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Thread: Campfires when hunting

  1. #1
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    Default Campfires when hunting

    My brother and I have been debating back and forth about having a nightly campfire out on our hunts.

    I argue the point how it alerts the game in the area to your presence and will stink up your clothes.

    He argues the point about the warmth and comfort of a campfire at dusk.

    What thoughts do any of you have on it?

  2. #2
    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default We had this conversation before.

    Quote Originally Posted by snakeyjake View Post
    My brother and I have been debating back and forth about having a nightly campfire out on our hunts.

    I argue the point how it alerts the game in the area to your presence and will stink up your clothes.

    He argues the point about the warmth and comfort of a campfire at dusk.

    What thoughts do any of you have on it?
    We must have gone four pages at least.
    Do a search, and you'll get EVERYBODY's opinion.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Without a camp fire why go. Have you ever noticed al the summer fires in Alaska,the wood heat all winter and trash burning. My guess would be the critters are as used to it as you are

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default Here's the old one:

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...ght=camp+fires

    And that's not the only such thread, because I remember arguing with somebody about having a fire and leaving traces of fires. I've had moose and caribou walk right into camp with a fire going. I've heard bears do too.

    In country where natural fire is unusual, or men are infrequent visitors (does that exist anymore?), smoke smell may repel game.

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    Default Fires

    Is it concievable that we as loud,awkward, stinkin humans can wander around unnoticed by animals that live the survival lifestyle everyday not likely. Young animals may mistakenly let us wander upon them but prime very rare. Spot stalk, call and ambush, lie still and ambush are good working hunting methods. But wander aimlessly and jump game not a real reliable method. so the scent is important when you are controlling the hunt circumstance. (stalk, ambush)but in both instances you have options of approach to keep the wind in your favor provided it doesn't shift. So I wou ld prefer to hunt with the brother who likes a fire.
    PS fires won't keep bears out of camp.
    Wars may be fought with weapons, but they are won by men. It is the spirit of men who follow and of the man who leads that gains the victory.
    - General George S. Patton

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    Member AlaskaTrueAdventure's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Fire guys...

    I'm a fire guy.
    Whenever wood is present I just must build a fire. And my client hunters and myself seem to kill a bunch of stuff so success does not seen to be affected by the smoke. After a day or three everybody starts smelling anyway, so enjoy your campfire.

    On a (personal) ram hunt I once bumped into (forum member) Northway and his hunting buddy. (Actually, we used to see each other often in that sheep country.) They had already whacked two rams. And they told me and my hunting buddy where they had saw two more good rams. We went up into a bowl and shot the rams while Northway and his hunting buddy had a fine morning campfire in the canyon bottom below us. His campfire, our campfire, was visible almost from the kill site! I could still faintly smell the smoke.

    A great hunt for four successful hunters, not such a great hunt for the four rams.

    Enjoy your camp fires.

    Dennis

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    It doesn't matter. We always have a campfire at hunt camp. We've had "herds" of moose within a couple hundred yards of camp. Had bear walk right through camp while the fire was going. The fire doesn't phase the animals at all. Anyone who says the smell of smoke will scare away the animals isn't going off of any real experience, just unfounded speculation. You'll find far more people who have personally witnessed that the opposite is true.
    Winter is Coming...

    Go GeocacheAlaska!

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    Quote Originally Posted by snakeyjake View Post
    My brother and I have been debating back and forth about having a nightly campfire out on our hunts.

    I argue the point how it alerts the game in the area to your presence and will stink up your clothes.

    He argues the point about the warmth and comfort of a campfire at dusk.

    What thoughts do any of you have on it?
    I like to bring an extra set of clothes, and try to camp far enough away that I feel my campsite will not effect the grounds I am planning on hunting. Then it is a win win for you and your bro

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    Quote Originally Posted by sledhands View Post
    But wander aimlessly and jump game not a real reliable method.
    Ten years ago I would agree 100% with you. What happen was I went hunting with two guys who would hunt on foot, and realized what I was doing wrong. I also found I could not hear the animals talking to me as I walked through the trees and built an amplifier so I could hear them talking.

    Getting back to the subject camp fires, I also agree smoke is the least of you’re problems after 3 days in the woods. If your hunting big bulls moose stay down wind, fire or no fire.

