So 2021 season started off pretty good. I was at a friends camp that I have hunted for several years. But the last 3 years didn’t go so well. Long story short, my friend got upset over something stupid and left me to bait myself. He was going to walk in as I followed, making the bear think 1 person in 1 person out. Sunday night plans were made and Monday morning everything blew up!!
I chose to rant a bit with no names, and after the turmoil I had a guide tell me to come to his place and he would put me on an active stand. I big shout out to JR Guide Service up past Jackman. I got there Thursday night late. I ended up on 4 wheeler trails cause I got lost. Eventually I found the main road again, and Jeff was picking up clients and directed me to a couple camp sites. The next morning I rode with him while he baited sites to show me a couple I could choose from. After showing me the first site we proceeded to bait 3 more sites. Every site was hit! So the next day I proceeded to the site he first recommended and I couldn’t remember where the trail went in. I was so flustered that I got emotional. So I went to the other site which was already hit after baiting that morning. I ended up on the second day to hunt on the first stand, which I still couldn’t find trail. So I sat at end of road for almost an hour and he didn’t drive by. So I proceeded back up to see if I could find it. Before I left the bottom of the road a made a teepee out of logs, and he came right up when he saw them. Needless to say I still got into the stand by 2pm.
Around 6pm I saw black movement off to my right. So I waited as it took it’s sweet time to come in. It came close to my stand and then walked to barrel. The 55 gallon drum was on it’s side and this bear’s back barely made it to the middle of barrel. I felt so bad for this baby probably not even 100 lbs. It couldn’t move the barrel and barely got a log to move to get some food which it did. I got to watch it for 20 minutes. It was very nervous and kept looking to my right. The bear finally ran off, so I figured something else was coming.
I waited for about another 20 minutes before she appeared from around a blown over tree with roots. Once she got to the barrel I knew it wasn’t the same bear. She was bigger and had no problem moving the logs. So I got my gun out and lined up on her and watched her go in and out of barrel several times as I was lining up my shot. About the 4th or 5th time in I took the shot.
She bounced so hard that she tossed the barrel to one side as she flopped around on the other side, and she didn’t go but 20 yards from site. Hearing the death mown so soon I know she didn’t suffer long. I sat for a few minutes with 20 minutes left of daylight. I was told to meet Jeff at the end of the road if I got one. So I sat and sat and sat, until I saw headlights! But it wasn’t Jeff. Just a person cutting through. Then another set of lights were coming, it was Jeff’s nephew and told me he was on his way.
Finally he shows, we drive back up and the bear had to go into his truck cause my sleeping quarters were inside. So Jeff drove my truck, I jumped into his with my bear and we raced to the tagging station, just making it. She was put into cold storage for the night. We headed back to camp and one of the camp houses opened cause other hunters left early, so I was hoping for a good hot shower and nice bed, but it turned out one of the campers there their wife got drunk and was creating a scene, so Jeff offered his camper for me for the night.
If anyone wants hospitality and a fun guide, I suggest JR Guide Service near Lincoln. Lots of woods there for sure. I will definitely go up there again. Met a bunch of new people and Jeff’s future wife Stacie while enjoying the outfitter after scene.
Thank you Jeff Reese for being such a nice person and friend for all you did for me!! Never to be forgotten!!