After 7 years of trying, I finally got a black bear. As we sat and glassed the hill my buddy spotted him moving right across the hill side, since he spotted it first he had the option of going after it. He decided to pass on it and the wind was right so I grabbed my rifle, and binos and ran up the hill after him. After what seemed like an eternity I finally got into the spot where I thought the bear was going to be. I waited and waited and waited, and thought I had maybe missed him, or he had winded me. I was contemplating going back down when I thought I heard a branch snap right above me. Then I saw a tiny bit of movement. I put the binos up and saw a black ear, then the rest of the head, and he was looking at me. I froze and waited. He eventually turned and started feeding to the left. I got down and realized I would be shooting through an alder thicket, so I crawled up another 8 feet or so and had a clear shot. I estimated the bear to be about 100 yards so I put the crosshairs behind the shoulder, let out a breath and squeezed. I didn't hear the rifle or feel the recoil but saw the bear heading down towards me. Then disappear in the alders. Uh Oh I thought....I wasn't sure if it was wounded and wounded bears in alder thickets aren't the funnest thing to deal with. I decided to wait a bit and give it time to die if it was hit, or maybe make some noise in the thicket so I had an idea on where it was. After a while all I heard was silence. Time to go check I thought. I put a shell in the chamber and headed in. When I got closer I saw there was a dry creek bed in the middle of the alders and no bear inside. I figured I would walk across and head up to the spot where I hit him, and check for blood and follow the trail. Luckily that was all unnecessary because as soon as I got across the creek and up the bank I saw a black spot. I put my binos up and saw him laying there and he was stone dead. I thanked the bear for his sacrafice and gathered him up and headed down the hill for what seemed like an eternity. But after all of that, I didn't mind one bit.
Later when I got back down, my buddy was watching the whole thing. He said he thought I was busted because the bear was heading up hill when I got up to the spot I was going to shoot from. For some reason the bear changed his mind and started feeding down. He said when I shot the bear's legs went out from under him, and he rolled down to the spot where I found him, stopped by a couple alders growing on the hill side. He was dead the moment the bullet hit him, so I was happy about that. I hear all these stories about bears being really hard to kill, and was happy this one went down with no problems.
It's not the biggest bear out there, but it was a clean kill, I got some good meat for the dinner table, and a really nice rug. I couldn't be happier with it! Now it's time to get the meat in to make some pepper sticks and bacon, and get the hide sealed and off to the taxidermist. Thanks again to Tony for hooking us up on this awesome adventure.