Hunt Moose in the Yukon
(Watson Lake, Yukon)
Yukon Moose Hunt
IT STARTED OUT BAD...
My wife and I take two weeks each fall to hunt moose in the Yukon.
We decided to travel 90 miles from home into the mountains and camp near a large swamp where I had called in two moose the year before.
We left home on Wednesday and set up our camp. We have a Toyota Tacoma 4 x 4 and a Four Wheel Camper loaded on. It was a 5 minute walk to the swamp edge to allow quiet coming and going. I called some on Wednesday night. Just before dark a couple fellows came along and said they had seen one cow moose in a week of hunting.
We were out before daylight the next morning. I called and no moose at all in the morning. We decided to hike around for a few hours and lo and behold all we saw were wolf tracks...
This was not good but decided to stick it out. I called again that night with the same dismal results.
Friday morning was just as quiet. During the day we took the ATV and circled the swamp. Unlike the year before, there were no moose tracks and it was obvious the wolves had moved in.
Saturday morning we woke up and wow 6 inches of snow. As we were up in the mountains we decided to leave and go to a spot 50 miles north of home.
By 9 AM we were on our way out and made it back to the Alaska Highway about 10.
We had not even had a coffee yet so stopped at a highway lodge and got two to go.
Back on the Alaska Highway heading home we passed a couple of small lakes. My wife says, "Hey, there's a moose"
. I pulled over and we walked over to the lake.
There were three moose standing at the far end of the lake 215 yards away. A cow, calf, and very small bull were looking back in our direction. I told the wife to stay put.
I went off the road, up a bank, and could clearly see all three. I broke a few branches off a small tree and took a good rest, on the small bull.
I thought about waiting for the moose to move out of the water but thought they float real well so we could most likely get him to our end of the lake. I shot and hit him real well. He took a few steps deeper into the water and the other two disappeared. I shot again and the moose dropped right there in the water.
I canceled my tag and tied it in a small tree as we needed to go home and get the canoe and larger rope.
Three hours later we were back and now the weather had changed to s raging snow storm. My wife put on her new chest waders and out we went to the moose laying in the water. She leaned over the edge of the canoe and tied on the moose.
I said "I hear another one" so let out a short call and holy cow... Out comes a 60 inch plus bull and coming fast right at us.
My wife dropped the rope and we paddled backwards as fast as we could. The bull turned and went into the bush at the end of the lake. By now we were about half way across the lake against the shore.
I looked up and there he was again, now only 10 yards from us. I stood up yelled, picked up a few sticks and threw them in his direction. He went up the bank and stood looking down at us from 5 yards away. We were looking right up at him, and all I could think of was please do not come down the bank or we will have a terrible wreck.
Luckily the bull turned and walked into the bush.
We paddled back to the moose in the water and tied him onto the canoe. We could move him OK but the wind was blowing so hard we just got pushed into the end of the lake. My wife jumped into the water at the front, pulled the canoe up as I let out rope and then she stopped pulling the canoe and i pulled up the moose. We did this process all around the lake to the end where we had our ATV and truck.
The ATV could not pull the moose up the bank off the lake though I was able to get the truck close enough and tied a 3/4 inch rope to the hitch. We had almost 50 yards of rope out. The moose antlers hooked up in the bank so we put a ramp of logs under the head and neck and up he came right on to a grassy flat spot.
By now it was 6:30 at night. I told my wife lets take the legs off, and then clean him out leave the hide on and we could finish skinning at home when we had it hanging in our shop.
I had just hooked the ATV winch cable onto a front leg to help lift it and I heard from above us "Hey, what are you doing?" A fellow came down the hill and said "I remember you. You shot a caribou a couple years ago and I wanted the hide. Remember I skinned the caribou and then came to your house and got another hide?"
Now I remembered him. He said, "Wait, I will get my knife". The fellow came back with an elder. They are both members of the local First Nation.
He got to work and the four legs were off and loaded into our trailer in quick order. The elder asked if he could take out the insides? Would we mind if he took some of the insides? "Of course", I said, he could take whatever he wanted.
My wife got a couple plastic shopping bags and the fellow filled them with insides. the other fellow told me we made his day. The torso was loaded into the trailer and we were home by 10 PM.
The moose horns were 20 inches wide. So we really got a freezer trophy.........
Editors Note: Thanks for sharing you experience about how you and your wife hunt moose in the Yukon, Robbie. A Yukon moose hunt would be on many a hunters wish list... including mine.