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Thread: Koyukuk Mosse Hunt - 6 for 6!

  1. #1
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    Default Koyukuk Mosse Hunt - 6 for 6!

    Some of you may of read my post in the boating forum about going moose hunting on the Koyukuk. I am starting this thread here to cover the hunting aspect of the trip. First day in camp we took 3 nice bulls then 3 more in the next 4 days. We had 6 hunters and everyone shot a nice bull. Kinda of a pain that we had to cut one of the palms in half but thats a stupid fish and game rule we have to live by.
    Here is a photo of the heads in front of the meat poles. I estimate we had approximately 4,500 - 5,000 pounds of moose meat hanging on the poles!

    I think the longest shot anyone took was me and that started out at about 75 yards. I gave my bull a quick off hand double tap with my iron sighted double rifle (Chapuis 9,3x74R) shooting Woodleighs 286 grain soft points. He fell after the second shot then jumped up and ran another 50 yards and stood there and I gave him 2 more in the lungs and then he collasped. My rule is if they are still standing they still get lead! Especially if they are running away from where we have to pack them to! When we gutted and quarted him we discovered all 4 bullets destroyed his lungs, 2 exited and the other 2 were found on the off side under the hide in good shape. Sometimes a big animal like this just doesnt know when he is dead. The challenge for hunting this area is getting the meat out and not breaking any laws. When you are in the controlled use area you are required to carry out all 4 quarters, the back, the neck, and both rib cages without being allowed to bone out any meat at all. It is bonebreaking work to say the least.
    I am the last person on the far left. My brother is standing next to me. He flew up from Pennsylvania just to make the journey and enjoy the experience.
    By the way, pike fishing was outstanding as well. I will be happy to help anyone here plan there own hunt but I am not at liberty to tell anyone exactly where we went as I was an invited guest and hope to return with the group with my son next season.
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    Why is sawing an antler palm in half a stupid rule?

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    Member nategr's Avatar
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    Nice photo!! Great job!!

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    This is a very good regulation. I use to hunt this area many years ago and have seen the disrespect for the area. There are some of the biggest bulls in the state coming from this area. I've witnessed many hunters kill moose just for the trophy value in this area. Some have even gone as far as leaving their meat on the runway of the local airport and taking off with just the head and horns.
    Since this regulation has been put in place it has kept a lot of trophy hunters out.

  5. #5
    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobblehead View Post
    Why is sawing an antler palm in half a stupid rule?
    Why is it reasonable, and what purpose does it serve?

  6. #6
    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by eagleriver24 View Post
    .....I've witnessed many hunters kill moose just for the trophy value in this area. Some have even gone as far as leaving their meat on the runway of the local airport and taking off with just the head and horns........
    That's against the law.

    Instead of passing another stupid regulation which punishes the masses, why not just enforce the waste laws if that's the reason behind the antler cutting exercise?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Why is it reasonable, and what purpose does it serve?
    The area was experiencing a lot of hunting pressure in the late 90's, and this regulation has greatly decreased the number of people on the river while still allowing subsistance hunting.

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    A law that says you have to make the tenderloin into burger or sausage would be a stupid rule.

  9. #9
    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by lab man View Post
    Originally Posted by bobblehead
    Why is sawing an antler palm in half a stupid rule?
    Why is it reasonable, and what purpose does it serve?
    The area was experiencing a lot of hunting pressure in the late 90's, and this regulation has greatly decreased the number of people on the river while still allowing subsistance hunting.
    Hasn't it been the limited number of drawing permits that has "greatly decreased the number of people on the river"?

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    Member TWB's Avatar
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    Part of the problem on the Koyukuk was illegal guiding, doing same day fly/hunts and the taking of BIG trophies.
    We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it. We get it rough enough at home; in towns and cities; in shops, offices, stores, banks anywhere that we may be placed

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    Member MARV1's Avatar
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    You can't eat the antlers so don't complain. I prefer quality of meat with plenty of fat. And I like a moose that drops where it is when hit.
    The emphasis is on accuracy, not power!

