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Old 09-30-2019, 03:50 PM   #1
diamond10x
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Default **2019 Moose Hunt** DIY Float Trip

Just returned back home to Texas last Friday the 27th from my first Alaska moose hunt. It was an amazing trip, so much so I will be back in 2 years to do it all over again to hopefully punch some more tags. Accompanying me on the trip was my dad and brother, which was their first moose hunt as well. For those that have never been, Alaska is a beautiful, breathtaking, and truly awe inspiring place, but she is extremely harsh. You better bring your ďAĒ game and be all in, because she does not give up or surrender anything easily at all.

This all started 2 years ago after watching an episode of meateater where they were on a moose hunt in the brooks range I believe. The 3 of us have always had dreams of chasing down all the game North America has to offer. With my dad getting older and my brother and I old enough to carry more than our fair share, theres no better time than now. My family has hunted Colorado backcountry every year as a family for elk and deer long before I as well as my dad was ever a twinkle in my grandfatherís eye. We had a good idea of what Alaska was like from our many fishing trips there and felt pretty confident in our woodsman skills from years of hunting trips to do a full DIY trip. We decided on doing a float trip for several reasons. One, to give us higher chances of punching multiple tags, the thought of true adventure, and the difficulty.

This was a true DIY trip from start to finish. Not a drop camp through a transporter or outfitter, not planned through a hunt planner, no help from anyone but our own hard work and research. We chose to do it this way as it would be easily affordable for my brother and I without sacrifice being that Iím 27 and he is 24. I want to emphasize that for anyone who has ever wanted to do something like this, it is affordable for anyone you just have to be willing to put in the work before hand and think a little outside of the box to save money with expenses.

Planning started on the ADFG website with vetting units and subunits that fit our criteria of success rate, pressure, and trophy potential/game density. Once we narrowed it down we then had to narrow it down to a river that met our criteria of truly remote, not seeing another floater/hunter, and not too much whitewater to float with a loaded down raft. Once we found the river we picked a section of about 40 miles with multiple spots on google earth and onxmaps we had found that looked good. Then we went through a list of transporters within 300 miles of the area that we strictly vetted. Once we figured out the transporter it was on to more research of the specific river. There was little to no information to be found other than there is a 10 mile section of canyons with class II whitewater. Biologists and wardens didnít visit the area due to remoteness, no pilots we talked to had been in the area within 15-20 years. It was starting to seem like we were either getting into something way over our heads or something we had been dreaming up all along. Only problem was the 40 miles and 12 days turned into 108 miles and 17 days.

The 2 months before dragged like never before day dreaming of hunting all day everyday. Each day the anticipation and anxiety building more and more. Itís September now and flights are booked and paid for, rafts rented and paid for, gear packed and ready. All that was left was waiting on the countdown to September 6th our flight out, or so we thought...

Sunday September 1st i receive and email that night that our transporter is backing out and all he says is ďhey, Iím not going to be able to take your party, sorry.Ē My heart sinks and I begin to sweat and I immediately call them and canít get a hold of anyone. The next morning I finally get a hold of him and get the run around and no answer as to why and Iím extremely agitated. I get off the phone and scramble to find another transporter lined up and booked because there is no way this is happening. Get another one lined up and he gives me a quote but his dates canít quite line up so he tells me heís busy heíll call me back when he gets things shuffled and worked out. Well while Iím waiting on his return phone call the original transporter calls back and explains why he decided to drop us. He explains he is worried about transporting meat across unit lines and doesnít want to lose a plane for ignorantly breaking a law, which I completely agree with his decision. I told him I had had that worry several months back and had talked to the biologist and warden in the unit about it and they said it would be fine to not worry. I still had their names and numbers so I gave them to him to contact them himself so he wasnít just taking my word for it. We get off the phone and he calls back 20 min later to tell me we are good to go and apologizes for the mix up. (The logistics for this trip were crazy. The only way out was by a landing strip 30 miles past the unit boundary or a lake 40 miles past the boundary)

Friday the 6th rolls around finally and we find ourselves loading the plane and getting ready to head out. Anticipation, anxiousness, nervousness, and a whole list of emotions filled that otter as we took off. None of us having no idea what exactly to expect, confident in our research, but also having that little voice in the back of our head telling us we forgot something, but most of all ready for one epic adventure.






Stay tuned, Thereís a lot more to come...


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Old 09-30-2019, 04:00 PM   #2
Rwc
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And I will be patiently waiting..........

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Old 09-30-2019, 04:05 PM   #3
slicktricker
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Oh man I'm ready for the rest of the story this looks like its gonna be epic. Patiently waiting.
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:13 PM   #4
junior
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man cant wait to hear the whole story
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:14 PM   #5
WTX
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This is gonna be good
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:15 PM   #6
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Subscribed


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Old 09-30-2019, 04:16 PM   #7
sectxag06
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wow. wow. wow. i'm in for the full story and salute you for a trip like this.
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:17 PM   #8
TxBowHntr
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IN!
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:17 PM   #9
Z7X
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in
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:38 PM   #10
Dillon
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Can't wait to hear the rest of the story!
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:46 PM   #11
huntingfanatic
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Definitely in !!!! Just starting the research and logistics myself for a similar trip ! Sons and I have a solid backcountry hunting background and are looking for a new adventure. Canít wait to hear more and congrats on making it happen !!!
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:47 PM   #12
AlwaysGigEm
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Oh Im in. Cant wait to read the rest!
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:47 PM   #13
Elite13
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IN!
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Old 09-30-2019, 05:24 PM   #14
easeup
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Green light on......lets get this hunt going
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Old 09-30-2019, 05:30 PM   #15
CastAndBlast
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Awesome! Tagged
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Old 09-30-2019, 05:41 PM   #16
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What!!! just open a beer to read the whole story.. In for a good one.
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Old 09-30-2019, 05:53 PM   #17
James
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This is going to be good
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Old 09-30-2019, 06:02 PM   #18
Sticks&Strings
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Keep it coming. Very interested

