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Thread: Need Some Pointers on Black Bear Hunting

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    Default Need Some Pointers on Black Bear Hunting

    I start by first saying, no I'm not asking for your secret spot. I am looking for my own, but problem is, I don't know what I'm looking for. I've been hitting up a few different places over the past three weeks without much success. I like being outdoors and relaxing so it hasn't been time wasted, but I would like to eventually see and possibly harvest a bear.

    I've gone south of Girdwood, Summit Lake area, and most recently Hatcher's Pass and everytime it looks like a great spot because I can glass entire mountainsides, like seriously covering some major ground and still I see nothing. I've been hiking in 2-5 miles each time.

    My questions are, but not limited to if you have any helpful advice. What are the bears doing, are they in the lowlands or up in the mountains? What constitutes a good "spot"? What am I looking for in an area to be successful? Should I hit one spot over and over again, or somewhere new each time?

    I'll freely admit I am new, but I'm trying to soak up as much knowledge as possible. I'm trying to at least get pointed in the right direction though.

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    Member Mkay's Avatar
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    Sounds like you are on the right track. Might try late at nite and very early, avoid the mid day.
    My child was inmate of the month at Mat-Su pre-trial Correctional facility.

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    what are some of your guy's thoughts on bear lures (such as baitem 907 or predator calls)

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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelRyanSD View Post
    I start by first saying, no I'm not asking for your secret spot. I am looking for my own, but problem is, I don't know what I'm looking for..
    If you are hunting the mountains where there still might be snow, it would be nice to spot a black spot on a white background, and that's a possibility. But rather concentrate on really glassing hard at avalanche chutes and south facing hillsides where the snow has already melted. They may not be as easy to spot, but this is where the first greens will appear for bears to eat. As far as anywhere else....you really could run into one just about any place. Lowlands, foothills, you name it. I've seen blackies so many times when I wasn't looking for them, anywhere from crossing the highway in front of me, to walking along a glacier lake, to poking out on a river where I'm fishing. Soon the foliage will be so thick that it will pretty hard to actually go after one in the woods. That's why a lot of people bait them and make the bears come to them.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    It's already getting hard to spot bears in the Alpine areas, as everything is so green now. They don't have much need to hang out in openings, but can find all their feed in denser forests. Moose calves are starting to drop, so find calving areas and try calling. Otherwise, find a baiting spot and start the feed trough.

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    Yeah I already took the test for the bear baiting license, but feel like its too late in the season to go set one up, was thinking about setting one up in GMU 16 when it opens up July 1st. What do you guys think about the bait em 907 products for a bear bait station?

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    Quote Originally Posted by willphish4food View Post
    It's already getting hard to spot bears in the Alpine areas, as everything is so green now. They don't have much need to hang out in openings, but can find all their feed in denser forests. Moose calves are starting to drop, so find calving areas and try calling. Otherwise, find a baiting spot and start the feed trough.
    AS far as calling goes, what sort of call would I make? I know I'm new, but I've never heard nor seen a "moose calving" sound. Or do you mean just use any sort of moose call?

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    This time of year is tough. I head out now and then in May as an excuse to get in the mountains (I'll be going on Monday), but I don't expect much in the way of success. If you really want to get a black bear, do what you're doing now - look high and cover ground - but do it in September. Your odds will go up appreciably.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelRyanSD View Post
    AS far as calling goes, what sort of call would I make? I know I'm new, but I've never heard nor seen a "moose calving" sound. Or do you mean just use any sort of moose call?
    Google black bear eating moose calf. There's a you tube video of it happening, with a very clear distress call. Mimic that and good luck! (just remember when calling: any bear coming your way is coming because he really really wants to eat you.)

    Any animal distress call can work. Jackrabbit is a good one, and pup squalls can also work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelRyanSD View Post
    Yeah I already took the test for the bear baiting license, but feel like its too late in the season to go set one up, was thinking about setting one up in GMU 16 when it opens up July 1st. What do you guys think about the bait em 907 products for a bear bait station?
    I just set my bait up and in 4 days it is getting hammered. Its never to late to set a bait.. I usually don't set a bait until may 15th-20th before then I personally believe it is a waste of time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alaska2go View Post
    I just set my bait up and in 4 days it is getting hammered. Its never to late to set a bait.. I usually don't set a bait until may 15th-20th before then I personally believe it is a waste of time.
    Yep, What he said.

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    If I set up a bear bait site, what am I looking for to set up a "good" bear bait site in a "good" location, something near water? In the valleys. I would think I would want it in a mouth of a valley where all the draws sort of merge, preferably near water.

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    By the way, I've been pouring over this site for all the info I can soak in, bought a few books to read, anything I can get my hands on. I think I'm hooked....

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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelRyanSD View Post
    If I set up a bear bait site, what am I looking for to set up a "good" bear bait site in a "good" location, something near water? In the valleys. I would think I would want it in a mouth of a valley where all the draws sort of merge, preferably near water.
    basically a funnel w/ water close by

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    As far as bait. Any place that is legal. If u bait it they will come.

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    Do you have an atv? Boat? Or friends with such items? It's all not necessary but it doesn't hurt either...
    The road system is good for bear baiting, but you'll probably get unwanted company (trespassers) or inadvertently have competition (other unknown bait in area). BUT, if the road system is your only option, get on a map, go as far as you are willing to drive and pick a spot. GOOGLE EARTH or TerraServer the s*** out of that area so you know you're in the clear regarding dwellings, roads, trails, etc... Pack in BEYOND the minimum required distance from the road. The extra effort (in my opinion) is usually much worth it... Just tell yourself that, if this spot is easy to get too, then it's easy for someone else too...
    There are a lot of good points in all of these responses. Find a pattern...
    907 stuff works great. Try to keep the bait sweet as possible.
    Now is a great time to set a bait. We've set, hunted, and killed bears within 3-6days of setting it up, all around the last week in May, MANY times...
    Keep doing your homework, you're on the right track... Good luck...

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    I'm in the Army, would setting up a bear bait station be a good idea if I can only get to the bait every week or so?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelRyanSD View Post
    I'm in the Army, would setting up a bear bait station be a good idea if I can only get to the bait every week or so?
    Unfortunately that will lessen your odds considerably if you can't check/rebait in quicker intervals. Especially after it's been hit and "working".
    I'm not going to say "NO" it's a bad idea, just looking at odds here. You know your schedule better then anyone. Baiting requires attention, travelling, and $$.
    This is also where a trusted buddy comes into play and may help you out on those days that you can't make it to the bait...

    The biggest problem is if a bear or bears come in the day of/after you rebait, cleans you outta house and home (especially a sow with cubs), and leaves. When they come back, and they will, and there's no food left because you haven't been back to resupply, they can/will eventually move out. It may take them a day or a week to leave. Who knows the timeframe, but they WILL lose interest. Therefore, your bait has gone "cold"...
    Getting it hot again is "typically" pi$$ing in the wind. There are stories out there where it's been rebooted, but not many.. But ya never know...

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    Yeah unfortunately everyone I know who hunts as well is in the Army, I'm thinking it may be better to get an electronic predator call and get a tree stand. Its something I can go out and set up, without much of a time sink. I'm not going to say "can't" but I just don't think I'd be up for going out there every 3-4 days after work and such, getting home around 1am, only to have to get up around 530am.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelRyanSD View Post
    I'm in the Army, would setting up a bear bait station be a good idea if I can only get to the bait every week or so?
    If you can only check your bait once a week I wouldn't bother. The main thing a bait needs is your attention. Once it's hit you need to be able to be there night after night or you're just shooting in the dark....
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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