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Old 10-01-2021, 12:59 PM   #51
Gclyde28
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F5
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Old 10-01-2021, 04:22 PM   #52
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Here we go again. Can't wait.
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Old 10-01-2021, 04:24 PM   #53
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Hooked
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Old 10-01-2021, 04:26 PM   #54
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Love this am a fan of rafting and hunting. Thanks for posting
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Old 10-01-2021, 10:02 PM   #55
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Default **2021 AK Moose Hunt** DIY Float Trip

Day 3

Morning comes and weíre up before day break. Make our protein shakes, grab a meal bar, and make the short walk to the small lake. We bring a wooden paddle to do a little raking while there. Itís still very early in the season but nonetheless you never know. There could be a bull moving through thatís fired up. This trip instead of just one paddle we have two and a shoulder blade from the bull we killed on the last trip. After an uneventful and boring morning we head back to the tipi. We enjoy a lunch consisting of spam patties with a packet of mustard, some fruit leather, and handful of trail mix. Spam is good by itself but when hundreds of miles from anything that added mustard takes it to a new level.

Since itís early in the season we decide what the heck letís give this place a little bit of a chance other than just a half hearted evening and one morning. After a nice little siesta we get back to our little spot on the lake. We break a few sticks but donít do any raking or cow calling. To no surprise itís another uneventful evening. Enjoy a hot meal back at the tipi for a 10:45 dinner. Which if youíve ever hunted Alaska, there is no eating dinner earlier than about 10 or so until you get to the end of September.


The lake, with limited area to watch things can get boring

Day 4

Today my dad decides he wants to stay at camp and watch a few sandbars down river while my brother and I sit back over at the lake. We had a very uneventful morning, almost like the woods were dead. No squirrels, no songbirds, no nothin. Just the sounds of the wind blowing through the spruce and few birch. About 11:30am we are joined by a pair of tundra swans. If youíve never seen or been close to these birds in person they make one heck of an entrance. Imagine a bird a little bigger than a turkey, wingspan probably 7-8í and feet as big or bigger than your hands. One of these two swans has us laughing to ourselves as his neck looks like a corkscrew. Almost as if he flew straight into a hillside and it never healed up. We watch these swans feed and honk at each other for about 2 hours before we decide to head back to the tent to break up the boredom and monotony.


Boredom has set in



While back at camp I grab the fishing pole in hopes of killing some time catching a char or two. I end up finding a moose shed walking the banks of the river bouncing from hole to hole. I showed my dad and brother then took the shed back to where I found it and hung it in the closest tree as I as I could reach. While hunting I do not take sheds and never will. They are always admired then placed in the nearest tree or bush as high as possible. I knew right then that something would be getting killed or there would at least be a great opportunity and it would be up to me whether the tag is punched or not.

We hunted that evening split up between the lake and watching the river. Nothing eventful happened other than my dad found wolf tracks that seemed to be following moose tracks that were near by. While cool to see itís not something you want to see unless youíre after wolves specifically. At dinner we decide itís time to pack up and find some new sign and campsite.

Day 5

We wake up a little late as weíre not in a rush to get on the water as itís a little rainy. We rake some brush a little bit while weíre packing up just for the heck of it. We get on the water and head down river. We stop at every sand bar we come across that we can see from floating by. We probably look at 8 or 9 sand bars and there is a pattern to all of them. Fairly fresh bull tracks followed by bear tracks, then followed by wolf tracks. Not the best combination of tracks you want to see. Another thing that is really throwing us off is we have yet to see one tree that has been raked by a bull. I mean the rut can run a little late but, for there not to be any signs of raking is just perplexing. Surely the moose numbers for the area arenít much less than what previous harvest data and biologists have shown.

