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Big Game Patrick Meitin: Out West

Plan An Alaska Float Trip For Moose Hunting

by Patrick Meitin   |  April 4th, 2012 1

No luck drawing a lower 48 tag? An Alaskan float trip might be your next best affordable moose hunting option for the bowhunter that’s on a budget. Here’s everything you need to know about  about taking on this life-changing adventure.


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The appeal of bowhunting moose is obvious. Because, you know, they’re the biggest big game with the biggest big antlers around (by sheer weight at least). The most problematic detail in this fantasy is drawing a Lower 48 moose tag – a Shiras moose by definition out West (the extreme Northeast harboring limited “Canada” moose) – is akin to drawing bighorn sheep. And though traveling to Alaska to bowhunt moose on your own is legally and logistically feasible, it might be important to stress unguided/non-resident success rates for moose (all weapons) sits around 10 percent, fully-guided hunts ($10 to $12 Grand) perhaps 50/50 propositions. I made five Alaska hunts before finally arrowing my first bull (there were brushes with success on some of those).

This isn’t meant to discourage. I enthusiastically recommend it in fact. It’s like this: You probably won’t get a moose (but you might) -- but you’ll enjoy every minute of your defeat (if you have an average tolerance for horizontal rain and/or biting insects). The landscape’s unsurpassed. The fishing world class. Actually killing something a lifetime achievement. And it’s the biggest adventure left on Earth.

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