Finally got my ox!

Jerod

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As most of the people in Bethel were asking... I caught my musk ox. After three delays (2 weather and 1 volcano), I finally made it to Mekoryuk on the 24th. We got in at 5pm and didn't waste any time. We headed south west and found a herd after about an hour and a half. It took a couple of try's to get in on the herd, but finally the bulls turned to face me and let me work into position to get a clear shot. I really had a hard time deciding which one to shoot, but the guy I took looked a lot thicker in the horns and body wise was a bit larger. His horns had more dark color to them as well. Abe said this is an indication that it was the older bull, and he got a good look at the other bull and said I made the right choice. Both were big bulls and I would have been happy with either.

One shot with the Mathews right behind the shoulder and the bull fell over in less than 10 seconds. About 30 seconds of huffing and he was done. The other bull wouldn't leave, so we had to convince him it was time to go. I finished up skinning and quartering the bull by around 11:30pm, and we headed back to Abe's in the dark. By 1:30am I had him de-boned and was all packed up and ready for the morning flight back to Bethel. Total time from Fairbanks to Mekoryuk and back was 36 hours.

Anyhow, here are the pictures...
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Jerod

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No time soon, I'm about to take the hide off the skull now actually. I'll roll it up and put it in the freezer until I can get the coin saved up for the taxidermy bill.
 

northway

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Question

Question

How long a flight is it from Bethel to Mekoryuk? Sure seems like an interesting hunt! Congrats!
 

gogoalie

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Who you catch it with???

Who you catch it with???

A transporter or a guide? from the sounds of it, maybe a transporter eh?
 

starmac

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Glad all went well after you finally got out of anchorage. Great pictures and how long did it take for the other bull to leave.
 

21'-Grayling

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Congratulations...

Congratulations...

Nice pictures and good looking Ox. Does'nt look all that cold there from here. How was the temps? How far a hike? Great pics and congrats again. Nice!!!:)
 

Kusko

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Nice Jerod! I bet that was fun butchering in the dark. I was wondering if you got one.

Did you hit the shoulder?
 

AFHunter

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Nice!!!!!

Nice!!!!!

I was wondering if you were going to make it out there. I am glad the plan came together for you. Congrats

Abe was a name mentioned. If it is Abe David, then he is a transporter on the island.

Hopefully I will draw one next year.
 

BRWNBR

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cool pic of the two bulls together, kinda makes the whole "hunting" word seem outa place in this kinda stuff....should be harvesting...lol
but i've had some kodiak bear hunts go like that too....hit us with the low down on how much that 36 hours cost you? lol give us a hourly fee....?
congrats on a great ox and pictures...man i like that one with the arrow stickin out and the other bull!
 

AK-HUNT

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Awesome!!

Awesome!!

I'm jealous. Two thumbs up man......Nice going.
 

Jerod

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Jake, here is another angle of the two bulls. The other bull stuck around for about 10 minutes before we chased him out of there.

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The weather was great. It was about 20-25 above with 10-15mph winds. Sunny as could be. Stars were shining bright that night. Abe's lights went out on his snowmachine, so I had to tailgate him on the way back to Mekoryuk so he could see.

I shot the bull right behind the front shoulder and it hit the offside bone so the arrow stopped. The arrow clipped the heart and knocked out both lungs. Abe was watching from about a half mile away and said he was surprised at how quickly it went down.

The flight from Bethel to Mekoryuk was about 45 minutes on a straight shot, but it took over 1&1/2 hours to get back since we had to circle Bethel a half dozen or more times. The weather turned to crap on the morning of the 25th and a few of the flights went on weather hold when we got back. I'm glad I got out when I did, because I'd either be stuck in Mekoryuk, or stuck in Bethel due to the volcano.

Costs are as follows:
Transporter - $3,000
Tag - $500
License - $62
Round trip flight from Bethel to Mekoryuk on Grant Aviation - $420
20,000 frequent flier miles plus $10 for first attempted flight
30,000 frequent flier miles plus $20 for second flight with friend
$100 bed and breakfast in Bethel
$100 charge after refund on 2 Hageland tickets
7500 frequent flier miles plus $10 for third flight. They had a glitch and only charged half.
$100 land use permit. (new fee starting this year according to Abe)
Extra weight on Grant with musk ox at $1.00 per pound = $247
Change fee on Alaska and extra overweight bag fees = $225 (she cut me a deal and knocked the amount in half)

Total cost out of pocket was $4374 plus I had some food and misc. supplies I had to buy for the hunt, so call it $4500 (125/hour :D). If I would of had an observer along, it would have run an extra $500 for the transporter plus $420 for the flight. I would have saved a little on extra bags and cargo fees though, so probably would have cost an extra $800 to have somebody tag along. I had asked him if the price would be less for 2 hunters, but it is $3000 per hunter regardless if you go together or separate.

Some other notes:

Grant was cheaper than Hagelands on both ticket price and extra weight. Hagelands wanted $1.75 per pound over 100lbs. and Grant charged $1.00 per pound over 100lbs.

Brown Slough Bed and Breakfast is a really nice place to stay.

Mekoryuk airstrip is quite a ways from Mekoryuk, so make sure you have warm clothes on for the snowmachine ride into town. It felt like it was a couple of miles.

Thanks for all the compliments! I finally got the hide off the head, what a pain!!! Now I gotta figure out what I'm going to do with all these parts.
 
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