Freezeup hunt


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caribou
October 5, 2010, 06:49 PM
Took a bit of a campout this last week to tie up our Fall.
besides the Caribou we caught a couple weeks ago, we put out an 'extra speciall Kiss Kiss' hunt to kick off the new Hunting Seasson, you know ,the one that followed Yesterday...

A Cousin, Alex, the Broinlaw Joe, a friend and camera man, Mike Z and myself started the day as normal, getting into a loaded boat.....

So, upriver we went, merrily cruizing witha load or gas, tenting and guys, up for the first night while the wife and daughters brought up the rear, a day behind us, overnighting at her sister Nita's in Kiana and visiting around.

We waited for Caribou to come down the hills to their Doom while crossing the river, but they were having none of it. Temps have plunged the river into solidifycation, one piece of ice at a time, and growing.
With Bino's and scopes, people at Kiana village watched a herd of maby 500 decend to the river valley , only to turn and go right back up again, and to join up with another group, all awaiting 'Something"....

We waited two days, and with the arrival of the girls, who enlarged and normalized the camp as a Butchering sight for a good ammount of Meats,we still waited... but the meats refused to decend....... and no new sucess's anywhere below the hovering Caribou, we told the ladies "Later!!" and burned our way further up, tward Kobuk sand Dunes and Caribou Bulls.
For two days we had seen Caribou closely, but all were dead and in boats headed down, So we made a plan to not return untill we were done in one form or the other.....

We gassed and went, while promising that everything would be OK if we didnt return that night , and after a spell of winding driving, we had crossing Bull Caribou shot by boats infront of us, hundred's of heads lining the river, lungs floating by and with two hours of light left ........and a group of 50 headed out to swim.......

We drove very slowly, as they meanderd about 500 yards ahead, the lead Cow splashing, HUGE Bulls flowing, all Prime, Fat, unrutted prizes of taste and nutrition, walkin out when all hell broke loose, the band reversed as one and like water spilling over a table went up and dissapered into the bushes a few yards North.

Around the corner came two boats adrift, who had seen the Caribou and only later, Us. Actually turned out to be the next door neighbor and crew, and when we talked it over, they kindly apologized a bit and we told 'em "You couldnt know" and we all laughed.....as we had not seen each other untill the Caribou were gone anyway.

Then we decided to build a fire and stay the night.
We shot a crossing Bull and ate to our fill with meat over the fire and heart-tounge soup and broth to drink.
Slept out in the open , in the lower twentys as the river grew louder and louder through the night, when ever growing pans of ice crashed and heaved into each other in the rivers flow......
After a night of sleeping on bare frozen, rockhard sand we awoke to a foggy solidily frozen river, about 1/2 an inch thick....several inches where it had plied and frozen.....

We were lucky in having a tin boat and a powerfull motor and we wasted no time getting ready to leave after coffee and a meaty breakfast.
We watched several Caribou , in small and large groups approach to cross, but all turned back after testing the ice with their hooves.
We crossed the river and made our meat with the MosinNagant. Not the way we wanted, but the way we had too. Coulda' piled up the body's all right, but not this time, with any certainty of returning for more loads.....
We were under Caribou supervision constantly as group after group approached and skirted us as we made quick work of the meats.
We limited our catch to two Fat bulls, which were in the boat and busting ice within the hour. We knew we were gonna be busting ice and a wasting gas by the bucket, and since nature delt the hand, we played it safe and folded.
We spent the next 5 hours crashing, smashin', busting ice untill were were free about 5 miles upriver from the ladies.
We pulled up, hoping they had been lucky, but they were packed and loading, Caribou less and a note on a Steak telling us to get the Hell outta Dodge, as the wife "knows".....

We busted Ice to Kiana, burning burning, burning gas as we barged on down, hardly finding a gap to make plane with.
Left one boat and took a big load down, our plan was to avoid any further 12$ a gallon purchase's and return with gas, but the next morning the wife was given ten and she, with a load of Girls and the bro, Joe, came on down them selfs, and we met them not quite 1/2 ways....all was well.

