View Full Version : Grizzly encounter

June 12, 2009, 04:48 AM
My two hunting partners and I went out black bear hunting Saturday evening in Willow, Alaska. I was dropped off at my bait station first (we canoe in) at around 6 p.m. and we planned on meeting back up at 0100hrs on Sunday morning.

It was a calm evening not much action going on besides the squirrels and birds picking at my bait. Then I had a small 4 1/2 foot blackie come in at 2130hrs, which I let pass. He stuck around for five minutes checking the area out eating a few pieces of bread here and there and then decided he had enough and took off. The rest of the evening was uneventful and then at 0050hrs it happened...

I hunt about 50 yards off a lake and I heard what sounded like canoe oars brushing through the water. My first thoughts were my friends are coming to pick me up since it was getting close to 0100hrs. Next, I heard some branches snapping and something moving through the brush heading my way so I packed my gear, lowered my bow, and climbed down my ladder stand. Once on the ground I pulled my 44.mag and started to walk towards the lake to meet them halfway. Now, that sound of something moving through the woods it changed directions to my immediate left coming from the alder bushes. At this time I'm questioning if it's my buddies, so I whistle... No response back, I'm thinking OH -CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED- this is not good!

I look to my left and 15 yards away from me I see a brown head and body pop out of the alders. :eek: I looked at it and screamed GET OUT OF HERE BEAR! He didn't budge; he lowered his head and bounded towards me! I raised my 44 and fired at his head. He stopped dead in his tracks; I'm thinking to myself did I hit it? But all the bear did was stop, it did not give any indication that it was struck but what it did do next was charge again. So I bladed my body and thought I need to get back in my tree stand which was 8 yards behind me. While retreating I fired two more rounds at it, he stopped again. I made it to my ladder and never climbed up it so fast in my life. Once at the top, I looked down and saw him eating a pile of skittles like nothing ever happened. I continued to shout at him for a few minutes while he ate and when he was done he slowly went back into the woods. When my friends finally did arrived we combed the area for any sign of blood. We found nothing...

I'm both relieved and a little concerned at the same time. Relieved because I didn't wound or kill the beast, but at the same time 15 yards away and I missed with three shots.:confused: Just an excuse to get some range time I guess...:D

June 12, 2009, 06:08 AM
Wow. Glad you still have all your parts.

June 12, 2009, 06:56 AM
Do you bring extra toilet paper for moments like that??? I would need two rolls!

June 12, 2009, 09:10 AM
Glad you are OK.To "See the elephant",or grizzly,is one of those things..

You might really enjoy reading Kannut's book "Bear Tales" now.

Absolutely no disrespect intended...

Are you sure you missed?It is easy to miss big with a handgun,but,did you get a sight picture?At the distance you describe,if you found your sights,you perhaps hit him.You were there,I wasn't,I'm just asking.

If your .44 had softpoints or hollowpoints in it,it would not penetrate far.Maybe 6 or 8 in..Entrance wound only,the loose hide and membrane will tamponade the entrance hole,it might not bleed.

Just a suggestion,you may want to report the whole thing to the game warden,so they can check on this bear.

Or,you might not want any human to meet him again.

Alaska Wild
June 12, 2009, 09:32 AM
I actually did call the state trooper once I could establish cell phone reception and briefed them on the incident.

I did go back out and hunt again that evening, but before we got into our stands we did a complete sweep of the area for the bear/blood.

June 12, 2009, 03:08 PM
Wow thats al I can say.

Whats up with the weird times is the daylight that screwed up right now compared to here or just a logistics problem of getting headed towards home earlier in the "night".


June 12, 2009, 03:12 PM
Summer days go way later up yonder compared to us. But they get longer nights in winter:D

June 12, 2009, 03:33 PM
If theres no cloud cover, you will still see the sunset/sunrise on the horizon for the 5 hours or so that the sun is actually below said horizon.

G Bobby, to help prove the point of the adrenalin rush eradicating much of ones skills, what kind of groups do you get now, shooting at 15 yards with your .44mag? On a static range, ideal shooting conditions, whats the best group size?

June 13, 2009, 02:46 AM
[QUOTE]On a static range, ideal shooting conditions, whats the best group size? [QUOTE]

1/2 inch groups at 20 yards.

June 13, 2009, 05:52 AM
well, i am glad nothing horrific happened to you. if the wost thing in life that happens to you is a grizzley scaring the skittles out of you, you are indeed a luck man! LOL!!! seriously though, you were indeed very lucky. as for your pistol shooting, yes, some range time is in order, but trying to duplicate the "fear factor" into your pistol practice is going to be tough. and that would be most likely what caused you to miss. 2&1/2 gallons of adrenaline released into your blood strean in 0.257 seconds is going to screw up anyone! at that point, it is pretty safe to say that squeezing the trigger went right out the proverbial window.good luck in your future bear hunts, and be careful out there!

