Please Sign In

Please enter a valid username and password
  • Log in with Facebook
» Not a member? Take a moment to register
» Forgot Username or Password

Why Register?
Signing up could earn you gear (click here to learn how)! It also keeps offensive content off our site.

Idaho Game Wardens Search for Grizzly Shot by Elk Hunters

Recent Comments

Categories

Recent Posts

Archives

Syndicate

Google Reader or Homepage
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My AOL

Field Notes
in your Inbox

Enter your email address to get our new post everyday.

September 25, 2012

Idaho Game Wardens Search for Grizzly Shot by Elk Hunters

By Chad Love

An Idaho grizzly bear that was shot and wounded by elk hunters managed to escape and is now being hunted by Idaho game wardens.

From this story on oregonlive.com:

Wildlife officials in eastern Idaho say they were unable Sunday to find a grizzly bear wounded a day earlier by elk hunters as they tried to retrieve a six-point bull elk carcass in the Island Park area west of Yellowstone National Park. Steve Schmidt of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game said a team of seven well-armed wildlife officers reported finding the blood trail of the bear near the elk carcass but that it disappeared after about 460 yards.

According to the story, the elk was killed by an Idaho archery hunter, but when the hunter and four others went to retrieve the elk, they discovered the bear feeding on it. The hunters claim the bear charged and was shot at a dozen times with handguns and a shotgun before the bear ran off.

What would you do in the same situation?

Comments (21)

Top Rated
All Comments
from idduckhntr wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

This is the 2nd incident from Island park involving a grizzy.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Poke him in the eyes!

Poke him in the belly button!

I would sit there and defecate myself while the bear ate me!!!

No I would, try and talk him out of eating me!!

Wait no,no,no, I would tickle the bear until he laughed himself to death!!!

Maybe kung fu could work? or maybe Pilates!

I'm sorry but that question needs to go into the Guiness Book of World Records for the "Worlds Worst Question".

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from mayoaaron wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I would do the exact same thing. If the bear charged at me, I would have no problem firing at it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from VAHunter540 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

ohh great..... another sighting of Robo-Bear.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from elkslayer wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I'm curious to know how much time elapsed between shooting and recovering the elk.

Perhaps when hunting in areas with high grizzly numbers you should pursue and recover the elk before the bear has a chance to find it. I understand that the bear may have already been close by or that the act of calling in the elk may have attracted the bear in the first place.

I think I would recover the elk as quickly as possible and if a bear had already taken possession then he can have it. If he charges, of course I would shoot.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Never had a problem with bears or anything else bothering my elk carcasses. In heavy bear country I'd build a triangle of small fires around the carcass, pee repeatedly in the area, and hang up a glow orange vest/coat. The latter is particularly effective at keeping birds off the carcass. They can ruin it quicker than a bear.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from achrisk wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Sounds fishy....As do a lot of people when telling a story of self defense.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gtbigsky wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I would do the same thing these hunters did. I would definitely take a few buddies both to help pack out quarters and to watch my back during the quartering process. If we happen to come upon an aggressive grizzly that decided to charge then I would have no choice, but to defend myself and friends. Shoot to kill in that situation. However I would try to avoid that situation at all cost by trying to get the elk out as quickly as possible.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from MICHMAN wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I would highly reccommend a tracking dog. I watched one work in Ontario this year, they are amazing. In addition, the dog will alert you if the bear is still alive!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from benjaminwc wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

All this happend not far from my home. Kind of a mess really. Not sure if the hunters provocted the bear or it just charged. After IDFG tracked it news was that two other bears found the dead elk shortly therafter. Island Park is overflowing with bears. We need to start working on hunting seasons for grizzlies.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dana Knox wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

These guys were idiots!!!!! The elk was shot at dusk the evening before, and this guy gathered his posse the next morning. Island Park is just west of Yellowstone and is crawling with Grizzly. It was all but a certainty this elk would be claimed by a Grizzly 12 + hrs later. Five guys armed with large calibers handguns and a shotgun thought it would be cool to either legally kill a Grizzly or run it off. The bow shooter knew the elk wouldn't be far away and he and the posse found the carcass in no time. Instead of circumventing and glassing the kill area, they went directly for a confrontation. They were lucky they weren't mauled as evidence points to the bear only receiving a minor wound after 12 to 15 shots. I'm sure all these macho men needed a change in underwear, as a charging Grizzly has a tendency to do that to people. They also found out that even though they had lots of weapons, it's difficult to hit and kill a Grizzly when it's moving directly at you at 35 mph.

