POW fly-in hunt (pictures and everything)

geetar

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Jan 28, 2019
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North Carolina
When I was in high school my family took the ferry from WA through SE AK and ever since I've always wanted to go back. I've done a couple of spring bear hunts at this point. I've hiked logging roads and climbed mts with a spotting scope, both of which are a blast, but with this trip I wanted to try something a little different; fly in and hunt via a boat.

Having lost my dad just months before I applied for this tag, my father-n-law volunteered to accompany me on the trip.

We arrive late in Ketchikan and stayed at a local hotel, they picked us up at the ferry terminal and took us over to safeway to grab some last minute supplies, including dry ice for the cooler.

Seems, like no matter how hard you try you bring way too much crap. That said we managed to get all our gear, inflatable boat + motor, and two hunters into the plane with room to spare.
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Definitely the best ride into camp I've even had

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Since you can't hunt the day you fly we set up camp and then did some fishing.

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Day 1 we headed out and found our first bear, went in for a practice stalk but got winded.
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Came back to camp to find fresh sign everywhere, around 9pm this little lady padded out about 120 yards from the tent.
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Day 2 I decided to go for a little walk up the stream behind camp.

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It took over an hour to go .25 miles, fallen timber in the river you couldn't climb over + nasty crap on the banks... new appreciation for the climb BigFin did in Rain Deer, the vegetation is spiteful.
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Came around a bend and this guy was at 35 yards hanging out.



Day 3 we headed out and found a good glassing spot, we decided that since we only had a couple of days left we needed to actually start hunting do more than just look at bears.

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We spotted what looked like a decent bear and went for a stalk, we were able to get up to just under 100 yards spent what seemed like 15 min looking at the bear.
Definitely a boar, great coat, decent size, although not a monster by any means... and more importantly the time and conditions for a perfect shot.
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I was able to make a good clean shot took, a even better bear than I had thought.
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We were pretty close to camp, so we decided to load the bear up whole and make the quick trip back to camp.
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We skinned the bear, boned out the meat and were able to get everything into our coolers. I had waffled back and forth with salting versus freezing, but since we were able to get our hands on dry ice I decided to skin out the head, turn the ears, remove the toes and then just freeze it. ( You have to present the unfrozen, skinned out skull for checking)

Neck and rib meat didn't make the photo...
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Our last couple days we spent hanging out around camp, fishing, and enjoying the freakishly good weather.
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As were packing up our camp we had a final visitor to our spot.

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Things got a bit tight on the way out, but the locals turned out to give us a send off

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and we got an amazing sunset
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Really appreciate BigFin for helping planting the seed of this idea in my head and @Randy11 @MinnesotaHunter @muskeg for putting up with all my pestering.
This is a great story. Thanks for sharing.
 

LCH

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Sitting waiting with baited breath over here for your pics...
Ha. Will probably be next week, I'm sitting in Craig poaching WiFi from a coffee shop. I don't really want to try and put this all together on a phone.

Pics are coming though!
 

wllm1313

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Ha. Will probably be next week, I'm sitting in Craig poaching WiFi from a coffee shop. I don't really want to try and put this all together on a phone.

Pics are coming though!
Between you and CPAW... torture...
 
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1_pointer

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Very nicely done!! Thanks for sharing!!

Ha. Will probably be next week, I'm sitting in Craig poaching WiFi from a coffee shop. I don't really want to try and put this all together on a phone.

Pics are coming though!
Sounds like someone got a monkey off their back...
 
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elkrchr

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Jun 26, 2010
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Portland, OR
SE Alaska is an amazing place. Glad you got to experience it to the fullest and you'll never have weather like that again. Congrats!
 

Mtnhuntr

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Really neat adventure. Thanks for sharing. I MUST go bear hunting one of these years.
 

rmyoung1

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Jul 12, 2010
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Great recap. Such a cool part of God’s creation. Just a neat place to poke around with a tag in your pocket. And congrats on a beautiful bear
 

cmeyer733

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Mar 6, 2018
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California
Congrats man! awesome photos and looks like a great overall trip. Not sure if i missed it in the thread somewhere, but what were the dates you were up there? I was on the very north end of the island 4/26 thru 5/3 and we had a hard time finding bears. only saw 3 bears our whole trip, got to 40 yards one time and he busted me. Just too early (we think) as it was snowing up there just a couple days before we got there. Still had a great trip with my dad and got to bring home some of the best fish there is!
Congrats again.


SEAK Halibut.JPG
 

wllm1313

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Congrats man! awesome photos and looks like a great overall trip. Not sure if i missed it in the thread somewhere, but what were the dates you were up there? I was on the very north end of the island 4/26 thru 5/3 and we had a hard time finding bears. only saw 3 bears our whole trip, got to 40 yards one time and he busted me. Just too early (we think) as it was snowing up there just a couple days before we got there. Still had a great trip with my dad and got to bring home some of the best fish there is!
Congrats again.
Thanks, look's like we should meet in the middle next time as we had the exact opposite problem, congrats on the fish!
 

wllm1313

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Honestly I can’t believe people don’t keep their bear meat. This bear loin from my POW bear is probably the best wild game meat I’ve eaten full stop.

Sadly this is the last of that bear, can’t wait to go back up and get some more.
 
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D-Mac

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Dec 29, 2017
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Loveland, Colorado
How physically demanding would you say this hunt is? Obviously when you leave the beach it gets rough going, but if you stayed away from the woods. I would like to take my Dad on this hunt, but he’s not in very good shape and wouldn’t enjoy it if he felt like he was holding me back. He’d have no problem walking several miles of forest road with no elevation change. Just not sure how tough are the beaches there? Thanks for the insight!
 

wllm1313

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How physically demanding would you say this hunt is? Obviously when you leave the beach it gets rough going, but if you stayed away from the woods. I would like to take my Dad on this hunt, but he’s not in very good shape and wouldn’t enjoy it if he felt like he was holding me back. He’d have no problem walking several miles of forest road with no elevation change. Just not sure how tough are the beaches there? Thanks for the insight!
Really depends on how you do it, if you are hiking closed roads it's probably fairly demanding as you have to pack out the bear. The way we did it I would say it is a 2 on a scale of 1-10. You have to load and unload the plane and if you get the boat stuck you have to roll in down the beach (which sucks) or hang out until the tide comes up (which is what we did).

I'm sure if you wound a bear and it goes into the underbrush things get rough quick, but our hunt was pretty easy from a physical standpoint.
 

ajricketts

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Sep 19, 2016
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South Florida
I think what several of us are asking is, "Will you take me with you?" lol

In all honestly though, I remember seeing a video of a HuntTalk bear hunt on the Big Fin's Youtube channel. I have no idea if it still happens, but a new version on POW would be awesome.
 

wllm1313

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I think what several of us are asking is, "Will you take me with you?" lol

In all honestly though, I remember seeing a video of a HuntTalk bear hunt on the Big Fin's Youtube channel. I have no idea if it still happens, but a new version on POW would be awesome.
I'm not sure if you could fit that many kegs in a beaver... I guess we could get an otter
 
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