Guests - If You want access to member only forums on FM. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on Fishing Minnesota.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
bearplott

Bear Hunt

11 posts in this topic

How everyone doing up that way this year? Any success yet?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's been getting slower and slower the past 5 years but this year is amazingly slow. I think it is real safe to say that the bear numbers are down 70% to 80% from what they were 5 years ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Would you care to offer your thoughts on why that is so? Is the state giving out too many permits?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

30-06,

Maybe to many sows and cubs are being killed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cubs can't be legally harvested can they? In Wisconsin, sows with cubs are also protected. Is Minnesota the same?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My feeling is that there has just been way too much hunting pressure in this area. I think many people "discovered" this area when they were here crappie fishing, looked at a highway map and thought that there was a tremendous amount of remote areas that should be great for bear. The problem was that these huge remote areas are mainly bog and not bear habitate. All of the hunters ended up clustered on the narrow ridges of high ground running through the bog. It has been commen the past 3 years for the baits to be 100 to 150 yards apart for miles down these higher ridges. It would be interesting to compare the number of bait stations registered in this area 8 years ago to the number registered now. I feel it could be 10 times more bait stations now.

For example some friends had a bait station in great bear country in the same exact place for many years. It used to be commen to sit there and watch 5-6 bears on the site at one time. That place has been baited the past 3 years and has not even had a single hit. 5 years ago every bait I had was within 5 miles of my house and every hunter had a bear by the 2nd night. Now I am driving the pickups 20+ miles in 4 different directions and then taking the wheeler further and having less success with 1/2 the hunters.

I wish MN would not allow sows with cubs to be shot. I do not think that the cubs have a chance to live with out Mom. Most areas do not the high numbers of Timber wolves like we do. They will catch the cub on the ground or dig it out of it's den and kill it. Also these cubs do not have Mom to show them where the berries are at one time of year or where the acorns are at now. This cubs end up just waundering around lost and can not find natural foods so they go to where people are and eat the pie on the window sill. When the MN DNR says that we have too many "problem" bears I wish that they would realize that with every Mom killed we are creating more "juvenile delinquent" little bears. frown.gif

In any case it looks to me like this area has never had the bear numbers this low. My father and the "oldtimers" can not remember it ever being like this. I think the DNR's high bear numbers are more likely in areas with a lot of private land and less hunting pressure.

On a little bit more happy note Labs got his bear last night. A nice 300+ pound chocolate. We think it must have been retarded or suicidal for Labs to get it. grin.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I can count the hits on our four baits on both hands. There have only been 4-8 bear registered in Blackduck this season. I think Kelly is correct about the amount of pressure in the woods. For us the Saturday of labor day was like sitting next to a 4wheeler motocross. And that was on both private and public ground. My friend in Onterio feels they lost alot of bear this past January with the mild temps. The bear came out of their dens and then were caught with the February/March cold snap. The other thing is I have never seen as many acorns for as long (mid August untill and through now).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, hopefully things get turned around and like the walleyes on Red Lake the bears become plentiful again. Sad to know that people can legally harvest sows with cubs. Congrats on the #300 chocolate. That's a nice bear anywhere! cool.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First off....who shoots sows with cubs? I know a lot of bear hunters, and not one of them would even think about taking a sow with cubs. I just don't think it happens much. I've never even shot a sow in my life.

Secondly I agree that bearhunting has become a harder game. Specifically when compared to Wisconsin. The obvious reasons are that we have way too many people hunting. If we restricted the number or hunters, I think we'd harvest more bears. The second thing that hurts bear hunting is the proliferation of 4-wheelers. Now every tom dick and harry can get a bait back in the woods without much work. It used to be only the guys that worked hard.

Personally I haven't had a downturn in my bear hunting. Sitings and bears taken have remained steady. I certainly have had to work much harder to get away from the crowds though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Quote:

It's been getting slower and slower the past 5 years but this year is amazingly slow. I think it is real safe to say that the bear numbers are down 70% to 80% from what they were 5 years ago.


