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New to hunting in AK Need Help

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  • New to hunting in AK Need Help

    Hello All,
    I am new to hunting in Alaska. Have been here since May 2005 so I meet the one year requirement. I have a Smith & Wesson model 270 bolt action. I grew up shotgun hunting in Ohio for deer. So any info that anyone has that can help me out on gear or places to hunt for Alaska Game would be appreciated. I have no ATV as well. I have been to the Ohio hunters safety course.

    Thanks for any help.

  • #2
    You're in the right place.

    No Fun...what kind of name is that? I sense a lack of enthusiasm for hunting here cause you just feel overwhelmed right? You're in the right place man...this site and are two invaluable resources to help you get familiar with hunting and the outdoors in AK.

    The best thing you can read, read, and read some more about what your are interested in doing and start pecking away at accumulating the gear you need for that specific task. Don't try to do it all at will come in time. Just pick something you want to hunt and do as much research about that specific thing as you can.

    Have any supervisors that hunt? Pick their brain, go check out their gear, walk around every outdoor equipment supply store in Anchorage and check it all's all much different that Ohio I promise you. When I got to Alaska I too had only hunted farmland whitetails and was overwhelmed. You just have to get into it will happen.

    Another thing that will help is to find a reliable partner that has the same interests and goals as you in the outdoors. Being new, it will benefit you greatly. It doesn't have to be someone with experience, just someone with drive and determination to learn so you can learn together.

    You say you have no ATV? Check this site out...these are two friends of mine..they are proof that with enough will and determination, you do not need an ATV to be successful in Alaska. Check it out. check out their hunting page.

    Good Luck man!


    • #3
      I assume your in Anchorage and have a car/truck. There should still be some opportunities for griz in unit 13 along the Denali hiway. Tho parts of it could possibly close soon if early snow comes. Also blackes in the same area and along the Seward hiway (I think) heading south from Anch. I see folks on here posting about glassing the upper mt's along the hiway and then walking up the mt for any bears seen.
      I would also suggest researching the drawing hunts in your area. Might be some decent hunts that aren't too costly to do. Granted, the odds of getting drawn are not good, but they are alot better than if you don't apply.
      If you don't mind spending a couple grand or more, you might look into a planned hunt from Pristine Ventures. That would be a real adventure and a great learning experience.
      I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
      I have less friends now!!


      • #4
        I know how you feel. I was born and raised hunting whitetail in Ohio. It is a lot diffrent up here though. Keeping safe is a big issue. Back home there is no such thing as grizz and really bad weather. You have to be prepared for about anything. Good gear and determination is a start. I'd try to find someone on base that has drawn a tag and see if they will let you tag along. You'll learn alot and help out in the process. Get certified! If you like to bow hunt it is a great help. The regs in Alaska are alot diffrent than Ohio. Read and ask questions. Pick up a few books on hunting tactics and the animals themselves. Learn what they like so you know where to look.


        • #5
          Some next steps-

          Well, we still have some fall left, but it's going quickly. If you're in southcentral (Anchorage-Palmer area) you might try the Johnson Pass Trail system for black bears. Moose is over. The Denali Highway might be worth a shot for grizzly...

          Other than that, it sounds like you could use a good orientation to the whole situation here. As others have mentioned, it's completely different here than pretty much anywhere else. As far as resources go, this forum is your single best online source by far. This is the largest online forum focused on Alaska hunting and fishing. Ask away!

          You should also have a copy of Chris Batin's "Hunting in Alaska" on your bookshelf. This will help you gain an understanding of the general layout of the state, what hunting conditions / species can be found in which areas, etc. This is the textbook on hunting up here and I've met few Alaska hunters who have not seen this book.

          I'd spend this winter finding a species to focus on and do your homework on where that animal is found. Learn all you can about that one animal and build from there.

          In the spring of '07 we have the Great Alaska Sportsman Show, which is something you should not miss. The dates are March 29-April1, 2007. It's the largest outdoor show in the state, and there are many seminars, booths and sources of information available to you there. It's also a great place to meet folks and to find out about what commercial services and products are available for your upcoming hunts.

          Hope this helps!

          Best of luck to you, and welcome to Alaska!

          Michael Strahan
          Site Owner
          Alaska Hunt Consultant
          1 (406) 662-1791


          • #6
            Thanks for all the help so far. Its appreciated.


            • #7
              What are you interested in hunting?

              What are you interested in hunting, and what part of the state do you live in? How far do you want to travel to hunt? Do you want to do day hunts, or over-night hunts, or like week long hunts from a base camp?

              Besides big game, there's some pretty good small game hunting for grouse , ptarmigan, and hares. A good way to learn your way around for big game hunting is to do some small game hunting in areas that interest you for big game. You can check the area out, scout game, and still get some hunting in without being overwhelmed with all that goes with big game up here.

              As was pointed out, a good hunting partner is worth his weight in gold.

              The biggest difference you'll probably notice up here is that a lot of the places you'll be hunting here are REAL wilderness. You won't be close to any roads or there will be one road in and if you head the wrong direction you won't find another for miles and miles. It's way easier to get lost up here than in Ohio. Plan accordingly.

              Also most of our animals are way bigger than what you're used to in Ohio. They can take multiple trips to pack out so you have to base decisions on that too such as how far you're willing to pack out. Shoot2kill gave good advise as to checking out you'll be able to see the work involved getting a big animal out of the woods.

              If you want to start on something familiar, there's good deer hunting on Kodiak and in Prince William Sound, and down in Southeast Alaska until the end of Dec. It won't be the same type of deer hunting you're used to, but it's a lot of fun.
              An opinion should be the result of thought, not a substitute for it.
              - Jef Mallett


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