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Thread: Kodiak < 20yd Tactics?

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    Default Kodiak < 20yd Tactics?

    Any suggestions for setting up a less than 20 yard archery shot on a brown bear (Fall hunt). Besides the obvious wind, cover, movement, and sounds issues, which tactics work best, tree stand on a trail or salmon stream, spot, stalk and ambush...dress up like a sow?

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    Ambush is how it has worked for me. I like catching them off guard.

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    Member ninefoot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boud'arc View Post
    Any suggestions for setting up a less than 20 yard archery shot on a brown bear (Fall hunt). Besides the obvious wind, cover, movement, and sounds issues, which tactics work best, tree stand on a trail or salmon stream, spot, stalk and ambush...dress up like a sow?

    try that last part you mentioned...tell us how that works out for ya.

    despite the obvious increased chance of a one lung hit due to the elevation issue (such a bear should be shot immediately with a rifle)...it just doesnt seem right to kill a brown bear from a treestand...maybe thats just me. your not giving him very much opportunity to be his normal cheery self if you bunk everything up are you? not with any consequences on your part anyway...that aint fair...in fact isnt that just a tiny bit part of the reason a hunter would want to put such a challenge upon themselves. bit of an oxywhateveryacallit isnt it? i'll sit up here perched among the ravens with my little bow, on a safe branch, and slay the biggest predator on our continent. what does a guy tell his buddies? just my opinion though.

    heres some more of that opinion: find someone you'd trust your life with if you screw it up to back you up, find an UNAWARE bear, that is well BELOW your comfortable shooting range, only shoot when his leg is forward with a low double lung your goal. avoid the big leg bones and shoulder blades.

    tactics would depend on terrain, circumstance, spring/fall, food source availablity (concentrating bears) and so on and so fourth.

    bowhunting them is in my opinion one of the bigger challenges in the hunting world....but at the same time, the act of getting within bowrange of a bear isnt as much of the "hard" part as haveing the patience to set up a perfect shot. brown bear are extremely stalkable animals...(specially when compared to stalking such prey animals as the common deer, both mulies and whitetails...ever stalked a whitetail in open country while up feeding? its hard. ) some of my clients have the privledge of taking their bears at "bowrange" quite often...doesnt mean it would have been a good opportunity with a bow though. lots of variables to the shot and set up to ensure that perfect double lung hit...

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    Start excercising your sphincter muscles now as you'll want good tone while awaiting the necessary sight picture as the bear lumbers about at point blank range.

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    I would have no issues using a treestand if the opportunity existed. It is no different than shooting a goat or sheep from above on the ground. Taking a brown bear with a bow is going to be challenging enough. I would think that ambush would be the best way, although, a spot and stalk with a trusted shot backing you up sounds like a rush.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    The easiest way I think is fine a stream with salmon running and lots of bear feeding and start fishing. In no time at all you will have bears close for shooting and eyeballing your catch. Pick out a nice one and let the arrow fly.Apond inpact when the bear starts makeing lots of noise the #1 bear feeding will come set him stright right away and take the pressure off you,just shrug like you don't know why he is acting up when #1 looks at you. When the other bears take their break skin him out and head to camp.Note if you shoot #1 then #2 will be more than happy to take advantage of #1 at a weak moment making him #1.
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    You might have trouble finding a tree that is suitable on Kodiak. Afognak, no problem. Very north end of Kodiak.....there's a few. Then the farther South you get, not so much other than a few Cottonwood stands along some of the streams. Didn't Fred Bear get the world record by hiding behind a big rock and stepping out for the shot as the bear walked past? Then he ducked back behind the rock?
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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    not many decent trees where i'm at that the bears would be. i'd just go with spot and stalk...you got the fundamentals wind, terrian and what the bears doing...just work him work him...chances are if he's a monster you'll only get one chance...
    less than 20 IS CLOSE in open ground....something dead like a whale would be awesome...but a far shot, i mean slim chance..
    figured wantj would have some insight for you, i'm sure he's taken more archery brown bear hunters than the rest of us.
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    Are we talking longbow, recurve or Compound? Yes the tactics will remain the same..but distance could improve a bit. I will assume a longbow or recurve since 20 yards was mentioned.. I was inside of 50 with my recurve a few years back on Kodiak..and opted for the rifle at the last min...big animal and shot was not right for bow.

    Practice with all different angles..as that terrian is rolling, hilly and steep in places. to have a perfect level shot, it just might not be there.
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    I figured the trees would be few and far between or at least they won't be where I need them. My first thoughts were spot and then attempt an intercept or spot one early in the morning or late in the evening and then try to be there the next day hoping he is a creature of habit. I've read about whale carcases but I'm never been that lucky.What's wrong with setting up near a well-used trail to a salmon stream? I assume the big bears would use the trails but what about momma and the cubs? These are the type of questions I have.
    I really didn't want to get into the weeds with equipment but to answer a few questions, I've bowhunted for 35 years, built and hunted with my own equipment for 15 of those years. 60-65# draw and 750-850 grain arrows. I've hunted here for 5 years and haven't applied for a Kodiak tag until this year. If I go, I'll carry a 45-70 SBL and most likely have a partner to back me up. I'll only take a shot if everything is right or I just won't shoot. I can shoot out to 30 yards with my longbows and 40+ yards with my Black Widow recurve but that's at a foam target and not at a Volkswagen with teeth after I've been sitting in 40 degree rain for hours. I picked less than 20 yards to help me put the arrow where it needs to go and not to go back and brag to my buddies. It just doesn't seem right to unload my rifle and/or my guides rifle into a brown bear from 100+ yards away...but maybe that's just me.

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    Member ninefoot's Avatar
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    good luck boudarc...bowhunting them is great fun. i shot an osage selfbow as a kid, i still remember the myriad of kindlin i flung (and lost)at the local rabbits with that thing. even connected every once in a while. still got that bow. its backed with rawhide, and even camoflauged (died, by the bowyer) with the stain of some sort of berries. that little bow and a few others taught me alot about getting close...good memories. one of these days i'll pic up a trad bow again...pick your shot man, and good luck....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boud'arc View Post
    If I go, I'll carry a 45-70 SBL and most likely have a partner to back me up.
    I'm a fairly paranoid guy and I go to great lengths to never hunt, fish, snowmachine or hike alone here in Alaska. Others are willing to hunt solo and other things but hear me: Don't set foot on Kodiak with intention to get near a bear without a partner. I wouldn't go solo on Kodiak even on a rifle hunt. I'm sure you could find a partner from here or your home state to accompany you. Both residents and non-residents are allowed 3 of their tasty deer.
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    the guide I used last spring down at Olga bay used a distress call to put one in my lap at twenty yards. All I had to do was make the shot which, fortunately, I did. I'm very thankful I was able to take him with a bow and did not have to put any bullet holes in him. Absolutely a hunt of a life time for me!!!!

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