I am getting stationed in Valdez this summer. What type of hunting is available in the area? I heard there was a preserve in the area that offers many opportunities. What are the seasons? Is there a good outfitter in town?
Via boat you will be able to access excellent black bear and decent Sitka blacktailed deer hunting. Goat is also a possibility. By road and hiking you can access black bear, brown bear, and possibly goat and sheep depending on permit status. For your first year you will not be able to hunt sheep, goat, or brown bear unless you are with a registered guide. Deer and black bear can be hunted by non-residents, though, as can caribou if you want to drive far enough or do a fly-out hunt. There are plenty of water taxis in Valdez that can drop you off in good hunting locales for deer and bear.
You will have outstanding bear hunting not far from town. I would highly recommend getting up with one of your fellow coasties to get a black bear bait station up and running. Many times someone transferring out will have one to pass on. Save your bear tag for spring of 2011 so you can have some good eats as a fall bear will not be much good for table fare.
You boat will work great in the Valdez arm for silvers but as for traveling out in to Prince William Sound for deer, no way. Do that and you might need the service of your fellow coasties to come get you. It can get pretty nasty out there.
From ten mile to the pass you can find moose. I know of a couple coasties who bagged them during their stay. I'm an SK so no hunting in Sept. for me.
I have seen numerous brown bear while I was stationed there so if that interest you go for it.
The best thing about Valdez, you are on the road system so if you are willing to travel you can hunt just about everything AK has to offer.
don't forget about all the fishing opportunities.
Oh, get there early, don't wait too long. Summer is short and winter is long.
What fun to be stationed in Valdez! I grew up there and I think its one of the most fun places to hunt. Bears, deer, birds, little critters and now moose within 60 miles of Valdez. Goat in the narrows right along with the bears. Fishing that BLOWS the mind, halilbut, salmon, shark, shrimping, cod and sea bass. Great place to spearfish dive if you're a diver. Keep that small boat close to shore if you go too far and don't take any chances. 3pm like clock work winds pick up for 1 to 3 ft chop. Not always but enough to run with caution.
Like Brian said you'll need a registered guide for certain big game but, you'll have plenty to do on your own. Good luck and enjoy Valdez!
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