We find some tracks on a bar with few predator tracks and a large meadow and lake near it. This lake also has a ridge on one side that would be a perfect vantage point for us to see everything from. The opposite side of the river thereís another big meadow but small lake. Seems like a perfect place to set up shop for a few days and see what happens. Maybe we can mix things up here and get a moose on the ground. The area would make a somewhat easy pack out if successful and having our camp on an island between the two banks would keep it well protected from any wind. While dad gets camp set up, my brother and I are working on filtering water and getting a deep cat hole dug that will be big enough to last 3-5 days or so. Next we work on a nice comfy driftwood thrown for the cat hole. When camp is finally put up and the sun is almost gone, we get a visitor. We have a young forky bull come in probably from heading us hammer tent stakes. This gets us pumped up for what we can only imagine could be a good sign of things to come.




The next morning we wake up to a nice frost. We hunt til noon and head back to the tent for lunch and a nap. While in camp to pass time we glass the nearest mountainside, which is about three miles away, for black bears. We donít find any bears this day and head back over to the lake for the evening. We rake for a couple routines and no luck. My brother and I have almost checked out for the evening as weíre getting cold and thinking of having a fire in the stove and a warm dinner. No sooner I hear a splash across the lake. ďMoose!Ē I tell me brother. Immediately we can tell itís a cow and sheís curiously looking at the bushes we had raked earlier in the evening. She works her way around the lake fairly quick, constantly looking for this bull she thought she heard. She gets to about 60 yards from us, which is only 20 from where we raked, and starts to whine and moan. Sheís looking for a bull to call hers. All the noises sheís making itís quite entertaining, like some love sick teenager. She finally works her way down looking and calling for this bull she just knew had to be there. Sheís moved off enough we can scramble out of our spot and get back to camp to warm up.






Day 6

To be continuedÖ


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Old 10-01-2021, 11:22 PM   #56
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Sounds like things are heating up. I think we’re getting close here!
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Old 10-02-2021, 12:22 AM   #57
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Action is picking up! Keep after em
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Old 10-02-2021, 01:40 AM   #58
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Heck yeah man caught up now and can't wait to follow along. Thanks for taking the time to do this !

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Old 10-02-2021, 03:13 AM   #59
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Caught up and waiting for the update
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Old 10-02-2021, 07:38 AM   #60
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In!


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Old 10-02-2021, 08:21 AM   #61
Buck_jane
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Just seeing this thread. If it's half as good as last years, everyone in is for a treat. Thanks for sharing with us.
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Old 10-02-2021, 05:22 PM   #62
diamond10x
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Default **2021 AK Moose Hunt** DIY Float Trip

Day 6

Iím up early as the temp dropped pretty low during the night and thereís a good coat of frost on everything. Dad is up as well and has a fire going in the stove so we can all sort of warm up from a cold night. We set a pot of water on the stove so we can enjoy a nice warm shake for breakfast before we have to wade across the river to get to the lake weíre hunting. Along with the frost thereís quite a bit of fog today. Dad decides to stay near the fire and watch the mountainside for bears. Brother and I grab our packs, his rifle, my bow, and head out. As weíre slipping in through the brush on the bank we see that there is a fog so thick over this lake and meadow you could cut it with a knife. Luckily itís up about 6-8í off ground level so we can see about 100 yards out. Weíre soon joined by a good size flock of teal out on this lake. Luckily, the fog only stays around for about an hour until 8:00 or so. We stay out for several hours, make a few cow calls, but no bulls show up. By 10:30 both of us are ready to thaw out back at the tent and get out of our waders as the water in our boots has about frozen our feet off. We stick out another 15 min before we canít take it and give into the thought of being able to warm up next to the stove.



