Non-hunters in the field with you, but carrying a firearm for backup...

AKBighorn

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I have no clue how the law is written in this case but it seems as previously stated that you are innocent until proven guilty.

That said, Troopers do ask questions and depending on your answers may ask more questions and if you are blowing smoke then you should know what's coming next.

If your buddy recieved a Buffalo tag and you go with him for whatever reasons you may have. You have a hunting license but the area is only open to Buffalo in which you have no tag for, yet you have a gun, are you hunting illegally? What would the difference be between this or any person in the woods during hunting season packing a gun and not a license for something they don't have a tag?

There was a time when I only had one gun, a rifle. I took it anytime I went out in the woods be it fishing or whatever. Just because I couldn't afford to purchase a shotgun for bear protection doesn't mean that I'm breaking any laws by packing for bear protection.
 

martentrapper

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i spoke with the troopers on a matter similar to this.

If i took someone on my trapline and they handed me wire for my set...they legally have to have a trapping license.

If someone helps me harvest a moose..ie pack it out or find it...they legally are suppose to have a hunting license.

.

The above 2 scenarios are totally different. Handing someone wire to "make" a set is participating in trapping. No animal has ben harvested, The trapper, and the wire holder are attempting to trap an animal. Both need a license. If your friend, client, etc comes along and you remove a critter from a trap/snare and hand it to him............he does not need a license. The trapping, at that particular set is over, the animal has been harvested.

Helping pack out meat from a kill whether moose, caribou, bear, or ptarmigan, does not require a license. A license is required to harvest, or attempt to harvest, a game animal. Once the harvest is over, meeting the "salvage" requirements does not require a license. Regs could be somewhat different for guided hunts.

To be cited, you have to break, or appear to break, a state law. There is not any law in Alaska that forbids the carrying of any firearm in the field at any time of year, nor does any law in Alaska require the possesion of a license to carry a firearm in the field.

Of course, none of this completely means an LEO won't think your situation is different.
 

BRWNBR

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i was implying that the packer was there with the hunter at the time of "harvest", i didn't mean some one came in later...i see where i left that open...on that note.
a master guide was talking to two fish cops (this is a true story...not a joke.), and asked them..."if i have a brown bear dead, and he falls into a bad place, can i use my sat phone to call for help to get him out?"
one trooper answered, "yes, the animal is dead so it has been harvested."
second trooper answered, "no, the animal is not harvested until it is taken from the field."

i don't recal seeing a definition of "harvest" in the regs...maybe i've missed it? or is it another left out portion to give law enforcement room to play...?

which trooper will be checking you next time?! lol

the trooper was very specific, that anyone who took part in the ACT of hunting, wether successfull or not had to have a hunting license, glassing, pointing, participating..whatever.
I orginally checked this all out thinking i could take guys on my trappline and do all the trapping stuff myself and just run it under my license...but they said for that as well, anyone that participates in the act of trapping ( I would dare say that depending on the trooper, anyone who handles trapped critters on a line might be considered a participant...??) has to have a license.

make note here, i'm not commending this regs or laws or whatever, i thought it was about the weirdest thing i'd heard since i learned it was illegal to trap hares under a trapping license...just passing on what they told me.
 

SuperCub

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In Reality... Having a hunting License for everyone present is cheap insurance. If thier Hunting or not...
 

Grizzly Man

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In this situation, I would think that it would be worse. If this person is just going out for the experience, no license is needed. If they buy a license, that would make me think they are going to play a more active role in the hunt. Then, if I was the trooper, I would be asking why the person is 'hunting' with no tags.
 

BRWNBR

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either way they'll be asking why their "hunting" with no license....is a dirty cycle...
 

Spartan Gunner

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Save it for the judge...

Save it for the judge...

Troopers can write for a lot of BS stuff...

Ultimately it will be up to a judge on whether or not they will uphold the trooper's assumptions about what happened and if a law was actually broken or not, right?

I am interested to hear from people with court experiences on these matters and how judges interpreted these type of situations.
 

FurFishGame

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As stated below, 85 bucks is pretty cheap insurance, then, if the opportunity arose, he could shoot small game too (no tag needed) and supply some meat for the pot.
 

Milo

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As stated below, 85 bucks is pretty cheap insurance, then, if the opportunity arose, he could shoot small game too (no tag needed) and supply some meat for the pot.

Insurance against what, the government? That's a great concept :)
 

hodgeman

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Insurance against what, the government? That's a great concept :)

I completely agree with your point...we shouldn't need insurance against the gov't.

I sort of view as insurance against the hassle of having to deal with it all. Unless there was another violation in the hunting party, it would be very hard to make "hunting without a license" stick based on the fact a non-resident was packing a rifle.

But- you will have to appear in court, explain it to a judge, potentially hire an attorney...etc, etc., etc.. It would cost more than $85 to take the time off work to make the appearance. Much higher for a non-res to travel back and make that appearance.

