Axis Deer – Lanai, Hawaii


Island of Lanai, Hawaii – PSE Mach Flite IV – Signature Series

My days in the U.S. Naval Reserves were great days, being able to go to Hawaii almost every year for about 21 days of active duty.  I was attached to the Naval Communications Area Master Station at Wahiawa, Oahu.  My crew members would be expecting me every year to come back for duty.  Besides doing my duty as a Spook, I would also help with the Physical Readiness Test, as I was the PRC for my detachment in Portland.  I was usually watch standing during my stay at the NCAMS Wahiawa, which would be 2 eves, 2 days and 2 mid-watches, with 80 hours off between the next watch.  This would allow me to find places to hunt, run or bike on the islands. 

One of my favorite places to work up a hunt was on the Island of Lanai, Hawaii.
I had made friends with the local game warden – Ken Sabino.  Ken was nice enough while he was working to loan me his Jeep.  It made it a lot easier to get around the island. 

Who would of thought that there was Axis Deer hunting on such a small island in paradise.
Well I have to tell you that the island gets big when you hunting it.  Some of the canyons are quite deep and rugged.  I loved to hunt the canyons and look for Axis Deer.  In the old days when Dole had Pineapple Plantations, they would have open arms for hunters to harvest the deer.  The Axis Deer had a passion for the Pineapple and Passion Fruit.

I had hunted the Island of Lanai twice before and harvested Axis Deer on both hunts.  It is in Hawaii where I learned how to do the Hawaiian Cut (gutting).  It has made it a lot easier to get the back strap, tenderloins, and all four (4) quarters off the game animal in the field without gutting the animal.

I would usually have to take a Cessna twin engine plane out of Oahu.  The flight was short and not to bad on the ride.  

My last hunt to Lanai was just before I retired from the Navy and it was a bowhunt.
I was successful in taking a nice Axis Deer off the Island of Lanai after two days of hunting.

Today it is a resort island and not the same as when I hunted.  There was one old hotel that looked like something that should have been in the Catskill’s in upper state New York.  It was very easy to get a tag to hunt on the Island.  I would get my tags from Dole Pineapple.  Today I believe that you go through the State of Hawaii.

If you want a rough – tough hunt for Axis Deer, you surely can have one.  On the dry side of the Island they have a bush called Long Thorn Kiawe that will give you a run for body.  The Axis Deer thrive in the stuff.  You can also hunt the wet side of the island and you better have a rain suit.


The big buck got away got away from me – I had 2 tags!


257 Weatherby Lazermark Custom – 350 yards

4 thoughts on “Axis Deer – Lanai, Hawaii”

  1. I liked so much my honeymoon vacations :). I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.

  2. Mighty Bwana,
    I just returned from my hunt of a lifetime on Lanai and am in the U.S. Army at 19yrs. I was truley humbled by the terrain and even more by the beauty, splendor, Island hospitality and friends that will give me memories that I will never forget. We were a party of 4 and opted for the Paid Lanai land hunt the day prior to the public drawn tag hunt on Saturday 5 April 09. We did really well and walked away with 6 animals total. I struck out on the paid hunt on the 4th, but was patient and on the 5th I made the kill that I will never forgett. The rack was not big and was still in velvet, but the body was huge, we figure about 190 to 200 lbs. He took me and my buddy about 2.5hrs to carry out of baby death valley. I thank the locals on Lanai for manintaining their island and their herritege. I hope to make it back next year with my son. Big mahalo to Mary for housing us and Kimou for the 4X4 truck.

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