Contributors to this thread:
Experienced bear killers opinion needed
Question for EXPERIENCED Bear KILLERS
Which Broadhead? Big Jim big 3-3 blade, Magnus 1-4 blade or tuffhead
1. is it better to guarantee two holes and pay the insurance up front of you happen to hit heavy bone or....
2. Are the vitals far enough back that you really have to screw up to hit heavy bone and a big hole that potentially could put more blood on the ground for tracking...or
3. If you double lung then you won’t need to blood trail because they will die in a very short distance so go ahead and shoot the bullet proof tuffhead?
I have killed three black bear with archery. I don't find them to be overly tough to kill. What ever you like for deer should work great for bears. I made good shoots on all three. None went 50 yards. They don't leave much of blood trail either. I am not sure if because of there fur or fat or combo of both. Don't over think it. If anything focus on picking a spot to shoot them. Because they are one big black blob especially in low light.
1.Which one flies the best. 2. Which one is the sharpest. 3. Concentrate on shot placement.
A good sharp head will do the job. My wife used a 100gr Stinger this year. One thing that I have learned is that with a high lung hit they will go 100-150 yards. With a shot closer to the heart or heart shot, they will go 40-60 yards. Good luck and take some time to look at picutures of the vitals prior to hunting.
I like this link with the overlaying pictures. You can put he mouse on the bear and then scroll down and see what organs you hit.
My mid-lung shot bears did not go as far as my heart shot bear. I suspect that opinions will vary on this point. You might want to get The Perfect Shot by Craig Boddington. It shows the anatomy of all North American animals. While written for gun hunters, the anatomical views are quite hepful, and it would make an excellent addition to your library. (One of few complaints that I had with the book is that it shows a muskox having a rather long tail......they don't). BTW, what species of bear are we talking about here?
No worries about killing them - worry about having enough blood to track them in dense woods. Bears are fat, thick furred, and blood soaks in the fur - or the fat plugs the hole. You also track in the dark most often. For these reasons, in my humble opinion and experience (13 bears with broadheads) and that of outfitters I have spoken with, 3-blades are "better" than 2 blades.
From my experiences and from that how I would plan it out. I would not plan for a blood trail. I only had one blood trail, all the others pretty much none. All the heads you pictured will put a bear down,, If you hit it where you should. Plan on hitting it in both lungs and if you do chances are it's down in 50 yds. Hit only one lung, make plans to shoot that same bear next year. Yes a heart will put it down. Liver and it's a good chance you don't find it. I would not worry about two holes only hitting both lungs. Ed
I like mechanicals for bears
Don't overthink it, but do make sure you avoid the scapula. Other than that pretty much and arrow/BH combination is fine for black bear. If you put the arrow in the right apot, they are softer than deer IMO.
I have used: Muzzy 100 and 125 grain 3 blade, Rocky MT. Supreme 3 blades, Zwickey Eskimo, Shot placement!
I have killed a dozen or more blacks and a brown bear. I would shoot a Vortex on my next one.
I have killed at least one bear with each of the broadheads in this photo. Any sharp broadhead that flys true and put in the right spot will result in a short track job on a bear.
It makes no difference whatsoever. Shot placement and a sharp are all that matter. I've only had to track a couple of my bears and they died close enough that blood trailing really wasn't an issue. None of them went over 50 yards, max. All of them were taken with a 2 blade magnus or zwickey.
I have helped out with some long blood trails on bears over the years and broadhead design was never an issue.
I have killed 23 black bears most all with zwickey eskimo
I've only killed a few and all with 2 blades. 1 bad blood trail where more blades may have helped but he didn't go far. High entry and stopped on the offside scapula.
I would hunt with any of the heads you showed with confidence.
Carcus x 2.6 Black bears aren't hard to kill when hit properly.
I used the same BH for every animal I hunt,have confidence in your equitment
Mechanicals for bears. They are soft but don’t bleed or at least blood doesn’t reach ground. Make a big hole.
They’re easy to kill. I’ve arrowed five blacks and one brown. I use a good solid fixed head that’s greater than 1”. My preference today would be Iron Will, either the standard, or wide.
They will all work. I have killed about 20 with self bows. Never used a mechanical, so no comment there.
