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Thread: How Close Do You Want To Get?

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    Member NDTerminator's Avatar
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    Default How Close Do You Want To Get?

    The bear threads always start me thinking...

    Like most everyone who hunts with his heart & soul, I wonder and dream about hunting dangerous game. In Alaska now days, that means brown/grizzly and to a lesser extent black bear and maybe moose. I know many don't consider blacks to be in the same catagory, but the only one I've shot gave me more than enough to classify the experience as an encounter of a dangerous animal. Moose can get touchy, I know from firsthand experience down here (there are a surprising number of moose in ND, I killed one in 91' about an hour north of my farmstead and having the occasional one in the immediate neughborhood of my place is not terribly unusual)...

    From reading, TV hunting shows, and video which a guy has to remember are probably doing some things to make them exciting (I would cite the Black Death series of videos as purposely creating dangerous situations to give the viewer an exciting & spooky entertainment) it would seem the standard method over there is to get as close as possible to dangerous game. True it's often because of thick cover but getting right up there on the critter is done primarily because that is how african dangerous game is hunted, period. Some of those elephant hunting videos they practically use a big bull for shade while they look him over and discuss the shot. Holy feces...

    Hunting dangerous game is not simple about killing, it's to test oneself and put oneself in harms way for the experience of doing so. I would guess that when you get within say, 50 yards or closer to a brown bear, you & your guide, your gunbearer & tracker (oops forgot I was talking about Alaska, although some well heeled guys probably do have gunbearers & trackers...) you are seriously in harms way and that every step closer swings the odds more & more in the bears favor.

    For the record, if I ever get the chance to hunt your big bears, that is how I would want to play it. A brown bear at 200 yards that doesn't know you are there has little chance to turn the tables and broadside offers a kill zone big enough that even a rank amateur shooting off sticks should not miss. Watched a guy on a show called Game Chasers a few nights back, the bear he got was working tidal flats and the initial shot he took (his guide advised to shoot from there, it looked like) was at 200 yards...

    So guides and those who have BTDT, how close do you prefer to get to brown/grizz and why do you want to get to that range or distance before shooting?

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    Getting as close as I can to make a 'sure shot" and Im the one with the rifle, not the Bear, the Odds are always in my favor.........

    I hunt Bears for Meat, and I preferr to get as close as possible, even if they know Im there and poppin' teeth. I look over any and all animals for health and fat, or I just let 'em go....Lord knows the wifes tounge is sharp if the meat is skinny , and the neighbors will have something to laugh about.

    I dont use a scope, but a good set of Bino's helps keep a good distsnce before moving in for the kill.
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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    200 yards would be a long shot, ND. But that's just me...

    Taylor

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    Like stranger said you want to get as close as you can to make the first shot count, with that said hopefuly it will be the only shot needed. ive seen multipale videos where they shoot till the bear goes down, 3, 4, 5 shots? i just dont think its needed, if the first shot is good, that bears dead he just dont know it yet, not to say a secound follow up shot isnt ok, if its a clear shot of co****. Ive yet to take a brownie, but ive taken lots of big blacks, the largest went 425lbs, all of em were single shot kills but they almost always run out of site. the brownie hunts ive been on were also 1 shot kills and 1 of em droped in its tracks, that shot was made at 115 yrds across a creek, we would have gotten closer if it was possible but you generaly shot when youre close enouph to clearly judge the bears size, but before they are aware you are hunting em, ive never taken a shot at a bear over 200 yrds, because ive never had to. Ive taken 2 bears with a bow, believe 1 was at 20 yrds, it was a bad exsperiance, put 3 arrows in him because he didnt run off that far and didnt act like it was a mortal shot, they are touph animals! Did a stalk on the dalton on a brownie with a bow, got to within 48 yrd, chose not to shot because he knew i was there and gave me a growl or 2 to let me know it, took the arrow out of the knock and quivered it, better to live to tell the tale than risk it. get close but not in their face, and not so far that you cant make out the sex, or size of the ears compared to the head, or how far the belly is hanging, JMO.

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    This guy was a realy nice bore, and to me would have been a ideal shot for a bow or riffle, during salmon runs they dont tend to care if youre around or not useing gravel beds to move up and down river, stashing out in front of thier moveing direction and waiting for em to get there, to get close encounters have been working great for me, that is until the season opens up, then i must smell like a predator or something because they tend to avoid me? how many guys would have taken this guy?

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    I like hunting bears for many reasons, among them is that they can be dangerous. However, if they are not close then they are not dangerous...

    I've shot bears at longer ranges, but I like to be inside 100 yards and last season I was 35-50 yards on numerous bears while in the field--that's not necessarily the best way, but it's a very rewarding way to hunt them IME.
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    Member NDTerminator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Cor15:19 View Post
    I like hunting bears for many reasons, among them is that they can be dangerous. However, if they are not close then they are not dangerous...

    I've shot bears at longer ranges, but I like to be inside 100 yards and last season I was 35-50 yards on numerous bears while in the field--that's not necessarily the best way, but it's a very rewarding way to hunt them IME.
    Even though I have not hunted big bear (yet) I would share your philosophy. The manner in which you worded yours pretty much mirrors my thoughts...

