Hunter Reports On Alaska Hunting For Glacier And Coastal Black Bear


Published: October - 2009

Subscriber Ed Yates didn't get the glacier bear he was looking for on his June hunting trip to Alaska, but toward the end of the hunt he did take a nice coastal black bear that squared 6 feet and 7½ inches. Yates hunted in the Yakutat area with Gary Gray's Alsek River Lodge, personal guide Wayne Gray. He recommends the hunt overall, rating them excellent on quality of equipment and service, and good on condition of camp and trophy care.

Yates tells us that, the one-bear limit for non-residents makes glacier or black bear an either/or proposition. He passed up one black he estimates would have squared 7½ feet on the first day of his hunt to continue his search for the glacier color phase. He did see three glacier bears. Two of them disappeared into the brush at 400 yards; the third was only 200 yards but vanished as Yates was getting ready to shoot. He notes that the vast majority of the abundant bears in the area (he saw an average of 10 bears each day) are coastal blacks, and that the overall success rate on glacier bear is only about 25 percent. "Still, there are glacier bear in this area," he says, "and I may go back." Among the highlights of the hunt he lists watching young bears sliding and playing in the snow much like children.

In one interesting note, Yates warns that the timing of this hunt is critical: "Near the end of the hunt (June 11) the brush greened up quite a bit, making it hard to see." The season ends on June 15.

He gives the cost of the hunt as $9,800. He booked his hunt through Jeff C. Neal.

........(continued)

 
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