Alaska is home to the largest subspecies of Moose in North America, the Alaska Moose. These creatures are truly massive, with mature bulls sometimes reaching weights of over 1,600 pounds and standing at over 7 feet tall.
Alaska Moose Hunting Season
Alaskan moose hunting regulations depend on residency. For residents, the season typically runs from late August to mid-September. However, non-residents can only hunt between September 8th and 17th. Residents are allowed to take one bull moose with no antler requirements, whereas non-residents can only harvest a bull scoring 50 inches or higher or with 4 or more brow tines. In addition, non-residents without a resident in their immediate family must hire a licensed outfitter or guide in order to hunt Moose.
Alaska Moose Hunting Tags
There are several options for Moose tags, all of which are location specific. Some areas, like the Fortymile moose hunt unit, are open to both residents and non-residents and only require registration. Others, like Western Tanana Flats, are only open to Alaska residents and require registration. These registration hunts have unlimited permits and are closed once the harvest goal has been met. Many areas are draw only, with tags being allotted through a limited draw system and requiring hunters to apply for tags several months ahead of time.
Alaska Moose Hunting Techniques
The best time to hunt bull moose is once the rut begins around September 10th. Here, the usually wary bulls are much less concerned about their safety than they are about finding females, so they are much more active and easier to find. In addition, hunters can utilize calling to bring in bulls from several miles away. Typically, hunters will make the low moaning sound of a cow moose in conjunction with bull sounds and the thrashing of brush to bring out a bull’s competitive nature. This technique can prove extremely effective, and, if successful, often results in up close and personal opportunities with the massive animals.
In-between calling sequences, hunters often spend a great deal of time behind their glass looking for the telltale rack of a bull. Once a bull is spotted, hunters will attempt to get into range or call the bull to them and look for a shot. Moose are extremely tough animals that require some serious stopping power. Typically, bullets in the .300 caliber and larger are recommended, with shot placement being of the utmost importance. That being said, make sure you are comfortable with your rifle before you begin your hunt, as a wounded bull hiding in a willow thicket is not a problem anyone wants to deal with.