Alaska Caribou and Grizzly Hunt – #177
This outfit for the last several years has been outfitting in a very remote area in farthest north Alaska, and have been having very good success. They hunt both grizzly and caribou in the area. A second caribou is available to you at an additional cost.
CARIBOU HUNTS: (Bear info follows)
These caribou hunts take place along the North Slope of the well known Brooks Range. The area is home to over 500,000 caribou and this outfitter has been permitted to hunt it from end to end. That gives him a concession area that is 400 miles east to west and 100 miles north to south. That translates out to 40,000 square miles. And it gives you well over half a million caribou to chase!
The Western Arctic Herd’s summer range and calving grounds are in the heart of this outfitters area. Those caribou migrate in September southerly and group up in the Gates of the Arctic park along the continental divide. He also hunts a second herd and a third herd as well, namely the Porcupine Herd as well as the Central Arctic Herd! So there is normally no shortage of animals. However caribou can move 20 miles overnight, so no caribou hunt is a sure thing anymore. But his outfitter and his partner have over 30 years of combined experience hunting on the north side of the Brooks Range, and normally do very well.
While Alaska has some good caribou herds, that is not the case for many traditional caribou hunting areas. You need to be aware of this before you book any caribou hunt. OIur advice for the moment is to stick to Alaska, unless you are collecting all the caribou species.
NWT HUNTS: You may or may not be aware of the fact that it appears virtually certain that for 2011 and the immediate future, all non-resident caribou hunting in the North West Territories will be closed!! Hunters who booked a barren-ground caribou hunt in the Northwest Territories (NWT) for this season will likely not be able to hunt. The reason is that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) plans to eliminate the quota for all hunting of the Bathurst caribou herd. This is the barren-ground caribou herd that is generally hunted by all outfitters in NWT. The herd has been declining for several years. One outfitter has reportedly cancelled 90 hunters– and is unable to refund many tens of thousands of dollars in client deposits!! The caribou populations in many areas in and around the NWT are sorely depressed, and the situation has been deteriorating for the last 3 years of more. This was foreseen and scientifically documented by many and we here at BMOA have been actively discouraging prospective NWT bookings for the last 2 years, feeling the handwriting was on the wall and set in stone! We have read a number of scientific articles speculating on the cause, but nothing seems clear cut. But it has been clear for nearly 2 years that this closure in the NWT was likely to happen! Whatever the cause, forget hunting caribou in the NWT at least for the next few years, unless something unlikely happens!
QUEBEC/LABRADOR HUNTS: As of late 2010, reports are awful for the Quebec and Labrador caribou- the herd in last few years has declined from about 650,000 to 77,000! Almost a 90% decline. So Alaska looks good!
In contrast to that NWT situation and the Quebec situation is the area and herds that this outfit hunts. Alaska’s largest caribou herd, the Western Arctic herd has grown continuously for the last 10 years and passed the 500,000 mark around 2004, according to a survey completed by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. We feel that this outfit is poised to offer you some of the finest caribou hunting to be found in North America, with 3 herds it can reach! Three reachable herds!! They expect most hunters to take two bulls; but again caribou are never a sure thing due to their wide ranging habits and overnight disappearances.
This outfit’s concession area is located north of the Gates of the Arctic National Park and adjacent to the famed ANWR (Arctic National Wildlife Refuge) and extends westerly for hundreds of miles. You will fly almost to Prudhoe Bay in far northern Alaska and will take Alaskan Air to the town of Deadhorse where you will be met. You are responsible for paying for your airfares to Deadhorse and for your hunting license and two caribou tags ($735- or $410 for a single ‘bou)). There IS a $1000 air charter fee as an extra cost.
LODGING: They have 2 deluxe base camps with all accommodations including telephone, internet and laundry facilities. These caribou hunts will be fully guided 2×1.
PRICE: (one caribou prices. Second caribou is $2,500). Fly in camps. Five days actual hunting but fly in day before, leave day after- total is 7 days. No hunting on the day you fly in.
3 on 1 caribou fully guided $5,1000
2 on 1 caribou fully guided $5,800
1 on 1 caribou fully guided $8,900
Extra caribou on trophy fee $2,500
Grizzly on trophy fee $ 8,500
Exclusive 1X1 7 day Grizzly/1 bull Caribou with fishing included
Only 4 available per year! $15,900
Raft Hunt 2 on 1 – $ 6,700
Raft Hunt 3 on 1 – $ 6,200
Price includes one bull Caribou. All other species harvested on trophy fee basis.
