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post #1 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-20-2012, 04:06 AM Thread Starter
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Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

I know this is a hunt not for the faint of heart. I have talked with a few hardcore hunters who have done it. Most have told me they wouldn't do it again. With that said Jayden41 and I are in the planning stages of doing a hunt like this. I have done a few hunts DIY two of which were to Alaska and Scott has done several DIY hunts as well. My questions to you moose hunters out here is has anyone ever done such a hunt that you were successful in Alaska? We are looking at Willow Air, 40 Mile Air, and a few others. Does anyone have any insight with either of these two transporters or any other ones? With being in the early planning stages this hunt could also become a float hunt as well with maybe adding caribou to the mix. So if anyone has experience with a hunt like this your input would be greatly appreciated! Please add any pics if you have them!
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post #2 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-20-2012, 01:56 PM
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

I used 40-Mile Air, and they are top notch.

Steve.

"When you put a buck on your wall, it links you to those guys who painted the walls of caves." --Me.
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post #3 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-20-2012, 03:10 PM
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

I have been looking into a similiar hunt myself. I hope you get some useful replies to your question, but if you dont I'd check out bowsite. There seems to be lots of info on that forum and more of the hardcore DIY type hunters.

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post #4 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-21-2012, 02:08 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

Steve, thank you for your reply! I have heard a lot of good things about them as well. What did you use them for? Smtn10pt, I am also on another forum that is more into the hunts we are referring to. Just trying to see what I can learn from the guys on this site. Hopefully I'll get some more feedback!
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post #5 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-21-2012, 02:28 PM
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

40-Mile Air gets booked early. I'm betting they're booking for 2014 now. We had to book them more than a year in advance. After our hunt, I wrote articles about it for <span style="font-style: italic">Fur-Fish-Game</span> and <span style="font-style: italic">Outdoor Life</span>, and heard through the grapevine that it was the best publicity they ever got. A year or so later, their rates went up. I'm sure a lot went into that, including the accidental death of the founder six weeks after we flew with him, but also the law of supply and demand.

A D-I-Y moose hunt will be the hardest work you ever do if you're successful, so make sure you're in top shape. I advise people to plan 2 years in advance and spend at least 6 months getting into physical shape. I lost 25 pounds before the hunt. If I hadn't done that and been in the best shape of my adult life, I couldn't have done it.

You can read the Fur-Fish-Game article on my website, and see photos of the 2 moose we got there.

Steve.

"When you put a buck on your wall, it links you to those guys who painted the walls of caves." --Me.
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post #6 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-21-2012, 07:09 PM
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

Hard to imagine I may finally get to Ak. to moose hunt!!!How awesome is that.Anyway, I posted for some help on another site as well,but hope theres some guys on here with experience
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post #7 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-21-2012, 11:50 PM
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

A good friend and I did a drop camp Alaskan moose hunt 12 years ago. I was 44 years old at the time - my friend was 51. I thought we were in pretty good shape but the hunt was one that tested us to the max both physically and mentally. To make an extremely long story short, the outfitter/pilot spotted two bulls 20 miles apart so he split us up for 3 days. I killed a nice 62 inch bull the day after being dropped off. The problem was my buddy had the meat saw and a lot of that kind of stuff as we told not to bring duplicates to keep weight down on the Super Cub. I had a pocket knife, a filet knife and a Leatherman. Once I skinned out the top half and cut off the chunks I had to roll it over - keep in mind I am by myself and weigh 175 pounds. I had legs tied to willow branches to hold them up and used the 3 inch saw blade on the Leatherman to cut it's head off - you can't roll a moose over with his head attached. BTW it takes 45 minutes to saw off a moose head with a Leatherman saw. Also you were not allowed to debone the front shoulders or hind quarters and I couldn't saw them in half so I had to pack them out whole. Alaska F&G is serious about wasting meat and they fly looking for kill sites and if too much meat is left on the carcass, you will be fined.

