,000 dollars. If you make this trip for the first time I want to encourage you to look at it as an adventure and not just a hunting trip. Take a lot of pictures and film. After 42 years of hunting in Alaska the most valuable lesson I have learned is to never judge the success of a trip by a gut pile or the size of the hide, horns and antlers. Hunting in Alaska is so much more then that.

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    good advice good out look

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