What to Know About Caribou Hunting


Alaska is the leading hunting destination ranging from bear, moose, musk ox, and caribou. This is your guide for what to consider before planning a caribou hunt in Alaska.

Caribou Hunting Requirements

There are a wide variety of hunting options up in Alaska, but before taking a trip, it is a good idea to have a strategy and choose what animal you plan to hunt on a specific trip. Some popular options include grizzly bears, moose, and caribou. If you choose caribou, be prepared to pay the current hunting license fee and price for a caribou tag.

There will also be extra expense to transport your meat back home, if you aren't actually from Alaska, and even if you are, you may need a bush pilot to help you get into the hunting area. Another consideration is checking baggage that may include guns and ammunition. It is important to know the Transportation Security Administration rules regarding weapon transport, and print out these rules in case security personnel are less aware of the regulations.

Packing the Right Hunting Gear

When hunting in Alaska one of the main concerns is to be properly prepared for the weather, which can be just as wild as any animals you might encounter. Bring with you high quality hunting and camping gear, including strong tents that is built to withstand high winds and protect from either rain or snow. Sleeping bags should be made of waterproof down or synthetic material that will remain warm even if they get a bit damp.

On the technical side, a good GPS unit is important, and if possible use a satellite phone that has an emergency beacon that will allow you to signal for the help you need in an emergency. If you can't buy this equipment, you should be able to rent it. Since daylight hours are limited, see that you have the safety laser lighting products you need, including a laser flashlight, and LED helmet light, and green laser light protection safety glasses.

The Rest of the Bag

Part of the challenge of hunting is anticipating what you might need, and being prepared to either succeed in getting a caribou, or heading back without one. If you do succeed, you will need a good size game bag in order to bring the caribou back, and transport it where it needs to go. If you are less successful you will still need items such as cooking gear, a proper rifle and/or bow and arrow, the ammunition you need, a candle stub to start a fire, filtered water in a canteen, flagging tape, a zippered plastic bag or bags with things such as toilet paper, your hunting license, and maps, and wool or fleece clothing in plenty of layers to keep you prepared for whatever surprises you come across.

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