After calling F&G, the posse left the carcass and reported the encounter. F&G sent 6 trackers in to see if they could find the bear the next morning. Intelligence rules as they glassed the area and saw another bear had claimed the carcass. They did a cursory search and found a blood trail that belonged to the bear, but saw that the wound had stopped bleeding and was probably minor. They packed up and left the area not disturbing the bear that had claimed the elk. The area was closed to further hunting.

-2 Good Comment? | | Report
from idduckhntr wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

benjaminwc, where do you live? I just moved from Idaho Falls up to Rexburg.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from elkslayer wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I finall got around to reading the story in the link and in this case as well as the hunter who was bitten in the same zone a few weeks ago, both hunters had left the elk overnight and returned to retrieve it in the morning. Allowing plenty of time for a bear to find the carcass. This last group appears to have gone in looking for a fight, armed the way they were.

I say if you can't recover it the day you shoot it then don't take the shot.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from dale freeman wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

After a bear has claimed your kill, do you write that one off and continue to hunt untill you gat a kill you can tag ?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jcarlin wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

elkslayer,
I don't live in bear country, but generally if out in the woods late at night, minus the shotgun, most people I know are similarly armed. I can't say that on any of those occassions I expected anything out of the ordinary to happen. It's just prudence. Last week the group was beating on the unarmed duo of bowhunters for going back to thier kill unprepared. THAT doesn't seem brilliant to me.
I expect that a fair majority of the readers here are in some fashion armed when they retrieve their game. You're likely, but not certainly, one of them.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jay wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I wouldn't want to be quartering and packing an elk at night in grizzly country either; especially in the island park area where bear numbers are thru the roof.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Dana, Is it possible that these guys had to leave the elk for the night because they didn't want to encounter a grizzly at night, giving the bear the upper hand? Is it possible these hunters used better judgement the next morning by going armed for such encounter and possibly glassed the carcass and seen no bear around while the bear was snuggled up to a tree sleeping off his/her favorite meal that it endulged in overnight, and when the hunters came was awoken by them? I wasn't with them, don't know them, don't live in bear country, but I know I carry my Handgun when retrieveing my deer after leaving for awhile because of coyotes are abundant in my area. I rather be prepared than not. I will give them the benefit of doubt and not judge them when I don't know the circumstance.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from benjaminwc wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

idduckhtnr-- I live in Rexburg

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from soverel wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

This sounds like five guys intent on killing a grizzly. I have never heard of and Alaska Fish & Game has never documented a grizzly attack on more than two persons at the same time in over a hundred years of record keeping. The likelihood that a griz would attack five men is hardly credible.

In any case, these boys should have been packing bear spray which is much more effective than handguns stopping/deterring a bear attack. Anyone hiking or hunting within 100 mi of Yellowstone or other grizzly hotspots (The Bob for example) is asking for trouble if they are not packing bear spray, have not learned how to use it and have it on their person in a position where they can get at it quickly.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dana Knox wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Dcast - Could they have surprised the bear as it was sleeping after eating? Sure, anythings possible. The point is you don't put yourself in this position in the first place. If you don't have a decent shot by 5 or 6pm, then call it a day. If you shoot by then and can't find the elk and get him skinned and the meat out by dark, then pack up and go back to camp as the elk is almost sure to be claimed during the night by a Grizzly. Also, if they had properly glassed the area I'm sure they would have seen the kill area would be surrounded by Ravens. That bear was feeding on that elk and these birds are always around once that is happening.

This isn't Colorado or New Mexico where you can hunt till dusk and spend the night feeling safe that you can get the work done in the morning. This is an area crawling with the apex predator in North America. A week earlier an experienced bow hunter who has been coming to this area for 15 years from out of state made the same mistake. Things have changed in the last 5 years and when these bears are in need of hyperphagia after a lean berry season, they have little fear sitting on a carcass.....even while approached by a posse. There were 8 kids attacked in Alaska last year, so numbers aren't important when a bear is full of adrenaline.

