Well just returned from a week on Admirality Island. We had a blast as usual, the rain didn't let us down either.
Just to set up the story, a buddy I grew up close to back in North Dakota is now living in Anchorage and I live in SE Alaska. We try to get together for a deer hunt every year, and boy do we have fun doing it.
We started out on a sour note this year tho as we usually try to find live crab in Juneau to fly in with us, no crab to be found this year. Then we fly into the lake and it is just a picture perfect day we cant wait to throw the motor on the boat and get after it. We pushed the boat away from shore 2 pulls on the starter rope and the motor fires right up, life is good. I put it in reverse and pull away from shore, and then switch it to forward and the motor dies : ( we tinker with it out on the water put to no avail. We pull the carb. (useing a leatherman and a screwdriver) as I forgot my socket set just for this reason. It is so nice out I suggest we hike of behind the cabin and look for some deer sign (as we are worried about last winters die off) as we are walking we see quite a bit of sign in tracks, rubs, and fresh poo. We are pretty stoked at this point. We make it back to the cabin and tackle that carb with lanterns and headlamps the leatherman and the screwdriver. We pull the whole thing apart on the table in the cabin. The person I bought it from used silicone to put it all together and we spent hours cleaning it all out.
we then put it all together and ate supper (we had to settle for the walleye we brought in with us) The next morning we get up and put the carb on and try it all out, runs like a top after a few miner adjustments. We then cruise to the other side of the lake to try our luck with the deer. The area we crawl through is absolutly full of blueberries ( I now know why all that bear poo is purple ). We did not see any deer but had a great first days walk about. We returned to the boat feeling good about the sign we again saw. We had some time to try our luck with the cutthroat trout that live in the lake and caught and released some nice ones. No deer yet but we head back to the cabin for a dinner of pheasant also from ND.
The next morning we go back out to a spot we have had luck over the years and hike up into that area finding it has done some serious growing in the two years since we had last been there. We find a spot to sit and glass about 50 yards from each other, after about 20 mins my partner shoots, then again then again. we say sitting for awhile then he shoots again. I am thinking boy he must have them piling up. I then spot a head of a small spike and set up for the shot and was a little excited and blew the shot. My partner walked over to where I was and I asked what he shot and he said two bucks, so we set off to find them. He admitted that he was a little excited on the first two shots and finally settled down and dropped the first buck on his third shot. We found the buck right where he dropped it with a shot right through the neck. We got it boned out and in the back packs and set off to find the other one he said he shot, found hair right where he said it was but not a drop of blood after 3 hours of hands and knees crawling in that old clearcut area, we head back to the boat and see another deer on the way, after a quick shot from me the deer are now 2 me 0 : ( . But we are both thinking of the fine meal of liver, heart, and tenderloin all together with brown gravy and over noodles Yum Yum. We stop and catch and release a few more trout thinking soon they will be in the fry pan. The area we were just in had lots and lots of sign in it.
The next morning finds us being a little lazy and no to the boat till first light, off we go to the other end with visions of big bucks in our heads. On our way down the lake we spot two deer swimming in the lake, we are thinking boy this is going to be easy but it was a doe and a fawn and we let them continue on with there morning swim. We get the area we want to go into and after battling the real heavy brush to get to the old logging road, we look and not 10 yards from where we battled our way in is a huge deer trail where it would have been real easy to hike up, we both have a good laugh over that one. We do the big hike to get up into the woods where we wanted to go and do some calling, which I have never had any luck doing but everyone says it works great so I keep trying, we sit down in a great looking spot, a ridge overlooking some thick areas. We start calling and hear a growl, we look at each other and say what was that, then it gets louder and louder and we tell each other we know what that is and we wand no part if that and start off the opposite direction looking for deer. No deer seen and we are wondering if we did the right thing letting the 2 go that morning. Back to the boat and a great afternoon of trout fishing.
The next morning I talk the partner into going to a new area where we have never been and he agrees, we get about 2 miles back in and I spot a small buck laying by a stump about 150 yards into the brush, after he let us him and haw about deciding if we could retrieve him or not I finally decide to take him and shot him right in the heart. As we walked down in the area to retrieve him we see deer sign everywhere, we get him cut up and back up to the trail and continue a little further, finally deciding to hang it up for the day as it is absolutly pouring.
The next day we decide to go back to the area where we got the buck the other day and sit for a couple hours not seeing a thing, so we make our way up to the old logging road and do a walk about we go about 300 yards and my partner spots a small buck and takes a quick offhand shot and I swear he hits it as it looks like it is standing funny, it starts to stare at us and I decide to try to shoot it in the head and put it down for good and at my shot it takes off like a rocket into the thick stuff, we look at each other and think well maybe we both missed. We walked down to where he was and found a coup[le drops of blood and the hunt was again on and when I finally found him I had a hard time believing he could go that far as my shot took out a front shoulder and came out the middle of his chest. We never did find my partners hole. We made it back to the boat and decided it was time for fresh trout for dinner and had a blast getting some 15 inch trout for dinner boy are they good.
the next day we get up and decide to go down to the new area again where I got one a few days before but the further from the cabin we got the sicker my partner became we tried to get out but he had a bad case of the flu so back to the cabin we go witch didn't bother me to bad as is was pouring again. We got back to the cabin and my partner looks like death warmed over, so I send him back to bed and I catch up on chores and read my book, when he wakes up later that afternoon he felt bad because I was still there looking out for him, but I told him I had a great afternoon with my book and the absolute peace and quite (don't get that much at home).
The next day he feels much better so we head back into that area again and about 4 miles in we find another buck to shoot and we are butchering him up in the pouring down rain and just grinning at each other is hunting great or what. we get him in the packs and head further down the road and I look up at the edge of the big woods and see a absolute monster of a buck standing with a doe and into the woods they go no shot there. By this time we are both absolutly soaked and head back to the boat and the cabin to dry out I was joking and said watch as soon as we get back the sun will come out at it will get nice out sure enough that is excactly what it did. But we were content with 4 deer and a great hunt once again. it was time to get ready to fly back to civilization the next day. we had a blast.
We flew in and out with Ward Air in Juneau and I highly recomend them to anyone as they are top notch.
Hope I didnt boor everyone to much with all my rambling.
There was a thread on here about hunting partners and I just want to say a great partner is mine. He doesnt complain when we procede to cut up deer, or haul it out, he is a good cook and I cant wait to go caribou hunting next fall with him. Boy I can't wait. I guess it time to start shopping for a new bow : ) the wife told me to...