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Thread: Mid-September Haul Road Bou...Tell me about your trips...

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    Member mossyhorn's Avatar
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    Default Mid-September Haul Road Bou...Tell me about your trips...

    I'm trying to fit in a Haul Road caribou hunt again this year, last year was my first. Due to other commitments and work I think about the only time I can get up there is right in the middle of September. I know the caribou are un-predictable but what have your experiences been? My wife and I will be going up and I want to show her the awesome country and do some fishing too, hopefully catch some char and grayling.

    Overall, I'd just like to hear everyone's thoughts on that time period and what you've experienced.

    Thanks

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    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    I was up there in mid-September twice moose hunting near Coldfoot. Both times we went up and over the pass looking for caribou. Neither time did we see 'bou at all and it snowed on us both times. You never really can tell, I shot a caribou on Nov. 1st 10 miles south of Coldfoot several years ago. It's a great trip that time of year and I'd definately still go.
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

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    One year I went in early September, the next I went mid September. The temperature difference was amazing, at least 15 - 20 degrees less. I saw the same amount of caribou though.

    Good luck, KWP

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    I was up there last year with three friends from September 9-15. We experenced unusually hot weather for most of the hunt with temps in the 80's. I think temp records were set! As a result there was not a lot of caribou movement during this period and we were seeing pretty small numbers on our hikes in off the road. I have a picture of my buddies coming back in from a days hunt with no shirts on. Finally on the last day the weather cooled and we started to see some small groups moving east to west, some crossing the Haul Road. We never did get a good set-up, but that's hunting. I know that you did good earlier in the season as I followed your posts. Congrats!

    Despite the above info, I think that most years mid-Sept. is a good time to be up there. I know in 2008 it was good and also in 2009 not bad until the big snowstorm hit on Sept. 18. I plan my hunt again for the same time frame as last year. Probably leave about Sept. 7 or 8 for 10 days total (counting the 4 days driving round trip from Kenai). Don't know yet which rig we'll be in but will stay in touch and let you know in case you're up there same time.

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    From talking to the Obi wans about caribou, weather seems to have everything to do with migration. And calving too I guess. But places where caribou usually show by mid-September might see herds weeks early or late depending on when snows inspire them to move.

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    Member mossyhorn's Avatar
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    Thanks Joe and everyone for sharing your experiences up there. If I am still able to go, it will probably be the 15th-22nd roughly. So hopefully no big snow storm like I read about a few years back!

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    Member Roger45's Avatar
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    You have not said if you are strictly road hunting or not. If so, then most 'bou will be between Galbreath and the Bluffs. Plan to glass the Kuparuk River area to Happy Valley. Lots of potential opportunities if you have patience. If you have a boat, remember the colder it gets, the skinnier the water is...so take that into account.

    Be prepared to hunker down for a day or two if a big storm comes in. Once it slows or quits, the road crew do a good job clearing as they want to keep the big rigs rolling, you should be able to drive without problems. You should always carry chains that time of year.
    "...and then Jack chopped down the beanstock, adding murder and ecological vandalism to the theft, enticement and vandalism charges already mentioned, but he got away with it and lived happily ever after without so much as a guilty twinge about what he had done. Which proves that you can be excused just about anything if you're a hero, because no one asks the inconvenient questions." Terry Pratchett's The Hogfather

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    Im going up Aug 10-20 going to be running a SJX on normal years how are the water levels just wondering thanks for any advise.

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    Member Roger45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skybust View Post
    Im going up Aug 10-20 going to be running a SJX on normal years how are the water levels just wondering thanks for any advise.
    I would think in most years, that is a perfect time for a SJX. The water tends to run a little higher at that time as compared to early September. The better you are a reading water, the better you are of not having any problems. At the launch, ask folks if there are any problem areas, and most folks are free with that sort of information as no one wants to break down. At the launch you want to get on step right away as (in most years) one of the skinniest water sections is just up stream 100-200 yards...small gravel rocks, and only about 20 yards across, so you may not even notice it in a SJX

    If you go up the Ivashak, above the Echoo the water gets a little more skinny...again, reading the water is important. The mouth of the Echoo also tends to have some nice hull inspector rocks, so watch that as well. If you are staying in the archery area, upstream of the Ivashak is pretty nice all the way to Happy Valley, if you know how to read water...downstream from the launch has great water, but a good GPS is needed as it can really braid out in places.

    Have fun!
    "...and then Jack chopped down the beanstock, adding murder and ecological vandalism to the theft, enticement and vandalism charges already mentioned, but he got away with it and lived happily ever after without so much as a guilty twinge about what he had done. Which proves that you can be excused just about anything if you're a hero, because no one asks the inconvenient questions." Terry Pratchett's The Hogfather

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info. Chris

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    Skybust i'll see you up their i'm leaving the night of the 9th of august thru 14 august. I'll be in the blue ford f350 pulling my boat.

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsapper7 View Post
    Skybust i'll see you up their i'm leaving the night of the 9th of august thru 14 august. I'll be in the blue ford f350 pulling my boat.
    What type of boat are you running?

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    I'll be running a extreme shallow, and my buddy will be taking his predator up.

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Dsapper7 we should think about running togather I plan on camping at the landing an just running back and forth. Have you ever run it. we are leaving morning of the 10 from Wasilla

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    Went up there with 2 friends last year on the 15th. We had heard it was really warm earlier in the week but I guess we brought up some cold weather as the temps dropped down into the teens at night. We camped around PS 2 and saw most of the bou between PS2 and the bluffs. they were in very small groups on road side of the river but if you crossed the Sag there were a lot of them. We crossed the Sag one day in a cheap Canoe and decided it was a very bad idea. We were all very green so the Bou won on that trip but it was a great learning experience and I'm looking forward to doing it again. Crossing the sag is no joke so if you do it have a dependable ride across. We met one guy that wadded it and he said he saw Jesus for a minute or 2. Good luck!

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    Tell me this ain't Dave! If so you better get me on your boat!

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