I called Ken with a few weeks left to the Quebec bear season to see how he had been making out. He whined about having a tough season and went on to say that wouldn't have too much time to hunt and that he probably wouldn't get a bear this year. I told him to shut up because we have the same conversation every year and then he goes on to take a giant every year....lol.
Well he did it again... Ken I'll let you give the stats and the story
Congrats and great to meet you at P&Y Ken (you too Shug)!
As far as the bear goes, I had first seen his signs about three years ago, but like most big bears often do, he roamed a large area and lived like a ghost. During that period we had had one brief encounter where he simply raised his nose and slipped back into the thick cover.
Where I hunt, bear hunting is popular with both the non-natives who have a spring season as well as one in the fall, and then also with the natives who have no season restrictions. The fall season is particularly risky for bears since there are a lot of moose hunters with bear tags too. Everyone hunts with rifles, so even a short exposure during daylight at any time during the bear's non-hibernating season may have proved fatal. He was on my mind this past winter and I wondered if he was still alive.
Our spring was very late this year and when I was finally able to start scouting around a bit and to make some preparations, I found his tracks in the snow.
I was anticipating his return, but since he didn't have a fixed schedule (LOL), I hunted whenever I felt the conditions were right (which was not really very often). At one point I could tell he was around but nocturnal (I don't use cameras much, trying to figure them out gets me upset, LOL).
The season was short this year and as I mentioned already the weather was terrible. There were no flies until June, but when they came out, they came out with a vengeance. They were bad even for me and I'm sure that if I took a lung X-ray at this time, several mosquitoes and black fies would show up on the screen.
I have to drive 3 hours south to bear hunt. I mostly hunt bears alone and since I don't need much luxury, LOL, on the days I could hunt I slept on the ground beside my pickup (too much stuff in the back). When the flies got really bad I slept in the bucket seat of my pickup truck - I don't bother with a tent for several reasons, one of which is that I don't like leaving a good tent setup unattended over there.
To get back to the hunt, I'll simplify things for the sake of space by saying that I took advantage of a front moving in and then (like my father used to say) managed to be at the same place at the same time as the bear, LOL!
He gave me a very quartering away shot at about 15 yards and I concentrated on a spot between his shoulder and his hip. Upon impact he exploded away and I saw the fletching end of the arrow fall out when it hit a tree. I listened for a few minutes and then I got out of my brush blind and walked over to check it out. All the arrow except about 7" was there but the colour was right.
I went back to the truck to get my dragging rope and a bottle of Gatorade- and boy, did I end up needing that as well as another and a big jug of water.
He had gone straight for about 20 yards and then had turned 90 degrees and dropped 40 yards further. The broad head had entered about at the last rib, went through the diaphragm, through some major blood vessels as well as at least one of the lungs, out therib cage and then into the opposite shoulder. The arrow was in three pieces - I had the shaft with the fletching, the broad head we found in the opposite shoulder when we butchered, but I don't have the short piece that broke off at the exit between his rib cage and opposite shoulder.
The 4 1/2 hours it took me to get him to and then into the truck is a story in itself.
I donated this bear to our community for Aboriginal day on June 21. The meat was smoked and cooked in a large tipi called a "michiiwap". It was eaten in a matter of hours and many (including my wife and I) did not have a chance to taste it. So... as soon as the weather cleared up I went back in the bush with my wife and her 30/30 to get some more bear meat, LOL!
That's one of the reasons I was away, but then after we butchered her bear, I had to drive 7 hours to a garage for truck maintenance (it was beginning to fall apart, LOL). After that I continued on another 1 1/2 hours further to be with my 86 year old mother and my brother while my sister underwent her 4th heart surgery in a big city. The specialists had told her that they were not sure if they could save her this time. They did.
I'm a little upset at the moment because while I was away I missed a call on our home phone (I don't have a cellphone) that was a job offer for a month in the arctic in charge of the safety of a group of geologists in polar bear country... it was urgent and I missed that job... !@#$... and the money would have come in handy, my truck cost me a small fortune to fix. Update: The guy called me back and if they go ahead with their plans, I got the job.
Truly a one of a kind BIG man! Thanks for telling your story. C
450#plus and a 20 1/2" skull
Anywhere that's a great bear in Quebec it's stunning
When I first joined Bowsite I never would have thought anyone would have posted anything like what I have read on this thread.
I am overwhelmed and I am honoured that you accept me as a friend.
Old friends, new friends that I met at the P&Y convention, and Bowsite friends I haven't met.