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Adak Is. Caribou

Discussion in 'Taxidermy Forum' started by Brad's Birds, Mar 30, 2016.

  1. Brad's Birds

    Brad's Birds Elite Refuge Member Sponsor

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    Thought I'd post a couple photos of my son's Caribou he killed last August on Adak Island. One of my customers owns a house on Adak and has been urging me to make a trip there. My son will graduate from college this spring so I thought it would be a good graduation present to take him. We had to do it early as he has plans after graduation, and couldn't make it during duck season, so we planned a week of Caribou hunting and Salmon fishing last August. Neither one of us has ever shot at anything much over 40 yards and being from Illinois, we didn't even own a rifle larger than a .22, so we had a lot of "new" stuff to buy and learn. We were on our own, so we had to learn as we went along, but it was a memorable trip and a great way to spend a week with my son. The Caribou were tough to find which meant hoofing it long distances and making Dad realize his age. Also meant lots of work after the shot, but all that added to the experience. Those of you who have been there may recognize some of the scenery:

    My friend Tony Bishop in Winfield, MO. mounted the head. I had the antlers freeze-dried:

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  2. Brad's Birds

    Brad's Birds Elite Refuge Member Sponsor

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    Some fishes..........
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    Last edited: Mar 30, 2016
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  3. Brad's Birds

    Brad's Birds Elite Refuge Member Sponsor

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    Some scenery......

    Ptarmigan were pretty easy.....

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  4. illini36

    illini36 Elite Refuge Member

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    Brad,

    The mount turned out amazing! I know Dillon will cherish that for a long time and the memories you all made on this trip. Congrats again on a trip of a lifetime. Talk soon. -Pat
     
  5. 2n1shot

    2n1shot Senior Refuge Member

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    That's pretty cool! The island looks a lot different in August than it did in December when I made my trip with Dad up there.

    The caribou on that island are introduced by request from the military when the Navy still had an active base there. They wanted them for a food supply.
     
  6. pukeko

    pukeko Senior Refuge Member

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    Me and friend tried that hunt but our flight from Anchorage to Adak was delayed for 4 days, first from volcano ash and then fog. Killed time shooting grouse near Palmer. Finally got there and had 1 day to get a bou. Saw some small ones but passed on them. My friend could only get 1 week off from work, if I try it again I'll give myself at least 2 weeks.
     
  7. Brad's Birds

    Brad's Birds Elite Refuge Member Sponsor

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    Thanks Pat, it was a cool trip. Tony let me sew up the neck incision on the mount, but that's all he allowed me to do......

    There was a group of hunters leaving Adak airport the day we flew in that had hunted the week prior and had not seen a Caribou. They were a pretty grumpy group. We made our way over to the counter to the lady that sold us the Aleut trespass permit and she said the caribou were all down at the southern part of the island which is inaccessible without a sea-worthy vessel. She said to come back in December....... So, our hopes of getting a caribou were dampened the minute we arrived on the island. We went to the USFWS office and the ranger said the same thing. Whoo-hoo.... Anyway, we had a week, followed our map and eventually found 4 bulls in a group.

    The caribou apparently move closer to "town" during winter so the hunting can be easier (although the winter weather has to be dealt with) .....in fact, the owner of the house we used was there in January and shot a couple cows exactly where we parked to begin one of our long treks......drove right up to them and loaded them in the truck! Bull season is only open from early/mid August until the end of December. We were told from several sources that the meat is "barely" edible during the rut which can run October thru November.....so getting a bull you can apparently eat has a somewhat narrow window....getting one edible and without velvet is even narrower. I do know the meat was/is the best I've ever eaten, so I'm glad we did what we did.

    There are certainly larger more impressive bulls to be had, but I have to agree with the quote attributed to Aldo Leopold: "The value of any trophy from the field depends not on its size but on the magnitude of the effort expended in its pursuit."
     
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  8. 480/277y

    480/277y Senior Refuge Member

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    Where you have to go to get an elk , moose or caribou make any one a trophy.
    And yes a bull shot in the rut is not edible. Your dog will not eat it.
    I have killed a bunch of bulls from all over alaska and everone is a trophy to me.
    Congrats on the memories!!!!
     
  9. sdkidaho

    sdkidaho Decoy, Gun Dog, Christian, Idaho, Montana/Wyoming Moderator Flyway Manager

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    That is really cool - I always wondered how they treated the velvet antlers to preserve them. Looks like a great trip and some awesome memories - thanks for sharing that.
     
  10. deadgrassdog

    deadgrassdog Elite Refuge Member

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    Great looking mount and some fantastic pictures!
     

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