If the hunter had used his head and not shot so close to dark, then all this would have never happened. 5 guys shooting at a bear is a good way to get mauled or shot in the crossfire. Just plain dumb.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Filson wrote 1 year 28 weeks ago

If it is legal to shoot right before dark, then so be it. But to be in heavy bear area, and have your elk claimed...woops. Is it legal to harass the bear off your kill with spray, then grab the left overs, or like in an earlier blog, you shoot someone else claims, then what? I say like we do in Northern Michigan, Shoot, Shovel, and Shut up. But if a grizz is eating my elk, especially if I glassed it, I'd go try to shoot another elk. Then maybe go back a cpl days later for the horns. Not sure what to do. I like the Idea of a grizz hunt in the area if it's that overpopulated. At least no one was chewed on.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from elkslayer wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I'm curious to know how much time elapsed between shooting and recovering the elk.

Perhaps when hunting in areas with high grizzly numbers you should pursue and recover the elk before the bear has a chance to find it. I understand that the bear may have already been close by or that the act of calling in the elk may have attracted the bear in the first place.

I think I would recover the elk as quickly as possible and if a bear had already taken possession then he can have it. If he charges, of course I would shoot.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from MICHMAN wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I would highly reccommend a tracking dog. I watched one work in Ontario this year, they are amazing. In addition, the dog will alert you if the bear is still alive!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from benjaminwc wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

All this happend not far from my home. Kind of a mess really. Not sure if the hunters provocted the bear or it just charged. After IDFG tracked it news was that two other bears found the dead elk shortly therafter. Island Park is overflowing with bears. We need to start working on hunting seasons for grizzlies.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from elkslayer wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I finall got around to reading the story in the link and in this case as well as the hunter who was bitten in the same zone a few weeks ago, both hunters had left the elk overnight and returned to retrieve it in the morning. Allowing plenty of time for a bear to find the carcass. This last group appears to have gone in looking for a fight, armed the way they were.

I say if you can't recover it the day you shoot it then don't take the shot.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jcarlin wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

elkslayer,
I don't live in bear country, but generally if out in the woods late at night, minus the shotgun, most people I know are similarly armed. I can't say that on any of those occassions I expected anything out of the ordinary to happen. It's just prudence. Last week the group was beating on the unarmed duo of bowhunters for going back to thier kill unprepared. THAT doesn't seem brilliant to me.
I expect that a fair majority of the readers here are in some fashion armed when they retrieve their game. You're likely, but not certainly, one of them.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Poke him in the eyes!

Poke him in the belly button!

I would sit there and defecate myself while the bear ate me!!!

No I would, try and talk him out of eating me!!

Wait no,no,no, I would tickle the bear until he laughed himself to death!!!

Maybe kung fu could work? or maybe Pilates!

I'm sorry but that question needs to go into the Guiness Book of World Records for the "Worlds Worst Question".

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jay wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I wouldn't want to be quartering and packing an elk at night in grizzly country either; especially in the island park area where bear numbers are thru the roof.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Dana, Is it possible that these guys had to leave the elk for the night because they didn't want to encounter a grizzly at night, giving the bear the upper hand? Is it possible these hunters used better judgement the next morning by going armed for such encounter and possibly glassed the carcass and seen no bear around while the bear was snuggled up to a tree sleeping off his/her favorite meal that it endulged in overnight, and when the hunters came was awoken by them? I wasn't with them, don't know them, don't live in bear country, but I know I carry my Handgun when retrieveing my deer after leaving for awhile because of coyotes are abundant in my area. I rather be prepared than not. I will give them the benefit of doubt and not judge them when I don't know the circumstance.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from soverel wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

This sounds like five guys intent on killing a grizzly. I have never heard of and Alaska Fish & Game has never documented a grizzly attack on more than two persons at the same time in over a hundred years of record keeping. The likelihood that a griz would attack five men is hardly credible.