I had to pack the meat and horns about 1/2 mile or so to where the plane could land. Many of the loads had to be over 100 pounds plus I was seeing brown bears so in addition to the meat, I had to carry my 300 win. It took me 2 1/2 days to get all the meat and the head packed out - the outfitter helped by carrying out one load for me. If you think just because you've packed out elk that a moose isn't much different think again - they are twice as big and the tundra isn't an easy place to walk. It was by far the most grueling thing I have ever done and I will never pack another one. When I was done, I was flown to meet up with my friend and was able to help him call in a 53 inch bull and then assist with cutting up and packing of his bull. I will admit he did A LOT more of the work on this one than I did. To make matters worse, he shot his bull across the river and we had no hip boots so we waded using garbage bags in the 38 degree water. I also should mention that it rained 9 of 11 days and we went 10 days without a shower.

Even though we were put in areas with moose, we killed the only two legal bulls we saw. I would not recommend the guy we used primarily due to the condition of his plane and for some other reasons I choose not to discuss on an internet forum.

There is much more to the story but you get the idea. The solitude, the pride of being able to handle what is thrown at you and doing it on our own was all very rewarding. In addition to the grueling physical excersion, there is also the element of danger that keeps you on your toes. For example, it is hard to explain what it is like to return to your tent and have brown bear tracks all around it and then slip inside for a good night's sleep knowing that the closest human was 20 miles away. Would I do a hunt like this again? Never! When it was over my friend said, you asked me on a hunt and it ended up being a survival test. Amen brother but we survived it and it certainly was an adventure to remember!

My advice for anyone considering a DIY moose hunt would be to be perfectly honest with yourself as far as your physical condition, strength and mental toughness. Oftentimes we as men, have egos and a false sense of our abilities and we tend to downplay just how big a task something like a DIY moose hunt can be.

Best of luck if you do the hunt and I hope some of my rambling above helps!


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post #8 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 03:32 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

This is certainly a hunt that isn't designed for everyone and the work certainly starts when he hits the ground. With that said there is something about being dropped off in the middle of nowhere and hunting on your own. I honestly look forward to the task of taking apart a big bull moose. Carrying the heavy loads of meat and horns and accomplishing what few ever do or care to do! Just being in the Alaskan mountains alone and not even pulling the trigger as was the case with my last trip there is exhilarating in itself! I certainly respect your opinion and applaud you and your friend for what you both did. I had a friend who was stationed there in the Army and did a DIY moose hunt which was successful. He too agrees with you on never doing it again. I hope to have the opposite opinion after our DIY hunt. Can you post some pics from your hunt? Thanks for your input!
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post #9 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 03:35 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

Quote:
Originally Posted by Everyday Hunter
40-Mile Air gets booked early. I'm betting they're booking for 2014 now. We had to book them more than a year in advance. After our hunt, I wrote articles about it for Fur-Fish-Game and Outdoor Life, and heard through the grapevine that it was the best publicity they ever got. A year or so later, their rates went up. I'm sure a lot went into that, including the accidental death of the founder six weeks after we flew with him, but also the law of supply and demand.

A D-I-Y moose hunt will be the hardest work you ever do if you're successful, so make sure you're in top shape. I advise people to plan 2 years in advance and spend at least 6 months getting into physical shape. I lost 25 pounds before the hunt. If I hadn't done that and been in the best shape of my adult life, I couldn't have done it.

You can read the Fur-Fish-Game article on my website, and see photos of the 2 moose we got there.

Steve.
What's the website Steve?
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post #10 of 37 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 12:58 PM
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Re: Alaska DIY Moose Hunt

Quote:
Originally Posted by big28hunter
What's the website Steve?
www.EverydayHunter.com

Go to the "Magazines" link, and find the article titled "Alaska Moose Adventure" (Fur-Fish-Game). There's a link to the Outdoor Life article (title, "Double Trouble") there too, but for some reason they don't have the whole article.

Steve.

"When you put a buck on your wall, it links you to those guys who painted the walls of caves." --Me.
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