14 Mar Bear N’Down – Never Say Never
Spring Bear Hunting and Patience!
Spring has sprung early this year and talking with all our outfitters and friends in the great north they are all saying the same thing, “It’s going to be an early spring season and the bears will be active early.”
So what does that mean to all us who are waiting patiently to head north for our bear trips? Warmer temps than normal, bugs out sooner than normal, and possibly more rubbing than normal, are just a few of the things we may have to deal with.
Lets be clear, the rut will not start early, for as long as anyone can remember weather is not the deciding factor that triggers the rut, for if it was in years past we would have seen it.
Warmer temps can change up the movement a bit especially if its way warmer than normal, the bears may not move as much till right at dark. However, let us base a true hunting situation we had many years ago, while hunting central BC. It was really warm and we were spot & stalking bears on old logging roads and cuts. We were not seeing much only early in the am and right at dark (the coolest parts of the 24 hour period). We would hike to vantage points and glass and it was already way into the morning when we topped over a ridge and glassed a large beaver swamp below us.
The sun was beating down and temps were climbing but we noticed a big ole boar cruising the edge of the swamp and he headed right to the beaver lodge. First off we couldn’t believe he was out in the heat of the day, he slowly made his way to the lodge and starred it down for sometime. We were way above him and had the advantage being up there. He slowed belly crawled to the shoreline and sat there for sometime as we patiently watched as both the bear and us baked in the sun.
After some time he exploded up and leaping forward, water splashing and he came up with a big beaver in his mouth. The beaver was still thrashing and he shocks it violently until there was no more movement from the beaver. He then perched himself high on top of the beaver’s lodge and continued to eat it.
This took awhile and then to our surprise he rolled all over the top of the lodge then sprawled out lying on his back and went to sleep. Yes, I said went to sleep in the direct sunlight, we never thought this would happen but we saw it with our own eyes.
We waited for over 3 hours when he finally decided to get up and stretch and when he did, I rested my Traditions muzzleloader and his chest and squeezed the trigger.
We saw water splash on the other side and I wasn’t sure if I missed or what and we noticed him stagger and knew it wasn’t a miss but rather a complete pass thru. He only went a little ways and piled up.
This hunt took the whole day and was one of the most memorable bear hunts for Vicki & I learned a very valuable lesson…
You see we always think we know what the animals are going to do and when but in reality we don’t know much. We never thought a big ole bear would be out in this heat, especially laying in the direct sunlight. Didn’t think he would be hunting this time of day. The only way we would have learned this is to be out there and willing to wait and see what was going to happen.
Bottom line all the reading, studying, on line searching & talking will never teach you as much as being out there and experiencing each and every day you can with the quarry you plan to hunt. Don’t assume you know what they will do, for they will make idiots out of us nearly every time.
Go out and enjoy this great land and become stewards of it and most of all share it with your loved ones!