Caribou Hunting Excursions Blacksburg VA

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Hands On Soccer Academy
Nellies Cave Park
Blacksburg, VA
 
Roanoke Summer Sports Camps
Po Box 2033
Salem, VA
 
Tangent Outfitters
(540) 731-5202
1710 Hunters Rd
Radford, VA
 
Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge
(757) 721-2412
4005 Sandpiper Road Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach, VA
 
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
(757) 986-3705
3100 Desert Road Suffolk
Suffolk, VA
 
Hokie Soccer Experience at Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, VA
 
Backcountry Ski & Sports
(800) 560-6401
3710 S Main St
Blacksburg, VA
 
Wallops Island National Wildlife Refuge
C/O Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge 8231 Beach Road Chincoteague
Chincoteague Island, VA
 
Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge
(703) 490-4979
7603 High Point Rd Lorton
Lorton, VA
 
Eastern Shore Of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge
(757) 331-2760
5003 Hallett Circle Cape Charles
Cape Charles, VA
 

Bowhunting Alaskan Caribou

As I lowered the 10X40 binoculars I'd been staring through all day, my peripheral vision detected a rather large clump of hair moving my way. Immediately two realizations came to mind. First, the hair was on the back of an animal way too wide to be a moose. Second, it was time to make a quiet, yet hasty retreat. A pretty good-sized grizzly materialized about ten steps away. Luckily, I was on a bank that was higher than the than the bear's eye level, and was able to quietly get out of the area and leave him to go about his business. One thing is for sure, you never run into a grizzly bear while hunting antlered game where I live!

My grizzly encounter was part of a great caribou bowhunting trip out of Kotzebue that my friend Bob Condon and I made. We have also hunted the Mulchatna herd, where I was fortunate enough to take a small bull with my longbow. While tundra deer are available elsewhere, there is something special about hunting caribou in Alaska. With a little planning, a successful Alaskan caribou adventure is for a reasonable expense. This will typically be a self-guided trip where a reputable flight service puts you ahead of the migration, but after all, that's how Fred Bear did it!

The biggest difference between the Alaskan-style caribou bowhunt and the hunting offered in Canada is that Alaskan trips are typically drop hunts. The other operations usually use a series of fixed-base camps along the migration route. Alaskan caribou trips will not have all the amenities, but have the advantage of being readily adaptable to changes in migration patterns. On an Alaskan caribou trip, a pilot flies hunters into an area ahead of the caribou migration. These excursions are do-it-yourself, thus the accommodations are a week in a tent. While this may not appeal to everyone, a self-guided hunt is an option not offered elsewhere.

Simply getting there is a big part of the adventure. Most Alaskan outfitters and flight services offer three different packages. They will drop you off in good territory and have you bring all of your camping gear and food. Outfitters also will fly to a hunting location set up a camp, then drop their hunters off later. The final offering is a fully guided hunt complete with meals. The biggest variation is the price. The more an outfitter or pilot has to fly, the greater their expenses are. Prices also increase when they provide a guide. Thus the more self-sufficient you are, the more economical the trip.

Outfitters typically check on their hunters to make sure everything is okay. They also fly out meat and antlers if there are any in camp. Many pilots ask their hunters to use a prearranged signal so they don't have to land if it is not necessary. Getting meat out and into a cooler somewhere is certainly a big plus if the weather is warm.

For any Alaskan hunter, resident or nonresident, the success or failure of a caribou trip is dependant on picking the right flight service or outfitter. Hunters should take pl...

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