I caught a marten!! If you are not sure what a marten looks like check out the picture in our pictures archive. They are basically like a really large squirrel except they eat meat rather than nuts. Although most of our snow disappeared during the warm spell, Molly and I went snow-shoeing a couple of times in the trees along a creek where the snow still ranges from one to eight feet deep. We found marten tracks all over the place! I told Ron about them so we set out to trap martens.
Here's how it works. In the area where I found several sets of tracks we looked for a leaning tree. Ron set one trap and I set another about 30 yards away. We set and wired the traps to our trees, put a ptarmigan higher in the tree, added some marten lure (very smelly), and hung a wing with fishing line to add some motion to the set. Simple! The next day Ron had a marten in his trap and the day after that I had one in mine! My marten was bigger of course and I claim the title of a marten trapping guide because I picked the spot. I wish everything else was this easy to trap. It's been almost two weeks since this and we didn't see another marten track until the day we had to pull out the traps because marten season is closed now.
Maybe I shouldn't have given away my marten trapping secrets, but as long as nobody plans to come trap them from Koliganek, I guess it is OK. Ron and I already have big plans for trapping martens next year because we have come across several areas with a lot more tracks. Last year a marten fur brought in around $80, this year only $30, so we are hoping the price jumps back up for next year.