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Bear Hunting 2011 – Round 1
By Linda K Burch
copyright September 2011
My trail cam has shown no consistency of times that my bait got hit by bears. So, I have worked all the angles. From the baiting photos previously posted, the bear did come in mid-day right after I baited. He has also been there at dawn and at dusk. In the past, I have taken bear with my bow. This year I am hunting with my Remington .308 bolt action rifle and my bow.
The bear I videotaped from my cabin porch this summer is the bear I would like to harvest. See the Video here at WomenHunters. Now to the hunt!
The plan was to drive my ATV in the dark, bait quick, drive the ATV away, park it, and sneak back in to my tree stand. I wore my bear baiting boots and baiting gloves, got in and done quickly, drove a quarter mile away, changed into my rubber hunting boots and hunt gloves, and snuck back to the bait area in the dark. Everything went perfectly except wind gusts to 25MPH, but no bear. Just coons and a skunk. I doubled back to my ATV and took the long way out so as not to drive by my stand again.
I baited around 2pm, getting in and out in five minutes. That has been my ritual since baiting starting mid-August. The day was hot, upper 80’s and humid. I got in to my stand quietly and was soaking wet with sweat by the time I settled in. The wind settled down mid day and then picked up again at dusk. The mosquitoes were omnipresent even with Deet on my face. I used face camo paint on my eye area but also had to put Deet on my eye area too. I heard 5 rifle shots between 6:30pm and 8pm, so someone had success with bear. But no bear seen for me. I did hear a trumpeter swan in the Big Swamp which was very cool. I exited my stand undetected and got sweat soaked to the skin again.
Did not hunt morning. In my 11 years of bear hunting I have never seen bear in the morning. I baited at 1pm getting in and out in five minutes. I checked my trail cam and the bait had not been hit. Janice Baer from WomenHunters stopped by my cabin and brought me some bait items that she had generously collected for me. Thank you Janice! For the evening hunt, I wore a full net face mask and leafy suit. I got into my stand in complete silence. The mosquitoes were in hoards but my full face mask kept them off me. The mask could easily be lifted to take a shot. It was a perfect bear hunting evening. The wind was dead still, I could hear things at great distance, my stand set up totally cloaked me since I was using a Camo-Flex system of artificial leaves to conceal because I faced south and might be spotlighted by the evening sun. (See if you can find the stand in the image to the left :-) Again no bear seen but tonight there were NO gunshots heard either. Perfect evening or not, the bear were not moving. I exited my stand undetected.
I hunted and suffered insect attacks, heat prostration, leg cramps and boredom. After that, the bears deserted my bait. I think hunting pressure from local Outfitters and the weather going to 80-90 degress was why. The second week of September, the acorns feel like hail for a solid week and bears love acorns. I dutifully replenished my now rancid bait offerings, never giving up hope. I decided to load my bait up with over a hundred pounds of goodies and give it a two week rest as I traveled back to Ohio to archery deer hunt with my husband. I will resume Minnesota bear hunting the first of October. With acorns done, the weather cooler and Outfitters not around, I hope to see bears again !
Alaska and the Yukon
North Alabama, Mississippi p
and North Georgia
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