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    Default Stupid Law

    So the "stupid law" reduced the harvest of bull moose in that area. Snowwolfe, congrats on a great hunt! I wouldn't complain about the law; because of that law you were able to harvest 6 terrific animals. Grumble about it, but not too loudly, cause it gave you those moose. Go buy some Bondo and fiberglass tape

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    That's against the law.
    Really? Show me where the law spells out what a person has to do with the meat AFTER it is recovered from the field.

    I agree it's wrong to leave the meat behind but I believe all a person has to do is be responsible to get the meat out of the field. They could take it to the dump if they wanted to and be within the law. Not saying it's right to do that or leave it behind with the air taxi operator and sitting on the ramp.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Instead of passing another stupid regulation which punishes the masses, why not just enforce the waste laws if that's the reason behind the antler cutting exercise?
    Because it's easier to change the law and eliminate the work of enforcing the law?

    Is that the conservative way of governing the masses?


  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Why is it reasonable, and what purpose does it serve?

    Is the purpose of the law to discourage trophy hunters from coming into the area?

    Would it be reasonable for 'locals' to want less pressure on the moose?


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    Default Drawing on the Koyukuk

    This is actually pretty simple. Talk to the area bio over there. He will tell you a number of reasons. I don't beleive most of them but he will.

    Illegal guiding was a problem and same day flying but that isn't the reason.

    The reason is the locals there scream bloody murder that they have no moose. My last trip over there was a perfect 6 hunters 6 kills as well. There is plenty of moose. It is all smoke and mirrors in my opinion. They allow so many moose for the locals then they figure out what is left for permits.

    The locals are supposed to cut the antlers as well as it is for subsistance but I don't recall seeing any cut antlers in Tanana, Ruby, Galena, Kaltag or Huslia so I don't think it is enforced if you are a local.

    The funny part is some of these new regulations for permits were actually put in front of fish and game by the guides over there to keep people out and allow them tags just for non residents.

    It's pretty tough unless you live here and even then it is tough to go up the Koy and hunt moose without a guide.

    I hunted a couple areas right out of town and it was a slam dunk for bulls over 50" yet the biologist trend counts showed not many moose in these areas and definately not many bulls over 50" which they consider mature bulls. I quit going there as the permits kept working their way down the Yukon past the Koyukuk.

    Our last year below the Koyukuk though was 3 years ago and we shot 6 bulls. Seen many, many locals just runnig sloughs in their boats and ticked at us for killing their moose. Cracked me up. I know we counted 15 boats a day and didn't see one with a moose. Yet we packed meat every stinking day we were there. Getting out of your boat and walking and calling seems to work much better than running around in a john boat with a 2 stroke pumping smoke and making noise.

    It's all politics if you ask me and not how many moose are over there. Who ever cries the loudest wins the Fish and Game war and the locals cry loud.

    I found the best places to hunt are close to villages and a 1/4 mile off the river. It works great as you never see anyone in the woods or out of their boat and they keep the moose that far off the rivers and sloughs.

    Just my opinion but a good tip for anyone here is call the bio and do and go the exact opposite of what he tells you or tells you to go.

    If he says great place. Don't go

    If he says poor place. Pack your bags hunting should be great.

    If he says lots of moose (he has) there is none.

    If he says no moose. Be ready for a 55" plus bull.

    Just my experiance and I made 7 trips over there doing the exact opposite of what I was told. And scored bulls on every trip.

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    Snowwolfe - Good job on the moose - great country and heck of a trip - I stayed close to home this year and felt like I didn't do something I was supposed to do.

    I have a different take on some of the other comments made - I have hunted the Koyukuk numerous times since 1989 so I have a little insight. Even though I apply every year I have never drawn a permit.