In any case, these boys should have been packing bear spray which is much more effective than handguns stopping/deterring a bear attack. Anyone hiking or hunting within 100 mi of Yellowstone or other grizzly hotspots (The Bob for example) is asking for trouble if they are not packing bear spray, have not learned how to use it and have it on their person in a position where they can get at it quickly.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from idduckhntr wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

This is the 2nd incident from Island park involving a grizzy.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from mayoaaron wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I would do the exact same thing. If the bear charged at me, I would have no problem firing at it.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from VAHunter540 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

ohh great..... another sighting of Robo-Bear.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Never had a problem with bears or anything else bothering my elk carcasses. In heavy bear country I'd build a triangle of small fires around the carcass, pee repeatedly in the area, and hang up a glow orange vest/coat. The latter is particularly effective at keeping birds off the carcass. They can ruin it quicker than a bear.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from achrisk wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Sounds fishy....As do a lot of people when telling a story of self defense.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gtbigsky wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I would do the same thing these hunters did. I would definitely take a few buddies both to help pack out quarters and to watch my back during the quartering process. If we happen to come upon an aggressive grizzly that decided to charge then I would have no choice, but to defend myself and friends. Shoot to kill in that situation. However I would try to avoid that situation at all cost by trying to get the elk out as quickly as possible.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from idduckhntr wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

benjaminwc, where do you live? I just moved from Idaho Falls up to Rexburg.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dale freeman wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

After a bear has claimed your kill, do you write that one off and continue to hunt untill you gat a kill you can tag ?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from benjaminwc wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

idduckhtnr-- I live in Rexburg

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Filson wrote 1 year 28 weeks ago

If it is legal to shoot right before dark, then so be it. But to be in heavy bear area, and have your elk claimed...woops. Is it legal to harass the bear off your kill with spray, then grab the left overs, or like in an earlier blog, you shoot someone else claims, then what? I say like we do in Northern Michigan, Shoot, Shovel, and Shut up. But if a grizz is eating my elk, especially if I glassed it, I'd go try to shoot another elk. Then maybe go back a cpl days later for the horns. Not sure what to do. I like the Idea of a grizz hunt in the area if it's that overpopulated. At least no one was chewed on.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dana Knox wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Dcast - Could they have surprised the bear as it was sleeping after eating? Sure, anythings possible. The point is you don't put yourself in this position in the first place. If you don't have a decent shot by 5 or 6pm, then call it a day. If you shoot by then and can't find the elk and get him skinned and the meat out by dark, then pack up and go back to camp as the elk is almost sure to be claimed during the night by a Grizzly. Also, if they had properly glassed the area I'm sure they would have seen the kill area would be surrounded by Ravens. That bear was feeding on that elk and these birds are always around once that is happening.

This isn't Colorado or New Mexico where you can hunt till dusk and spend the night feeling safe that you can get the work done in the morning. This is an area crawling with the apex predator in North America. A week earlier an experienced bow hunter who has been coming to this area for 15 years from out of state made the same mistake. Things have changed in the last 5 years and when these bears are in need of hyperphagia after a lean berry season, they have little fear sitting on a carcass.....even while approached by a posse. There were 8 kids attacked in Alaska last year, so numbers aren't important when a bear is full of adrenaline.

If the hunter had used his head and not shot so close to dark, then all this would have never happened. 5 guys shooting at a bear is a good way to get mauled or shot in the crossfire. Just plain dumb.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dana Knox wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

These guys were idiots!!!!! The elk was shot at dusk the evening before, and this guy gathered his posse the next morning. Island Park is just west of Yellowstone and is crawling with Grizzly. It was all but a certainty this elk would be claimed by a Grizzly 12 + hrs later. Five guys armed with large calibers handguns and a shotgun thought it would be cool to either legally kill a Grizzly or run it off. The bow shooter knew the elk wouldn't be far away and he and the posse found the carcass in no time. Instead of circumventing and glassing the kill area, they went directly for a confrontation. They were lucky they weren't mauled as evidence points to the bear only receiving a minor wound after 12 to 15 shots. I'm sure all these macho men needed a change in underwear, as a charging Grizzly has a tendency to do that to people. They also found out that even though they had lots of weapons, it's difficult to hit and kill a Grizzly when it's moving directly at you at 35 mph.

After calling F&G, the posse left the carcass and reported the encounter. F&G sent 6 trackers in to see if they could find the bear the next morning. Intelligence rules as they glassed the area and saw another bear had claimed the carcass. They did a cursory search and found a blood trail that belonged to the bear, but saw that the wound had stopped bleeding and was probably minor. They packed up and left the area not disturbing the bear that had claimed the elk. The area was closed to further hunting.

-2 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

bmxbiz-fs