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Can you give me some thoughts on where the grizz start thinning out as I go south from Yellowstone?
I’d prefer not to see any but if it’s very unlikely I would probably be ok
South of Jackson and out of the Gros Ventre.
There's griz farther south than people realize. I've got a buddy lives around Daniel and we hunt in the Bridger-Tetons straight west from Labarge. There be griz there...we've seen em. A local rancher told us they transplant problem park bears outa Yellowstone, and they're a REAL nuisance, if not downright hazardous. They're used to people and have been breaking into cabins and camps. Blackies don't overly concern me, but griz have my total and complete attention...lol.
I’ve hunted west of LaBarge in the Commissary Ridge area. I know outfitters there too. Never heard of anyone seeing grizzlies way down there or anywhere in the adjacent hills to the north.
There's not nearly as many the closer you get to Pinedale, but the drainages of the Wind River, Shoshone River, and Snake River are saturated with grizz.
You ought to be safe in the Bighorns and the Snowy Range!
I think Big Piney is about as far south as you'd find them.
Totally agree with MulePower.....hunt commissary a lot..never seen or heard of one in there....
Wy game and fish has them listed as far south as Bridger Teton I’ve hunted thru that area and I haven’t seen any sign of them. I’m sure they are close though. The only thing I can assume is all the bands of sheep everywhere around that area most probably keeps them away. I know it made me change my plans . Forest service needs to do something about the numbers of sheep in there .
Maybe not right up on Commissary, but there are factually griz in the Wyoming Range up toward McDougal Gap, albeit limited numbers. Read the depredation reports if you want. If they are there, then you can be certain at some point soon, if not already, there will be grizz everywhere in the WY and Salt River Ranges if left unchecked. Of course the population is nothing like the Green headwaters or further north, so you aren't going to hear a lot of reports.
Those animal distribution maps that show the range of each species are a joke. They show grizzlies everywhere but not one snake in Washington DC. Seriously I know for a fact there are no griz where they show them. Maybe one was spotted in 1886 but that shouldn’t count.
I don’t even worry about grizzlies near Hoback.
When hunting in Western Wyoming it would be foolish not to be aware that Grizzlies are there. It doesn't mean you have to be scared or worried, but be aware and make necessary precautions to protect yourself. I have family in Pinedale and there are grizzlies there and SW of there for sure.
There was young male that had to be destroyed for killing cattle in the Grays drainage a few years ago, furthest south I've ever heard of one.
There are grizzly warning signs on the trailheads down on Piney creek drainages just north of Big Piney, and I know of two credible sightings by long-time local bowhunters (Wyoming guys) down there this year. A USFS guy told one of them that problem bears from the GYE were being relocated down there also. I didn't see any sign or tracks in the five weeks I spent in there this summer and fall.
WY G&F has a tendency instill grizzphobia sometimes in areas there not in.
Funny they are so open about grizzlys but tell them you saw a cougar in some places and it's a "no way no cougar here"
From: Bowboy 28-Jan-18 WY G&F has a tendency instill grizzphobia sometimes in areas there not in.
***Wouldn't you rather that they err that way than to not show where they believe they are and then have someone get mauled with your theory that there aren't any around?!
well some different opinions here for sure!!
thanks everyone for the thoughts...
i would think hunting pressure is quite a bit less in the confirmed grizz areas, but i dont have the stones for it....
good luck all....
Last year south of Alpine along the Greys, I visited with a lady who's son is WY game and fish - he confirmed a sighting of a sow with 2 cubs approximately 58 miles south of Alpine.
We found a fresh pile of scat in SW Colo about 3 years ago. It was 2x larger than the largest black bear scat we've ever come across. I'm trying to find the pic. Using my son's bow for scale, we determined that the pile was roughly 16 -18" long and ~9" in diameter. It a continuous pile of 2-1/2 -3" "turd" of dark green, grassy looking stuff. It resembles some pics of griz scat. It was a few miles from an area that the warden had identified as an almost inaccessible wilderness sanctuary that the elk flock to early in the bow season. The CPW says there are no Griz in Colo, so it must have been something else... 'just not sure what?
Must have been Bigfoot scat. Lol
From: Inshart 01-Feb-18 Last year south of Alpine along the Greys, I visited with a lady who's son is WY game and fish - he confirmed a sighting of a sow with 2 cubs approximately 58 miles south of Alpine.
