So last week me and my Boy, Andrew (my Navy buddy from USS IWO JIMA) headed out on a bear hunt in the mountains of Wyoming and what a great time we had! We had camp set up at about 8800 feet just over the continental divide in some of the most beautiful country God has to offer! We went with the same outfitter I hunted pronghorn with last year and man do these guys know how to run a camp! Considering their outfitter license is #2 (meaning there is only one other guide in Wyoming who has been doing it as long as Craig has - 38 years) should tell you something about the expertise of our outfitter! Then add his Billy Goat-mountain-climbing-Son to the mix, and you can't find a better team to go hunting with! We went to camp as "clients" and came home as great friends! Me and Andrew were treated like family and when we got our bears, Craig and Nick were just as excited as we were! It was unreal to see two guys who do this all the time, and for so long, get so pumped up for our success! That is what really made the hunt so awesome. I got my bear on the second evening after passing on a small, but beautiful light-colored chocolate bear the first night.
Andrew on the other hand, had to hunt his tail off for the entire 5 days and it paid off big time on the morning of the last day when he got his milk-chocolate bear! He was the first hunter to ever get one in the morning and from what Craig and Nick told us, he probably put in more time during the week than any other bear hunter has in the past. He was in the stand 8 different times, usually for 4 or 5 hours at a time and one day he was on stand for over 7 hours trying to catch up with Yogi! What made it even tougher, was he never saw a bear until the last day when he got his chocolate... Talk about perseverance! It just goes to show, bear hunting over bait is never a guarantee, and with multiple tree-stands to hunt, you can find yourself playing musical stands while chasing these elusive animals!
We are still on the road making our way back to Iowa and are already thinking/planning our next adventure! Andrew is going to make a rug with his bear and I am going to do a life-sized standing mount for up in the loft. We also brought home a ton of delicious red meat for the freezer, and if you want to talk about organic, it doesn't get anymore organic than this! Man do I love archery hunting out West!