Alaskan hunting laws

Rock375

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I’ve done 2 self guided moose and caribou hunts in Alaska. Very beautiful place. As stated by others, you must be prepared for the unexpected. Weather, terrain etc. we were left an extra 6 days on one hunt due to the weather and the inability to fly out. We had a great time though! That said, I highly doubt I will ever return to hunt. The prices up there are no longer competitive when compared to Africa. I always planned on a sheep and goat hunt or two up there. However, for the money they want now, I can hunt dangerous game in Africa for much less and enjoy the weather. Plus The professional services you get in Africa are far superior to Alaska’s
 

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I lived there for years. Ran a boat out of Valdez. I grew up in Canada and spent 9 years in Wyoming before moving to Alaska. Alaska is much more remote than anywhere in WY/MT/ID, more like Northern Canada. Once you are off the road system it is a true wilderness trek and help is not close by. Some can handle it solo, most can’t. I cannot comment on the rationale of AK Game and Fish, but I can tell you that experience in the lower 48 is probably not adequate preparation for a solo wilderness hunt in Alaska. The comments on game density above are spot on. It is one of the most beautiful places on earth but the TV shows create false expectations. I worked hard for my critters!
 

jacques smith

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Fortunately my brother is a resident so I slide through needing no guide. We hunt moose bear and wolves almost every year. I agree some hunts are priced to the moon but so is bongo. We stack up plenty of costs in our DIY hunts so relatively easy to justify outfitters costs. As a retired outfitter of mostly Idaho I’ve watched elk hunts triple or worse. Game worldwide seems to be in remote pockets that tend to be inacessable to the average joe. What I want to know is why crocodiles are so expensive?
Cheers Jacques
 

ack

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I went on mostly private ranchs in SA and botswana with friends I made, we self catered most times(cooked,made our own beds and took care of our private needs) and used rifles and equipment there and did not shoot the biggest animals to keep cost down. for me having a very good friend married to a south African was the BIGGEST HELP as that was my transport and places to stay between hunts. I think their is a magazine with private farms that take hunters in SA.

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Thank you..
 

Rick Cox

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For many years you did not need a guide for mountain goat , the guides lobbied hard to get them included. Saying its just too dangerous , but the real reason is to line their pockets. There is no guide needed to go in the same place to take pictures or what ever else. The same way as hunting a designated wilderness in Wyoming , you can mountain climb or rock climb and tha'ts ok just not hunt.
Good point. I think you nailed it. It's a money thing.
 

Rick Cox

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I've lived in Alaska for 36 years.
There are many places here where you could probably fly a hundred miles (if you're not grounded in bad weather lol) and not see any animal of any sort.
I own a parcel of land on a river that was rolling with king salmon each summer when I bought it 20-something years ago.
As far as I can tell, now there are none returning there at all.
Haven't seen any sign of them for several years now.

The State in its infinite wisdom let commercial clammers and private individuals over-harvest razor clams here for decades.
The sad story goes on for moose, caribou, halibut, rockfish, crab, etc., etc.
The only happy note for Alaska is that predator numbers are up right now.
So, if wolf and/or bear hunting interest you, now is the time (before those become scarce as well).
Sorry about the price of guided hunts here.
I agree, they are very expensive.
However, for that same reason I cannot afford to hunt lord derby eland and I'd truly love to do that.

At any rate, do visit Alaska if you get the chance, it is a beautiful place, no fences, millions of acres of public land and not many people (by today's standards).
Don't risk a leaking bottle of mosquito repellant in your luggage.
It is available in almost every store and gas station up here.
Cheers.
I'm sorry to hear about the mismanagement of the resources in Alaska. I doubt the current administration will do much to change that.
It's kind of weird how Wolf populations seemingly world wide are burgeoning. Here in BC they are hammering the moose and caribou populations, which also struggle against loss of habitat. But moose hunting brings in so much revenue, it seems government is very conservative in employing restrictions. Many hunters in certain areas of the province feel the moose hunt should be shut down or at least curtailed and more closely monitored than it has been. Better logging road deactivation needs to happen, and I feel quad use should be restricted.
I do know one thing: I sure would love to come up to Alaska while I am still capable for a DIY caribou hunt! Moose, it would have to be a monster! They are just too much work!
I only recently discovered that as a US citizen I am elidgble to hunt those species in Alaska.
 

