Caribou Opener August 10th

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alskanguy
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Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2015 2:29 pm
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Caribou Opener August 10th

Post by alskanguy »

Hello all,
I meant to post these a month ago, but things are busy up here in Alaska as you can well imagine.
I did a registration hunt for Caribou here in the Greatland. We had set aside a total of 7 days to bring down 5 Caribou. We arrived 1.4 days early to set up camp and scout for groups of Caribou. We had a location that was on a clear water creek and had great access to trails.
Camp life... Not really this was a parking lot
Camp life... Not really this was a parking lot
We started seeing Caribou here and there the first day. the second day we saw probably close to 40 animals. NOW you really are not "scouting" as anyone that knows Caribou can tell you, they are always on the move. What we were really doing was verifying this was a higher traffic migration point.
Having seen all we needed to see we headed back to camp for "refreshments" as I do not allow any once hunting actually starts.
The next morning I woke up my hunting party somewhere around 3 AM about a hour and a half before first light we headed out. Most of the trip in to where we had chosen to hunt was uneventful other than getting stuck a couple times. We were on the look out just as soon as it was light enough to see. First animal we see was a GIANT 60" bull moose (Moose season did not open until the 20th) which made a grand show and exit from the area.
As we reached the area and started up the mountain the first caribou could be seen walking across a ridge. They were heading away from us and there is no such thing as GOOD cover when you in the tundra, the higher you go the less you can hide behind anything that grows. So being they were about 400 yards up hill from us we left them be and moved on after a few minutes of watching them.
We follow the trail up the mountain side and came to a nice lower bench and right away we found more groups of Caribou, they were around 400 yards away with a valley between us. We decided not to go for these from where we were and look for another route around to them. Our group no more than moves up the trail maybe 800 yards and from out of now where we see a cow running from the far side of the valley to our side. (Side note here) We hunt for meat we do not hunt for sport or trophies (end side note ;)) So of course once the animal is within shooting distance it is brought down.
While our friend is dealing with his Caribou myself and a friend decide to hike over to the caribou we had been watching. After about a hour and a half hike/stalk I manage to see one of the giving me the perfect "Texas heart shot" as they exit the area so I choose not to shoot. Now we hike back to the wheelers and move on.
I should note that during this time we are seeing Caribou and hunters alike all over below us and even saw a group of 30 Caribou running the ridge of the mountain. So we go up the trail up the mountain.
We no more than get up there than my stalk is on. I duck walk about a 1/8th of a mile and this damn Caribou keeps just behind rocks and moves again, this cat and mouse goes on for about 15 minutes.... all the while I'm doing this hunched over stalking. Finally it gives me a shot only 250 yards. I was panting and exhausted but this was a shot I could make in my sleep, so long as it doesn't decide to move forward 6' into the boulders again. Crosshairs on it a 1 shot later my Caribou hit the ground, not even one step taken.
CARIBOU DOWN!!!
As I go up over the ridge where my caribou was down my friends move up with the 4 wheelers. As I am gutting my animal 2 nice cows decide to come and check us out. BOOM BOOM they both bring down a caribou each no stalking needed. So we gutted and loaded the 3 caribou into the trailer and headed down the mountain with 4 caribou in tow. We had 5 tags and 4 caribou down before 10AM. We head down and on the way we see plenty of caribou with in range and the size we are looking for. I had to convince them not to as we were out of room and WAY over weight as it was and that said we needed the other large wheeler free to pull the 4 wheeler out of holes so loading it down was a bad idea.
Caribou in the trailer
Caribou in the trailer
So down we go stopping to rinse and cool our animals in a stream. Once back at camp we hung and butchered them, putting everything in game bags and then they headed out for one more.
All in all a good hunt. To bad there was never a good time for me to film it. Maybe one day ill give in and get the head strap for my Go-pro
Caribou processing we set up behind the trailer
Caribou processing we set up behind the trailer
You gotta have counter weight
You gotta have counter weight
~Steve~
If you can't do it right, then you may want to stop drink a beer and have your buddy do it for you!
1230 Jon Boat with 14" pods and a BEEFED up transom... Small Kit with a Predator 212cc stage 1 & 2 mods.

Aknative
Posts: 489
Joined: Sat Jan 04, 2014 3:28 am
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Location: Fairbanks AK

Re: Caribou Opener August 10th

Post by Aknative »

Woo hoo!
Rumors of my assimilation have been greatly exaggerated.

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JD
Posts: 935
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 3:19 pm
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Location: Palmetto, FL

Re: Caribou Opener August 10th

Post by JD »

Nice hunt Alskanguy. That'll fill the freezer!
Psalm 55:7 - Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness.

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PJB
Posts: 545
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 12:51 pm
Location: Middle-Diddle Georgia
Location: Middle Georgia

Re: Caribou Opener August 10th

Post by PJB »

Awesome job! Sounds like one heck of a hunt.

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