On the 2001 black bear season opener, I traveled with good friend Cameron Hanes to Klamath, CA. There we filmed a spot and stalk video for Eastmans’ Outdoor Journal. We stalked to within 12 yards of a bear that Hanes arrowed while it fed in a grove of blackberries.
I returned in November to hunt bears with houndsman, Ken Gavin. The redwood forests in this region are rugged and unforgiving, testing the stamina of the most fit outdoorsman. We jumped a good bear that ran more than two miles before hopping into a tree. It took us more than an hour to reach the tree, and that, after wading waist deep in river that was on the rise due to the harsh rainstorm we were caught in.
As we approached the tree and cleared brush for a shot with my bow, the bear shimmied down and the chase was on again. The bear treed quickly, though it took us nearly two hours to reach him due to the vertical, brush-choked cliffs we had to scale.
A well placed shot with PSE’s CRH Blacktail bow, throwing Carbon Force shafts topped with Rocky Mountain’s 100 grain Razor Lite broadheads, did the trick. One of the dogs suffered sever bites from the bear during the ordeal, and after receiving several stitches, spent the next month recovering. The bear weighed approximately 250 pounds.