Back at camp my dad is relaxing in his camping chair with the spotter in front of him. Heís watched a few bears eat berries all morning. My brother says to him ,Ēyou ready? Weíre about to hike up there and get one! Even if we have to force you to.Ē My dad laughs it off ,Ē no, itís way too far, weíre not doing that.Ē We laugh but each give each other a look like if we have to weíre doing it. My brother and I really would like to see my dad punch a bear tag and are willing to put some real work in for it. After watching bears, warming up, and eating lunch itís time to try for a moose. We cross the river again back over to the lake. It has stayed cool all day and probably hasnít gotten above 40 degrees. About 5:30 we rake our first tree, the same spot as the day before. Itís not 10 min after that first session is done that a cow comes in. This is a different cow and she has a calf with her. This cow works her way down this tree/brush line weíre sitting in and the whole time is focused on the my dad raked. She has the same mannerisms and is making the same whining sounds as the cow from yesterday. Almost as to say ďhey big boy, Iím over here!Ē She keeps working her way down toward us. I whisper to my brother ,Ēsheís going to walk right into us. Then sheís going to get right in front here at 15 yards and smell us.Ē Sure as can be thatís exactly what happens. In my head Iím just saying over and over why couldnít that have been a legal bull. It would have been an absolute chip shot right here. Have my bow, and couldnít think of an easier spot. Oh well itís bow hunting and itís moose hunting at that. The rest the evening is as uneventful as every other day we havenít seen anything.


Watching bears


15 yards

Day 7

We sit on the lake all day with zero excitement. The highlight of the day is some swans flying over, baking chocolate cupcakes at lunch, some delicious shepherds pie for dinner, and a nice warm tent. Weíre not too worried about much as itís still early in the season and still have 13 more days out here to get things done.




Day 8

Same as the day before. The highlight of the day are some teal, pair of swans, and a couple of spruce chickens that end up hanging around us for a while. This is the day the mind games start, for me at least. No bull signs other than tracks. The way those cows were acting. Is there even a mature bull in the area?


Warming our feet up at lunch by the stove

We talk about these things over dinner. The decision is made this isnít the place itís going to happen. Weíve given this spot a fair shake and itís just not panning out for us. Weíll pack up in the morning and head out to give us all day to find some good sign and hopefully get one on the ground.

Day 9

Up early and get camp broke down. There seems to be a storm moving into the drainage. Luckily itís not raining and just pretty windy. We get on the water about 10:00 and begin the search. The wind is howling once we turn the first bend in the river where we had been protected for the last several days. This makes for some heavy rowing. Itís not a fun experience if youíre having to do it all day just to slowly get down the river with the current of the water.

We stop at the first place we see tracks and check things out. Same story as past days. Some Moose tracks, bear tracks, followed by wolf tracks. After the 4th or 5th bar we come to that has fresh tracks and a good looking lake by it we are starting to get a bit discouraged. Thereís no raked trees that weíve seen yet, making us even more a bit perplexed. We push on looking for more sign and each time the tracks are the same. A lot of these areas we had previously marked as looking good and promising from our e-scouting on onX. One problem we keep encountering when we check out all these lakes is that they are all above normal pool. The water line is obvious by the grass and other vegetation but since itís been a wet year all these lakes have shorelines basically back up into the spruce. Making for not so easy hunting and then even tougher conditions to get an animal out if weíre to get lucky. Things are really starting to get discouraging just by the conditions. Did the late spring push the rut so far back and the bulls are still up high and not yet down here by the river?



Thereís a ridge running parallel with the river. If you were to hike that ridge you can watch the drainage we are in for at least several miles, as well as the small drainage on the backside that feeds into this one about 10 miles down river. I had marked that spot just in case we got a wild hair. After the 9th or 10th bar and lake we check, I pitch the idea of camping at the bottom and hiking up there. We talk it over and decide what the heck we have nothing to lose but just a single day. If we pass it up we canít come back. Weíll be able to see a big area so we can decide if we want to go after something the next day or see nothing and decide we need to head on. We find the best place we can up in the timber to camp basically at the base of this ridge. Itís a 2000í climb in about 2 miles so itís not too terribly bad. Weíve hiked much worse with loaded packs. Weíll only be taking food, water, and guns, then Iíll have my camera gear.

