Alaskan Bear Hunt: Tent, Kayak, & A Blinged Out Bow
June 11, 2011
It's no secret that if I could pick one place to live it would probably be Alaska, and it's not JUST for the incredible hunting. I enjoy being in an area where the real wilderness still exists, where mistakes can have serious consequences and the land is untouched by humans. I decided the best way to experience true Alaska would be at a drop camp hunt for black bear.
The setup was this. A float plane piloted by Ryan McCue of RDM would fly me into a remote location on Prince of Wales Island. I had a chance to look the area over on Google Earth prior to my arrival so I had a little knowledge of what the terrain was like. As the plane circled my new home in the forest I realized just how far away from civilization I was. My only form of communication would be a SAT phone for emergencies; otherwise it was a complete break from the real world.
Most people would choose to use a skiff or small-motorized boat to hunt from, but I wanted this to be different. I decided to have a kayak brought in so I could make my stalks in silence and scour the shores for bear by the power of my own shoulders. I put in a lot of time at the gym prior to the trip to ensure plenty of kayak horsepower. It would be a week of hard physical work, freeze-dried meals, and pure Alaskan beauty.
Once camp was setup and organized I was able to get a good nights rest before the morning hunt.
In Alaska, the tide moves around sixteen feet of water, so if you're not careful someone with a big boat can become easily stranded.
Considering I was hunting on my own, this is where my kayak came in handy. As a girl, I'm not strong enough to carry a big skiff or lug heavy motors back and forth. So my solution was a lightweight kayak that could be incredibly mobile and basically never have to worry about the tides. In high or low tide, I could get anywhere I needed to be, in complete silence.
Now that I was highly mobile, the bear couldn't hear or see me coming. It's almost too bad that bear have such poor eyesight because they missed out on my sweet looking bow. Prior to my spring hunts, one snowy MN day I decided to sit down and bling out my Mathews Passion. I had an entire table covered in Swarovski crystals trying to get the perfect combination. I wanted something that looked great, but would hold up through some hard hunting. Eventually these pretty crystals will be drug through the mud, rain, and hopefully even a little blood.