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Old 09-30-2019, 06:03 PM   #19
LivinADream
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Pulls up a chair with a cup of coffee... I'm in

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Old 09-30-2019, 06:41 PM   #20
muley4x4
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I’m hooked. Can’t wait for more.
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:17 PM   #21
rut-ro
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sounds like a lot of work, Im tuned in
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:29 PM   #22
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Crap. Opened this thread too soon.
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:55 PM   #23
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In

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Old 09-30-2019, 08:56 PM   #24
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I'm in!
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Old 09-30-2019, 08:57 PM   #25
NotJose
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Waiting impatiently here!! Canít wait to read the rest


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Old 09-30-2019, 09:05 PM   #26
sasqy
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Sweet !!
This is going to be good .
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:10 PM   #27
Throwin Darts
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This is already awesome


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Old 09-30-2019, 09:17 PM   #28
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In. Sounds like it’s gonna be a good read!
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:18 PM   #29
jaker_cc
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Dang it, I just sat down to read this one and thereís only the first update. Come on man!!
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:18 PM   #30
diamond10x
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The flight out was full of spectacular views, getting more and more breathe taking with each pass we went through on our way to the opposite side of the mountain range. It was all beginning to come together and soon we would be doing exactly what we had thought of years prior, hunting moose in the wilds of Alaska in about as remote of a valley as one could be in. As we came out of the pass and banked a hard right to head up the drainage we had picked the sun shine down on it as if the lord had lit it up just to give us a grand entry. We make it up to the drop off lake and weíre a little too high so we circle to lose altitude and speed to be right where we need to be. While weíre circling I spot a bull standing in a creek that leads to the main river about 1.5-2 miles away from where weíre landing. He looks legal (50Ē+) especially with his pans just reflecting sun like dang satellite dishes. You can bet the butterflies and adrenaline was already starting.

We land, unload the plane, make sure all of our gear is on the bank, double check we have our can of camp fuel, and say adios to our pilot. First things first we have to pack all this gear and rafts to either the nearest creek leading to the river or pass up the creeks and hike it all the way to the river. We decide to use the creek and that would put us no further from where we were from the bull I spotted and within calling distance. The creek we came to was fairly short at only about a mile long. Well it took us from 11am to 7pm just to float/drag the 2 rafts with all our gear down it. Several portages from log jams and a beaver dam as well as numerous sweepers and strainers we had to get the saws out to cut so we could pass through. When we finally got out of the creek we decided we better make camp before it gets dark.

Once we get camp set up we decide to hike a half mile up the river in the direction of the bull weíd seen to rake and call hoping he would hear us and head our way so that hopefully one of us could get a crack at him in the am. While hiking we saw a ton of grizzly sign from tracks and salmon carcasses to scat. Which, looking back, we saw an incredible amount of sign on that small creek we started off on and still wonder how we didnít run into a hungry bear. Anyways, we go through two calling sequences then head back to camp. Not but 100 yards from camp we stop because there is fresh moose tracks that had crossed ours after we headed out, with fresh bear tracks following behind. We are psyched and ready for what our first morning of hunting may bring after seeing this.









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Old 09-30-2019, 09:19 PM   #31
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:28 PM   #32
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In
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:39 PM   #33
Chew
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In
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:41 PM   #34
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Fantastic thread so far. Keep it coming!!!
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:42 PM   #35
rut-ro
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unbelievable photos, ready for more
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:46 PM   #36
ATXArcher
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In


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Old 09-30-2019, 09:54 PM   #37
Acameron52
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Iím in like Flynn!!
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:57 PM   #38
Tom
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there on the river you should have bear in camp every night. Good luck and you will have a blast! Alaska is the best
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:57 PM   #39
GarGuy
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That tent just doesn't look grizz proof. I'm in keep it coming.
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:59 PM   #40
ColinR
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Man this is awesome! I can’t wait for some more.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:01 PM   #41
Thorcules
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Getting even better! I don’t even have to subscribe. I know this is gonna be stuck on the feed for days. Great story telling my friend. Can’t wait for the rest!
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:07 PM   #42
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Iím in! Good write up so far man.


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Old 09-30-2019, 10:09 PM   #43
texan16
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Awesome story of an epic adventure. Can't wait to hear the rest
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:11 PM   #44
freerhunter16
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Awesomeness so far!
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:12 PM   #45
brrdnk
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This is getting good. In for more.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:26 PM   #46
Tom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GarGuy View Post
That tent just doesn't look grizz proof. I'm in keep it coming.
not much is Grizz proof but they are all worked up about getting fat on fish so are really no issues....at least when I have been there. They will splash around all night but you will be loaded for bear anyhow so no drama.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:27 PM   #47
UncleBubba
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Following!!!!!!
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:40 PM   #48
slicktricker
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Man y'all are truly blessed and see great things in store on the trip. You've got my attention!
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:47 PM   #49
TxAg
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Tagged
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:47 PM   #50
cbrown
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Heck yea I’m in for this one!
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