Dalton Highway Caribou Camp
I've never done the Dalton Highway Caribou hunt before but have read alot about it. How do most people camp while on this hunt (i.e. campers, tents, etc.)? Where do you camp? Are there large pull offs or designated camping areas? If so what are the locations?
Expert - Camper
I'm an expert on the camping part of the Haul road. Not so good on the harvest - so, when I tell you I'm heading up there, you should go somewhere else... I seem to find a way to clear the caribou out for miles.
Anyway - All forms of camping are done on the Dalton.
The vast majority are in tents. But you will see a few RV's, couple travel trailers and a number of slide in campers on trucks.
Do NOT camp on the pipeline, under the pipeline, or block any access to a road that accesses the pipeline.
Make absolutely sure that your vehicle is off the road. Three reasons -
- First, it's bad for the truckers trying to make a living
- Second, it's bad for your truck when the rocks get kicked up on it.
- Third, it's hard on your wallet when you get a ticket
If you want to use the pipeline... you'll need a R.U.G.; which you can get from any of the pump stations. This is a permit to allow you to 'legally' walk or bike across the private property (Alyeska type).
Most of the security folks are very understanding, and will help you get a R.U.G., but one of these day's someone is going to do something worse than drive two trucks on the tundra and really get under their skin.
With that - don't drive on the tundra.
You'll find that there are lots of places you can park your truck, off the road, and out of the way of the access roads...
Personally, I like to get camp away from the road... noise, dust, etc. Some of the tundra makes an excellent bed, very soft.
Good luck, have fun. And remember; gas is expensive!
Once you go over Atigun pass, there is:
Originally Posted by cowildin
Galbraith Lake (a camp ground is just past the runway).
Lot's of folks camp at the brick potty near pump station 3.
You'll possibly see folks camping near the slope mountain DOT.
Virtual tent city at Happy Valley runway
Any all along the Sag river there will be tents.
I've seen folks camp at the Prudhoe Bay closed area sign
I've seen folks camp at the various ponds/lakes in Deadhorse too.
Of course all of this depends upon the number of caribou, versus the number of hunters... and where these two intersect each other.
Been up there twice
Just thought of some things I wish I had the first time that made the second time much easier:
-North of the pass, there isn't much in the way of firewood unless you get some driftwood off the river bed-depending on when you go, a fire could be nice.
-For when you get a caribou- you'll need some way to hang it. I made a 2x4 frame to use as a meat pole then hung a tarp over it to keep it out of the sun.
-If you want any adult beverages...they don't have any in Prudoe sooo...
-If you're the only one camping for miles and miles up and down the road; you're probably in the wrong spot. Caribou move alot but you can get some clues as to where they are coming through by where everyone is camping. That is unless you see caribou and noone else is around; just smile and hunt in peace.
-If you tent camp, take a tarp and some poles to make a sun/rain shelter. There's no shade so it's nice to sit and glass out of the sun or stay dry when it rains. (just remember, it gets pretty windy up there so plan on it)
-If all else fails, glass the sag river bed-especiall early season, I think it's cooler there and less bugs, the caribou seem to like it.
hope this helps. Good luck!
Be as mobile as possible.
I've hunted up there many times since the early nineties. I built a custom topper on my pickup and lived out of it. Had a lean-to set-up off the back of topper for a cook shack if I stayed put for any length of time. That worked great because often times, the places I find to get off the road are not condusive to tent camping. We have set up camp a few times but I find that very limiting. The Bou over the years seem to have figured out that when they get near the road, it's time to blast across and dont stop until they are a few miles off. They are on the move so I like to be as well. Not so bad on the south side of Atigan for moose. You can set up a nice camp and do day trips out from there.