Our annual bear hunt with Fred Lutger’s Wilderness Adventures goes back almost 20 years. This is a hunt that myself, Donald Duck, Chef Klause, Kirby Knockstedt and Fred looked forward to all year.
Fred Lutger’s Tips For Bearhunting Black Bear With The Bow
At the beginning of each new season I start new baits, as well as use existing bait sights, using very strong smells along with a food offering. I met John Burgeson years ago when I first started bear hunting. He is a trapper and hunter from Minnesota who had just started a hunting scent business, Wildlife Research Center. He gave me a sweet smelling liquid he now sells by the name Ultimate Bear Lure. I used it on my baits and was astounded by the results.
This strong smelling liquid can be detected by me a couple hundreds yards away. I’m sure with a bear’s powerful nose that distance is stretched for nearly a mile or further. This year I put it on WRC’s Pro-Wick scent pads and hung them high on the bait sights. Ninety-five percent of my baits were hit within 2 days.
Black bears will feed any time of the day but they are nocturnal and prefer to eat after dark. The best time to hunt them is in the evening and most sightings on the bait are from 5 p.m. until dark. Once when it was extremely hot compared to past years the daytime temperatures were in the high eighties and low nineties.
Most bears visited late in the evening when the temperature dropped. Sweating while sitting on stand was a problem. The bears keen nose — that helped find the bait — also helps him detect hunters. Luckily, Wildlife Research Center sent up Scent Killer spray for all my hunters to use. I drenched myself, my clothes, and my equipment before and during each sit.
We had a very good hunt in spite of the tough hunting conditions of high temperatures, calm silent woods, and masses of mosquitoes. Hunting a mature bear takes extra effort. You don’t just sit and wait for the bear to appear. You must hunt him.
You have to be quiet entering and leaving the woods. You must be still on stand and it is extremely critical you have to keep yourself and equipment scent free. Your equipment must be quiet when you draw and shoot. Your shot placement is critical.
A bear is a big animal, but the vital kill area is small. A bear is a remarkable animal and I have seen massive injuries bears inflict on each other. Mother nature has her way of taking care of wildlife.
(For info and questions about his bear bowhunts email Fred at firstname.lastname@example.org.)