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Thread: Grizzly Stopping Shot

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    Default Grizzly Stopping Shot

    Hi All


    Here is a question that i have asked several older, more experienced hunters who have shot grizzly bears, and they have given me different answers. so i like to get your opinions on this matter;

    If you had to stop a grizzly from getting to you in a full charge, where would you shoot it? Head? tip of the nose? chest? or shoulder?or another place perhaps?

    Tell me how you would do it if you were in that scenario and the grizzly was 10-15 yards away from you. (i am assuming you are using a premuim bullet with enough sectional density, penetration, and a rifle of adequate power, a medium bore)
    Thanks

    Marksmanv

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    Member Casper50's Avatar
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    At 10 -15 yds you do not have time to aim at specific points. You point and shoot and shoot until he's dead, leaves or gets you.

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    [QUOTE=marksmanv;561474]Hi All


    Here is a question that i have asked several older, more experienced hunters who have shot grizzly bears, and they have given me different answers. so i like to get your opinions on this matter;

    If you had to stop a grizzly from getting to you in a full charge, where would you shoot it? Head? tip of the nose? chest? or shoulder?or another place perhaps?

    Tell me how you would do it if you were in that scenario and the grizzly was 10-15 yards away from you. (i am assuming you are using a premuim bullet with enough sectional density, penetration, and a rifle of adequate power, a medium bore)
    Thanks

    Take a BIG tire, put a picture of a bear on it, roll the tire at you. Stand in the way and shoot the picture. That is how you do it. :O) Get good or stay where the hell you are at.

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    Member BrettAKSCI's Avatar
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    I haven't hunted BB/Griz yet, but as a general rule with DG shoot the centeral nervous system to stop it. Chest shots may turn it or knock it down allowing for another shot, but they may not. What I've read or been told from experienced guides in African and Alaska is don't rush the shot and wait as it closes until your sure of your shot. "Just shooting and hoping for the best" isn't advisable unless that's all you have. I've seen some perscribe getting low to be on level with the animal, but probably not applicable to BB/Griz (more smaller lion/leopard). About the closest call I ever had with a charging animal was a wounded racoon rocketing down the tree trunk directly at me as I was standing at the base! No exacly Capstickesk, but it sure got my attention when I droped him at my feet with a brain shot! Not exactly a serious encounter, but....

    Brett

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    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Casper50 View Post
    At 10 -15 yds you do not have time to aim at specific points. You point and shoot and shoot until he's dead, leaves or gets you.
    As fast as those bad boys move and at that close of range I agree with Casper point at the blur and put some lead in the grizz as fast as you can shoot. Then again if I pulled my rifle up and had the presence of mind to aim I would aim at the center of the head and or the hump behind his head hoping to make a quick killing shot.

    I have shot two wounded black bears at close range, both times they were 10-15 feet away and going away from me. The first one was with a 308 win in good light and reasonably open vegetation I put a round at the base of the skull and it never moved again. The second one was with a 300 win mag at dusk in the rain forest of Whittier, never saw the bear till it jumped up and started to run, I could not tell what direction it was going and hit it two times and it dropped. Honestly I am not sure where those two rounds hit it as we quickly skinned it out and left the area.

    The only other close range bear shot I have witnessed was my wife shooting her black bear with my 375 H&H at ten feet between the eyes. That did the job!

    I prefer for them to fall after the first shot and not to get back up but it does not always work out that way. Practice shooting a lot and with the same rifle you are going to hunt with as this will make you and it one.

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    Default The Terrifying Brown Mass Engulfing Your FOV

    I'm not sure you can "choose a spot" in that scenario. At that distance (10-15 yards) you are fortunate to get one round off with a bolt action rifle, and you are wise to ensure some hydrostatic shock into the bear - anywhere you are able to. And, as stated earlier, keep shooting until dead - you or the bear. Oh, and hope you have partner/s cool enough under pressure to employ the same tactics you are employing.

    If you are shooting a scoped rifle (even low power) then the entire FOV is filled with brown - squeeze the trigger. At that point you are likely instict shooting anyway....like birding with a shotgun. The debate over point of aim seems purely hypothetical and totally unrealistic to me in your given scenario. It is survival response then, and you are past the opportunity to "target a specific spot".

    I do have an experience such as this. I am sure there are others on this forum that do as well. I would be interested in hearing their thoughts. The brown bear in my story is in the final stages of rugging. A cherished and hopefully singular experience for me.

