Just thought I would share my experience with Jeff at Kodiak Combos and pass on some reviews of the gear I used.
First off, Kodiak Combos was awesome. Jeff and Lianna are great people and made my hunting trip a trip of a lifetime. I figured I would lose a few pounds running around Kodiak shooting deer but I'm pretty sure that I actually gained a few pounds. We had pasta, steak, fried chicken, pork chops, and a fresh caught king for dinner on our 5 nights. The sides were amazing and the fresh home made deserts every night were out of this world.
My first day I learned a valuable lesson about hunting on Kodiak. Don't shoot a deer on top of the mountain at 4pm. The short story is we wanted to make sure our group got at least one deer on the first day. I shot a doe and paid a price getting it out. I have never been so physically exhausted in my life. It was a lesson learned the hard way and one I will never forget. The other guys shot a forkhorn and a doe on the first day.
On the second day, one of my partners decided he'd had enough. He was too cold, tired, and sore to keep going. He was trying to get the radio from me to call for an early pickup when a 3x3 walked 20yrds away downwind of his lit cigarette. Needless to say, he warmed up right quick and put that buck down. He was so excited, he emptied his .300 Weatherby into it and kept yelling for us to shoot that poor dead deer again. We spent the afternoon quartering and packing that guy the half mile to the beach; over FLAT ground.
On the third day, Mr. Too Cold had enough. He stayed in the lodge the rest of the hunt. After sitting the beach for the first two hours, we decided to head up hill a ways. 50 yards up the hill we jumped a "doe" and I told my partner, who was the only one not to shoot a deer yet, to have at it. He moved over a little rise and I hung tight with our gear. Moments later it sounded like an invasion of Old Harbor. At the first shot I noticed a nice buck up on a cliff watching us. Every shot, the deer would run closer. I figured that my buddy was shooting at this buck and missing. I waited for what seemed like forever about 50 shots and when the buck finally had enough he turned to walk away. I put a 168gr Berger Hunting VLD on top of 46grns of Varget right through the goods and the 4x4 took off right at me. I was feeling like a jerk because I thought I shot my buddies deer but it turned out he was shooting at the "doe" that turned out to be a little spike buck. We spent the rest of the day getting them out.
Last day was my partners lucky day. He spotted a monster about a mile away just off the beach. I'd like to say there was some strategy to our stalk but the reality is we just walked up to it and he shot it. I am fairly certain that his buck will make SCI book. If I were to guestimate, it would be around 90 inches. The other guys ended up shooting two 4x4's about a mile down the beach from us. All in all it was an awesome experience. We shot 4 4x4's, a 3x3, fork, spike, and two does.
The only equipment that really stands out is as follows:
My Eberlestock Dragonfly pack worked great for packing out gear and deer. It was a bit heavy empty but the fit works for me and makes it worth it. My Savage M16 stainless in .308 win was overkill on blacktail but it shot great and was a pleasure to handle. I was not happy with my Helly Hanson Impertech II rain gear. The waistband ripped right out while putting them on. My Danner Pronghorn boots are the best thing on earth, just wish I had brought a cleaning kit. The saltwater was not good on the leather.