Let’s continue the saga of the drawing permit application brochure. As I mentioned last week, nobody in Big Lake has this brochure and, apparently, even if they sell hunting and fishing licenses, they must request these brochures, or they will not have any.
I called Fish and Game and requested they mail me the 2023-2024 brochure, which I have already received in the mail. The receptionist I spoke with said she would be calling the third-party vendor who does the distribution of this brochure and let them know at least some local hunting and fishing license vendors received last year’s brochure and would need the current brochure.
I was back in the grocery store where I first noticed the mixed-up brochures. I checked to see if new brochures had been received and placed out. They were still providing last year’s paperwork. I called this to the attention of the customer service person, and she proceeded to tell me the brochures were good until the end of the year. She obviously didn’t have a clue how this all worked. She was thinking of license periods rather than the drawing permit application timeframe.
I pointed out the timeframe to apply as written in the first sentence and stated the Dec. 15, 2021 end time. With that, she quit trying to tell me I was wrong. Anyway, if you pick up a printed copy of the drawing permit application brochure, be sure it is titled, “2023-2024 Alaska Drawing Permit Hunt Supplement” so you will have the correct information to apply.
The front page of the brochure explains everything you need to know to submit your applications. It tells you how to apply, youth hunting opportunities, and basic hunter education requirements. If you must use a guide, that is explained also. It explains permit reissue for deployed military, proxy hunting, and undersubscribed drawing hunts. It’s a good idea to study this front page if you are new to the drawing hunt application process and even if you’re an old hand to refresh your memory on how this stuff works. Page 3 contains an explanation of how the random hunt drawing works and goes into a little more detail on youth drawing hunts.
I don’t hunt brown bears or do any mountain hunting anymore, so I didn’t study the sections on brown bear permits or sheep or mountain goat hunts. A quick look at those sections showed no new hunts for brown bears or mountain goats. There are four new hunts for sheep involving nonresident hunters with a total of ten permits for all four hunts combined.
I don’t worry about black bear permits as there are so many opportunities during the general season. I can’t afford to travel for elk or musk ox, so that limits my interest in those species. I’m interested in bison, but the tresvpass permits to hunt on private land have priced me out of that hunting too.
I’m basically down to caribou and moose permit applications. As stated in prior columns, there will be no drawing hunt permits for Unit 13 caribou in 2023. I might look at the Fortymile hunts in eastern Alaska, but those hunts don’t involve drawing permits. Probably half of the entire drawing hunt brochure involve moose hunts.
There are a couple of new moose hunts scattered around the state, but there are nine new hunts in Unit 14A, all of which are for bull moose. None of the hunts, following the boundaries of the antlerless hunts, have more than four permits each. Most only have two permits available. I suspect these new hunts are to relieve some of the pressure of the antlerless moose hunts in Unit 14A.
The odds of drawing an antlerless moose hunt permit in 14A are around two percent or less because of the number of applicants and available permits. These new bull hunts will draw more applicants and should serve as a revenue generator for the department.
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