The ****ed up part is that Mike Z , with 70+ excellent pictures of this small hunt cannot find his camera......**** **** PISS!!!! ya, those astricts cant even describe how we collectivly felt...

"But" the oldest Daughter did snap some from her cell.......and I in my UNJ Tee shirt..~~LOL!!~~ You can see some of the ice behind me, around the boat.....
http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_Foto-0085.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=Foto-0085.jpg)
http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_Foto-0087.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=Foto-0087.jpg)

Got some good ones of the girls, round the fire and in the leanto.
http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_Foto-0082.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=Foto-0082.jpg)

http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_Foto-0074.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=Foto-0074.jpg)

http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_Foto-0076.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=Foto-0076.jpg)

http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_Foto-0077.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=Foto-0077.jpg)
Some artifacts I found.
http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/th_PICT0120.jpg (http://s53.photobucket.com/albums/g71/edwardhailstone/?action=view&current=PICT0120.jpg)
The top one is a net making gauge, so you can tie uniform mesh's and a little Marlin spike on the tip to slip and loosen any knots.
The bottom antler spear tip is missing its tip that would have held a small point. These were loaded into an antled socket'd end of a shaft and speared into swimming Caribou , just behind the ribs, through the liver, and the shaft was reloaded to dispatch more Caribou.This was done as a stone lance can snap its blade and be worthless. Steel changed that.
The spear tip has small lines of ownership 'marks" so every one knew who's Caribou it belonged to when they were floated to the shore during community hunts at these crossing spots, every fall for thousands of years.
My camera has a bad shade that is sometimes 1/2 the picture.......sorry bout that, I took it when I got home, that's why I left it behind anyhoo....~~LOL!!~~

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Roughneck08
October 6, 2010, 04:01 AM
Man, that is something else. I sure enjoy reading your adventures! Good luck with the months to come and what a shame we can't see all those other pictures.

caribou
October 6, 2010, 04:30 AM
Learned two things on this trip;
Bring yer own camera, and damn it, bring a sleeping bag........ if theres even the slightest chance of sleeping out~~LOL!!~~

You learn when you Burn, and when you freeze too!!

Tim the student
October 6, 2010, 10:05 AM
Now that is a hunting story! Good luck in the coming months.

OYE
October 7, 2010, 12:09 AM
Caribou, I'd go for one of the military air mattresses as well. Was wondering what ammo
you were using in your Mosin Nagant. Brass or steel case ( would assume 147 grain steel core bullet ) and what country made it and how well does the ammo shoot. Cabelas
has the Nagants on sale at the Boise, Idaho store for 99 bucks. Looked at a couple, took one home. Stock is in very good shape, few dings and still a good finish. Headspace is good (passed "no go" easily). Slugged the bore and also slugged last half inch of muzzle.
Can't detect any muzzle erosion. Bore looks good. Shopping for ammo soon. Should make an excellent grizzly gun.

wankerjake
October 7, 2010, 12:27 AM
Always love the stories, thanks Caribou.

caribou
October 7, 2010, 01:38 AM
Glad yall like it :D

A materess woulda been almost as nice as a sleeping bag~~LOL!!~~, but it wasnt nearly as cold has I have been before and its gonna be sooon...Im in the Arctic and Winter is apon us.

I use Czeck laquer'd Steel LPS, FMJ for my shooting pleasure, OYE, a fine , deep penatrating tumbler of a round, wicked mean on any Grizzz, and since the wife caught a record Arctic Grizz this last Spring, well, the proof is in the pudding :D or Bear Grease, Mmmmmm....
I stick with the Czeck for its tumbling qualitys and its steel core 'carrys through' on most all big game....'cept Whales, no exit holes there....Other ammo has either very inaccurate qualitys of is a "Drill" as it dosent go sideways nearly as quickly as the Czeck.
The Czeck is both VERY accurate AND a mean ripper of muscle, breaker of bones, I stick with it, with excellent results.

Fact is, its all about placement, and as accurate as the Czeck is, Its #1 in my book of ammo for the Mosin.

OYE
October 7, 2010, 02:19 AM
Caribou, Hey thanks. I'll keep an eye out for some. I figured you to have much experience on game with the Nagants. Appreciate it.

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