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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by JOAT View Post
    It doesn't matter. We always have a campfire at hunt camp. We've had "herds" of moose within a couple hundred yards of camp. Had bear walk right through camp while the fire was going. The fire doesn't phase the animals at all. Anyone who says the smell of smoke will scare away the animals isn't going off of any real experience, just unfounded speculation. You'll find far more people who have personally witnessed that the opposite is true.
    Pretty much nailed it...

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    Member Rock_skipper's Avatar
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    Auctully fire's and conversation has brought in more moose than I can count. Moose are curious critter's.

    That's like a boat coming up the river, most will wait til it get's there to see what it is.

    Also fire's will distract other critter's with big claw's that want to chow down on the one you have down while you are trying to get your buddy's tag filled.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by snakeyjake View Post
    My brother and I have been debating back and forth about having a nightly campfire out on our hunts.

    I argue the point how it alerts the game in the area to your presence and will stink up your clothes.

    He argues the point about the warmth and comfort of a campfire at dusk.

    What thoughts do any of you have on it?



    Animals do not associate light, fire or smoke with humans. If you are camping in an area, the animals know you are there, from your noise and smell. If anything, the campfire helps mask it.
    "If you are not working to protect hunting, then you are working to destroy it." ......Fred Bear

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    I guess you're right there.

    Anything would smell better then my little brother after 4 days of Bog Bustin'! :-) Especially a nice fire with some moosekabobs a roastin.

    Thanks for all your input.

    Jake

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    Member Rock_skipper's Avatar
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    This fire question bring's another to mind. Reading the Delta paper today, it said that all open fire's regardless of what you are doing need's a permit. They are free, but does it mean that if you are on the river you will get a ticket for having a camp fire without one? Hmmm going to have to check this one out.

  15. #15

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    It's an attractant if anything. Pound some stumps on the ground, stomp on dead branches to break them, make as much noise limbing and prepping your firewood as possible then sit back and enjoy it. Just keep an ear out for faint grunts. I've even rattled em in trying to bag tent poles, had to shu away a ~64" bull while breaking camp, still had a tag to fill too but didnt want to be that guy that through off the pilots schedule since he was supposed to pick us up in an hour. Turns out, the group before us had "that guy" in their group we waited for 5 hours. No worries though, the bull is still out there and our pilot loves us.

    Having said that, I havnt had a fire in moose camp in 6 years, couple hours after dark is a great time to listen for bull movements in prep for the next day.

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    skipper- open fires need to be permitted only during wildfire season which begins today, april 1 till the end of august i believe.

    however, state law allows open fire for cooking and warming anytime of year (without a permit, but you must be cooking with it or at least warm your hands a little) but you are liable if it escapes...

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    Default Rock Skipper

    Must has been a typo in the Delta Wind as permits are required for all fires EXCEPT cooking and warming fires and approved burn barrels. It was also inthe Fbks paper but they had it right!

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    Member atvalaska's Avatar
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    Post burn away 3-5 millon arces a year here ,can't be wrong

    i started out doing the no fire thing...then missed the "camping" part of the trip ....burn away ,i've had dar'near everything in camp since..to include wolf's.... walking back and forth 25yds from the camp fire in the willows/ near a bear hide we hung in the shade..and when we hit them with what would bearly pass for a flashlites ..they would turn the eyes away...i now arm myself with a high dollar light and see what needs seeing...02cents
    WHEN IN DOUBT> THROTTLE OUT.......

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    Member stevelyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JOAT View Post
    It doesn't matter. We always have a campfire at hunt camp. We've had "herds" of moose within a couple hundred yards of camp. Had bear walk right through camp while the fire was going. The fire doesn't phase the animals at all. Anyone who says the smell of smoke will scare away the animals isn't going off of any real experience, just unfounded speculation. You'll find far more people who have personally witnessed that the opposite is true.

    That's been my experience too. I'm a fire person myself and I think you hunt better when you can relax in the evening, absorb some heat and get a warm meal even if it's an MRE entree dunked in hot water or Spam on a stick.

    I like to bring an extra set of clothes, and try to camp far enough away that I feel my campsite will not effect the grounds I am planning on hunting.
    Trust me, after the first day a change of clothes isn't going to fix your problem. BO will spook critters long before woodsmoke will.
    Now what ?

  20. #20
    Member tccak71's Avatar
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    I'm a fire guy to, plus (depending on the area) it alerts other hunters that you're hunting that valley, river, area, etc...

    Tim

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