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    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    I've been within 10 yards of brown bears around here in a ground blind set next to a well traveled bear trail. He walked right by and I would have shot him if he wasn't rubbed all to hell. Absolutely thrilling, and now pretty stupid as I think about it
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    shot my 8 foot griz at 6 foot as he stepped out of the brush in front of me.

    Last edited by Vince; 01-06-2011 at 13:32. Reason: add pic
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    Member AlaskaHippie's Avatar
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    Default Took these "shots"...

    ..About the length of an 8wt away.....



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    Member tzieli22's Avatar
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    No more than 100 yards for sure, but would prefer 50 yards or less. If you can smell them then it's all good. And if you really want to try something fun, try backing your hunting partner up after they have shot a brownie with a bow as you walk into the brush. You can smell em then...
    Tony

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr.Montana View Post


    This guy was a realy nice bore, and to me would have been a ideal shot for a bow or riffle, during salmon runs they dont tend to care if youre around or not useing gravel beds to move up and down river, stashing out in front of thier moveing direction and waiting for em to get there, to get close encounters have been working great for me, that is until the season opens up, then i must smell like a predator or something because they tend to avoid me? how many guys would have taken this guy?
    Would NOT take the bear pictured if hunting for good mature Kodiak or lower Peninsula boar. Not certain where the picture was taken but that is not a large bear, mature? , maybe.
    Joe

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    I've only shot black bears. One at 20 yards, one at 60 yards and one at less than 3 feet. If I get a chance for a brown/grizzly, I would like to get as close as possible until I felt uncomfortable, then shoot. I'll never know what that distance is until that day comes. Kudos to all of you have have been there and done that.

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    Member AlaskaHippie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wantj43 View Post
    Would NOT take the bear pictured if hunting for good mature Kodiak or lower Peninsula boar. Not certain where the picture was taken but that is not a large bear, mature? , maybe.
    Joe
    Biggest one I saw last Fall.....



    I don't hunt 'em, but this one struck me as pretty impressive....

    A few more angles..Crappy resolution, lousy light that day and I was using a point and shoot from across the crick.



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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaHippie View Post
    Biggest one I saw last Fall.....



    I don't hunt 'em, but this one struck me as pretty impressive....
    Mr. Chocolate?

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    Quote Originally Posted by fullbush View Post
    Mr. Chocolate?
    Dunno if your a Jimmy Buffett fan 'Bush...But the phrase "Mr. Bear.....sir!" came to mind...
    “Life has become immeasurably better since I have been forced to stop taking it seriously.” ― H.S.T.
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  18. #18

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    Bears come in all body sizes. That one pictured above appears to have a nice coconut & hide. I think most hunters would be hard pressed to let that one walk on the tail end of any bear hunt!

    I like to get as close as possible undetected & under 100 yards if possible. If I have the bear dead to the rights @ 70 yards & a broad side shot I see no reason to get closer. I think most bear stories are about charges/ attacks & so some people fantasize that they will have some blood thirsty, 1000lb, 10' boar, chargen them. If you hunt bears long enough you will have your adrenaline moments. But to go out hunting, looking to get super close, push for a charge, & a smaller kill zone I will have to say is a bit foolish.

    Also read in an above post that if you shoot a bear & feel it is a good shot no reason to shoot again. That it will die because of the well placed bullet. I personally feel that is a foolish idea for a big brown bear. I understand that it may depend on the situation, but I like to see the sucker hit the dirt in my "direct line" of sight. I can give you alot more reason as to why to keep shooting than not. I hope you get to come up & hunt brown bears some day. I also hope it will be as exciting as you dreamed it would be.

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    another sub adult bear, i have a few pic of some big ones joe, ill try to post em for ya, looked for 6 days and only seen 3 real nice ones that fell into the pig category. justin guess alot of what you said was directed at my post, I for one love the rush of being up close to a bear for a kill, some guys may not, and want that longer shot. it has nothing to do with provoking a charge, because if you spend enouph time around brownies you learn to read the body language, they remind me of a big dog sometimes, they aint to teddy bear and im not timothy tredwell but they are are just fun to hunt and be around. i like to get close to make my for sure shot, you may need more than one shot and like to keep youre distance, but a well placed shot will drop a big bear in its tracks, you may not have experianced it but i have. when you get close you get to look the hide over and make sure there are no rubs, it has good hair and color, and the lips arent torn, ive seen that too. i said nothing on the lines of dont shoot more than once, as you should be ready for a follow up, but to just unload for no reason has no purpose and youre taxidermist is gana hate it. do what you want, you have youre way i have mine, i dont need to feel like rambo to hunt a bear, big or small.

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    I have taken one coastal brown bear and one interior grizzly, and I have helped two friends take two other interior grizzlies. All bears were spot and stalk and shot within 100 yards...to be more specific 90, 75, 45 and 15 yards. Each and every one of those hunts were so intensely memorable that my heart starts racing just thinking about them. The experience was way beyond words, and I know that I will never forget those moments in time...especially the one we shot at 15 yards. My preference and my intended practice is to only take brown/grizzly bears within 100 yards, and I hope that I am able to continue to do so.

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