We hurry up and get camp set up because itís starting to drizzle and having the inside of your tent wet is an aggravating thing. Team effort we level and clear out a spot and get the tent up. While my dad gets the bear fence up and splits some wood he has me and my brother do a little hiking to see if we can make this ascent without waders. We take off and make it up about 800-900í. Easy peasy. We can already see 5 lakes from this elevation that we can watch. Donít have to wear waders which is a huge plus. Brush and timber ainít bad, worst part is thereís a few small ridges on the way that will have to be crossed, or so we think. My anticipation is running at its peak for the trip now, I have a good feeling about what kind of reward could be waiting for us for going where even less hunters will go than where we already have been.

Day 10

To be continuedÖ


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Old 10-02-2021, 05:33 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChickenWilly View Post
Heck yeah man caught up now and can't wait to follow along. Thanks for taking the time to do this !

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There's a lot to squeeze in haha

I was going to see about doing a semi live hunt and text you everyday but its a pain just taking time out to send 1 message and then I didn't want to jinx myself
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Old 10-02-2021, 05:37 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jshouse View Post
last years thread reminded me of the show called "Dropped," with the Keefer brothers. i dont know if its still on but i remember at least 2 seasons and thought it was great.

i didnt even see last years thread until yesterday, and i read the whole thing. sadly, i saw this one today and will now have to wait for updates...lol
This is sort of similar. There is always work to be doing if you're not out hunting like cutting and splitting wood, filtering water, etc.

One major difference is we take food for each day we'll be out there plus a few extras if we're caught because of weather and there's no room for wall tents and cots.
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Old 10-02-2021, 08:24 PM   #65
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Iím in


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Old 10-02-2021, 09:04 PM   #66
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In for the conclusion!
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Old 10-02-2021, 09:41 PM   #67
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Saved. Iíve got to read this when I have time. Looks epic


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Old 10-03-2021, 05:51 AM   #68
Joel
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Awesome! Hoping for a moose or 2 pack out!! Keep it coming.

I never knew how difficult it would be to breakdown and pack one out, until my moose trip last month. Especially when your cold and it's raining sideways.


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Old 10-03-2021, 08:14 AM   #69
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I must say this sounds like an extremely physical challenge. The thought of walking in waders with a 65 pound pack on my back for miles sounds exhausting and hot! What do yall do for getting ready physically and how do you keep the stink off your clothes and body? Shower, wipes, ???

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Old 10-03-2021, 08:31 AM   #70
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I love these threads !
Would love to do any hunt this real.
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Old 10-03-2021, 10:42 AM   #71
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Threads like this that really make me want to hunt Alaska.

This is real hunting.
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Old 10-03-2021, 11:12 AM   #72
Bro. Bill
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Thank you for letting us be a part of your trip!
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Old 10-03-2021, 11:41 AM   #73
ChickenWilly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diamond10x View Post
There's a lot to squeeze in haha



I was going to see about doing a semi live hunt and text you everyday but its a pain just taking time out to send 1 message and then I didn't want to jinx myself
Shoot I don't blame you at all brother! I wouldn't have minded though that's for sure haha

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Old 10-03-2021, 01:04 PM   #74
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one day.

what an experience that must be.
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Old 10-03-2021, 01:59 PM   #75
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still watching the adventure.....choc cupcakes and all
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Old 10-03-2021, 02:45 PM   #76
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In for this thread, the last trip was epic.
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Old 10-03-2021, 03:48 PM   #77
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I’m still tired from reading day 2. Great write up
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Old 10-03-2021, 05:19 PM   #78
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Last years write up was great and this ones headed the same way. Thanks for sharing these!
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Old 10-03-2021, 07:55 PM   #79
diamond10x
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Default **2021 AK Moose Hunt** DIY Float Trip

