Alaska Caribou hunting is at the top of many outdoor enthusiasts’ list. Paul Atkins of Kotzebue, Alaska is Hunt Alaska’s “After the Shot” columnist and a longtime contributing editor. An avid big game hunter, he’s been hunting in Alaska since 1994. Paul has taken around 100 caribou between then and now, so he’s quite knowledgeable about caribou hunting. In this video Paul discusses what it takes to embark on a do-it-yourself (DIY) Alaska caribou hunting adventure.
Where to Go
With roughly 32 different herds of caribou, Alaska caribou hunting is possible from the Kenai Peninsula in the south to north of the Arctic Circle, from the Canadian border in the east to the coastline of western Alaska.
Where to go is one of the first questions you need to address. There are several herds of caribou in Alaska. With roughly a quarter of a million caribou in northwest Alaska, it’s one of the good areas if you are able to hunt without a guide. Tags can still be bought over the counter, and logistics aren’t terribly complicated. You can fly Alaska Airlines directly to Kotzebue, then hire a transporter (if unguided) or a guide to get into the field. Transporters and guides book well in advance—sometimes a couple years, so you’ll want to address that question first. The DIY, unguided option is less expensive and is the focus of this video. If unguided, you’ll need to do considerable research to figure out where you want the transporter to drop you off.
What to take with you when Alaska caribou hunting is another question you’ll need to answer. Some transporters rent camping gear, etc. or you can bring your own. Obviously, you’ll need to bring your own hunting gear, and since this is wilderness, you’ll need to have everything you need to be self-sufficient once the transporter drops you off. Paul provides good advice on what gear you’ll need to have with you, whether you’re bow hunting or rifle hunting.
Alaska caribou hunting provides one of the more accessible, affordable big game hunts in the Greatland, and this large member of the deer family provides excellent meat and impressive trophies. Check out Paul’s seminar on Alaska caribou hunting.