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Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Old 09-09-2008, 12:09 PM
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Default Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Man how time fly's! It seemed It was just yesterday that the baiting season opened for bear In Minnesota but It was not. It opened August 15th and Its now September 9th and my bear hunting Is over for the year, that stinks If you ask me!! It went by way to quick. Bear hunting was tough this year In the area that my/our small group has always hunted In. It seemed that there were was allot of natural food this year. The more natural food they have the harder It Is to get these bear to hit our baits on a consistent basis. I've been bear hunting for 19 years and at least one of us In our hunting party has gotten a bear. This year was a 1st. We were skunked for the very 1st time In the 19 years I've been bear hunting. The baits really never got rolling from day one. We had a few baits getting hit pretty decent before hunting rolled around September 1st but for the most part they were very slow and few and far between. For the people who think baiting bear is too easy, you are inexperienced and uneducated and that's putting It nicely!!! We've proved It year in and year out that Its the farthest thing from a guarantee. Opening night my dad had a 150lb range bear at 12 yards but the bear didn't stick around and give him the shot he wanted. He was there maybe a minute or so and headed out. The following night my dad seen a different bear that was a nicer bear probably weighing In that 200lb+ range but the bear never committed himself to the bait and thus the old man just watched him being he was to far for his longbow (30 yards). The 3rd night Is when things got real interesting for my brother. The bait my brother was sitting on had 2 dandy bear hitting hit. I'm pretty sure the one bear is a B&C bear (21"+ skull) and the other bear is a high 20" skull, allot like the big bear I got, maybe bigger! A few days before this we noticed that the one bear was very light in color from the other one in the infrared pictures that our cuddebacks and my RC60 was taking. That light colored bear finally came Into the bait during the day (4:00 PM) which Is odd being these big guys don't usually do this but anyway we got a picture of him and he's brown as can be which Isn't very common for Minnesota, just a beautiful looking bear. We usually don't get to our stands until about 5:00 pm, he beat my brother to the bait and was gone long before my brother showed up. What I just explained all happened on the 2nd evening of hunting for my brother. The 3rd evening was a hair raiser for him. At about 7:30 that evening browny showed up. He slowly came into the bait which Is about 10 yards from the tree my brother was sitting In. The bear knew he was there, the wind direction switched about an hour before dark and he had my brother pegged the minute he came In to the bait site. He looked up at him countless times and finally when he did present a nice broadside shot my brother pulled his longbow back and the bear darted away. My bro couldn't believe It, he was heart broken thinking he just blew It on a once In a lifetime bear. Low and behold the big bruin came back In and offered another shot but again he spooked! My brother Is thinking what the hell Is going on here, this sucker Is jumpy as hell!! Well It finally got to dark so he just sat himself down on his seat and watched the 300lb+ browny eat at the bait hoping he would leave so he can get out of the woods. I forgot to mention that every time this bear would bolt out he would woof and smack his lips the whole time, that right there was driving my brother nuts, he's a little on the nervous side anyway when bear hunting. 20 minutes after It was dark he thought the bear had walked away from the bait so he decided It was time to slip on out of there and get back to the truck to pick me up 3 miles down the road. My bro does carry a 45 with him when bear hunting, It makes him feel safer, whatever works to keep you comfortable Is what I told him. On his way down the tree he hits the last tree peg and is just about ready to step on the ground and all of a sudden something 10' away woofs at him and starts stomping the ground and smacking Its lips again. Up the tree my brother goes yelling at the bear and scared out of his you know what!!! As soon as he got back In the stand he pointed the light below the tree with his revolver ready to fire but no bear In site. He told me that If the bear would of walked below his tree and gave him any hassle he would of ate lead. When all of this was going on he also had heard some something bust away directly south of him about 30 yards. I told him that I figured that both of the big guys were at the bait the same time and that was probably why all the lip smacking/stomping/chasing around was going on. The bear that treed him probably thought he was another bear. Long story short I finally made my way to his pickup being I knew trouble was In the works being he hadn't picked me up yet so I was just heading Into the woods to go and get him when finally he came flying out of the woods with just his revolver and light on our walk In trail. He told me he left his bow In the tree so he could run like a SOB out to the road when he finally got down. He never did hear nothing when he finally did get down from the tree to get out.

