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Thread: GMU 23 DM 876 moose hunt advice needed

  1. #1
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    Default GMU 23 DM 876 moose hunt advice needed

    I just drew a moose tag for DM 876 in Unit 23!

    Now I need advice on that area's best transporters and outfitters. I am on a tight budget so guided trips are out. I will be drop-camping or floating, depending on the prices. I have all my own gear so I can go either way.

    Also would appreciate advice about whether to drop-camp or float - and where. Seems from the info published by the F&G that Unit 23 is a hot bed of conflict between non-resident hunters and Kotzebue resident hunters so any info on areas to avoid would be great.

  2. #2

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    We have hunted DM876 a couple times. PM me and I'll give you the good and bad news. Only really a few options to get you in there. The smaller the plane the better to work the short strips. Don't get dropped on a long bar and don't float to low on the river. Get a rate or quote that doesn't change other wise who knows what the total is that you will pay if your on a tight budget. I personally wouldn't hunt DM876 again. You might want to get something booked one way or the other, I hear most of the companies are booked.

  3. #3
    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flying View Post
    PM me and I'll give you the good and bad news.
    He just joined and has only 1 post. He can not send or recieve PMs until he has a lot more posts. You both need to figure out another way to communicate other than PM.

  4. #4
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    Kotzebue is most accomadating to outside Hunters.
    Most conflicts with local people comes from transporters who were doing 'bad stuff' with airplanes and Caribou, as well as many, many guys comming in with spoiled or nearly spoiled meat.
    Its stayiong warmer lomnger, so meat care can be a hassle when the temps shoot well above freezing in late September, but its not hard at all.

    The transporter problem has been a non issue for quite a few years now, and with education, hopefully less meat gone bad will contenue till the problem is history.

    Back in those days, even non res could get 5 Caribou, and I honestly belive some had never delt with that much meat before, and hence their problems taking care of it ...........locals have freezers and people to give it away to, as well as transportaion at hand, something that you will NOT find commercially available. Hang your meats in an airy place, keep 'em dry and you'll do fine.
    When you do arrive, Theres wetlock box's available in AKAirlines, and maby NAC in Kotzebue

    Good luck
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

    "Dam it all", The Beaver told me.....

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    I contacted Ram Aviation before the draw and got detailed pricing information. Then, after reading about the issues in Unit 23, I asked them where they would be able to drop me for the hunt so I could decide if the trip would be worth the price. So far no reply. Any suggestions on where to hunt (or not hunt) would be appreciated.

  6. #6

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    Most of the time people don't really know where they are going until they arrive in Kotzebue. You can say I want to go to xyz river and you can plan that but if there are no animals there your not going to be very happy. We've gone with Ram Aviation a number of times and they have always done what they said and we have taken some nice animals. They have freezer space for their customers as well in Kotzebue. The first time we went to Kotzebue (won't say who took us out) to hunt we told them were we wanted to go for Moose and Caribou because friends of ours had done the trip before and had great success. I looked pretty stupid when I pitched a fit for them to take me to exactly were I wanted to go. We had a great camping trip! No animals though. That was the last time I told anyone where exactly we wanted to hunt and left it basically up to who was flying us out. Had great success every year after that. Also remember there is nothing CHEAP about a good hunt! Some companies will nickel and dime you to death and at the end of the hunt your pay additional money. We haven't ever had a conflict in the field or in Kotzebue while we were there. The people in Kotzebue were actually very friendly and we have made a few friends there over the years.

  7. #7
    Member Milo's Avatar
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    Be aware of land ownership if floating.

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Flying gave you good advice on letting the transporter pick your spot. You already have info on RAM aviation. The other good guy up there is Golden Eagle Outfitters............least I think that is what the operation is under. The guy who flies is a pilot for Hageland, but the transporting is done under the golden eagle name. You might have seen the pilot on Dicovery's Flying Wild Alaska..... (don't believe everything you see on the show!)
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
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  9. #9
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    My advice is to do as much research as possible before you book with any of the transporters up there. There are a few that charge by the hour and a few that charge a set rate. I have talked to a few transporters up there on the phone and in person and in my opinion, the ones who charge by the hour have a better reputation and are better deals for the hunter. I flew with Jim Kincaid of Northwest Aviation last year and had a great trip with him, very professional and great operation. We tried to book with him again this year for the same area but unforntunately he was all booked up so I called one of the transporters that does a set rate for his flights. The only info I gave him was the river we wanted to fly to and the dates. He came back with a very high price quote, so I explained I was a resident and I flew with Northwest last year for a much lower price, why are you so expensive? His exact reply to me was "Oh, your a resident? We mainly deal with non residents and they usually pay whatever we ask, I can go ahead and match what Jim Kincaid charged you last year". I hung the phone up and got in touch with Jared Cummings of Golden Eagle outfitters and booked our return trip with him. Jim Kincaid recommends him and he charges by the hour, I talked to him on the phone for an hour and got a real good vibe. I'll have a report on him after my trip in September. Thats my advise, good luck on your planning and have a safe trip.

  10. #10

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    I myself like going with a set rate so I know exactly what it is costing me with no hidden cost. We have done by the hour hunts in the past and we were charged for every minute the prop was turning. On our flight into the field one year we couldn't make to the final destination because of weather and had to turn around. That flight was 2 1/2 hours at $500 per hour. We got 3/4 of the way there then returned to the base. $1250 for nothing. So by the hour is not always that great. There is never a gurantee that your going to make it there or if the flight service flys out to pick you up and can't land because of the weather, wind or what ever, guess who pays for that. The hunter does. If someone charges a set rate and sticks to it then the price is what it is. I do think air taxi's give Alaska Residents better deals but they probably should. Normally AK residents I would think are way less of hassle then someone coming in hunting from New York City or something and trying to hunt in Alaska for the first time. Less hassle usually means less money, I don't care what kind of service you provide!

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the information. You fellows are very generous with your time and attention. I will contact the transporters named in this thread and try to make some affordable arrangements. Thanks again.

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