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I found out last Monday that I had a few weeks of down time so I took leave, packed the truck high enough to make any hillbilly proud and headed North come Tuesday morning. I called my brother (Keith) who's been telling me the bear stories and let himknow I was on my way (had to add a bag of dog food to the load and we were on our way). My wife (Katie) was with me, but being the citified type decided she'ld drop me off and head further North till it was time to head toward civilization.

Day 1: Wednesday morning I rolled out of bead, bathed in the best scent soap I could find, threw on the scentlock suit and headed the ~200 yrds to the stand. I set there all and watched squirrels all morning until around 1300 when it got a little exciting. Just over the ridge in front of me I heard a tree crash (a big crash), I thought,...... "well coulda been a squirrel jumping on a dead tree". 15 mins later another big crash to my left just out of sight,......."they do got a lot of dead trees up here". About 15 mins later, behind me I hear boulders boucing down the hill side, "now squirrels don't throw rocks, but my brother has been know to mess with a few folks". The day ends with no bear sighted.

Day 2: Same scent control procedure repeated and I head to the stand with a sore butt. Not quite as motivated asday 1. I did bring a few target arrowsto keep the squirrels outta my hair.Went 0/4 on squirrels.With no bear sightings, and a numb butt I was forced to end the day short and headed to the house around 1430.Keith and I decided to try to kill some squirrels for dinner and headed outwith the 22's. He killed 4,I'ld missed more than my share then he let me borrow his gun. I finally put one down. Squirrels, beans, and biscuits for dinner.Yum,Yum.......

Day 3: I rode the Kawasawki down to the feeder and nothing had been there overnite, so we decided to head to town to buy a predator caller. I was needed to kill something. 3 hrs later we found ourselves walking the aisles of Bass Pro in Springfield, MO. Got what we needed, grabbed some grub and headed toward the sticks. With daylight fading we threw in the crow calls, they came screaming in, and we just watched. Finally, I shot twice and,.....following the trend, two clear misses. We made our way back to the house and decided we try our hand at predator (coyote) huntin, REDNECK STYLE. We grabbedtwo lawn chairs, 6 pack busch, .22's, redlights and headed to the top of the hill. The stories began to roll, when we heard a rucussfrom behind us, a minimum effort returned no eyes so we went back to shooting,...... the shit. We heard it again, louder, then on the third time we were forced to put the beer down and get up. We discovered 4 coons on the top of the barn behind us, lucky for them I was shooting. I did manage to hit one. With Keith it was one shot, one kill. Then me, finally a good shot, he fell and began the death kick. We decided to gather up and head to the house, when I went to pick up my 2nd coon he was gone,..................guess he'ld been hanging around the oppossum's. I'ld give him an oscar for that performance.

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Day 4: Bear hunting had slipped to the back of my mind as I rolled out of bed around 0930. I threw on some shorts and rode the prairie down to the feeder,..........only to discover HOLY *%^$, there'ld been a bear there since sunset. I went back to the house and decided to take Keith's advise. Brenda (Keith's wife) graciously washed my clothes in their landry soap, I showered with his soap, and generally did what I could not to hide my smell but to smell like him. I took seat in the stand at 1430. Even the squirrells were skiddish, I couldn't even get a shot off. It was a pretty boring afternoon until about 1730. While scanning to my 11 o'clock, I caught movement,...it was big and dark,...my heart rate begin to pick up. Then he turned toward me, sure enough.......IT'S A BEAR! I could feel my heart pounding through my teeth. I tried to pick up my binoculars and my hands were shaking to much. Finally I got them to my eyes and got a good look at the bear, looked huge to me. He was 60-70 yrds away working toward me. My heart rate was constant and fast. I tried to calm myself like I've done many times before with bucks, but couldn't I'ld never been this close to a wild bear. He was weary, like he knew there was something there. He stood up on his back legs, nose to the air. Then, as he began to walk again, he went behind a brush pile and I easedto my feet. I was shaking, BAD. We walked past the feeder and I got nervous, I thought this may be my only chance. A shooting lane I'ld ranged at 33 yrds, I drew, took aim (I've never shook so much), and released the arrow. I knew instantly, bad shot, very bad. I missed him by at least 3 feet. He scrambled away unsure of what had just happened. I called Keith on the radio and tried to explain what had just happened, all he understood was don't call back. He clicked the radio to acknowledge. I felt like crying, I'ld blown it. I pulled it together and thought about what had went wrong, then as luck would have it, I'ld get a second chance. He'd made a small circle and was on his way back to the feeder. I stood up, this time sure footed and calm. He stopped at 28 yrds broad side. I drew, took aim, and released,...................PERFECT SHOT. The rush which followed was more exciting than anything I've ever experienced. I watched intently until he was out of site then listened, I heard the death growl followed by some loud crashes..... I called Keith on the radio, "mark the time, I got him, I got him, what time is it, WAHOOOOOOO, yeah, He's down, down. What time is it?" Keith responded, "Set down and calm down, are you o.k". I was excited, shaky, and a little hard to understand. I finally got calmed down and explained what had happened, 30 mins later I eased out of the stand and went up to the house, grabbed a burger, and an hour after I'ld shot (the 2nd time), we made our way down to begin the tracking process. Immediately found my arrow, a straight pass threw and it looked good, good lung material on the arrow. The blood trail took about 20-30 yrds to start but then it was fairly steady. I got to admit trailing a bear in the dark that's been shot with a bow is a little hair raising. We found him about 150 yrds from the shot site, and was back at the house by 2030. WHAT A TRIP!!!! Deer hunting with pops to follow later this week.

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nice looking bear!:clap good thing about going to school up in north alabama is alot of people up here have land i can go hunting on. hey do you normally launch your boat at sherman cove? i think ive met you there before.
 

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That was a great story!!! congrat's on the bear,and good luck with pops!!(deer hunting)thats the best time spent with family!!!! and friends.....great pic's too:takephoto... Thanks for sharing:clap....What kind of 22 were you sooting, that you were missing so much?(scope, open site)........Some GREAT memories
 

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I always launch at Sherman Cove, chances are we have met. I've spent a lot of time launching over the past 6 months.

As for the .22, it was open sites that I kept missing with. I guess I'm just out of practice, I used to be a pretty good shot.
 

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Awesome read, I am hoping to get a shot my bear this weekend. He has not been back in a few weeks. Way to go. I hope my nerves are as steady when I am looking at those teeth. Again Congrats.:bowdown
 

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Great story and congrats on the bear!!!!:clap:clap:clap
 
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