The next night he left the bait cool off and didn't hunt It. The following evening I was planning on sitting with him being I knew he'd feel more comfortable with me with him but we got rained out. The following evening was our last night hunting so my dad said he would sit with him instead being he lives only an hour from where we hunt and he plans on hunting more after we leave, I won't be able to get up there again this fall so I hunted the last night where I've been usually going. Nothing showed for me. I didn't see a bear the whole trip. That's hunting and It won't be the last time It happens. I still had a blast!!

At 7:57 browny came In to the bait and was just as cautious as he was the last time he came In. He finally did give my brother a nice broad side shot but the hunting gods weren't on my brother's side this particular year. He hit the bear we think high In the back a little far back. He was pretty nerved up when the big bruin came In and It just didn't work out for him. Man I felt bad for my brother!! Whats a guy do though, that's hunting I guess and so many things can happen when your bow hunting and you have a once In a lifetime animal 10 to 12 yards In front of you. I know he will never forget that night. The trail camera happened to be in the right position where you can see my brother In the tree with the bear In front of him, Its pretty nuts looking at it. We also looked at the video of the bear when he shot and that's how we came to the conclusion of where the arrow hit. We didn't track It that night. We waited till the next morning and looked for It for 5.5 hours. Not one spot of blood was found. We did find part of his arrow, 3/4 of it. It was broken off and had no blood on It. He didn't get hardly any penetration. I'm sure the bear Is fine. At least we all hope so anyway.

We had more P&Y bear hitting our baits this year then any other year that we know of. We had some big bear there, just couldn't get them to hit the baits consistently! What worried me about this year Is that we had no sow and cubs and very few young bear hitting our baits. Something happened I think last winter that many of the young bear and sow and cubs didn't make It out of there dens. We did have a late snow storm last year that might have been the problem that kept these bear In there dens too long and thus starved and ran out of fat and died. Then again maybe Its just the area I hunted that was like this and nothing bad will come out of It but I'm thinking Its probably not the case.

Here Is a picture of the bear when he was 10 yards In front of my brother. When he turned broadside Is when he got the shot off. I drew a red arrow where my brother is In the tree.



He shot when the bear turns broad side In this pic. The camera didn't do to well with the flash In the picture. There Is still a good 5 minutes of shooting light left yet. It really shows the bear's size in this picture. The sack In the tree Is about 6 feet high. The bear Itself Is about 4 feet high on all fours, that's crazy tall for a bear on all fours walking!!


This was when we found out he was brown. These pics don't really do him justice though on his size being he's crunched up In these pictures.



Here Is a few more of browny that we got.













Here is the biggest of the 2 bears that was hitting my brothers bait, he's a hog!! We named him blackie.







I'll post more pics of the bear we got on camera In a different thread. We've got some other huge bear on camera as well.




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Old 09-09-2008, 12:28 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Well Steve, you know what they say.....sometimes you get the bear, and sometimes the bear get's you. You had a good time, that's all that counts!
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Old 09-09-2008, 12:29 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Great stories and great pics Steve!!! Good read!! Too bad you guys didn't get a bear but like you said that's why they call it hunting. Thanks for sharing with us!
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Old 09-09-2008, 12:50 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Man, too bad you didnt get your bear. I was betting you would have another monster to post once you returned. Atleast you had a good time and spent quality time with the family, afterall, thats what hunting is all about.

Dont let high horse posters get to you either about how its unsporting to bait bears either. Im willing to bet that 99% of them have never done it and have no clue what its really about. I was floored when i saw how much work went into baiting bears on my trip to quebec.
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Old 09-09-2008, 01:16 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Dont let high horse posters get to you either about how its unsporting to bait bears either. Im willing to bet that 99% of them have never done it and have no clue what its really about. I was floored when i saw how much work went into baiting bears on my trip to quebec.
Thanks Rob!! I appreciate that. Did you bear hunt this year?
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Old 09-09-2008, 01:21 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Cool pics and story. Atleast you got to spend time with family.
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Old 09-09-2008, 01:23 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Sounds like you had a great hunt! Congratulations.
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Old 09-09-2008, 01:46 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Thanks for sharing the story & pix from the hunt. Been waiting for it. Sorry it didn’t work out for one of you to take one.
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Old 09-09-2008, 02:42 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

License, $20
Bear bait, $75
Gas,$150
Watching your brother run out of the woods after being scared by a bear, Priceless!

You will get them next year! and they will be bigger!
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Old 09-09-2008, 03:27 PM
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Default RE: Our Minnesota Bear Hunt (Very long read)

Great story bro and pics bro!!! Thats why we call it hunting not killing, sounds like all had a great time!! Walt
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