This hunt will be black bear from the ground. I very much appreciate everyone’s feedback and advice. I will stick to what has worked for me over the past 4-5 years and shoot the single bevel tuff heads or grizzly. I have the utmost confidence in these and I fully expect to hit where I want. And if I don’t or the bear moves I have pre-paid the insurance with the Broadhead snd arrow set up.
Thanks again everyone. Great information.
Good luck on your hunt. I shot many bears from the ground, some stalk, some by bait. The ground gives an excellent shot angle, same on deer.
Good luck. Double lung archery is a 40 yard or less track job deal. If you’re tracking after 150 yards be worried. Very worried.
Larry says you can just about THROW an arrow through a bear, and he has killed something north of 300 of ‘em....
So I am prepared to take his word for it.
Black bear are not all that tough. Hell i kill them with flint knapped stone points. Double lung them, sit back and relax.
I’ve killed my share of black bears of many color phases. Shot placement is key. Patience is the key to shot placement. If you are hunting bait, it is your ethical responsibility to wait for the shot. It WILL happen. Don’t want to get into a broad heads argument. Fixed broad heads were at one time almost required by Canadian outfitters. This takes us back to shot placement. That has changed some . A mechanical broad head, I use spitfires now, that is shot at a broadside or a slight quartering away animal is deadly. Sometimes producing excellent blood trails.....not always.
A well placed shot will send a bear sprinting away. Many many times that well placed shot will cause the bear to hook right or left as death catches up with him. Sometimes letting you see and hear the final seconds of the kill. Some guys call that run the “ hook “. Patience....the shot will come. Whatever broad head you choose will work with patience. Good luck!!
Double lunged one with Eskimo had good blood trail out both sides but he was soaking wet, just out of the creek went about 80 yards.
No one really wants to read a long answer... nor my "qualifications", LOL - but taking everything into consideration: use a good 3 blade and don't hit the shoulder blade (which by the way, will stop 99% of any kind of broadhead).
Also, you know what waiting for a good shot is, but remember that you're gambling if you shoot at a bear that's sitting or laying down.
I have personally killed several bruins using longbows and guided hundreds of successful clients using all types of bows and broadheads since the early 80’s. Excellent advice from Ken Taylor.
I've killed a few dozen bears from the ground and most with a three blade Spitfire mechanical, (can't recommend the new ones) and a few other types of fixed, from Slicktricks to two blade stingers. Stay away from the shoulder and shoot halfway up. I find most vitals diagram don't show an accurate depiction of a bear's lungs.
Maybe someone from one of the busy bear camps would post a broadside bear with a red dot on it. Study the placement of that red dot and shoot it there.
Thanks Ken. I’ve been on a handful of black bear hunts. On my second hunt I had a 6’ bear on the edge of the bait snd I told myself , “settle down let him come in and eat the bait”. Well I passed up a shot because every other bear I had ever seen to that point had walked in and eventually got into he bait. But everything was different about this bear. His walk, the way his shoulders rolled, his head. He stood up, smelled a trail camera dropped snd walked straight away. I hunted for 7 more days and passed up 5 different bears waiting for that dude. I’ll never forget it. Wouldn’t change anything except maybe shooting one of those 5 bears that I passed. Hind site old sons. This is great information and I very much appreciate the time everyone took to respond.
I have 3 Black Bears, all P&Y taken with 3 blade fixed. I also have another near 150 Biggame taken with 3 blade fixed & some model Rocky Mountain last 45 years. (Elk, Antelope, Buffalo, Mule Deer, Whitetail, Bear, Caribou, Hogs & Exoric Sheep & Deer) Always fly great & very staisfied with everything about them. Currently, 125 gr Ironhead.
I would shoot the bigger head, the one with the most surface cutting area and make sure it is shaving sharp! Stay away from the shoulder, shoot just below midline. We’ve killed hundreds and shot them from nose to tail with every kind of head. (We prefer a sharp mechanical, most aren’t sharp unfortunately.)
Mike’s advice and amazing set up helped me shoot this giant!!!
Mike’s advice and amazing set up helped me shoot this giant!!!
Listen to whatever Mike U says!
Broadhead choice is one of those fun things to think and talk about out of boredom that in reality at the end of the day matters way less than we care to admit. Pick one, shoot it in the lungs, and smile for the camera.