Hunting big game with the aid of dogs is a hot topic. Some hunters say that following hounds pursuing a bear or mountain lion is very exciting, and they find joy in watching their dogs doing what they're instinctually born to do. Others disapprove, saying that the method violates fair-chase ethics, can border on animal cruelty, and can give hunters an unfair advantage over their quarry. If I can, I try something before I form an opinion about it. So for a few days in mid May, I joined Table Mountain Outfitters owners Scott and Angie Denny (www.tablemountainoutfitters.com
), and their hounds in southwestern Idaho for a bear hunt.