I bought a sweet hatchet, not quite an heirloom quality piece, but still a high quality Husqvarna hatchet. It’s got a razor’s edge on it, so it will have me almost as nervous as my Havalon whenever I am using it. That’s a good thing I guess, keeps your mind on safety. I’ll probably add the hatchet to my hunting daypack for helping to split the ribs off each Sitka buck, and at camp, the hatchet should be invaluable for splitting down the firewood to TiGoat stove-compatible pieces.
Admittedly, a 2 pound bucket of plaster of paris seems like the most random item of all the things I’ll be taking. That’s probably because it is the most random item and doesn’t even really qualify as gear. But there is a method to the madness. I want a cast of a Kodiak brown bears hind-foot. Plain and simple motivation. I’m hoping to find a clean track in some mud, mix some plaster, set the mold, come back after a couple of days and retrieve it. Who needs store-bought souvenirs?
2-gallon Ziplocs will make partitioning meat easier, particularly as we de-bone quarters back at camp. Not to mention 2-gallon Ziplocs are great waterproof containers for sealing up a dry change of clothes in the daypack. A couple heavy-duty dry sacks were also purchased to augment my existing supply. 3-mL contractor bags will also be along to seal in several 2-gallon Ziploc bags each and sink in the lake where we are landing for refrigerated meat care. Re-positioning to the south end of Kodiak Island, there is zero chance of benefiting from a nearby snowback for meat care, so we will have to get a little more creative. There will be no shortage of waterproof bags and sacks to keep moisture at bay.
If we do get wet, I’ve got plenty of ways to start a fire. My Swedish Firesteel striker will be the back-up to my back-up plan, some waterproof strike anywhere matches will be my back-up fire source, and my primary plan to light any necessary flames will be the ol’ Bic lighter. For fire-starting fuel, I grabbed a couple DuraFlame fire starter logs that I hacked into smaller pieces which will back-up the standard and most effective Vaseline-soaked cotton balls which I will have along in abundance. I’d rather be safe than sorry.
Wrapping up this post, I decided not to purchase my own satellite phone or other communication device or even to rent one in the conventional sense. I made a post on a backcountry hunting forum asking if anyone had an Inreach unit that they would not be using during August-September and offered to rent it from them for an agreed upon price. Within a couple hours, I was chatting with a fellow from Texas who gladly took me up on my request. I’ll have the SE Inreach unit along for our adventure which is capable of sending and receiving pre-fabricated as well as custom text messages. For a fraction of the cost of renting it from an established vendor, I was pretty pleased with myself for plugging that hole in the equipment list via an extremely economical manner.