Self-guided Moose & Caribou Hunting in Alaska: Episode 2 – Two Magnificent Bulls!

Team Wild TV Team Wild TV

Date: in Video

It’s the morning of day two in the magnificent Alaskan Wilderness. Ian Harford, Steve Wild and Mark McGuinness are heading out on an epic caribou hunting adventure.

  • Hunting Moose and Caribou in Alaska: Self-guided drop hunt adventure
  • Spotting with the Hawke Endurance ED Spotting Scope.
  • Into The Wilderness.
  • Caribou Hunting – The approach.
  • Tagged Out.
  • Next Week on Team Wild TV.

Welcome to Self-Guided Hunting in Alaska on Team Wild TV.

Self-guided Hunting in Alaska Episode 1

Ian and Steve had a busy day yesterday getting into country and setting up camp. They then spend the rest of their time glassing and getting a lay of the land. Their home for the next 14 days is in a spectacular valley with big mountains on both sides and a huge field of view of their area ahead. The plan is to get up onto a nearby ridge and continue glassing. They have already spotted a lot of caribou and moose tracks and are very much excited for the day ahead.

Spotting with the Hawke Endurance ED Spotting Scope.

As usual, eagle-eyed Steve is the first to spot game. High on the mountainside opposite from camp is a grizzly sow and two cubs meandering across the tundra. At over 1000 yards away, they take a closer look through the Hawke Endurance ED spotting scope and get some great footage of this magnificent apex predator and the next generation that will undoubtedly dominate this area. There are estimated to be around 30,000 grizzly bears roaming Alaska’s interior. These voracious predators have had a significant impact on the moose and caribou populations, prompting the Alaska Fish & Game Department to increase quotas and lengthen the hunting season to bring balance back to the region.

Into The Wilderness.

Ian and Steve begin the arduous trek up the ridge behind camp and across the plateau beyond. Today is about exploring and trying to find the best vantage point from which to survey the hunting area. Within five minutes of being at the top of the ridge, Steve spots a caribou. They continue to scan the area and see another caribou bull. The two bulls are around 1200-1300 yards away; Ian and Steve plan their approach. With the possibility of doubling up on the two caribou bulls, there’s a renewed sense of optimism and a purpose in each of their strides. They pause periodically to get our bearings. The ground continually changes shape as progress, with new ridges, knolls and ravines appearing from nowhere.

As the elevation increases, so does the quality of their view. From here they can formulate their approach into the caribou, which disappeared from view and are evading advances. As Ian and Steve get closer to the mountains, the incline increases dramatically. Whilst the vegetation isn’t providing too problematic, the sheer physical exertion is beginning to take its toll. The view from here is simply breathtaking and it’s been well worth the effort. Ian and Steve scan the area ahead in detail; they spot the caribou and plan the optimal approach.

Caribou Hunting – The approach.

As the tension rises and time runs against, Ian and Steve drop their packs and approach the ridge where they believe the caribou are grazing. They need to be light on their feet and ready to take the shot on a moments notice. Ian spots one of the bulls ahead. It is undoubtedly one of the bulls they spotted earlier in the day, it’s distinctly shaped antlers and beautiful white neck are unmistakable.

The next task is to establish the location of the other bull, which is almost certainly in the immediate vicinity. It isn’t long until the second bull appears just yards away. This is the perfect opportunity. Both are mature bulls and both in safe shooting positions. The first bull is aware of their presence and stands. As Mark loads, Ian waits patiently for the second bull to make his move. Marks first shot connects perfectly, but Ian’s double lung shot didn’t immediately anchor the bull and so he put in a second to bring him down. With both bulls down, they gather their packs and head down to pay respects to the fallen game.
 
Tagged out.
Ian and Mark’s first job is to tag the bulls and complete our harvest tickets. This is an essential part of the management programme here in Alaska, with every animal harvested accounted for including where and when it was taken. It has been another incredible day out in the Alaskan wilderness. However, the hard work isn’t over yet. As tomorrow, Ian and Steve will be packing out the caribou bulls.
Next Week on Team Wild TV – Self-guided Moose & Caribou Hunting in Alaska: Episode 3 – Butchering Big Bulls & Packing Out

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