Geez, I shot my mule deer along the Greys not too far east of Alpine in 2015 and my resident buddy shot his south of there at least 20 miles and then another 193" NT down south of Afton 10 miles in 2016, which is still less than 58 miles south of Alpine. That would put that sow and cubs dang near out of the south end of the NF due west of Labarge. We saw a huge sow with two cubs near where he shot his buck in 2015 and it sure looked like a black bear, but this now has me wondering! I'm not going back there any time soon with the number of PPs it takes to draw a tag, so I guess I'm safe, LOL!
"Must have been Bigfoot scat. Lol" That was the second suggestion that came up when we searched for scat that large. 'Still searching for the old camera pic. Edit: Further research indicates that RM griz ( ~800 lbs, max) aren't all that much bigger than the largest Blacks ~650 lbs. Given the lack of any recent verifiable griz pics, the CPW may be right. The last confirmed Colo griz kill was in '79*. Ours must have been a MONGO black, or as the boys were prone to say - "bear-zilla"...
ColoBull---The last grizzly confirmed in CO was the one Ed Wiseman killed by jabbing it in the jugular while it was mauling him down by the Platoro Reservoir during the fall of 1979!
The CPW isn't as dumb as some think, at times anyway. Think about it. I have a good friend in southern CO. He and his wife saw a griz about 10 years ago in the San Juans. They reported it. Do you know why the CPW denies these sightings of griz and wolves? From what the CDOW officer told him, they'd have to protect them which means intervention from the feds. The "investigating" officer also told him he is not the only person seeing griz in SW CO since the last one was killed supposedly by that guide many years ago.
Thanks, Topgun. I'll edit that that old report out. Parts of the Weiminuche are a great sanctuary. We didn't find any tracks. It was on an old overgrown & closed off fire access road. It was after sunset, and a couple miles from camp. It hadn't been there on our way up the ridge. We weren't in the mood to stick around & meet whatever had dropped in on our tracks, like a warning sign.
EESH, griz by Platoro?! I used to spend alot of time around there in the summers. Glad I didn't know about that.
I was packing/fishing South Big Sandy south of Pinedale mid jun. 6 feet of snow at Donald lake and 3 grizzle elk kills. I was trying to hurry past a fresh elk carcass, my dog winded something, tucked her tail and heeled,.. we left because the fish weren't biting
There ARE Grizz in the Commissary area... Period
Says who? I know guys making a living guiding there who have never seen ine or heard of anyone who has. None of the hunters who camp there take any precautionary measures because of them. I’ve never seen a track much less an actual bear. I’ve gotten PMs from people saying the same thing.
Do you mean commissary ridge? That seems pretty far south from what I have read
I hunted west of Daniel in 2010. The guys at the camp talked of a moose hunter that was bow hunting in September and had a close encounter with a Sow Griz. We saw no grizz sign, but did see a big tom mt. lion in broad daylight near Little Mackie Creek.
WY Game Fish is having a public meeting on grizzly management on the 27. It's going to be a live meeting on Facebook
I really doubt that there's any resident grizz in the commissary ridge area with all the sheep in there all summer and into mid Sept, don't think one would last long the herders would shoot it.
'Finally found the pic I mentioned. Something left this in the middle of a trail we had been using for a couple days. South end of the 'Nuche - west of Vallecito. For reference, the bolts are ~30" & the outer tips of the limbs are ~14" apart across the riser.
That was me. Sorry about that, I had the full two servings of chilli mac the night before.
Okie, I don't believe you. If chili mac was the culprit that pile would be an odd shade of orange...
Native that is hilarious, I just woke my wife up when I started laughing!
That could just be a big blackie. A big turd doesn't prove anything. That's just a big pile of shit. CO P&W killed an 800 lb blackie boar that was killing elk cows and popping their udders with a claw, drinking the milk, and then killing another in the Flat Tops back in 2011. I talked with the CO that was part of the depredation hunt. This was right as my hunt started and I saw some huge bear crap piles on that hunt, very comparable to the grizz piles I've seen in WY. An 800 lb blackie boar will crap just as big as the average grizz - they're no bigger.
There have been confirmed cases of grizz west of Big Piney for many years now. I've personally saw 2 trail cam pics for bear baits that showed grizz. One even had really good video of the young boar grizz on bait. A rancher had a grizz set up residence on his "bone pile" or carcass disposal pit. Commissary ridge is much more remote that the Piney front, I would bet there are a few cruising around.
They are ABSOLUTELY there. Period.
It's not a stretch of the imagination for them to be west of Big Piney and down to Commissary Ridge. Those mountains are contiguous with areas around Jackson and Dubois that have high populations. All it'd take is for a few young bears to get pushed around a little by mature bears and then take a walk looking for new territory.