Rick Cox

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Have done six unguided hunts for caribou and black bear in Ak with wife and son...You need a lot of outdoor xperience or you can get yourself in big trouble fast..Weather, terrain and animals..If you never have hunted there you have no idea of distances and how tough terrain can be..Packing meat in some of that country can be a nightmare along with being prepared if weather sets in for a period of time..Very enjoyable if you are fully prepared and lots of common sense..
That's a great looking caribou!
 

Rick Cox

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flhunter,

i kind of understand the concern about costs. also, some guides charge more than others. i have been a resident since 1983, and became a assistant guide in 2001. i still work for the same outfitter/master guide.

there are several factors in the costs of the hunts, maybe you have or have not thought of. first, supply and demand. there are only so many places in the world to hunt brown bear. there are only so many guides that can take out a client. and only a few places have truly giant bears. lion and elephant hunts are expensive for the same reasons.

second, logistics to the hunting grounds. almost all of the places to hunt the "guide required animals" are in VERY remote places. it costs a lot to move a camp out there, pay the state for the permitting. in our case, pay a hefty trespass fee to the native corporation that owns the land. the cost of food, fuel and housing (building a cabin or camp) is expensive either boated in or flown in by aircraft.

third, the cost of doing business. you have to pay an assistant guide and maybe a packer. the cost of the boat that we hunt off of is significant. (we lease a boat for the bear season, 65 footer, to house the clients on) etc.

all this costs money. this is not hunting a common animal, like a white tailed deer, from a lodge on a road system. heck, even that can be a bit expensive.

im not trying to justify the costs that guides charge really, just helping you understand some of the reasons that it does cost more than your average turkey hunt in florida.

is it dangerous to hunt up here, not always. but definitely can be. i have heard all the reasons noted above for the state requiring a guide for sheep, goats and grizzly. i think the guide lobby has had some impact on that rule as well.

also, mekanics comment above is not wrong: if unlimited access to those animals was allowed, although it might not look like the russian river sockeye salmon gauntlet, it might be pretty congested for a few years, and then screwed up and permit only for everyone, residents included. that seems to be where sheep hunting up here is headed. to many hunters, not enough sheep. by the way, the guided hunter success rate is much higher than the average resident going out hunting on his own.

so c'mon up and enjoy hunting for moose and caribou and have a great time on a DIY hunt!
Stone sheep hunts in BC are pushing $40,000. Might as well go for a Marco Polo.
 

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I'm sorry to hear about the mismanagement of the resources in Alaska. I doubt the current administration will do much to change that.
Not sure how I managed to get my typing into your quote here but anyway:
It is very sad that we will never see another admistration even close to what Theodore Roosevelt's was like.
 
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huntinlabs

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I'm sorry to hear about the mismanagement of the resources in Alaska. I doubt the current administration will do much to change that.
It's kind of weird how Wolf populations seemingly world wide are burgeoning. Here in BC they are hammering the moose and caribou populations, which also struggle against loss of habitat. But moose hunting brings in so much revenue, it seems government is very conservative in employing restrictions. Many hunters in certain areas of the province feel the moose hunt should be shut down or at least curtailed and more closely monitored than it has been. Better logging road deactivation needs to happen, and I feel quad use should be restricted.
I do know one thing: I sure would love to come up to Alaska while I am still capable for a DIY caribou hunt! Moose, it would have to be a monster! They are just too much work!
I only recently discovered that as a US citizen I am elidgble to hunt those species in Alaska.

You should come up and try the 40 mile hunt. People are everywhere (normally right on the road) but if you get off the road some. You can find yourseld surrounded by thousands of Caribou and it is a sight to see!
 

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well,

just got back from a 10 day hunt in sand point alaska. was guiding a young hunter, 26 years old that fell into this hunt.

he shot his 9 1/2 foot brown bear at 161 yards on the 10th day. bet he was glad he had a guide. so was another hunter on the boat that had a bear charge and killed by a guides shot in the skull at 13 yards.

the third guy got his bear in the company of good friends, but i can tell you, he and the other hunter could not have done it with out a guide. not hard core hunters.

see, those guys, with money are the guys that ruin it for the rest of us. they don't have the skill set to hunt on their own in horrible conditions at the end of the world, so they hire it out to guides, and drive the costs up because they can afford to play a game that i cannot.

for their expensive fees, they hunted private land, stayed on a boat, caught fish, ate hot meals every day, had showers at night. was it worth it? you would have to ask them, but i bet they would all say, yep, it was worth every penny!

velo dog, we gotta have a whisky and i'll tell you a story.
 

