2017 was another excellent season for us on our Baited Brown bear hunts. We took a total of 7 Baited Brown Bear hunters and harvested six brown bears and a couple black bears. The one hunter who went home empty handed lost a large bear with his longbow and is returning in 2018.
I started packing bait on May 1st and it took about 10 days of flying and packing to get all the baits out and going. The first brown bear arrived on May 7th.
All 8 baits had brown bears hitting them by May 17th. Including a couple studs!
Even though I have had brown bears on my baits every year by the 10th of May, I don’t typically start the first hunter until about the 20th of May.
I flew the first hunter in May 21st and our target bear was the brute in the picture above. I try to check my cameras daily, and get on the big bears within the first couple days of them hitting a bait.
Always nice when a plan comes together and on the 2nd night, after 12 hours on stand, Tony was able to harvest this giant 9’ foot bear with a 26 1/4” skull. Still plenty of time for a black bear!
Out of all the guiding I have ever done the baited brown bear hunts are by far the most work. I fly and pack bait 7 days a week for 2 straight months. Most of my family time in May and June is spent skinning bears, working on airplanes, and making dog food runs. The Boys love it!
Since the focus of my baits is primarily for Brown bear hunting, the hundreds of Black bears tend to get pretty bold. Night time is when the bulk of the brown bears come in to the baits, so during the day almost every bait has blacks on it when I come in to bait.
Most of the mature male black bears in this area tend to square about 6’ with a 17 1/2”-18 1/2” skull. However, we do get a few that are much larger!
By the first week of June there are so many bears hitting the baits there is no physical way possible to keep them all stocked. I have found that by baiting every bait daily the bears will get in a more frequent routine checking the baits.
This next big bear showed up right before I flew in the second hunter who was a longbow hunter. This particular bait has an excellent ground blind setup that we have harvested some awesome bears from in the past. Including a bear we harvested in 2014 that was the largest bear killed in the two year recording period for P&Y.
On the second night this bear did finally come in, but unfortunately Tom’s Arrow didn’t find its mark.. Next year!
My wife picking up a little gas money while we’re out checking baits.
Most of my baits are what I like to call “Natural Baits”. I do this for a few reasons: I believe brown bears feel more comfortable at them, it’s easier, and it takes me less time to bait. Only downfall is you go through a lot more dog food.
During the months of May and June I flew 170 hours and packed in over 11,000 pounds of bait.
The next hunter was a rifle hunter and this big bear with an attitude showed up just in time! Check out the video on the home page of our website to see the awesome footage of Angelo’s giant bear!
The next hunter was a Bowhunter and I thought I knew just where to take him. The bait I picked had a big bear hitting every night for the past week, and I was feeding him well.
Like Clockwork the big bear came in Jim’s first night on stand. However, the bear came fast and laid down quartering toward the stands offering no shot. After about 5 minutes the wind switched and the giant bear was gone. Jim sat the next four nights hoping to catch a break but the big bear never returned. So we moved to another bait.
50+ hours in the stand and Jim was ready to Arrow a bear, so they decided the next mature boar to come in was going for an airplane ride. Congrats to Jim on his P&Y Brown Bear!
Then next two hunters were friends and wanted to hunt together. Luckily I had a smokin hot bait with multiple hot sows hitting it daily. Long story short we saw 14 different brown bears in 2 days and killed two absolute studs! Both bears were over 9’ with 26”+ skulls.
We got both hunts on video and got some great pics but unfortunately we were asked not to use them on our website for political reasons. Atleast we got some trail cam pics!
One hunter left and still lots of options!
First night in the blind and a nice P&Y Bear!
The best I could keep track from trail cam pics we had over 60 different brown bears on camera at our bait sites in 2017. 23 of those bears are what I would consider shooters. By targeting and harvesting the big mature boars from these sites we will maintain a healthy population for years to come.
Don’t forget to take your family hunting!