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Wilderness hunting

Discussion in 'Northwest Hunting' started by parsons_12b, Jan 20, 2010.

  1. parsons_12b

    parsons_12b LaPine Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I'm looking at making a hunting trip into a wilderness area for the first time does anyone have any suggestions on gear.
     
  2. OPAWY

    OPAWY NorthCentral Wyoming Member

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    If you are a nonresident, intending to hunt wilderness country in Wyoming, the first thing you must do is hire a guide, because nonresidents can't hunt Wilderness designated areas without a guide in Wyoming. I would check the regs in other states as well.
     
  3. huntingharder

    huntingharder Oregon Member

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    What state are you thinking of , What wilderness unit , What time of year...
     
  4. parsons_12b

    parsons_12b LaPine Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Im looking at making a trip over to the eagle cap wilderness here in Oregon Ive hunted quite a bit but I never have doen a extended hike in hunt before.
     
  5. John316

    John316 Oregon New Member

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    I got online and checked out the Eagle Cap the other day and was thinking of taking my family there. I don't think this is the best spot for the faint of heart. I personally seek out the nastiest, most remote places on the planet, but I have alot of experience hiking and packing. The real problem probably won't be getting there, or even getting a critter. The BIG issue is how to get that animal out without spoiling. The other issue is injury to yourself and how the heck do you get out if no one knows you're hurt? If I were you, I'd pack into the wilderness right up the road from Sweet Home, with a buddy, this summer. You'll learn alot real quick. Things like how to filter water, what food to take and how much, what gear is too heavy, what you forgot, etc. START WITH SOMETHING SAFE AND MANAGEABLE. Save the Eagle Cap for next season.
     
  6. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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    This is great advice,we don't want to see on the news that there is a missing hunter in the Eagle cap area.:winkkiss:
     
  7. 2506

    2506 Seattle Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't go into the Eagle Cap without a horse. And if you're going to hunt, I wouldn't go in without some pack animals.
     
  8. parsons_12b

    parsons_12b LaPine Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the input I have spent time in wilderness areas mostely MT Jefferson. I'm planning on doing this with my brother-in-law who also has quite a bit of experience hiking. What we lack is experience hunting in areas like this. My biggest concern as was stated earlier by others is getting a animal out before it goes bad. I have looked into outfitters that will do this and have also looked into renting animals. Still trying to figure out what my best option is. I do appreciate the input you guys are giving keep it coming.

     
  9. 2506

    2506 Seattle Well-Known Member

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    There are plenty of good outfitters around that area that would haul out an animal for you. I wouldn't go into that country on or with a rented animal, it's steep, deep, and a long way from no where. Unless you go out of Red's Horse Ranch, they have a landing strip.
     
  10. Buano

    Buano NC Member

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    I hunted the Bob Marshall Wilderness area of Western Montana last September. I got an education in reality — and I was with a great outfitter (Lake Upsata OUtfitters). I luckily got a beautiful 317" bull. There is no way I would have gotten that 1,000 pound animal off that mountainside without pack animals. I could have hiked in, hunted & hiked out. It would have been a killer, but I am tough enough to know it would have been possible. I wouldn't have had the option of hunting different areas in search of game or the right conditions. Walking a few miles through the mountains with gear would have effectively cost me a day I could have otherwise been hunting.

    Unless you only plan on heading in a few miles & you know exactly where you want to hunt in advance, a wilderness hunt without animals isn't realistic. Game retrieval without pack animals simply isn't possible.

    Gear list: Hunting license, Game bags, Great boots - well broken in, The best binoculars you can afford, an accurate rifle that doesn't weigh a ton, Water filter & water-purification tablets, GPS, Maps, Compass, Personal Locator Beacon in case you get injured, propane lighters, signal mirror, whistle, first-aid kit including sutures & moleskin, anti-diarrhea medicine, aspirin, narcotics, a good back-pack, pan or 2 & cooking utensils, freeze-dried food, salt, rain-gear, fleece layers, hat, gloves, 2-3 pairs of socks, tent, water-bottles, flashlight, camera, toilet paper, sleeping bag (pad?), rope, & an ax. I know this isn't everything, but it's already more than I would want to haul in 15 miles through the mountains.

    Shop for an outfitter. As the economy crashed many are cutting their rates in hopes of staying in business. You will likely find someone willing to take you in to a drop camp & retrieve game for a very reasonable fee if that's all you want. It's much more practical than trying to hike in with all your gear.
     
