Bow in the Brooks?

swat8888

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I am seriously debating taking my bow over my rifle into the Brooks this year. Looking for any advice from others that have hunted the Brooks. I already have one Dall on my wall but I've been very addicted to my bow since I got it, much more than I ever was with a rifle. Keep in mind I've never taken an an animal with my bow. How hard is the Brooks with a bow for those that have been? I don't want to leave without getting something since the trip is so expensive. Any of you who guide I'd love your advice....I know Molls guides AK, not sure who else on here does.
 
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The area I sheep hunted in the Brooks did not lend itself to bowhunting. I'm sure there are areas that would be alright, l just didn't see them. The chugach on the other hand seems much more conducive to bowhunting. Good luck
 

R Miller

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If you can kill a sheep in the Chugach with a bow you can kill one anywhere in Alaska with a bow.

I dont have any real experience/advice to offer as far as bowhunting the Brooks but if I were in your shoes and taking a ram was of upmost importance on this hunt I would probably take the rifle and perhaps schedule a walk in off the haul road next year.

Having said that, I am considering switching to bow for sheep hunting in the near future and if you are leaning that way at some point you have to take the leap and be prepared to deal with a little frustration along the way. Time in the hills during the off season will lessen that learning curve mightily.

Good luck Swat!
 

Chris

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Did 14 days in the brooks toting the video camera for a friend who was bowhunting. We came close twice, but the cover was just too sparse to close the gap to reasonable now range. I'm sure there are areas somewhere in the range that may be better suited for it, though.
 

billy molls

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I have only every guided one bow hunter in the Brooks (North side). It was a crazy deal, it was a 6-day 2 on 1!!! The one guy shot one with a rifle on day 1, the other guy held out until the last day. We got to within 80 yards, with no cover available to get closer and he wasn't willing to "wait them out" as it was the last day. The South side has more cover, but I don't have any experience hunting there. I am sure it can be done, and it is done every year, but I have to think that there is easier places to bow hunt them.

That being said, I have had a couple guys shoot rams at 40 yards or less. I've never had much success with over whites. I don't pack them anymore, but I know some guides have had good luck with them. If I was bowhunting, I would surely use them.
good luck.
 

Rowdy

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I've been hunting sheep in the Brooks for the last 6 years and I've have on a pretty good number of occasions been within 50 yards or less. Personally I think the pursuit of game might be the funnest part about hunting. Putting a tag on sheep seems to be the goal but I've always had just a hint of regret that the pursuit was over. I'm not a bowhunter but getting up close to a sheep with the excitement of having that moment when you are in range and finally get to draw would probably peg the excitement meter. If you're that hooked on your bow I'd say take it, you'll never know unless you do. It'll probably be a blast.
 

Steve O

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Fred Bear did it...

If you must tag a ram, you are not ready to bowhunt sheep. Take the rifle.

This is coming from a guy who has an unpunched Bighorn tag from Colorado and spent the entire season trying with a recurve.
 
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swat8888

swat8888

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I've decided I don't "have" to get one, obviously I really want to. Got my first last year....shot it out of my sleeping bag, so I suppose I owe it to the sheep gods to give myself a little more of a challenge this year.
 

Steve O

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Do yourself a favor. If you really DO want to take a ram with your bow, do NOT take a rifle along. 99.99999999% of people will end up using the rifle.

Good luck. Even without killing my Bighorn, it was still and will always be my best hunt.
 

Nick Muche

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After watching all of Billy Molls videos I am convinced that a Bow in the Brooks for sheep would be TOUGH! However, that is the way I like it... When I get a chance to move to AK I am taking it and I can't wait. I would take the bow and no rifle because I know that after 6-7 days of hunting hard that rifle would be calling my name just to fill the tag. I think it would be a challenge, a fun one at that. That country looks tough but there were several rams killed on those videos that I think with a little more time a person could have tried to stalk within bow range, especially the ones that were near rocks or just on the other side of the hill/mountain... Could be fun!

Great video's Billy!
 
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swat8888

swat8888

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Nick the two guides I ran into pretty much laughed in my face when I told them I was bow hunting in the north side of the Brooks. Three days later I stalked into bow range twice. Although I sucked it up and didn't bring home my ram it is do-able and way more rewarding just to get that close and let one fly than watching my buddy blast his from 400 some odd yards away...ho hum. That being said I'll have a hard time taking my bow again next year since my partner will have a rifle...at least that's what I told myself after watching both of them take home rams. Couple weeks after the fact I'm already considering taking the bow back to finish the job I started last year.
 

Steve O

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Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner.

Now the tough part. You may now have to find a sheep BOW huning partner...
 
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swat8888

swat8888

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Or just find someone who isn't a resident who wants to experience Dall Sheep country....then I can split my load of sheep meat too....sounding perfect. Too bad I'll probably never find someone like that. Hard to convince someone a $2k bush flight is worth it to maybe get a chance at a 'bou.
 

Steve O

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Well, I am spending just a little less than that to scout my potential elk unit in Utah next month...

Sheep hunting with a bow is not easy and having a partner that understands it could be a big help. I could be talked into it I am sure, but not for a couple years. Taking a group of kids on a Pronghorn hunt for the Professional Bowhunters Society next year that will take all my spare time. You should check out the PBS...there are a couple guys up there that might be able to help.

I have always wanted to hunt the Brooks Range and figured I would get my Dall there. Might just end up being an optics jockey and sherpa!
 

Nick Muche

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Swat, I plan to move there in about 3-4 years... I will look you up and we will do it... I am serious too!
 
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