Day 10

Morning comes and weíre not in a rush to get up on top of this ridge before daylight. We still havenít hiked the other half of it. We know itíll at least take 2 hours if it took my brother and myself in just waders 45 min to get up almost half way. We get up about 7:00, happy itís starting off to be a good weather day, strap our gaiters and hunting boots on, and away we go. We are all in high spirits just at the thought of being able to hunt a day without waders. Weíre moving along making better timing than we did the day before. This whole morning so far I just have this feeling that when we get up to the top something is going to happen thatíll change the luck. I donít know what it is but either we kill a bull up there, we find a big bull somewhere so we can make a move to him tomorrow, I donít know but thereís just something. I had found a shed a few days earlier and nothing has happened so far something has to happen soon. We make it a little past halfway before we come to a nice steep section of a blowdown. No big deal. We get through it fairly quick. We donít get through that blowdown no sooner do we run into alders. We decide instead of trying to find a way around weíll go through it. If youíve ever had to navigate or traverse alders itís an absolute nightmare. The worst thing to ever have to deal with. Itís like a kids jungle gym deal on steroids. Imagine one of those rooms with all the lasers that you have to worm your way through without touching a laser to get to the end of it to win the prize. Just ridiculous. To top these things off itís all very elastic so you canít break branches off or when it catches on to you it just moves with you until it has completely binded you up and canít move anymore. We make it through this 200 yard patch and we couldnít be happier to be out of it. We get up to this bench and eat a snack to refuel a bit after the hike so far. Press on as itís coming on the 2 hour mark of hiking and we need to get to the top of the ridge.

It ends up taking about 3.5 hours for us to make this climb because we had to make our way through several more patches of alders and blowdown. As we get to the top weíre all a little irritated from the death hike we just had getting up here but trying to stay positive that hopefully itís worth it. Luckily there is patches of blueberries everywhere so we enjoy a few to pick the mood up a bit. If youíve never had wild blueberries, theyíre nothing like what you get at the store. Taste very different and much better. Eating wild blueberries is something every person should experience at least once in their life. I hop up on this rock so I can take a quick look at the drainage below us that we havenít seen yet. Nothing. Not worried as we still arenít where we want to glass from. Thereís a knob about 3/4 a mile to our southwest, from there we should be able to watch 360* between the 3 of us. As I put my binoís up to check out that glassing knob where we want to go I notice something right away sticking out. Bear! I take about a second to realize this is a fairly good bear. Definitely fully mature no doubt.



I hop off real quick grab my pack and scramble towards my dad and brother to tell them thereís a bear and we have to go get it. I had brought my rifle on this hike cause I wasnít sure what things would be like on the hike or how they were when we got up here. They just look at me like ,Ēoh coolĒ and go back to eating berries. Guess they donít care and Iíll get this bear myself. So I start heading to the brush so I can be in complete cover and just grab my camera and rifle to get over there as quick as possible. If youíve ever spot and stalked bears you have to move quick. Dad and brother realize Iím in a rush and there must actually be a bear over there to go get. They soon get over there once Iím ready to go and are asking whatís going on. I explain to them again and they realize the urgency of the situation. They start dropping gear and grabbing their rifles. I pause and vote that Dad is shooting this bear as he has never bear hunted or killed one. My brother says the same. An argument soon ensues because my dad would rather one of us shoot it since we havenít even seen a legal moose yet. It ends with basically us 2 boys telling dad he will be the shooter on this bear. I leave my rifle with the packs and just take my cameras. We scramble to make it a half mile basically dropping off the ridge and checking up every so often to make sure the bear is still there. We close the distance to 400 yards and the wind is howling probably a steady 25mph with some gusts probably getting up to 40mph. Thereís also another problem and that is the wind keeps swirling. The longer we dilly dally around the better chance this bear smells us and spooks out. With the wind we have to get closer for the shot. Are able to use some spruce as cover to hurry up to about 250 yards. Dad crawls out to a rock to our right to rest off of. He takes the shot and the bear drops. It hops up and is rolling around a bit trying to figure out what just stung it. He racks another one and puts another one in the bear. It drops and doesnít make another motion. We canít believe we just made a 1400 yard stalk in just a few min and it worked out.