Most LEOs you encounter will have some common sense and some degree of savvy in detecting whether you're blowing smoke or not....but I wouldn't bet my hunt on it, in every organization there are folks who are overzealous with very little discretion.

Simpler to produce the license and say- "I'm hunting moose and my buddy is hunting ptarmigan."
 

1S1K

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Very interesting read. I can't wait for some LEO to try and contact me and my out of state buddies when we're "camping" during hunting season. Game on.
 

dkwarthog

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I've hiked hundreds if not thousands of backcountry miles in my younger days during an open season of some type with a rifle (for "survival") and no license on me. I've packed out a dozen or more moose as a packer for a large guided outfit with a weapon for bear protection.

It would be truly unfortunate if you ran into a LEO who would write you a ticket for those things, but it sure seems that if you were willing to fight it, a judge would see it your way...but then again, I dont insure my snowmachine since I dont expect I'll ever need to make a claim...
 

257wby

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Even if you do have a hunting license, until you've fired a shot or have game down, I think you'd be perfectly fine to decline an offer to produce a license. Camping, viewing game, hiking. None of those activities require a license to carry a firearm. It is required to have a license to pull the trigger, and according to some, after that split second, non-licensees can then pile on and begin shooting until the animal is dead. Some even claim it is legal to let a non-licensed child shoot game for you.

Buying a license for someone who has no intention of shooting anything and presenting it to a fish cop to CYA makes no sense at all.
 

Snowwolfe

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Some of you guys need to grow a pair and stand up for your rights. No need to spend money for cheap insurance. My brother came up here twice to go with me moose hunting. Both times he carried a weapon in the field. First time was on an ATV hunt and F&G came in on a helicopter to check camps. They quizzed us as to what we were doing, why bro didnt have a license, etc. Told them he was here for the fun of it and I was the one hunting. They started to get pushier and pushier and finally told them I would not answer any more of their questions. After awhile they left.

Even though some of the agents think they are god, they are not. Carrying a rifle while riding an ATV in the woods is not hunting. Last time I checked this is still America and we are innocent till proven guilty.

Second trip was to the Koyukuk. We checked in and the agent asked my brother if he was hunting and he said no, just came for the trip and wanted to fish for pike (brother was wearing a holster/revolver). The agent was very nice and offered him some suggestions and never hassled us at all.
Edited to add Koyukuk post
 

1S1K

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Some of you guys need to grow a pair and stand up for your rights. No need to spend money for cheap insurance. My brother came up here twice to go with me moose hunting. Both times he carried a weapon in the field. First time was on an ATV hunt and F&G came in on a helicopter to check camps. They quizzed us as to what we were doing, why bro didnt have a license, etc. Told them he was here for the fun of it and I was the one hunting. They started to get pushier and pushier and finally told them I would not answer any more of their questions. After awhile they left.

Even though some of the agents think they are god, they are not. Carrying a rifle while riding an ATV in the woods is not hunting. Last time I checked this is still America and we are innocent till proven guilty.

What he said!
 

Bushwhack Jack

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A hunting license is not required to carry a gun anywhere in Alaksa.

Does someone fishing have to have a hunting license, NO.

Now can you let your cousin shoot your moose and you tag it NO.

Could you have some kind if negative interaction with LEO, maybe.

Also Mr Bushwhack Jack,,, a cousin is NOT second degree of kinship,, just FYI.

Always best to contact the local enforcement Officer for your area before you go, and both ask how they feel and to give them your intent before a contact situation arises.

Mr Bushwhack Jack,

Copied from the regulations.......



Guide information
Nonresidents who hunt brown bear, Dall sheep or mountain goats must be accompanied in the field by an Alaska- licensed guide or an Alaska resident 19 years or older who is within the second- degree of kindred. This means he or she, if not a registered guide, must be your: father, mother, brother, sister, son, daughter, spouse, grandparent, grandchild, brother/ sister-in-law, son/daughter-in-law, father/ mother-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepsister, stepbrother, stepson, or step- daughter.


Steve

Hey Stid,

I didn't realize that a cousin was not considered a second degree of kindred. That was my mistake. It surprises me though. I wonder if it is intentional or just a mistake that a cousin is not considered second degree of kindred. But, I am still sticking to my guns on the interpretation of whether or not he is required to have a general license. I realize it is okay to carry a gun for protection when it is not hunting season, but in this case it would be hunting season and the person involved would be participating in the hunting process. He may not be pulling the trigger, but he is still hunting with his cousin. At least that is my interpretation of the law. I guess we will have to have a trooper clarify the rules for us.
 

hodgeman

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Lying to an officer is never a good idea.

I never said anything about lying to an officer. I said that being accompanied by an armed non-res with a valid hunting license (even if only for a species of opportunity, not the primary prey species of the resident hunter) is potentially less problematic than one without any sort of license at all. Anyone that may accompany me in the field on a hunting trip armed will be hunting something- if only something for the pot.

Please don't construe anything I've said to include lying to a LEO.
 

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