South of I-80 though, would be a whole nother ballgame. There's a lot of open country and a freeway that never sleeps that they'd have to cross to get to Utah or CO. And to believe they've been in Southern CO all these decades without one getting shot, photographed, wandering down into ranch lands, etc... I don't believe it. It'd be common knowledge if there were still Grizz in CO. There's just too many hikers and hunters canvassing those mountains every year.
I posted earlier, and previously on a similar thread, of griz sightings in the Labarge, Big Piney area and was soundly thrashed here on the "inter-web"...lol.
My oldest hunting buddy lived in Green River, and is now retired near Daniel. I've made several trips with him to that area, primarily hunting the Absaroka ridge area...a short distance from Commissary.
He's seen grizzlies on two occaisions, both within 100 yards. My last hunting trip there was a few years ago, and a set of tracks showed up in about 6" of snow following the same 3 elk I was. I let him have em, and I moved elsewhere.
I asked a forrester if any had been spotted in the area, and he said a deer hunter's horse got swatted the previous week over on Commissary. When I asked why they were so far south, he said some young park bears were being pushed out and went "walk-about".
We went back the next summer camping, fishing, and kicking around the Lander Cutoff and ran into a local rancher who stopped to chat when he noticed my Wisconsin plates...his daughter was attending college at Wisconsin.
The conversation turned to griz and I told him what the forrester had said. He laughed, and said problem park bears were being sedated and relocated in the area...and were growing into a problem with their familiarity with humans.
I dunno...but I can see the possibility.
The local NF ranger told me that problem bears from the parks were dropped up by Kissinger Lakes NW of Dubois because that was the farthest they could get them away from people with an ATV with a trailer. I told him it'd be more effective to use a .30 Winchester Magnum and put them 6 feet under where people walk. He smiled but didn't say anything although I knew what he was thinking.
Guess you haven't heard but sightings in Northern Colorado, that is well south of I-80, credible sightings.
Midwest: That last sentence is wrong, absolutely incorrect.
elkstabber, I was curious about that!
Yes, that last sentence contradicts the title and the rest of the story. That writer needs some (unpaid) time off.
The fact is that most animals that come off of the Endangered Species list come off because they went extinct, and not because they recovered. Here in recent years the Timber Wolf and Grizzly Bear have both come off of the list because they have recovered. This is a victory for conservation and we hunters should be proud because we funded it. Now that the Grizzly has recovered it is time to do controlled hunts because this will secure the Grizzly's future.
"Guess you haven't heard but sightings in Northern Colorado, that is well south of I-80, credible sightings."
There's been sightings of Bigfoot for decades but one still hasn't turned up dead. I'm not saying it's impossible for there to be grizz in CO, but until there's proof, it's just rumors. People lean towards wanting to tell the fantastic story and believing it instead of the boring truth. I can believe that a lot of people would see a big brown-phase black bear and think they saw a grizz.
Um, no. I'm stating recent sighting by credible people. Equating grizz sightings to bigfoot, c'mon man. There were once thought to be gone from Colorado but I guess the hunter mauled by one in 79 was a fantastic story. That bear had nursed cubs. Black footed ferrets were extinct at one point til a dog drug one in to a ranch so, didn't think wolves would end up near I-80 in SE Wyo this soon either but they are here, there are pics and verified sightings. Just because CP&W says not there yet doesn't make it so. Yes, most folks would not know the difference between a color phase black bear and a grizz, but many do. You hear interesting stories when you have close contacts with G&F folks, just saying.
We hike hunt, ATV near I-15 on the Id/Mont border. Bears dont leave much sign. Our Boy Scout camp (Targee ski area) and 4 H camp near Alpine Wy both had grizzlies.
Like cougars they get around and dont always leave much sign
Two years ago I unintentionally walked to about 50 yards of a grizzly sow and cub just SW of Hoback Junction. I then quickly and smoothly slid behind a tree.
Anybody happen to know what color eye shine a grizzly has?
Just curious. Hiking with a headlamp, and see green eyes, it'd be nice to be able to rule them out.
I read that they are usually yellow/orange but can vary. Their nutritional intake can effect it. Riboflavin and zinc are a factor.
Inshart, I know that. I'm wondering if Griz are green too.
Heard something crashing through the brush one morning. Saw a big black shape and green eyes. I was thinking all sorts of horrible thoughts until I realized it was an Angus cow.
If, for example, I knew that griz glowed orange, and not green, then the next time that happens I won't have that 5 seconds to wonder if I'm about to die. See lots of stuff with green eyes at night.
It would be nice to be able to look over, see green and know it's not a bear is all I'm getting at.