Caribou 2014, first attmpt

Headed up to 12 Mile Summit with Dean with the intent to give him a hand on a few things at their cabin and then do some caribou hunting. Well when we got to the top of 12 Mile Summit it was -3 below zero and a good 20 mph wind and neither of us felt like riding out in 25 to 30 below temps just to do a little maintenance and maybe get a Caribou. So back to town we went, I have to say that once we got back down off of 12 Mile it was a nice morning for a drive. We did stop off at Chatanika Lodge and have breakfast, thanks Dean.

So Sunday I figured I’d go after the Bou again, but this time up to Rosebud which is a mountain about 3500 feet elevation along the Yukon Quest trail. Being by myself it’s a nice easy ride in from Chena Hot Springs Road. I parked at 52 mile CHSR and off loaded the Bearcat and pull behind Otter sled, there was one other vehicle in the parking area, a truck and cab-over camper who had spent the night there.

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Winter Moose Hunt, our first attempt

As I said, I missed the general Moose hunt this year due to some medical issues I had to resolve but now everything is good. The Alaska Fish and Game (F&G) has a late season or winter moose hunt open until February, so I went and got a tag and decided to go see what I could see in regards to some Moose meat for the freezer.

Missing moose hunt this year is really biting into our winter food supplies. I’m not thrilled about having to eat store brought meat all winter, so I used most of my Alaska State Permanent Fund (PFD) dividend and ordered half a cow and half a pig from Delta Meats. Delta Meats is an excellent butcher shop down in Delta, about 100 miles south of us. A long way to go for food supplies, but better than having to eat regular store brought meat and without any Moose or Caribou in the freezer we need something for the dinner plates.
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Another Alaska Cabin, Oct 25, 2014

My latest trip to the Steese cabin site was to see what little I could offer in getting the cabin enclosed. Winter is here and enclosing the cabin is way up on the priority list so the inside work can be done is some comfort.

I also hauled in the material to finish up my cabin’s foundations. Not sure I’m going to build a cabin here but at least a nice 16×24 foot platform that I can use to set up my wall tent on for hunting season and some basic exploring weekends. This part of the country is excellent for ATV riding and doing a little recreational gold panning, so who knows, maybe I can dig up a little gold to help with the cost of building a cabin here.

By time I left for the day the cabin was enclosed minus a window and door, but no biggie, putting those in shouldn’t take them more than an hour at the most. So good luck Dean, I’m going to spend the next couple of weekends trying to fill a winter moose hunt tag I have since I missed the general hunt this year.

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Another Alaska Cabin, Oct 18, 2014

Saturday morning Jake and I drove up the Steese to the parking area. The original plan was to work on the porch deck, help get the wall sheeting up and the house wrap on.

So as all good plan’s go this one was changed before we even got started. Met Dean and loaded up the Siglin sled and hauled it behind the Bearcat for our first run in. Dean asked me if I’d mind hauling the rest of the material in and of course I said sure. So Jake and I ran three trips hauling the last of the heavy materials to the cabin site. A nice and easy day actually, all considered. The weather at the cabin site was fantastic, blue bird skies and sunshine. The weather at the parking area, 7 miles away was a different story. It started out nice, but by time we got the last load ready to go in the wind was blowing and the clouds were coming in.
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Another Alaska Cabin, 4th weekend

I figured I’d make another trip, my fourth, up to the cabin site to help some more with the building. This was going to be a big push weekend as Dean had gotten a few more hands to help, a couple of good carpenters. I left town early with the plan to beat the snow fall that was suppose too fall in Fairbanks and the Alaska Range. The Alaska Range is south, so no worries, right…

The Steese site is more in the Central weather area as far as weather reports. The news was saying a bit of snow in town and nothing out of the Central area, at least that’s what it said before I left. So the drive up was pretty easy and relaxing and I got to wait a bit for the others to show up. They and I were going to stay in one of the enclosed trailers with a heater. Since I wasn’t familiar with the heater I just hung out at the summit and started to read a good book. After they showed up we all packed our gear in the trailer and got the heater going.
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Another Alaska Cabin

For those of you who haven’t really followed my postings over the years, after Dean and I brought the property down near Hurricane (aka Hurricane cabin near Chulitna Alaska) we applied for the State of Alaska Land Lottery and won, along with 50 or so other folks. Anyway, the land lottery is the state’s replacement to Home Steading and a pretty good deal, at least I think so.

Our original agreement after getting both locations was that I would build the first cabin in Hurricane and Dean would build one on the Steese property. As time went on Dean got side tracked with the regular issues of life and helped me build the Hurricane cabin and not the Steese one.

So last month (Sept 2014) he informs me that his wonderful and charming daughter got all her material for a 16×20 cabin. One slight little problem….. She needs dad (Dean) to build it because building is not one of her major skill sets.
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Brain Surgery and Cabin Work

So I made the trip to Seattle and the Swedish Medical Center to follow up on the brain surgery my local doctor said I needed. To accomplish this I had to cancel all my hunting plans and spend three days in Seattle in a very small room. The bottom line, my cyst is not a cyst but an anomaly and doesn’t require surgery, yeah team.


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July 4th, 2014

Well I guess it’s time to review the roll over I had on the 4th of July weekend. We got to where Peter said the group was meeting, this was 50 miles down the rough and ready Denali Hwy and then another 7 miles up the Valdez Creek Mine Road to a nice pull out with a view. So far an easy if bumpy ride, well almost easy, crossing Valdez Creek shortly after turning off the Denali Hwy was a challenge. The challenge of course was convincing my lovely bride that we wouldn’t get sweep away crossing what was a pretty good roaring river. Heck it only came over the top of the tires for a few feet.

So we made it and nobody got wet which was nice. After getting camp set up I was informed that Peter was leading a ride farther up the valley, you can see it on the track log included in the pictures. It was a beautiful evening and a nice ride with only a couple of wet crossings, granted one of those was 500 feet long with nice deep pool at the end to get over, but still enjoyable.

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The 4th of July 2014, where I rolled the ATV

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June 2014, into the cabin

After my end of the season trip last April I figured I’d wait until the snow was gone and the weather improved to make my first summer trip in. Well the snow did melt and summer did arrive along with lots of rain so far this year.

I drove down Thursday evening and had my mind set to get stuck a couple of times on the ride in, surprise, surprise, made it to the cabin without getting stuck once, that was a change. You will notice that the first picture in the album below is of bear pop, taken about 50 feet just before the cabin. Dang bear(s) tore up some more of my form board and decided to leave me a nice little pile to show his support, Ha.

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The cabin in June 2014

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Last ride of the season

And it was a doozy, the day started out fairly good, worked 4 hours, then drove down to my parking spot and unloaded. Plan was to make the first trip in with necessities and then make a couple more to haul the 1/3 cord of firewood I brought along. Well as they say, the “Best made plans of men and mice”, it was 2:00 PM by time I was able to start my first run in. It was getting pretty warm and I figured I’d see how the ride was going in with a light load.. hahahaha, it’s 3 miles from the parking spot to the cabin. Normally a 10 to 15 minute ride, it took me 4 hours and 38 minutes to make it.

Got stuck 5 times and as you can see from the pictures below, the first time also included rolling the Bearcat and then burning out my belt. After getting unstuck and going again I figured I’d be OK, nope, got stuck three more time and was just about to turn around and head back to the rig when one of my neighbors, Ron, showed up. He helped me get the Bearcat back up and on to the semi-packed trail and then he rode lead on his nice little and very light weight Tundra. We made it into the cabin and there I stayed. It was 6:38 PM and I was pretty well wiped out.


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