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Thread: Black Bear near Hope

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    Default Black Bear near Hope

    I am going to head down to Hope this weekend in search of a black bears and was hoping for a little advice. I was either going to check out the palmer creek road or the hope end of the resurrection trial. I know this hasn't been a great berry year, but I am staying hopeful! Would anyone choose one over the other this year? Haven't been down to either this year and am not afraid to do some hiking, but only have the day. Anything helps. Thanks.

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    My guess is Palmer Creek is getting Moose & Caribou & Goat hunter traffic. If you do Palmer Creek, I would pop over into Alder Creek, and walk the ridge to the left. Several times a week I have been seeing one or two on the hill behind the cabin (mile 7.5 hope road) so I would glass Cub Creek (mile 6.8) back to mile 4.5 that whole open hillside is good. Map your route up carefully, as that can be some skanky alder hell.

    If you just want meat there is a very small Black Bear daily in the bay (mouth of 6-mile creek). Don't shoot him if you can't get too him, he is often on the other side. There is also a large very dark (almost black color) Brown Bear in the Bay.

    I would avoid Resurrection Creek as too many trees. A better choice is Hope Point (Early or Late). Good Hunting. If you do Palmer Creek then do it at 5:45 AM.

    Mills Creek is another good option, especially if you have a bicycle.

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    I do have a bicycle and love a good back-country ride, but am not familiar with where mills creek is located. Thanks for the tips though, I really appreciate it!

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Palmer Creek Road gets far too much pressure to be a top option in my book. Yes, there are black bears in there and it is great habitat, but not a day goes by in the fall that doesn't see at least a handful of hunters cruising that road. Mills Creek or any other mountainside along the Seward or Sterling Highways would be my choice. If you can spare the time, even better would be one of the many trails that head into the alpine.

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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MT2AK View Post
    I do have a bicycle and love a good back-country ride, but am not familiar with where mills creek is located. Thanks for the tips though, I really appreciate it!
    Just before the summit lake lodge on the seward highway ( Mile 46? or 47? )is a large gravel pit. on the south end is a rough 4x4 road leading down to where Mills creek meets Canyon creek maybe a half mile or a little more.
    There is a road on your left (North)just before canyon creek crossing. this leads to a parking area for just a few vehicles maybe 3-4. There is a bridge there you can cross and a trail that goes up the mills creek valley from there. The Miners use 4 wheelers to get to their mining claims but I believe the general public isn't allowed to use motorized transportation.
    Hope this is where they are talking about.

    PS please respect the mining claims and their gear while you are there. You are allowed to hunt there just no mining.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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    You all have been incredibly helpful! I think I will give mills creek a shot! Is the ride a steep grade? How far back does it go? Again...thanks a million for all the advice!

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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    Mills Creek trail is not steep at all, but there is one wash out that is a little sketchy and it is pretty steep to get up and out after a bear. There are active mine claims back there so make sure you are respectful of their property, but most of the miners would be happy to have less black bears around. The trail used to go all the way to either Johnson Pass trail or the Seward HWY I believe, but it goes back a long way. I've never been to the end. Be prepared for creek crossings.

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    Water crossings huh...are there many? I am just trying to get an idea for what kind of gear to take!

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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    There's a few to a handful of small creeks usually not deeper than knee deep.

    Sent from my MB860 using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by tyrex13 View Post
    There's a few to a handful of small creeks usually not deeper than knee deep.

    Sent from my MB860 using Tapatalk
    Anyone else have any last minute valuable information for me about the trail conditions/water crossings? Sounds like the crossings are quite a ways up the trail, but I don't suppose all the rain in the area has done me any favors!

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    Quote Originally Posted by MT2AK View Post
    Anyone else have any last minute valuable information for me about the trail conditions/water crossings? Sounds like the crossings are quite a ways up the trail, but I don't suppose all the rain in the area has done me any favors!
    9:AM Friday Sept. 9, 2011

    I can see (6) Six Black Bears on the hillside eating black berries, and last night the little one from the Bay was in the neighbors yard eating grass & devils club berries as we ate Mexican (No one you would know, Hehehehehe), and tested some tequila & watched Football.

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    I've four wheeled and walked into my grandfathers mining claim on mills creek trail. The water on the trail could be walked across easy enough. I usually take my boots and socks off and walk across. It might be a bit high for regular muck boots.


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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    9:AM Friday Sept. 9, 2011

    I can see (6) Six Black Bears on the hillside eating black berries, and last night the little one from the Bay was in the neighbors yard eating grass & devils club berries as we ate Mexican (No one you would know, Hehehehehe), and tested some tequila & watched Football.
    One of said bears is dead! Buddy nailed it a little bit ago. On ridge skinning the beast out solo. I will let him post pics and story, looks to be a really decent bear! He asked if I knew how he knew where to go, I said, "AGL". He said, "yep!" Not sure if he talked to you or what, but it worked. His second bear on his own this time. Dude loves to hunt! Thanks AGL, made his day, he has some hard work and hike down in the dark through the nasty!

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    Member Roland on the River's Avatar
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    Hey, what happened?
    i posted right after AGL4Now this morning. how did it get deleted? I was only joking. Please advise by PM Thanks.

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    Well guys thanks for the tips. I went in on a mountain bike yesterday morning. We unfortunately didn't see any black bears! We did manage to see a nice big solo brown that we watched for a good hour or so, but none of the smaller black variety! We talked with a couple of miners up the creek who said that they had only seen one black bear in there all year, but they did preface that they weren't exactly looking for them either! Cool country though! Water crossings were a little crazy with all the rain last week, and the water went onto the road about 3 miles up the trail so we couldn't go any farther.

    We spent the evening driving Palmer creek road on the way back to Anchorage. May have to give that a try sometime. Are there any trails that cover any of that land so that you don't have to bushwhack? Specifically I would like to climb the ridge on the south side of the canyon.

    Thanks again! No bears, but had a blast!

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    I seen only one Black Bear up Slaughter Creek Ridge in Cooper landing today. Lot of Black berries up there. Nice hike.

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    So rumor on the street is that I can get into the Mills creek drainage from the Johnson pass trail. Any input on that hike? Is there a trail or am I bushwhacking? Similarly, at the end of Palmer creek road are there trails that allow for access to the ridge tops or am I bushwhacking to get to the top? PM me if you like...

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    Quote Originally Posted by MT2AK View Post

    Similarly, at the end of Palmer creek road are there trails that allow for access to the ridge tops or am I bushwhacking to get to the top? PM me if you like...
    At the end of the road (The real end of the road. take a left up the trail on foot or Mountain Bike, and walk or bike the ridge, that is Alder Creek. Be warned if you come out the bottom of Alder Creek which returns to about mile 3 Hope Road, it will get ugly down there. You would be better to hike back Bear Creek, or go up to Hope Point and beyond. Do NOT go out Gull Rock Trail, as it is heavy timbered the whole way, and your only chance of seeing a bear is either on the beach or the trail.

    I glassed Hope Road mile 4 to mile 6 today when I hauled trash, and seen NO bears. Yesterday and today I glassed behind the cabin and seen NO bears.

    Another valley to check out is Slate Creek, you can bike a ways back there. My guess it the bears have been pushed out of Summit Creek and into Slate Creek. Good luck. If it is open alpine, Glass it.

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