We hug and all share the excitement. Itís an unexplainable feeling to get to experience moments like this with your dad and brother. Something that canít be found somewhere else and memories that will last forever that canít ever be taken away. We go check out this bear and itís apparent itís been living off blueberries for a while now. We take pictures and get the bear broken down and packed in our packs. After all the action, excitement, and work that had to be done itís getting close to 6:00. During all this time of being up top we havenít stopped grabbing berries to enjoy while we can, wishing we had a bucket to fill to have a big stash of them at camp with us. Packs stained of blood and blueberries, we begin our descent. We wanted to glass/hunt up there but with already shooting a bear we figured it best to get this bear back to camp so we can get the meat hung up. The hike back is just as aggravating and exhausting as the hike up. We get back a little after dark, about 9:45, and get the bear meat and hide all hung so it can start drying. Weíre beat after a total of a little over 10 miles on the day and 1 of those being through alders. Anywhere else 10 miles is about an average day but up here itíll beat you up pretty good.




Hiking back to camp a little heavier

Day 11

Itís a pretty day and we decide over breakfast we arenít making that hike up the mountain again. It would waste a day and just be too much trouble. Made it worth it killing a bear up there but trying to get a moose down would take 3 days minimum with having to cut a trail. We break camp and get the rafts loaded to make another run down river in search of fresh sign. We make it about 8-10 miles before we have to pull over and tarp the bear meat cause itís starting to lightly rain and we canít be too careful. We press on and donít find much that really catches our attention. After checking numerous places we decide weíll find us the best camping spot we can up around the next bend as there is a series of lakes about 3/4 of a mile from the river that should be easy to traverse. Plus, thereís several meadows in the area just making it look like moose heaven from our maps.

Get camp set up, meat hung, hide hung, just have the bear fence left to do. By now itís probably 7:30 or so. Dad gets the bear fence put up while my brother and I head to go check out the first lake. Passing through the first meadow we find two fresh moose beds, droppings, and a raked bush. This has us excited as finally we find some legitimate bull sign. We back out before even getting to the lake and head back. Both of us are not wanting to push anything being as itís evening time. Get back and tell dad the the good news and weíre all excited and have lifted spirits with hopes for the next few days.

Day 12

To be continuedÖ


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Old 10-03-2021, 08:08 PM   #80
diamond10x
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Originally Posted by Joel View Post
Awesome! Hoping for a moose or 2 pack out!! Keep it coming.

I never knew how difficult it would be to breakdown and pack one out, until my moose trip last month. Especially when your cold and it's raining sideways.


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Yes moose never die in an easy spot and seems the weather doesnít exactly want to cooperate during or after while taking care of meat. Those 140lb quarters arenít the funniest to put and your back and start trucking through the places they call home.
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Old 10-03-2021, 08:15 PM   #81
diamond10x
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I must say this sounds like an extremely physical challenge. The thought of walking in waders with a 65 pound pack on my back for miles sounds exhausting and hot! What do yall do for getting ready physically and how do you keep the stink off your clothes and body? Shower, wipes, ???

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Good waders make a big difference but even then living in them gets really old.

Moose habitat is just a pain to trek through, no matter your strength or cardio it just plain sucks. Or at least their habitat in muskeg and tussocks there in AK is just a pain. The biggest thing is mentally preparing honestly. Being in shape helps but youíll get burnt out quick and just have to mentally push through it.

Youíre going to stink no matter what you do. Wearing all merino wool helps quite a bit, if youíre gonna have a fire for a good while itís not a bad idea to dip clothes in the river with some soap. Changing socks everyday is the biggest thing.
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Old 10-03-2021, 08:16 PM   #82
ACbob
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Great read, and you guys are my new heroes!
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Old 10-03-2021, 08:16 PM   #83
diamond10x
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In for this thread, the last trip was epic.
Congrats on that heck of a moose you killed sir!
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Old 10-03-2021, 08:51 PM   #84
slayr
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Have really enjoyed this one thus far.
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Old 10-04-2021, 07:56 AM   #85
Mbbriggs05
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I am truly enjoying this thread.....thanks for sharing the adventure with us!
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Old 10-04-2021, 12:21 PM   #86
TMC50
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Getting Good!!!!!
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Old 10-04-2021, 06:12 PM   #87
diamond10x
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Default **2021 AK Moose Hunt** DIY Float Trip

