After the labors of fleshing, salting, and processing I'd like to share this great bear with you. I won't say his size. I didn't tape him. I won't get his skull measurement until next Tuesday when I seal him. The fact I was able to hunt a great animal in a great state is reason enough to share.
I got an offer to head back into a local salmon stream for Coho with a friend. This was to be a fishing trip but I told him about a "hot bear tag" in my pocket so we should leave prior to first light to have a chance at seeing a bruin on the beach. So I loaded up everything I need for hunting bear in my trusty pack, threw together some fishing stuff and pushed out the door. We ran the boat for a bit and just as we were getting ready to stop I see a nice bear on the beach. He immediatly hit the deck and layed very, very low. My partner couldn't even see him but I knew he was there and quickly gathered my rifle and binos. We motored quietly to the beach at some distance and I was dropped off by myself and my trusty 25-06 loaded with a hand rolled 120g Nosler. It was on!
The morning was so picture perfect for a bear stalk. Calm. I could hear nothing, yet everything. The wind betrayed nothing. I leaped from solid rock to solid rock to keep the crunch factor to a minimum. The stalk was perfect and I closed the gap to less than 100yrds and had the upper hand by about 10 feet. The observation post was in a clump of trees and I took a prone posistion and watched my quarry. The moment of truth; everything happens so very quickly in these moments. I first looked the bear over very closely to identify sex, coat and size with my 12x binos. Check, Check, and a maybe. The Bear lifted his head and scented something and my sinario quickly took on a whole new urgency. He was on the move and questioning the safety of his beach retreat. I made the quick decision to seal the deal, steadied my rifle and sent destiny.
The shot rang true at a distance most anyone can shoot well at. He roared to life and plowed into the trees. My racing heart took some time to settle. No charge, no world war three shooting session, It was just one well placed shot and done.
I looked to the boat and my friends eyes could be seen a mile away. Everyone was in amazement.
We gathered our stuff and gave the bear a little time and started the recovery. The moment was tense heading into the rainforest after the bear. My friend said I should'nt be going in there. I knew what I had to do and had an obligation to fullfill. I nosed into the brush and that bear didn't go 10 yrds from where he was shot. A perfect chest and heart shot.
This completes a super season for me. I've been very blessed in so many regards. The conservation efforts and land management strategies of Alaska have helped me experience the reality of being a hunter. I'm not saying they are perfect but for me, this year, they were. Thank you to all my online friends. Its been fun sharing the adventure and privlege of being an Alaskan.