I have been "planning" to go to Alaska for several (10 or so, I am now 27) years. Problem is, I have never had the money to put together to get it done. I am finally in a position that I can put enough dough together to finally get it done.
I am looking at 2011, and I want to hunt a unit that will allow me to shoot any caribou. I am also wanting to go earlier than most hunts open, and DIY, drop camp, possibly 5-6 days total hunting.
I have looked into Wright Air in Faibanks, as I think that would be my best bet for getting into caribou country. It also looks like the areas keep getting more and more restrictive, and to get into areas where there are less restrictions gets even more cost prohibitive.
Is getting to 20F from Fairbanks, and back with a single caribou and maybe a wolf hide a far stretch? Or would I be better to look elsewhere.
I just cannot find any units that are only a one shot jump from a major airport, and have decent rules.
Also, is the idea of going early crazy, or better? I am thinking hunting about starting August 1st.
I am also thinking of what would be needed for the hunt. I currently hunt all sorts of big game in NV, to include mountain lions, year round, and I am very experienced in that part. I would mainly be in the need of a decent tent, sleeping bag, stove, and a few other small items. I was thinking more of taking everything in duffles, and using my Eberlestock X2 backpack to hunt with. I have carried lots of weight in this pack, and I think a 300-400 lb caribou can easily be done in 4 trips without overdoing anything.
Any other areas I might look into that I can get into with a direct flight from a major airport after getting there from the lower 48?
Although I will be able to afford a hunt finally, I am still not rich, and will have a budget of about $4000 total to do this.
A flight to Fairbanks would be about $1000-1100 as it sets right now. Tag costs I have not looked into yet, and have not gotten information from Wright on charter flight cost.
My plan would also be to have the caribou cut up, frozen, and then shipped to NV by UPS if possible.
Anything else that I should look at?
Thanks for the help!