  11. parsons_12b

    parsons_12b LaPine Oregon Well-Known Member

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    So maybe Im being ignorant but besides having to take care of an animal once I get it down what is the difference between hunting a wilderness area and going to the field as a light infantryman. I know in the military you have more people and support if something goes bad but living out of a ruck is living out of a ruck regardless of the task.
     
  12. Buano

    Buano NC Member

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    The differences? Support forces. In the military if something goes wrong, you can rely on others. On a wilderness hunt no one is standing by to air-drop supplies. Part of the beauty of a wilderness hunt is that you must be totally self-sufficient, which means hauling in everything you need. Compound this with mountainous terrain and the difficulty hauling gear becomes immense without pack animals.
     
  13. John316

    John316 Oregon New Member

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    This packing the game out of the Eagle Cap Wilderness is not to be disregarded. When I was 21 and very tough I packed about 90 lbs (1/2 a spike bull) downhill for three miles to the truck. My legs hurt so bad two days later I could barely move them. In my 30's I packed 1/2 a five point bull slightly downhill for just 1 mile and it was brutal. 15 miles? 12? 10? Forget it. Not going to happen. Get on the internet and check out the Eagle Cap Wilderness. At 44 I'd feel blessed to be able to haul my own carcass in and back out of there without a mule. Strap on 50 lbs of gear and you've suddenly got logistical problems. Multiply mileage by four elk quarters, one head, and your own gear. Do you feel like you can walk 100 miles with 60 lb. pack? Before all the meat spoils? Going hiking in the wilderness is not the same as going HUNTING in the wilderness. Those old timers that say things like, "There's no buck big enough that I'd shoot him down in that canyon" aren't stupid people. Packing dead weight is no fun. I got an elk north of Enterprise one year and took it into town to the lockers in quarters. I asked them to cut open the hindquarters to be sure they cooled out good. When I came back on my way home a few days later they showed me the intact and spoiled hindquarters that hadn't cooled. I no longer trust the meat cutter in Joseph. That could be apotential problem or a one-time deal, but who knows.
     
  14. Buano

    Buano NC Member

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    On my last wilderness hunt we saw several people (3 groups) hiking in to hunt. We asked them where they were headed to & what their plans were IF they got an elk. After we got out of their range of hearing the outfitter I was with had his chuckle. They had said they were ONLY headed in about 6 miles — with 60-70 pound packs over very rough terrain. We later found that none made it more than 3 or 4 miles in & none even saw an elk. We were in total agreement that if one of them got lucky & shot an elk most of it would be wasted as it wouldn't get out before it spoiled.

    Having the guts to push yourself is one thing, and that's admirable. Having the wisdom to know you have limits, and recognizing those limits is much more, it's called WISDOM. Ignoring your limits when so much is at risk is beyond foolish. It's irresponsible and ... well the other words would likely get censored.

    A mountain wilderness hunt with animals is a killer as the horses only get you to the area you are hunting. You still hike up & down mountains every day with your pack, rifle, binoculars, water, etc., for 12-14 hours at a time. Even if you are in great shape, by the third day your body is getting beat down. By the end of the hunt you will be dead tired. That's with horses. Without horses you would only be kidding yourself and wasting the chance to have a great hunt. Why not make the most of your hunt and give yourself a realistic chance of recovering what you shoot?
     
  15. John316

    John316 Oregon New Member

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    Admirable for the drive, wise to know your limits. Try strapping on a 50 lb. pack and walking around your living room. Have a stroll to the mailbox. Bend over, climb a flight of stairs. Head back to the fridge for a frosty mug of your favorite beverage and syber-hunt the afternoon away in comfort and style!
     
  16. 2506

    2506 Seattle Well-Known Member

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    If you're set on hiking in, you can find yourself an outfitter that will pack your game out if you happen to kill one. Like most posters have said, it's really easy to find a packer these days that will be willing to do just about anything to earn a dollar.
     
  17. Buano

    Buano NC Member

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    Another option is to hire an outfitter already headed into this area to haul your provisions into the area & haul any game & your excess gear out. I've seen that done with walk-ins for wilderness fishing & it is much more feasible to do a "hike in" if you aren't carrying everything needed over that terrain.

    I would still suggest using an outfitter the first time you hunt the area. If you want to go it alone after you've "been there-done that" you would then be making a more informed decision.
     
  18. motoman98

    motoman98 Gresham, OR Active Member

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    Wow, interesting to hear about the 'cap' again. Back in the 70's there was an early buck hunt in that area. Started the first week in September: My buddy and I hiked in two yrs in a row. First year we got skunked, but saw and hiked the most impressive country in Oregon. Second yr we both got bucks. Boned the animals and packed 'em out, about 12 miles. Something to remember, oh yes.