This story starts about a year ago. I put in for three elk tags in the draw along with many other things. As everyone knows the tension was on until the results came out. I actually won a permit!!! DE706 (what was that for anyway!?!? It's been so long!). After looking it up again, I was thrilled. Cow elk on Raspberry Island! Time to start planning...
After looking at what I had already accumulated in my recent move here, I started shopping around for stuff I thought I would need. You see, I moved up from Florida where hunting consisted of sitting in a tree stand for hours on end. I have never killed anything larger than a deer. This hunt is going to be special.
Over time, I was able to put together quite a respectable gear list for a **** good price (I never pay full price for anything.) All in all this cost me less than $200 for gear/food/etc... specifically for this hunt. This I thought was important because I heard so many people say it is cheaper to hunt elk in the lower 48 than it is up here.
After months on end of planning this hunt was finally coming to fruition. I think everything that could happen, happened. No ride to Raspberry, hunting partners backed out, leave might not be granted, you name, it happened. In the end everything worked itself out.
Mr. G, Mr. D, Mr. F, and myself loaded the the boat (with way too much gear) on Saturday. Sunday morning bright and early we headed over to Anton Larson bay to launch the boat. Crap!! Its rainy... Go figure, we are in Kodiak!! We started out of the bay before sunup to what looked like a miserable day. After what seemed like an eternity the overloaded, underpowered boat finally made it to Onion Bay. We were treated to a show of sea otters, a rather large bear on the beach, and no rain!! This is going to be awesome!!!
We carefully beached the boat and started to unload the gear. Why on earth did we bring so much!! It ended up taking 4 of us three trips each up the the camp site.
The plan was to have a ten day hunt, with weather possibly making it up to 15 days. Kodiak is no joke. The weather will turn on you in a quick second. Only Mr. F had done any "real" Alaskan hunts...
After the utterly exhausting hike up 500 feet of stepped Raspberry terrain (you know, the kind with salmon berry bushes, boggy marsh, and thick scrub alders) three times, it was time set up camp in a well protected spruce thicket. We got the K2 XT and the Cabela's guide model tents (2 four man jobbers, so we could keep gear in them and sleep comfortably) up in no time flat. We set up a tarp near the firepit and one about 50 yds away for cooking. Completely exhausted, we decide to go in search of water. Just then it started to rain. What a blessing it disguise. We set up drain points from the tarps into collapsible water jugs. By the evening we had 15 gallons of water. Not too shabby.
Water, shelter, food, and fire... Off to a good start.
Now the plan for the next day. Wake up, get an elk! If only it were that easy
Anticipation sets it, making for a rough night and an early morning. 0600!! it doesn't get light for hours!! As I bide my time I run through all of the scenarios in my head. What if I miss, what if we run into a bear, what if we can't find them!!!
Soon the others roust out of there sleep. we sit down and come up with a plan over some coffee and breakfast. Lets hike up over the ridge glass for a while. Maybe we see them, maybe we don't. We can get a good view of where to set a spike camp and start early the next morning.
Rifle: Check, Food: Check, Water: Check, First aid kit: Check, Spotting scope: Check, Knife: Check, miscellaneous small items: Check. Lets do this!