  7. #7
    Member Magnum Man's Avatar
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    Default Tough question

    I have been charged by a black bear and a brown bear but got away without having to shoot either. The blacky I had A 450 marlin and saw him coming out of some willows thru the tundra and had total control of the situation. The brownies 2 siblings came at me in A creek I had a 44 mag. And yes I was very concerned. If I had enuff time to choose the shot I would go for the snout. A little high or a little low and I think it would be a kill shot or at least a good shot. If I had the 375 I wouldnt be afraid to hammer the brisket but I would be following up a round in a big hurry. A 30-06 300 or 338 I would try a little more for the snout.

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    Member shphtr's Avatar
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    To specifically answer your question: Conventional wisdom is to aim for the nose...as best you can. The rational is a shot thru the nose at a slight down angle stands a good chance of being a brain shot and hence instance stopper. A bit high in the midline provides a high likelihood of a spinal shot - another instant stopper. A low shot hopefully will take out the heart but will prob not be an instant stopper at close range - but way better than shouting, "Shoo bear!", a shot to the right or left is a probable shoulder shot and will possibly turn the bear - always a good a good thing in this type of scenario. Hopefully Joe Want, undoubtedly one of the most experienced bear guides in Alaska and a freq poster on this forum will give you the benefit of his extensive FIRST HAND experience and recommendations regarding your inquiry.

  9. #9

    Default I have taken a blackie

    with a .325 wsm - 239 yds, one shot....I know that is not a 10-15 yarder...BUT, I have also sprayed a Grizz at that distance. Yes, here we go, bear spray.
    At the distance you prescribed, I would have total confidence in Bear Spray. Full on frontal and it WILL turn the bear away...giving you time to get out the lead spray and place that well aimed shot if need be.
    Those Bears are soooo ****ed quick, and soooo ****ed quiet, you certainly won't have time to aim. While I carry a .454 Casull in a chest pack, I have learned through experience that I would not be able to deploy that in enough time to shoot at a bear at that distance. If it were my 45-70 with the 450 gr buffalo bore ammo, it would only be a 'point and shoot' issue....no aiming involved, at that distance.

    Consider Bear Spray. It works. Period.

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    My time in Alaska was not spent hunting bear, but we spent a fair amount of time in Bear Country. My thoughts are based on information from this website, as well as others and reading a multitude of books.

    Russian River Grizzlies are known for false charges, stopping or vearing off at the last second, sometimes multiple times, and sometimes close enought to brush the scared crapless fisherman. I would hate to take a bluffing Grizzly and change it into a pissed Grizzly by wounding it.

    The weapon I carry is as good as it gets for a handgun. 500 SW, loaded as hot as I safely can, pushing 700 grains of lead.

    Have been a police officer for close to 30 years and am a firm believer mentally preparing yourself to react to specific stress in a specific manner. An example is getting shot. Can't practice getting shot, but you can mentally prepare yourself. Was shot in 2002 and reacted exactly as I had prepared.

    My plan, and some will disagree is that if charged and time permits, I will put one round in the ground, while dropping to my knees, hoping the shock and noise will end the charge, and it's easier to pray from that position. If the bear continues I will stay on target. My intent will be to keep the pistol up and drop the hammer an instant before contact, or on contact, aiming strainght at the nose, instinctive without using the sights.

    In our group we carry firearms and spray. Those with spray will start seasoning at about 15 yards if the wind is right.

    If a attack takes place and the bear is already on a member of our party first shot will be in the hip, hopefully the bear will flee or turn presenting a safe shot.

    We typically divide gear and try to always have Spray and a Firearm in each group.

    Based on what I have read I am confident we would survive a bear attack. Firearms and mace to hopefully deter a bear, or end an attack, a great first aid kit, with which I am confident we can stop pretty much any bleeding, GPS and Satillite phone to call for assistance. We would have less chance at surviving a lethal gunshot wound.

    Most importantly we take every step we can to prevent a bad encounter with a bear. We have only made two trips to Alaska and have had bear within a foot, sniffing our tents at night, 15 feet while fishing on the upper stretches of the Russian, out to about 70 yards on the Russian and Resurrection Creek.

    We consider seeing them the highlight of our trips.

  11. #11
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    well i'm not older but i've got a little experience with bears. if i could pick my shot at that range and you'd be suprised how well you can when your instincts take over in a situtation. but i'm shooting for his face. if i'm left or right, i get a shoulder and hopefully he'll turn. if i'm high, maybe his spine and he'll drop if i'm low maybe a chest shot, then when he's chewin on my i know he'll be dead around the same time i am....
    largest margin of error is where i'm aiming...beady little eyes.
    Www.blackriverhunting.com
    Master guide 212

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    No need for a harsh tone of voice there champ. I KNOW how to shoot.
    I was asking for particular spots to shot at from guys who have done it before, not just spraying a tire with my semi auto rifle.

