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  • Caribou Rut

    When did the bigger/trophy caribou bulls start to taste rutty this year? I've heard mid-October as a rule of thumb, but this can differ from herd to herd. I'm looking specifically for GMU 23 WAC, but I'm sure someone else will appreciate a comment on any other herd. Thanks.

  • #2
    I harvested a big bull 21Oct 2012, unit 13 Nelchina herd, no rut taste at all. sat overnight even before I could gut it. 0-15 degrees, light snow on ground. he was alone.

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    • #3
      It depends on the animal

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      • #4
        I've had stinky, rutty caribou as early as mid-September. Never hunted them in October, and I've never hunted them north of the Ak range. August through early September is your best bet for a big bull with lots of fat and good flavor imo.
        Experience is the name every one gives to their mistakes. ~Wilde

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        • #5
          You wouldn't plan a fishing trip for salmon in October would you? Of course not, the meats going to be no good! If meats what your after lay off those big bulls in October. They don't all stink but lots do. Why take a chance at wasting an animal? Let the poor thing try and make it to spring or let it feed some wolves or another sharp toothed creature with valuable skin. But don't shoot an October bull for the rack. There are better times if the year for that plus the meat is to die for. If you can manage the time away from work try and give er a go in early September or August. Not as cold and better meat. A WACH hunt could be challenging in October with the potential for very cold temperatures.

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          • #6
            I've always gone by the rule...... no shooting caribou bulls the first two weeks of Oct.
            Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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            • #7
              Yep, here in unit 23 the first days of Oct is when the Bulls go "Stink".

              We conclude our hunts from a boat when we get Bulls with not much feed in thier guts and lots of water, besides when you are in a boat behind the bulls and they stink, its pretty easy to know, its that bad............... or if on land , when they stop eating and are tanked up on water, its the only warning that they are going Stink within a day or two. This has almost always been at the beginning days of October.

              They are stupidly curious at that time too,and will often run to you if your walking across Tundra......shuks..... but the Cows with no calfs are very huntable at that time, also being tender and fat.

              Where are you planning to Hunt? and what time?
              If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.:topjob:

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

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              • #8
                Originally posted by HulaDoll View Post
                When did the bigger/trophy caribou bulls start to taste rutty this year? I've heard mid-October as a rule of thumb, but this can differ from herd to herd. I'm looking specifically for GMU 23 WAC, but I'm sure someone else will appreciate a comment on any other herd. Thanks.
                I notice you don't say your going to hunt in Oct. Little late for the transporters anyway. Mid to late Sept. should be good. Bulls will be largely good eats and bugs will be down. Bou will likely be on the move as well.
                Have a good trip.
                I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
                I have less friends now!!

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                • #9
                  We're looking at the squirrel river area. Haven't set concrete times yet. Thanks.

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                  • #10
                    Im just a bit North of the Squirrel on the last week/days of Sept.

                    The bulls havent been coming along untill then. They come down from the ridge tops when it chills/snows up there, and the bug activity is down. Keep yer eyes on the weather.......:topjob:
                    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.:topjob:

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

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by HulaDoll View Post
                      We're looking at the squirrel river area. Haven't set concrete times yet. Thanks.
                      Price wise and flight time wise, the Squirrel is a good drop or float. You will likely have some company tho. If the bou are there in numbers you'll have a good hunt.
                      Once you pick a transporter I suggest talking about other places as well. I would also suggest talking with the 2 transporters in Bettles for a unit 26 hunt.
                      I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
                      I have less friends now!!

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