View Full Version : Spring Bear Hunting

04-02-2011, 12:46 PM
Any of you hunt-addicts out there ever hunted bear in unit 32 & 32a in Idaho? My son and I drew tags in that area for this spring. The hunt actually opened yesterday but after driving around that area last weekend, there looks to be way too much snow still. We live in eastern Idaho so we would like a good idea of where exactly to go and maybe when to go before making the arrangements to head over there. I'm thinking of heading up near Ola and then up to Sage Hen Reservoir but...
Appreciate any tips, fellas.

04-03-2011, 02:59 PM
I have never hunted there, but I must say you guys are lucky suckers! I have been applying there for 7 years and still can't pull the tag. I hope you post some pics after you fill your tags

04-07-2011, 02:37 PM
Predator- I live in Emmett and know 32 & 32A like the back of my hand as I have hunted it for 30 years. bowhunt247@hotmail.com is my e-mail if you need to chat. I have a couple ranches in Ola that we see a few good bears on every year when Turkey hunting. I will be out this weekend with a few kids Turkey hunting and will keep my eyes open for you. Just an FYI I have drawn that tag 3 times over the years and had great success. Congrats on drawing. If the things I learned this week end up passing I see the drawing odds in those units jumping thru the roof. There is some dandy bears in this area too.

04-07-2011, 09:38 PM
Hey MT. MAN. I just sent you an email.

04-08-2011, 02:19 PM
I just sent you an E-mail. Sorry having a hard time keeping eyes open here at my desk today. 4:30AM was way to early this morning. But it was good to see my neice nail her biggest Turkey yet. A 3-bearded bird!

04-08-2011, 07:02 PM
I seen that turkey pic on the other thread. That is awesome! I've never even seen a 3-bearded tom and for your niece to bag one...impressive. Tell her congrats.
I read your email. Thank you. I programmed your number in my phone incase I need to text you when I'm up bear hunting. Hopefully I'm texting you to tell you we bagged a big boar. We'll see...

04-08-2011, 11:31 PM
I hunt directly East of 32, in unit 33 just above Banks. last year we could see accross the highway into both units, and spotted alot of good bears, We tried to access our spot on april 6th and there is still to much snow. If you can get up to High Valley and drop over the East side I think you may have some luck. Check the "access yes" program for property in that area as well. I think there may be some on the list...

04-10-2011, 10:58 AM
Thanks for the tip hootchiemama. We'll be up there next weekend and hopefully we can get up in some of those places. The forecast says its supposed to rain or snow all week. I will let you know if we see anything in your area across the highway. Good luck!

04-10-2011, 10:54 PM
IdahoPredator I drew the same tag and luckily have a little shorter drive to check out the areas than you do. I have been out a few times and most of the areas I am wanting to check still have a lot of snow. I drew a turkey tag too so next week will be splitting time between bear and turkey.

Good luck on your hunt!

04-11-2011, 08:55 PM
Thanks rcrosby. Good luck to you too. Hopefully we get some decent weather soon so we can get up in there.

04-12-2011, 09:53 AM
Good luck to both of you. I know now that both of you are looking in good area's.

04-15-2011, 10:26 PM
We had a pretty frustrating 2 days. Seems like everytime it felt we were getting close we came to a washout or a 3' feet bank of snow in our way. We put some miles on the boots glassing spots that really looked good without seeing a bear yet.

We were supposed to go to Mackay tomorrow for a turkey hunt but my buddies there are getting pounded by the weather and have only seen 2 toms so far.

Its always great to be in the field in the spring but I am dissapointed with the lack of bears and sign I have seen thus far.

04-16-2011, 05:25 PM
I went out yesterday myself. Not much to see. A few deer tracks, an abandoned camp,(not sure why it was not occupied on a wet rainy friday..but).. A few boot prints and a few more I left next to the ones I saw.
I noticed its been a bit cold to get the grasses growing yet, and the wetlands are still pretty wintered.

Might have to give it a rest for a few weeks and hit it up in May.

04-16-2011, 05:35 PM
We just got home after a couple days up there and we didn't have any luck either. Spent most of our time trying to walk through or around snow drifts. Friday afternoon we sat in the pickup up on the mountain glassing in a steady rain. A little demoralizing, but we'll give it some time and then go hit again.