    Everyone else thanks for your feedback. I think based on what i have heard here that, the face/snout is the best place to shoot at. This is pretty much what i have heard from majority of hunters i asked before posting here.
    I like the idea of bear spray, save the bear and avoid injuries to myself, but i have been hearing so much mix feedback on that. Some swear by it and some swear at it haha.

    Thanks
    Marksmanv



    [QUOTE=JEFFSTER;561478]
    Quote Originally Posted by marksmanv View Post
    Hi All


    Here is a question that i have asked several older, more experienced hunters who have shot grizzly bears, and they have given me different answers. so i like to get your opinions on this matter;

    If you had to stop a grizzly from getting to you in a full charge, where would you shoot it? Head? tip of the nose? chest? or shoulder?or another place perhaps?

    Tell me how you would do it if you were in that scenario and the grizzly was 10-15 yards away from you. (i am assuming you are using a premuim bullet with enough sectional density, penetration, and a rifle of adequate power, a medium bore)
    Thanks

    Take a BIG tire, put a picture of a bear on it, roll the tire at you. Stand in the way and shoot the picture. That is how you do it. :O) Get good or stay where the hell you are at.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by marksmanv View Post
    Hi All


    Here is a question that i have asked several older, more experienced hunters who have shot grizzly bears, and they have given me different answers. so i like to get your opinions on this matter;

    If you had to stop a grizzly from getting to you in a full charge, where would you shoot it? Head? tip of the nose? chest? or shoulder?or another place perhaps?

    Tell me how you would do it if you were in that scenario and the grizzly was 10-15 yards away from you. (i am assuming you are using a premuim bullet with enough sectional density, penetration, and a rifle of adequate power, a medium bore)
    Thanks

    Marksmanv
    At 10-15 yards and a full charge there is no shot selection other than center of the charging mass (in some instances I'd shoot a shot in front - but certainly not all).
    "...assuming you are using a premuim bullet with enough sectional density, penetration, and a rifle of adequate power, a medium bore...".
    During the "full charge" TOO LATE to be thinking about those things!!
    Good luck
    Joe (Ak)

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    At 15 yards on a charge the bear should be able to reach you within a second (depending on how big it is). I have no experience whatsoever with charging bears, but according to some reports I have read, an adult grizzly in good shape stride's (on a charge), can cover around 15 feet of distance, and as fast as 35 MPH or more.

    Also, what I have read on this subject is that all you have time to, if lucky enough, is to aim and shoot all you can at the center of mass, and hope for the best. I agree with others in that at that distance there is a good chance that all you will see through the scope is brown color, and also to shoot as many times as you can.

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    Default re

    I have spent several years bear hunting, and talked to several guides.

    If you have a friend that has a bear skull or go to a fish and game office. You will see that the bear has a small brain cavity it is located in the back of a sloped head. There have been documented cases of 44 bullets bouncing off the skull of brown/grizzly bears.

    I can tell you that I shot a 8 ½ food brown bear through the heart and the bear ran off 100/150 yards before dropping. In fact the only bear that I have ever seen just get pole axed, was a bad shot that hit the bear in the spine.

    So the reality is that you’re not going to stop him, if he is really determined for one. Second you will have no time to aim it will be point and shoot and shoot and shoot and pray. As the old saying goes save the last round for yourself.

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    Member AK_Kid's Avatar
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    Real men just wrassle 'em.

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    Real men just wrassle' em , and don't live to tell about.

    Really tho, one of your best defences is to charge straight at the bear while unloading your gun.

    Bears sence fear, and they respect something coming at them with no fear.

    I don't know if thats good advice being all sitituation's are differant, but it's what I'd do instead of back-peddling and trying to unload while tripping over the brush behind you.

    Just my 2 cents, I was 25 at one time too And I was fearless.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rock_skipper View Post
    Real men just wrassle' em , and don't live to tell about.
    NOT TRUE! Had a "zero - one" record and then RETIRED!
    Joe (Ak)

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    Member Rock_skipper's Avatar
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    Man I'd like to hear that story

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    Member Buck Nelson's Avatar
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    Default My one and (hopefully) only time at a charging grizzly

    I aimed at center mass. It was actually a coastal brownie charging up a steep mountainside through the alders and close enough that I pointed my rifle at the middle of the blurry mass of brown hair and yanked the trigger. Not textbook maybe but I was just happy that I remembered to do that!

    I don't know how much of the effect was the impact of the bullet and how much was the bear being startled, but the bullet (30-06, 180 grain Core-Lokt, I was goat hunting) actually seemed to knock it back a bit. I shot twice more and it was down for good. Took a bit for the adrenaline to dissipate, though.

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