Vessel Based Unguided Kodiak Blacktail Deer Hunt Report by Kyle Hanson

Kyle with his Kodiak Island blacktail

Hunter: Kyle Hanson
Date: October 24-30, 2021
Hunt Taken: Vessel Based Unguided Kodiak Blacktail Deer Hunt
Consultant: Kyle Hanson | Outdoors International

My goal on this trip was to catch a fish, shoot a buck, and take a fox. I did all of that in the first day. It was an unbelievable experience. This trip has more experience value per dollar than any other trip I have ever been on… period. This was my first trip to Kodiak Island and it will most certainly not be the last. Matter of fact, we are already planning to go back next year!

We caught Rockfish, pulled Crab Pots, chased Blacktail Deer, Fox and even Mountain Goats! (Residents only). I was fortunate to take two great bucks on this trip and a sweet Cross Fox. My first buck taken the first morning on shore was a really nice 3×3 with eye guards that ended up being one of the bigger bucks taken on the trip. On the packout back to shore I bumped a fox and was fortunate to get setup in time for a shot. Hell of a first day! The second buck taken was a really neat “Cryptorchid” buck. I found out they are somewhat common on the Island. They are a non-typical buck that never shed antlers or velvet and are similar to a Mule Deer Cactus Buck. Unfortunately they also have pretty delicate antlers, mine rolled pretty far after the shot and broke the tines off. Zero complaints with two awesome bucks and a Cross Fox though!

The accommodations were better than expected on this hunt. I am told that next year they are upgrading to a 6 man Yacht style boat with two man rooms and showers! Meals were restaurant quality and chef prepared. We ate lots of fresh Kodiak delicacies to include Rockfish, Tanner Crab, Scallops, Blacktail, and even Mountain Goat! Our Boat Captain was top notch and very professional. I couldn’t have asked for a better staff to care for our group.

The weather on this trip was better than expected. We had sunny and beautiful weather the first four days with only one day of high winds. The last two days of the trip were real rainy and crappy so we stayed on the boat considering we put 16 critters on the boat in 4 days… Having hunted Alaska for the sixth time now, I have learned to stock up on patience as weather should always be expected in Alaska! Kodiak is especially no different.

  • How would you rate your trip overall? Great
  • How were your guide(s)? Great
  • How was your lodging? Good
  • How was the food? Great
  • How was your outfitters communication? Good
  • How physically demanding was your trip? Moderate
  • Do you have anything to add about your outfitter? Solid Operation. I have the highest confidence and trust in this Outfitter.
  • How would you rate your consultant? Great
  • Do you have anything to add about your consultant? Self Coached mostly on this one! My Coworker, Gary Colbath was a tremendous help on this trip as he has gone on this trip four times now.
  • Would you book another trip with OUTDOORS INTERNATIONAL in the future? Yes
  • Can we use your stories and/or photos on our website? Yes
  • Can we use this in social media? Yes

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