04-17-2011, 11:40 AM
I haven't even been out yet I have a good view out my living room window of the mountains and have a little tell tail snow drift that I keep an eye on. When it's gone I can usually make it in to where I want to go.

04-18-2011, 02:44 PM
Don't give up guys and don't be afraid to try down lower. We did see a small bear just wandering thru the sage just out of Sweet on Friday afternoon. He was a little one, but was out and about at 2:30pm when the sun was poking thru for a bit. Try that area off the Little Weiser that I told you guys about in the e-mails. I had a friend up there Turkey hunting on Private ground and said he saw 2 bears I believe in King Hill Cr.

04-20-2011, 11:24 PM
Scott- Darn I was right up there for most of Friday and Saturday. King Hill is right there on the little Weiser right? We glassed up and down those canyons from the end of the private all the way up to the snowline. Glassed plenty of deer and elk but no bears.

I am sure it is just a matter of time. I've got to get caught up on work and then I am planning spending another week or so the first of May.

04-21-2011, 07:00 PM
If we keep getting snow like this they will sleep until June!

05-08-2011, 09:07 PM
boy! lets get an update here on this thread. I am interested on how you are doing

05-08-2011, 09:27 PM
Well I hit it this weekend. I have glassed more flipping elk and deer than I believed existed but no bears. I am going to spend a couple of.afternoons this week just getting in a few hours and trying to get on something. Then all weekend. If i am not onto something by then I am going to be very worried.

05-09-2011, 07:52 AM
Still a lot of snow up high, I'm headed to the regional F&G office next week to get signed off on bowhunter ed. I figure I'll grab a bait permit while I'm there and then start trying for my first critter with a bow.

05-09-2011, 08:22 PM
I spent all day out today on west mountain between McCall and New Meadows. Saw lots of whitetale, one coyote that dodged a bullet and one badger that didnt! lol.
No bears. I think I am going to head up the southfork area next to see whats along the river.

05-09-2011, 11:59 PM
Today I was glassing this steep drainage and again it is loaded with elk. I have glassed so many elk it is just insane at this point. As I was about to glass another area something caught my eye that just cried out, bear!!! About 300 yards from the elk was a nice black bear. Finally!!!

He was completely across this large canyon but I watched him feeding in the spotting scope for quite a while. Once he got within a couple hundred of the elk they all took off.

Right before dark I was glassing again and right ontop of a large rock is a HUGE cinnamon phase bear. I couldn't close the distance before it go dark but that bear is in my sights. I really want to get him. I will be back every chance I get to try and seal the deal with that bear.

So finally some progress!!!

05-10-2011, 07:58 AM
Good news! I have some time off coming up so it's good to know they are out. What elevation were you at?

05-10-2011, 09:00 AM
The area was between 4500 and 5000. Do you have a unit 32 tag?

05-10-2011, 09:58 AM
Nope just a general tag. I'm looking at the 8000 - 9000 foot elevation range in the area I'm headed so I figure they should be hungry and on the prowl when I get up there.

05-10-2011, 10:09 AM
:cool: Hey Ryan,
I was very busy this weekend with the kid's camp. It sounds like you finally found some bears. Good Luck.

05-10-2011, 11:58 PM
Thanks Scott I hope the camp went well it sounds like an awesome deal!

Just pulled myself out of the hole again I have been chasing these bears in. Couldn't find the cinnamon. I found the jet black bear again only a few hundred yards from where he was yesterday. I got to about 475 yards facing a cold swim to cross a way swollen and normally named "little" creek and one hell of a pack out. I am well known to be very dumb about where I shoot animals and what I go through. But after watching this bear for over an hour and even trying to see if he would respond to a fawn distress call I figured there has to be something easier than this.

I am going to keep him in the back of my mind and rethink and try and find a couple of other bears. I had my 6 and 4 year old with me on Monday when were first found the 2 bears and they tried to stay up late tonight to see the bear I was going to bring home. I would really like to have them with me if I can. I broke my 6 year olds heart in deer season when I passed on a 4x3 with her with me.

05-12-2011, 07:54 PM
I saw a couple that arent quite there yet. Heres the pic.

05-13-2011, 12:39 PM
Cubs are so dang cute...like puppies. Can I keep em?
Can you imagine trying to convince a wife why you brought one home? LOL