June 13, 2009, 04:59 PM
Wow, that is one great story there. Glad you made it out okay. The Griz is no animal to ever mess with or take lightly. They scare me to death. You never know if the one you run into is a Predatory Grizzly or not. While they weigh up to over 1,000+ pounds, they are extremely fast and quick. A ranger in Montana (Glacier Nat'l Park) told me last year that a Griz can cover a football field size distance in 6-7 seconds. You sure as hell ain't going to ever outrun one, that's for sure. When I am in their habitat, I always carry a high quality bear spray and my Model 29 (.44 mag). Even then, I am still very alert and always make a lot of noise or sing on the way out. Am thinking about getting a S&W .460 mag to replace the .44 mag.

June 14, 2009, 05:37 PM
After those last two post I am sure this is close to being closed, but all i can say is wow. I am not sure what kind of gun I would want against a grizzly, probably a .454, or better yet a long gun

June 14, 2009, 09:07 PM

June 14, 2009, 09:22 PM
I have a firend that shot a grizzly four times point blank with a 44 Mag because he was on top of the hunter he was guiding trying to kill him. The bear got off the man but still had the energy to travel seven miles through the snow and was never found.

Alaska Wild
June 14, 2009, 09:40 PM
My wife bought me a Glock 20 for my birthday a few months back and I have carried it while pre-season scouting and on atv rides. But, something inside told me to carry my .44Mag while bowhunting. I wonder if things would have gone different if I engaged the grizz with my 10mm?

By any means I'm not trying to bring up the 10mm for bear defense debate once again:)

June 14, 2009, 09:40 PM
Back off my skittles bud or else.:D Glad your not ground beef.

June 15, 2009, 01:56 AM
G Bobby...
That was a great story. I'm glad your hear to tell it to us. Now I wonder what's a good handgun or round to use on a grisly...

June 15, 2009, 05:55 AM
G Bobby, I want you to know I had no intention of saying anything wrong to you but was teasing in my own way. I also wanted you to know how lucky you were and you may not be so lucky the next time if there is one, ( That's all no in between the lines. )

June 15, 2009, 06:12 AM
Would have scared more than just the "skittles" out of me. A more accurate word would rhyme with "skittles," though, and it would require those two rolls of TP and possibly a healthy dose of nitro.

srt 10 jimbo
June 15, 2009, 06:51 AM
If that happened to me , there would be no doubt in my mind whom the endagered species Is.:D

June 15, 2009, 07:18 AM
I remember the first time i ever encounterd grizzly, cost me $2.12 at my local conveniant store. It had a great taste, and gave a smooth buzz for the time. But now adays im dipping copenhagen.

Haha sorry i couldnt resist. i saw the title and looked and saw a old can of grizz, and just had to. Yes im a little worried for you about you missing at 15 yards. i probly would to though. No i wouldnt of missed, id threw the gun at him and ran faster than Tyron Prothro ever could.

June 15, 2009, 09:02 AM
It's a bummer that same grizzly is growling for close to $2.50 now haha.

June 15, 2009, 09:15 AM
charlie vandergaw would have handle the Grizzly with his stick and may have been his pet grizzly at Bear Haven Alaska.The most incrediable story I have ever seen on animal Planet.The man walked around with grizzly's and black bears.:eek:

June 15, 2009, 09:41 AM
isnt that guy bear scat now? He was sharp as a marble.

June 15, 2009, 09:59 AM
Not the guy that was eaten by the bears.Charlie vandergaw was 70 yrs old at the time and spent 20 yrs with feeding the bears which is illegal and was facing criminal charges,I believe he is still alive today or at least as of may 2009.

June 15, 2009, 10:05 AM
Why do some nut jobs think it is OK to feed wild bears, but there are no nut jobs that do the same thing to lions in Africa....:rolleyes:

June 15, 2009, 10:11 AM
Here's the linkhttp://www.adn.com/news/alaska/wildlife/bears/story/801034.html P.S this man did not just feed them, he actually sat with black bears and at one time the man was laying down petting the bear.They all seem to bond with him.

June 15, 2009, 09:05 PM
My new survival kit for big bear country will include bear spray, 475 Linebaugh and one case of skittles:D. Great story and glad your ok.

June 16, 2009, 12:19 AM
that crazy charlie guy is still around. flew over his cabin the other day and there were bears there. i know a guy thats got a bait bout 2 miles from there. (btw just to brag a lil i just got back from bear camp and we got 5 in 3 nites. three 5 footers a 6 and a 7:D)

June 18, 2009, 10:34 PM
This picture was taken by my trail camera 5 hours after my little incident. I think this was the grizzly I had my encounter with. :eek:

June 18, 2009, 10:48 PM
Looking for more skittles.:D or maybe the guy that buzzed some 44 at his or her head.:eek:

June 19, 2009, 12:05 AM
Griz probably looking for the dentist:D. I`d stay alert when hunting there, especially after downing any game.

June 19, 2009, 10:05 AM
G BOBBY J, is it just me, or does that grizzly look like it's dropping a deuce? Your skittles might have wreaked havoc on his stomach...

Better watch out next time you go out there. He/she might be seeking some revenge! Nobody likes the thin dirties... even bears.

June 19, 2009, 03:20 PM
Man in that last pick that Grizz seems to be looking for someone mighty hard. Sure gives me the willies thinking about what he is thinking, I beleive I would stay clear of that area for a while.