1dirthawker

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the middle skull was a 9' bear, took a 375 ruger bullet to the head, made him stop coming, he was glad to have a guide!
IMG_5452.JPG
 
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Velo Dog

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Well Don, it just so happens that I'm ready for a good story (and a good whiskey as well).
I'll buy.
 

huntinlabs

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well,

just got back from a 10 day hunt in sand point alaska. was guiding a young hunter, 26 years old that fell into this hunt.

he shot his 9 1/2 foot brown bear at 161 yards on the 10th day. bet he was glad he had a guide. so was another hunter on the boat that had a bear charge and killed by a guides shot in the skull at 13 yards.

the third guy got his bear in the company of good friends, but i can tell you, he and the other hunter could not have done it with out a guide. not hard core hunters.

see, those guys, with money are the guys that ruin it for the rest of us. they don't have the skill set to hunt on their own in horrible conditions at the end of the world, so they hire it out to guides, and drive the costs up because they can afford to play a game that i cannot.

for their expensive fees, they hunted private land, stayed on a boat, caught fish, ate hot meals every day, had showers at night. was it worth it? you would have to ask them, but i bet they would all say, yep, it was worth every penny!

velo dog, we gotta have a whisky and i'll tell you a story.


I sent you a PM.
 

70worm

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Too many idiots from down here going up there and shooting a bear from 400 yards with a .30-06 and the bear runs off and dies 3 weeks later from infection or bleeds out a week later. It'll be "with a guide" only hunting for out of state folks pretty soon for all fur bearers. All these Discovery channel "pioneer" shows got a lot of retired rednecks from down here thinking they can drive up, walk into the woods, shoot whatever they want, then drive home and tell stories. Trust me, I know a couple of people who think that Alaska is a "do whatever you want with no rules" kinda place. Much like the early days of African hunting. No respect for anything, they just want to shoot shit. I can't blame Alaska for doing it. We have the same issue here in Indiana with deer. My Dad calls them "Walmart hunters". They go into Walmart buy a cheap slug gun, camo, hunting license, and some beer. Then go out and shoot a deer and leave it because they don't want to mess with it. Most don't even think about dealing with animals after they shoot them.
 
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1dirthawker

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Then go out and shoot a deer and leave it because they don't want to mess with it. Most don't even think about dealing with animals after they shoot them.

i think that happens up here more than people realize. outside people don't understand they need to salvage ALL the meat. and its far from the strip. and its really heavy. so they waste it, and regularly get caught.
 

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Too many idiots from down here going up there and shooting a bear from 400 yards with a .30-06 and the bear runs off and dies 3 weeks later from infection or bleeds out a week later. It'll be "with a guide" only hunting for out of state folks pretty soon for all fur bearers. All these Discovery channel "pioneer" shows got a lot of retired rednecks from down here thinking they can drive up, walk into the woods, shoot whatever they want, then drive home and tell stories. Trust me, I know a couple of people who think that Alaska is a "do whatever you want with no rules" kinda place. Much like the early days of African hunting. No respect for anything, they just want to shoot shit. I can't blame Alaska for doing it. We have the same issue here in Indiana with deer. My Dad calls them "Walmart hunters". They go into Walmart buy a cheap slug gun, camo, hunting license, and some beer. Then go out and shoot a deer and leave it because they don't want to mess with it. Most don't even think about dealing with animals after they shoot them.
i think that happens up here more than people realize. outside people don't understand they need to salvage ALL the meat. and its far from the strip. and its really heavy. so they waste it, and regularly get caught.
Idiots. We certainly have a surplus. :( If there is one place you DO NOT want to get caught violating game laws it is Alaska. I wish Idaho was half as serious about prosecuting wildlife crimes as Alaska is. IDF&G takes it seriously and do a decent job, but then too many times prosecutors plea bargain it down to a slap on the wrist.
 

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7939DDA7-8206-466C-83A1-3CBBDBB05BEA.jpeg
 

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There is no fish I want that badly!!!
 

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Well, at least we agree that there's a difference between your car and game (unless you've recently donated your car).

Yes, the game belongs to everyone. Which is exactly why there are rules imposed from above on it's use. Tragedy of the commons otherwise.

Maybe an analogy will help. Many western US states have a high percentage of land which is "owned" by the federal government. In other words, by the citizens of the United States. Yet when that land is managed without any concern for the people on it, around it, or in the state, the result is almost always trouble. If you substitute wild game for wild land, the result is the same.

The game does not belong to the "people", nor does the federal land.

Whenever the Government tells you the people own something all it means is the Government owns it and may distribute as it sees fit.

The US operates on the 17th Century European model, the King owns all the game and if the peasants are lucky the King will maybe let you hunt some.
 

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