Born and raised – AK
2006 with the Family
I always enjoyed being raised in Alaska. Now it is my turn to raise my kids here. Being ages 5, 3 and <1yr, it is a bit difficult to get them out and about, but we tried hard this year and this is a SHORT version of how it went.
Early in the year we made several (4) runs down to the Clam Gulch area for razor clams. (more for the kids to experience then for the clams) Between these trips we also covered a little lake trout fishing and a couple black bear trips (in areas that were fairly easy to access with four wheelers) On one occasion My dad, my oldest son (5) and myself were treated to an afternoon show from a brown bear rummaging through log piles on the beach as we ate our lunch. The following weekend I did connect with a little black bear sow, real close to where we saw the brown bear but unfortunately none of the kids had went on that trip. They did get involved with butchering meat and scrapping the hide.
Over the summer and into fall we did our yearly dip-netting, made several four wheeler trips, went on one 40+ mile round trip with our track rig (Thiokol), and we got chickens, (layers, and the kids think there just great)
We still haven’t taken the kids on a “real” moose hunt yet. They have been with us for literally hundreds of miles on the wheelers and track rigs but as far as getting “out” and “away” – that’s still a while off. I was able to take a 40” 3x3 brow tine bull in the remainder of 20A. Even though the kids weren’t there on that one they were jumping up and down excited as we unloaded the meat and horns at the house. (You would have thought it was Christmas)
This year also brought us a pleasant surprise when my wife drew a Delta Bull Bison tag. I had heard lots of stories about what kind of “hunt” this would be. The extremes where: Its just like shooting cattle; all the way to: it’s as frustrating as hunting sheep. I would consider our hunt to be more challenging then most of my moose hunts. We were always 15 minute to early or 2 hours to late. It was definitely a “UNIQUE” hunt.
On our sixth day of hunting, we did end up getting ahead of a herd, as they were walking into the wind. They came out of a wind row single file at 120 yards broadside. We concentrated hard trying to find a bull (big bases, blocky square head, “lion’s” main, and the penis sheath). When the fifth or so animal cleared the brush there was NO doubt he was a bull. Big bases, huge squared head, lions main almost to his rear quarters, and a big ol’ penis sheath. I said “bull” and my wife was already raising the 375 H&H to her shoulder. Just as I shoulder my 375 and got a clear sight picture, I saw the bull stumble at the crack of her gun, (after seeing some one else’s bull the day before take “multiple” rounds we had already decided that soon as she shot I would back her up) I immediately followed up with a 2nd 375 round to the chest and he stumbled again. At this point the herd came breaking out of the brush and other follow up shots were no longer possible and not needed. As other bison past, we could see the big bull going down in the back ground. It was amazing! Luckily we could get a truck to where the bull went down and the kids spent most of the time in the truck staying warm.
I have learned a lot this year. About the only thing better then being in the outdoors is bringing the family along and seeing the enjoyment as they experience new things. I try to never push the kids into this stuff but give them the opportunity if they are interested and boy are they interested. I am anxious for them to be big enough shoot, but I don’t dare wish away the precious time we have now.
Best of the outdoors!
God bless America!