Day 12

Wake up early after not much sleep. Partially from the promising sign we saw the evening before, and partially from it being a cold clear night. We set up with my dad on top of a hill raking, then my brother and I down about 60 yards from him on the side. Then my brother and I are about 150 yards apart so we can watch about 200* around this hill. Thereís a meadow to my right and a draw in front of me that runs perpendicular then I can also see the side of the adjacent hill. My brother has a similar scenario in front of him. The closest lake in this chain of lakes we can both see parts of it as well. I have my bow hoping if a bull comes in heíll want to circle down wind of my dad and to do that heíll have to come right down this draw and I can have anywhere from 40-80 yard shot with plenty of cover and elevation on him to draw and get a shot off. We hunt til about 11 til we start getting too cold and need to move around to stay warm. We head back to camp to cut and split more firewood as well as working that bear hide good and getting the skull cleaned better. Also we want to put up a few more tarps to block the meat and hide from the sun.



Afternoon comes and we head back over to the same exact spots and repeat it all over again. No dice, just like the last 12 days of trying for a moose. We stay til dark and itís another fairly cold night. A warm tent and stove with a hot meal keeps our spirits up.



Day 13

We start the day off just like we did the previous day. Same spots and same order. About 10 or so my brother gets up to move over further to his left on this hillside giving him a better view of this meadow and this lake. We meet up at noon to discuss a plan and head back to the tent to check on the meat and lay out bear backstraps so theyíre airing out good. Back at camp my brother tells us he found several more beds and a number of fresh bull and cow tracks in the new spot he moved over in.
Weíre excited for the evening and catch a short nap before we head back out at about 2:30.

We set up just like we were in the late morning. At this point Iím itching just to have a chance to nock an arrow. We sit all evening and nothing happens. At this point the negative thoughts and doubt are starting to slowly creep into my mind. Itís about to be two dang weeks without seeing a single bull unless you count the little forky we saw on day 5.

Day 14

Morning comes and itís hard to find the motivation to get out of the sleeping bag. Itís cold and that bag is nice and cozy. We set up in the same spots as the previous day and hunt til about 10. Itís getting hard to sit for long periods and keep hunting when the moose hunting has been pretty poor compared to what we expected. To make things worse, most spots you canít watch a large area. Youíre focused in on a small spot and canít see much so you get bored very quickly. We decide letís check out this next lake in the chain and I want to walk this ridge along the one side of the lake weíve been on. Thereís also a big meadow on the opposite side of that ridge maybe weíll see some trails out there. Two days set up in the same spot with absolutely nothing out of it maybe we can find something more promising.

We make the trek around the current lake and to the next lake in the series. It looks pretty good with more open area to watch. Thereís one big problem. To hunt this lake is going to be almost 2.5 miles one way from camp. Also, itís not easy walking by any means. We leave the second lake and start to make a loop around the first to walk the ridge I mentioned earlier. Sure enough the meadow on the backside of that ridge looks very moosey. We also come across numerous old raked trees and several fresh ones. We decide we will change up our set up for the afternoon/evening hunt. Iíll set on the ridge so I can watch half the lake behind me and most the meadow in front of me. My dad will rake down at the end of the ridge where he can see me so we can communicate if need be. My brother will sit on the opposite side of the lake where he was earlier that morning. Weíre set up by 3:30. On the way in I find a dead head from a legal bull it seems. I pick it up and hang it as high as I can in the nearest spruce. Thatís where it will stay til it rots or gets eaten by little critters. First rake my dad does isnít until 5. We wait 2 hours before the next session. 7 pm on the nose he starts another 20 min session.

