Bear - Crossbow Record

1. Ken Loya Jr. 20-10/16 2007

It was a bear season I won’t soon forget. I began scouting for bear’s in the spring in hopes of finding another big bruin. When I got to the area that I wanted to hunt that fall, I was really happy to discover that there were a few big bears around. I had been scouting for a few hours when I came across a huge bear track. I got really excited as it was quite a bit bigger than the bear I shot two years prior. This meant that I might possibly beat my own record I had set in 2005 with a whopping 702 lb black bear.

Right then and there I decided to set up in this area for the fall hunt. I went back to the area periodically through the summer to make sure that the bear was still in the area and every time I went back, there was good sign that the bear was still in the same area.

Finally August 13th rolled around and I started to bait the site. Using KenMar’s bear lure, both the spray and jug, I baited my site. Within a few days I had bears coming to the bait site but there was no sign of the really big one. A week went by and I still had not seen any sign of the bruin. The season didn’t open until September 1st which was still a couple weeks away so I was not too concerned that the bear was not coming into the bait site. The berry crop was really good this year so I figured that it would take a few weeks for him to turn his attention from the abundant berry patches to my bait site.

Another week went by and the big bear finally came into the bait site; but only once. I was pretty happy that he made an appearance as this meant that he would eventually start coming in on a regular basis. I just had to wait for the berries to die off.

September 1st finally came and I started to hunt with my crossbow.

By then the bear was coming in about two to three times a week so I knew I had to put some time in if I wanted to get this bear. On the third week of the hunt, the bruin started to come in three to four times per week but he would not come in during daylight hours. I had been hunting the bait site every day, 6 to 8 hours each day for three weeks; this is how I knew he was coming in after good shooting light.

I always put sand around my bait site so I can see how many different bears are coming in. Based on the prints, I can also establish a time line as to when the bears are coming in. On the 5th week of the hunt, I passed up a few good bears with one being over 400+ pounds; still, the big one that I really wanted had not presented himself in good shooting light.

Finally, I decided to try an old trick my father taught me long ago. I took the bait out from the site and hunted for two days with no bait. On the third day I put the bait back in and low and behold, it worked! The big bruin I had been after for the past 5 weeks came in with 4 hours of good shooting light left. I took the shot, my bolt hitting it’s mark and he spun around and ran back into the bush. I waited a good hour before attempting to track the bear and it had now started to rain.

I called my father who came to help me track the bear. When we started on the blood trail we discovered lots of blood so I knew I got him. It was still raining and by now it was also starting to get dark so we decided to come back early the next morning.

The next morning my dad and I went back to the bait site and started to track the bear. Of course the blood trail was washed away so it took us about two hours of tracking to find my bear.

When we found him, I knew right then and there that I had beaten my previous record.

Later that morning, after hauling my big bruin out of the bush, I went and got him weighed on an official gravel scale. The bear weighed in at 780 lbs so I knew I had beaten my other record.

I then skinned out the bear, took the meat to the butchers, and sent the skull to have it dried and measured. While using Ken-Mar’s Shooter’s Arm Support, Bear Lure, and Cover Scent, I shot the new Ontario crossbow record Black Bear.

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