Not Too Late for Spring Bear

No matter how late you think it is in the spring black bear season, success could still be as easy as driving to a neighboring state, throwing out some bait and returning the following weekend to punch your tag. 

If you are reading this, the clock is ticking. If your state does not have a spring bear season or does not allow baiting, find one close by that does. Find out what pertinent laws you need to obey and make a plan to get some bait in the woods. The obvious consideration for planning a hail-Mary bear hunt is location. Find a place close to a water course and try to put a natural barrier, such as a creek or steep hills, between your bait and any potential parking spot. This will help you stay concealed and keep the crowd away from your honey hole.

Next, you will need to find out what constitutes legal bait and get some. Dog food is perfect bait, as it is somewhat cheap, and it is not easy to eat fast since it comes in small pellets. If you are allowed to bait with human food, get some bacon. If you are clueless about how many bears the location might hold, get some attractant scent like anise oil and prepare to smother your bait site with it to lure in hungry bears. If you are baiting in an area with tons of bear sign, forget the attractants as they will just help lure in tons of bears and create competition for the bait which will make your bait disappear every night.

On your original bait dump, leave enough to last until you can return in a week. Some bait gets hit over night, but most bait takes a few days before the action starts.

Don’t limit yourself. There is an old cowboy saying that says, ‘If you are taking care of one horse, you might as well be taking care of two.’ So, if you have time to put out a bait pile, you might as well put out two just in case your one, lone site is attracting a sow with cubs that you cannot harvest. She will most likely claim your bait as her own and keep all males away from it.  Have a back-up plan.

Finally, if you can manage to get a game camera, you can place it at one particular bait site and use it to help make a decision on which site you will be dedicating your initial time on. 

If you can have a friend share costs and time, that will make your mission even easier.