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Hunt mountain goats and Sitka blacktail deer on Baranof Island, Southeast Alaska

This mountain goat hunt takes place on one of the most scenic and rugged islands on earth, Baranof Island in southeastern Alaska. Unlike many goat areas in Alaska, you do not need to draw a tag in this area.

The outfitter offers hunting in August, October and November. During September he is busy guiding brown bear hunters. On his late hunts he picks you up at the airport in Sitka. If you want to save some hiking, you can opt to pay for a charter (was $2,500 last year) to fly into a high-altitude lake.

There are two chief factors that affect hunter success: the weather and the hunter's physical and mental conditioning. The weather is more likely to hamper hunting in November, when the animals have long winter hair. But occasionally rain clouds drop low in August, too, preventing spotting of animals at long range.

Usually hunter success is 75 to 80% or more. Only hunters in good shape should consider this hunt as hiking in steep country is difficult even in the best of conditions and even more difficult if the snow is deep. Lots of snow does help in one way, however, and that's because it forces herds of Sitka blacktail deer down to the beaches. This is an ideal time to enjoy a combination deer-goat hunt.

Baranof is the only island in southeastern Alaska with a major goat population. There are about 2,000 goats on the island.

"Most of my hunters see 30 or 40," the outfitter said. "But goat hunting is a young man's game. You have to be in shape; you have to be able to get up to them. I've had hunters see big goats at long range and choose to take an average goat that was easier to reach.

"If I get a guy in August who doesn't mind the shorter hair, the weather is usually nicer. If a hunter can hike, that early hunt will give him an excellent chance to get a nicer goat. The goats are way up on the peaks then. And though my August hunters usually see a lot of goats, it's still a hard hunt because the walking is not easy.

"My son and some young guides go up and hunt with them on that early hunt. Often the hunter will say something like, 'I can't make it over to that big billy; let's just take this one.' Even though you fly into a high lake, you have to hike up a steep ridge, it's not dangerously steep, but it still takes a great deal of effort. I had two hunters last year who did not want to hike to the 20 to 30 goats they could see. So I definitely stress to hunters that it's a physical hunt. If you're not in shape, it knocks your odds down quite a bit. But if you can handle rigorous hunting, you should be able to get a really nice goat, assuming the weather is on your side long enough during your trip."







Hunt MG4952
Hunt, hunter:guide ratio Price per person in 2016 or 2017

Mountain goat, 1x1

$9,000 for goat, $10,500 for goat/deer combo

Both 7 day hunts

Travel Hunter success
Fly to Sitka. No extra charter flight. Early season (August) goat hunts have the option to take a float plane to a high lake to start out at a higher elevation, total cost about $1,600 per pair of hunters. No motel stay required. Typically 80% or more, depending on weather and hunter's shape. Each year from 2010 through 2013 the outfitter has produced six goats for eight hunters. Typically hunters who don't score come in poor physical shape.
Difficulty What to expect
All goat hunting requires good physical conditioning. Mental toughness is just as important. This hunt is not for obese hunters or heavy smokers. Hunters usually see 30 to 40 goats. There are about 2,000 mountain goats on Baranoff Island. Expect steep
Licenses Area
Tags and license not included. You do not have to draw a tag to take this hunt. Click here for tag prices. Baranoff Island, the only island in southeastern Alaska with a major goat population.
Not included in hunt price Notes
Taxes, taxidermy, butcher fees, license and tags, transportation between hunter's home and Sitka, Alaska. The state allows 21 non-resident goat hunters on the island per year. This outfitter and one other control all but five of the tag quota. The other outfitter charges $8,000.