He isnít done 5 min and ,ĒCRACK!!!Ē An unmistakeable sound, once you hear it one time you know exactly what it is and wonít ever forget. Thereís a bull back behind us over by my brother and heís ready to play. He just smashed some brush with his antlers. ďSssscccccrrrrrrrrrr,Ē his antlers are scratching brush as heís making his entrance from out of the brush. All I can think about is I hope my brother is ready cause this bull is about to be in his lap over on that side of the lake. By this time Iím slowly trying to get to the top of the ridge so I can see the lake. Itís literally impossible to maneuver through this country without making some sort of noise. I get up enough where I can peek over and watch, all I see is a bull from the shoulders back walking straight in front of where my brother is supposed to be. Smack dab in this meadow on the edge of the lake at probably 50-60 yards from him. I donít see the antlers and Iím waiting to hear his .375 H&H go off. Nothing. All sorts of thoughts are going through my head. What is my brother doing? Is he freaking sleeping over there? I can hear the bull working around headed my dads direction. I look to my left and heís motioning for me to get over there. I grab my bow and get over there as quickly and quietly as I can. The wind is terrible. This bull is gonna get to 80 yards and be right in our wind. Nothing we can do but hope heís so mad he doesnít care. He gets into our wind and things go silent. We donít hear a peep. Not a scratch, not a thud from a hoof. Nothing. 20 minutes goes by and nothing. My dad and I move up the ridge sort of away from where the bull is to see if we can see him. We move to our right about 60 yards when we see this bull disappearing right back into the draw he came from. Not making a sound. My heart sinks. Weíve been working our butts off for literally two weeks and we finally get an opportunity and blow it.

We stuck it out the rest the evening and nothing else happens. The woods are completely dead. We meet up with my brother at dark before we head back to the tent. Heís in a good mood and all excited about the evening. All I can think is what the heck happened? He was actually ready and set up to dump this bull right when he stepped out but he was definitely a sub legal bull both width and brow tines. He was able to get some video and pictures of the bull which I was happy about being as now I at least got a good view of the antlers and thatís more exciting than whatís been seen so far. For some reason I still canít get the negative thoughts to quit creeping in. What if thatís the bull hanging on this lake and weíre wasting our time as heís got cows and chances are no other bulls will show up. We have 5 days left and at this point Iím not feeling too positive.

made it past my brother and headed in the direction of my dad and myself

making his exit



Day 15

To be continuedÖ


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Old 10-04-2021, 07:41 PM   #88
Joel
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Awesome hunt!! Keep it coming.


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Old 10-04-2021, 08:36 PM   #89
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Dang it, the suspense


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Old 10-04-2021, 10:34 PM   #90
HouCav
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Really enjoying the story and the pics. Thanks
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Old 10-04-2021, 10:38 PM   #91
Chubb
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What an adventure! Looking forward to the rest of it!
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Old 10-05-2021, 12:39 AM   #92
EliteDriver
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Love this!!!

Keep after them!!!!
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Old 10-05-2021, 12:42 AM   #93
jaker_cc
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Same as two years ago, I found this thread too early. Great story telling and pictures. Iím in the process of planning my first caribou hunt with a buddy. Alaska is calling
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Old 10-05-2021, 08:56 AM   #94
TMC50
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Oh we are getting moosey!!!!
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Old 10-05-2021, 11:46 AM   #95
gglover
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You’re a great story teller. Can’t wait for the rest of it.
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Old 10-05-2021, 12:05 PM   #96
kurt68
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Awesome, thanks for the write ups. Good luck.
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Old 10-05-2021, 01:35 PM   #97
Bryan11
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Such an awesome thread and adventure!
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Old 10-05-2021, 08:13 PM   #98
slayr
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Suspense is killing me!
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Old 10-05-2021, 08:23 PM   #99
Mtltx
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Let’s Go!
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Old 10-05-2021, 08:28 PM   #100
tps7742
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Wow heck of a trip.
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