    It is illegal to hunt the controlled use area with a plane so I fail to see how same day airborne hunting was a problem. The only plane I have ever seen was fish & Game.

    I have had nothing but good experiences with the current local biologist and respect his efforts in trying to appease all of the political issues while maintaining a resource. I don't expect him to give me advice on where or when to hunt.

    Before the change to a drawing system the area was getting over run with hunters and the moose population was declining rapidly - (My personal assessment). If the water was low and everyone was pushed to the main river it was a zoo in some areas - Hardly the adventure you would hope for after traveling several hundred miles.

    The current system allows me to hunt the area and fill my freezer if I choose to take on the adventure and price. It also seems to have greatly lowered the number of hunters so I assume the trophy value was of great importance to a lot of folks and they chose to hunt elsewhere.

    I think the management of the area has had success at achieving some of the objectives. The current price of fuel will also have an impact on the number of hunters. I just hope I draw a permit before the big one I have been watching gets old and dies of natural causes rather than lead poisoning.

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    To claify, the reason I mentioned the cutting of the palms was to explain why the antlers looked stupid!
    What ever happened in this area in the past most likely caused it. The party I was with (including me) are meat hunters first. Sure a nice rack would be nice to hang on the wall but I want steaks and burgers.
    Maybe the rule requiring the cutting of one palm has reduced traffic in the area and helped others looking to score for meat, who knows for sure. Going this far on a river boat was an adventure I wanted to do for the last 20 years and now that we did it once we are going back! Save your pennies for gas and make the trip as it is well worth it.

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    Rambling Raven I can agree with you on it getting pushed hard with hunters. That was why I decided to hunt the Yukon river itself.

    I will say though that it was more than just permits dropping the number of hunters. Prices in fuel have always been an issue and I remember 7 years ago in Galena fueling up Vern talking about hanging it up as his traffic was way down from the (good ol days) partly price and partly permits.

    The number of permits has gone down and the number of subsistance moose has gone way up.

    As far as the bio goes I would just call and ask for trend counts in certain areas and only once did I ask him about a certain area. I honestly think though that he is swayed because of where he lives.


    I do wonder about what will happen over there with the great decline in villages. People moving out and their numbers are shrinking fast.

    I still want to see a cut rack in a village over there

    I would like to see the locals over there help out with predator control as well as I don't think they do a ton of it. Once again we have a community that is not rich and the price of fuel is way up so that makes it hard for them.

    So many factors but I do feel like it is definately one sided and it's not about populations of moose. Just my opinion .

    Not to hi jack Snowwolf's kick butt Moose killing thread. Way to go and I am jealous as I wasn't able to hunt moose this year.

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by 375ultramag View Post
    Just my opinion but a good tip for anyone here is call the bio and do and go the exact opposite of what he tells you or tells you to go.

    If he says great place. Don't go

    If he says poor place. Pack your bags hunting should be great.

    If he says lots of moose (he has) there is none.

    If he says no moose. Be ready for a 55" plus bull.

    Just my experiance and I made 7 trips over there doing the exact opposite of what I was told. And scored bulls on every trip.
    I have to agree with this. I went up off the Steese this year for the first time and had a couple of talks with the bio for the area. We saw one cow/calf track total in 6 days of hunting and glassing. No live animals and no sign of anything.
    akraven

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by 375ultramag View Post
    Just my opinion but a good tip for anyone here is call the bio and do and go the exact opposite of what he tells you or tells you to go.

    If he says great place. Don't go

    If he says poor place. Pack your bags hunting should be great.

    If he says lots of moose (he has) there is none.

    If he says no moose. Be ready for a 55" plus bull.

    Just my experiance and I made 7 trips over there doing the exact opposite of what I was told. And scored bulls on every trip.
    Your words are very true! When our group checked in at the cabin we were told the area we were headed to had water levels so low we could not access our hunting camp. And then we were told that even if we got their the moose numbers were down. My friends knew better and just laughed. Thank heavens they were there before.

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