Friday, October 02, 2009
Lots of effort but no elk
This year our Afognak elk hunt was a disappointment as far as shooting elk goes. We arrived back in Kodiak on Wednesday night with no elk meat. But we did find 3 herds and did have plenty of opportunities - only this year luck and circumstance seemed to be working against us. I think the most crushing blow was failing to harvest a single elk from a herd that we found on the beach. What a wasted opportunity!
Nonetheless, we did do a lot of great hiking, camped in some beautiful spots and even got in a little fishing. Even if we failed on the elk we did bring back some fish (mostly Pacific Cod). This year we spent 3 nights on shore camping, and life was good at night when we had our mini wood stove burning in the Kifaru teepee. Quite a change from last year when we got socked with the wind and cold and had no warm place to hang out. One afternoon when we crossed a pass we got pasted by snow and rain and it looked like we might have an emergency situation. Everyone was soaking wet and cold. But we were able to pitch our tent in a grove of spruce, light the stove and dry out. Wow!
Photos: Top - Justin hiking up a mountain in search of elk. Ben M and John S with Mount Augustine in the background on the extreme right side. John poses with our tiny woodstove. Tent and stove weigh less than 6 pounds. All five of us fit around the stove (but it was a pretty tight squeeze). Justin awaits pickup from the Alpha Centauri - Jim was able to nudge the bow of the boat up against the rocks and we all jumped aboard. Bottom - John shows off a tiny halibut that we did not keep.