Idaho Deer Hunter Magazine Spring/Summer 2013, Issue #4 - Page 23

When it comes to baiting for black bears in Idaho, I am fairly new to it and still learning. I do however have a couple of friends that have been very successful at running baits for several years. After helping them bait for a year and asking them questions, I figured the time for me to strike out on my own was at hand. I learned a ton of valuable information that first season. I learned exactly how much work it was to establish a bait site by yourself, along with how important stand location was. That first spring I had several bears coming in except for the days I would sit in the stand. It took me a few evenings to figure out that I had placed my tree stand in the wrong location. I had decided for the 2013 spring season that I would move the bait and my tree stand to a better location. Seven hours later, the bait was set in the new location. After waiting a couple of weeks I couldn’t stand it any longer. I had to get up in the tree. A couple of bears came in the first night but never presented a shot opportunity. I was excited to get back up in the stand for the second night. Three hours after climbing up the tree I noticed a bear off to my right starting to make its way to the bait when I heard the familiar sound of motorcycles coming up the trail. The bear turned and took off for Colorado. I figured my night was done. I was really chewing those guys out in my mind when I looked off to my left and there was a good bear standing there only 40 yards away. The bear would walk a little bit and then sit down and sniff the air and look around. When he finally made 23 the commitment to come in I thought to myself that I was about to harvest my first bear. I did my best to control my breathing and pick a spot to place my pin. As I drew back the bear heard the little bit of noise from my jacket and turned to leave. I thought I had just blown it when it stopped to look around. I settled the pin and let the arrow loose. It found its mark. The adrenaline rush that took over my body was unreal. My whole body was shaking like I was standing out in a snow storm in only my underwear. As I climbed down the tree to recover my bear a feeling of uneasiness came over me. The shot looked great to me, but was it really good enough? A short distance later I found the bear piled up at the base of a large tamarack. Even though it was only an average sized bear I was proud as all get out. I have a spot picked out on the wall for the rug to be hung so I will have a constant reminder of all that went in to this hunt. I am hooked!