There is a bear #11, Dog gone it!

by david on December 11, 2019

It is not that I don’t like to hunt with dogs.  I spend dozens of days each season behind my setter chasing birds.  I love hunting dogs, and I guess that is the problem. I don’t want to see any dog hurt and that is a very real possibility if a hound happens to get too close to the bear.  If I wanted this bear, I was going to have to depend on the dogs or get down on my hands and knees and go in after him.

Turns out the Jay and his dogs were close by and beat us to the spot. The dogs were in the thick of things baying and howling as they went after the hot track.  The opening we were hunting was cut for timber a few years back and has been replanted. On the side we were on was an open patch about a hundred yards wide and half to three quarter mile long.  The clear patches were cut as drainage to help the newly planted trees. I said the patches were clear, but there was grass and weeds about two to two and a half feet tall to prevent any erosion.  Alongside the open patches is an area of timber and thick undergrowth. Imagine the black and white keys on a piano, if you will. Along the end, opposite the field, there was a single track road running perpendicular to the edges of these strips of land.

It was on this road we were now parked and talking with Jay on the radio.  After we determined on which patch of woods the bear was and which directions the dogs were headed, we positioned ourselves somewhere in the middle of the clearing and waited for the bear to make an appearance.  We heard the dogs getting closer and tried to move in their direction. Running through the tall wet grass was not something my 57-year-old body was meant to do. It was more like: run a few paces, then walk a few steps and repeat.  There was no way I was going to cover any distance quickly in this thick vegetation. Sure enough, the bear popped out 150 yards ahead of us and made the opposite edge of the woods before I could even remotely get close enough for a shot on a running target.  So it was back to the truck and try and make it to the other side before the bear did. We did and still could not get far enough into the cut to catch up with the bear before he made it to the woods again. One more try and we only had one more patch of woods to go.  Before we could try and get there, Josh was told there was another hunter was already waiting for the bear to come out. Well, fudge pops. That sucked. Dejected and a little miffed there was another hunter so close to me, we headed back to pick up backpacks and other gear we had left beside the road.  There was also a peculiar vehicle I wanted to get a look at.

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