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Thread: Bear judging; how big is this bear?

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    Default Bear judging; how big is this bear?

    I would appreciate seeing more photos of bears and learning how you experienced bear guys judge them. To kick it off, how about this Deadhorse bear from about 14 years ago (I hope the picture quality is adequate).

    How big is this bear, is it a boar or a sow, mature or subadult? What characteristics are you looking for?

    Anyone have additional photos they would care to add?
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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    The first thing I look for is a small head and a longer neck. Those are typical traits of a bigger mature bear. If a Bears head looks big it usually isn't.
    Not the best pictures but i'd keep looking, my first thought is mature and a boar. Lots of different ways to field judge a bear. When in doubt just guess between four and twelve foot. 👍
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    Black bears are tough to judge, as are goats. If there are more than one, it helps. Shoot the big one....well unless it's a nanny and kid.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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    Sinc3 that pic is 14 yrs old if you s33 that b3ar this spring it will b3 a shoot3r!

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    BRWNBR has a ton of experience, so I would defer to his opinion. With that being said, I'd say mature sow, in the 6.5-7' range. When observing a bear, I've been told and have since experienced the following: "if you're not sure its big, it probably isn't." I've only seen a handful of 9.5-10' bears in the field. I knew they were big bears immediately.
    Experience is the name every one gives to their mistakes. ~Wilde

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    I will add to what sockeye said a bit about knowing a big bear, it's similar to sexing a bear. Mid range bears are often times almost impossible to guess sex on 100 percent of the time. I've seen some I swore were boars that weren't and vise versa. But when they get big its pretty obvious.
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    Moral of the story- if it's big you'll know, then shoot it. The one in your pic is a boar/sow (soar? bow?) and not real big so don't shoot that one, until now cause it's 14 years older. But make sure you have at least a .375 win mag with 300 grain bullets, cause nothing else will kill it.
    Experience is the name every one gives to their mistakes. ~Wilde

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    Quote Originally Posted by sockeye1 View Post
    Moral of the story- if it's big you'll know, then shoot it. The one in your pic is a boar/sow (soar? bow?) and not real big so don't shoot that one, until now cause it's 14 years older. But make sure you have at least a .375 win mag with 300 grain bullets, cause nothing else will kill it.
    I agree with all you're saying, but I wouldn't hunt it with a .375 Win Mag, since such a thing doesn't exist.

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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sockeye1 View Post
    Moral of the story- if it's big you'll know, then shoot it. The one in your pic is a boar/sow (soar? bow?) and not real big so don't shoot that one, until now cause it's 14 years older. But make sure you have at least a .375 win mag with 300 grain bullets, cause nothing else will kill it.

    but wait.... that is an archery only area.... LOL!
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    Actually, I'd guess this area is closed to hunting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheep Jesus View Post
    Sinc3 that pic is 14 yrs old if you s33 that b3ar this spring it will b3 a shoot3r!
    Hmm, that's a new one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBC View Post
    I would appreciate seeing more photos of bears and learning how you experienced bear guys judge them. To kick it off, how about this Deadhorse bear from about 14 years ago (I hope the picture quality is adequate).

    How big is this bear, is it a boar or a sow, mature or subadult? What characteristics are you looking for?

    Anyone have additional photos they would care to add?
    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm...ing.bearchoice

    At the bottom of this page is a decent video that bear hunters in unit 4 are required to watch before they obtain a permit. It lays out what to look for to determine male/female and judge relative size. If you follow those recommendations it looks like you have a medium/large sow in the pictures, however the Yukon and the north slope are not the same area and bear color may not matter as much. A beautiful bear either way.

    In Southeast a darker bear is usually a boar, unless it is really rubbed up and then it may look lighter. Can't go on color alone, always better to get closer, which is more exciting anyways.

    Found this bruin on google earth...
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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    the E and the 3 are close together on the keyboard? or the E and 3 on the phone are the same and he is holding the E down too long. LOL
    Taxidermy IS art!
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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oakman View Post
    Actually, I'd guess this area is closed to hunting.


    depends if the bear has traveled much. LOL
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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Folks have necked up 300 win mag to a 375
    Win mag....it does exist. Kind of. Lol
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    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BRWNBR View Post
    Folks have necked up 300 win mag to a 375
    Win mag....it does exist. Kind of. Lol
    I stand corrected, kind of. I just had never seen or heard of anything by that name, though anything could be created.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    I'm thinking 7' sow from pic but would still get closer to be sure. Joe Want posted alot of whats this bear pics if you look up his old post.He also told you what you were looking at. To me bears are like people most of the time and girls look like girls,boys boys.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    To me bears are like people most of the time and girls look like girls,boys boys.
    ......Most of th3 tim3
    I am serious... and don't call me Shirley.

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    Here is a video I put together a few years back. Unfortunately we didn't dart all the bears to get their exact measurements.... that would have been fun!
    -JR


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqiF...fW3O71dMPCG-tH

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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Wish you could have darted then! Enjoyed watching that. One thing I will say on rule number 2, short legs means big bear. I would caution to not apply that rule to spring bears, spring big bears will often times look long and gangly, long legs, neck and torso. I guided in a camp with another guide once,
    we got
    Together that night and he told me about the small bear he saw,
    Long legged thing he said, well I had been looking at the same bear from a different location. So I went track checking the next day cause i was sure it was a shooter. Well I found the bear too, tracks were almost
    8" on the front pad, putting him near ten foot. When I saw him I guessed him at high nine. So off we went on the stalk. At 800 yards to go up the side of the mountain the client quits and wants to go home. So we did. I told him he asnt allowed to whine at the end of the hunt if he don't get nothing. He whined.
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