Hunting dates start as of late July and run into about the first 10 days of September for 2015:
1-available Means (1 guide available for a 2X1 or 3X1 Hunt)
July – 26th – aug 2, 2015 1 available
Aug – 9-16, 1 available
Aug – 16-23, 1 available
Aug – 23-30, 1 available
Aug – 33- Sept 6, 1 available
Raft Hunts: Good hunt to add grizzly too!
Available 1X1 Grizzly/Caribou combo
Aug – 2-9 , 1 available
Aug – 9-16, 1 available
Aug – 16-23, 1 available
Aug – 23-30, 1 available
Aug – 30-Sept 6, 2 available
TRANSPORT: Hunters fly to Deadhorse, AK. on Alaska Airlines the day before their hunt starts and depart Deadhorse the day after. Charter flight from Deadhorse to either the Kavik camp or the Umiat Camp is approximately $800 to $1000 Round Trip, Per Person. Verify your flights with the outfitter.
LICENSES: License and 2 Caribou Tags = $ 735. One caribou is $410. Licenses and Tags are sold in camp. Trophy shipment to Fairbanks is $200 per animal.
GRIZZLY BEAR- SAME AREA!
In addition to world-class caribou hunting this outfitter will offer you the chance to also hunt for the Arctic Barren Ground Grizzly! These grizzly hunts will be 1×1 hunts in both spring and fall. They do these grizzly hunts right in the heart of the caribou’s calving grounds where the grizzlies are highly concentrated. The griz are there in order to feast upon the newly born baby caribou as they are dropped in the spring. These bears actually live here year round but are normally widely spread out over a vast area. But, during the Spring because there of this super-high-quality food source the bears are present in excellent numbers, and the extra protein from the new-born fawns allows them to grow quite large. This Outfitter is one of only a handful permitted to operate in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Understand that the Arctic Refuge is the last great untouched wilderness on earth. It is what Montana must have been 200 years ago. This area stretches from the continental divide to the Arctic Ocean. You will see no one else, see no other human footprints or hear gunshots that are not our own. The area boasts the farthest north population of dall sheep in the world and is as close to unhunted as it gets these days. The area is also home to an extremely abundant barren ground grizzly bear population. The outfitter prides itself on having one of the best true interior grizzly bear hunt in the world.
PRICE: Grizzly- 10 Days, 1×1, $16,000
(Fall bear hunt trophy fee for adding a caribou is $6,000)
Hunters fly to Deadhorse via Alaska Airlines the day before their hunt starts and depart Deadhorse the day after. Charter flight from Deadhorse to either Kavik or Umiat is app. $800 RT PP.
Licenses and Tags are sold in camp. Trophy shipment to Fairbanks is $200 per animal.
A Recap of 2010 & Looking Ahead to 2011
Just a quick note on our success for the 2010 season… This fall the weather was phenomenal with temps ranging from highs in the 80’s to lows in the 30’s! The caribou were thick in the early part of the season and thinned out toward the latter part, however, the camp cook recently reported seeing 1,000 caribou close to base camp. We suppose the early and the late hunts were better as far as numbers were concerned. We had a 100% success rate on the first caribou and 90% success on the second animal for those who chose to take 2 bou. We had a hard griz year, for some reason only 50% success. All who hunted griz saw one, however, may not have had an opportunity to take one.
We would suggest all caribou hunters buy a wolf and a griz tag for 2011 as we did have a high number of wolf opportunities, and griz are available on a trophy fee for the low cost of $6,000.
We are planning on cranking up our arctic hunts earlier for the upcoming season as we saw extremely high concentrations of caribou in late July and early August. Our Alaskan arctic hunts are truly fair chase hunts, and their success rates are highly affected by adverse weather conditions and/or game migrations.
So, bring with you a good attitude, sharp eyes, good optics, a flat shooting rifle, and lots of patience. With this we guarantee you will have an experience not soon to be forgotten. The arctic truly gets in your blood!
AND ALWAYS BE IN SHAPE- IT WILL DIRECTLY IMPACT YOUR SUCCESS!