I'm going to have to disagree with this! I hunt in and around that area and there are more bear then ever. Sometimes they just are not on your bait. I had some nice pictures of 8 different bear, however, the weekend of opening it rained a lot and then the acorns fell, that is why bear hunting sucked this year. The bear are out there. Put up a camera and you'll see what i'm talking about.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know if there is an abundance of bear by red lake or if the numbers are down. I do know that the 40 acres I own 3/4 of a mile from the south shore has bear on it. Last year we had many on the camera. This year our moultree deer feeder was completely destroyed along with some other things. I learned my lesson not to put up the deer feeder once they come out of hibernation. They sure are a nuisance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Posts

    • BlackArrow1

      Posted

      Went up north of Tofte last weekend camping/looking for a few grouse and to see the fall colors. Was in the region of the grade and 600 road. Pulled off on a walk only trail to run my lab and see if I could kick a few. Anyhow, my lab sits and barks like hell with anticipation at me every time I'm getting the gun out and getting ready to hunt her. So for about 5 minutes she's harassing me loud barking with excitement. We start walking down the trail maybe 50 yards and I see all this brown commotion jumping around ahead of us about 75 yards. At first I think we startled some deer. Then one came out full on the trail and stood watching me/dog. They were timber wolves. That one slunk off in the woods and another came out and just sat there looking at us for about a minute or so. When I noticed they were wolves I grabbed the dog by the caller. They seemed interested in my dog. Her barking must have drew them in. They ran off after looking us over a bit. I turned around and left that spot to avoid any issues. I'm thinking that maybe some younger bird dogs would be enticed to chase after wolves that show this kind of interest in them. In my opinion that would be bad and a dog may not come back alive, given their boldness and interest in my dog. It was fun seeing them, but we didn't just walk up and surprise them, they were coming to see the barking dog. Just curious? Maybe. Looking for an easy meal, maybe. I'm just putting this out there to inform bird hunters up there what I saw, so they can be aware if they have dogs. And no they were not coyotes. 

    • ANYFISH2

      Posted

      Made it out yesterday evening, SAW 4 deer. The same small buck and 3 does.  They sure seemed skittish with the wind.

      For the fact I am getting very few daytime pics of any deer, I am at lest seeing a few every sit.

    • delcecchi

      Posted

      The crescent and south switch meet all the criteria, except for boat access.   And they even usually have some sort of craft beer on tap, like surly furious etc. 

      The only place near the lake that has upscale food that I am aware of is the casino.    We try to get to the wilderness grill for lunch a time or two.   And daughter and husband will sometimes go there on date night while they are up, although the pull to the east is less now that the quilt shop in tower shut down. 

    • I am going up this weekend with a few buddies and the plan is to fish hard...will post back and let ya know if we find anything.

    • cabin040

      Posted

      Was up for the week of Sept 10-17th.  First day spent on East and West Fox lake and we did well on bass, crappie and northerns.  Second day was very slow fishing.  Spent one day on Kego and did well on bass and norhterns.  Hit Mitchel twice and did well on sunfish and bass.  A few nice crappies in the mix as well.  Went to Little Boy for a day of walleye fishing, and it was very slow.  1 walleye and 1 smallmouth bass.  Great week of fishing on a few new lakes.  A very nice area to explore.

      1 person likes this
    • Cliff Wagenbach

      Posted

      The trees are turning color fast now! Seems to gain color by the hour now!

      Cliff

    • Driving a scenic route through a state forest is a great way to view fall color, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.  

      Finland State Forest

      Finland State Forest

      “Routes through hilly or rugged areas dominated by deciduous trees tend to have the best mix of color,” said Jennifer Teegarden, DNR forestry outreach specialist. “And the dark green needles of conifers accent the yellow, orange and red leaves of deciduous trees in mixed forest.”

      Here are a few state forests routes to consider:

      Late September

      • Finland State Forest heading northeast along County Road 7 from Finland.

      Early October

      • Bowstring and Blackduck state forests along state Highway 46 between Deer River and Northome.
      • Pillsbury State Forest along Beauty Lake Forest Road between County Road 77 and County Road 1.
      • St. Croix and Nemadji state forests loop. From Interstate 35, take exit #183 and head east on state Highway 48. Head north on County Road 24. Head east on County Road 24. At Markville, head north on County Road 31. Head west on Park Forest Road. At Kerrick, head south on state Highway 23 to Interstate 35 exit #195.

      Mid-October

      • Richard J. Dorer Memorial Hardwood State Forest has two good options. Along Zumbro Bottoms Road off of state Highway 60 southwest of Wabasha. Along state Highway 16 between Interstate 90 and state Highway 26.

      Visit www.mndnr.gov/stateforests for information about visiting a state forest and additional scenic routes. Entrance into a state forest is free. State forest campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis for $14 a night.

      Visit the Minnesota state parks and trails Fall Color Finder at www.mndnr.gov/fall_colors to find areas in Minnesota with peak fall color. The Fall Color Finder is updated every Thursday through the end of October.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • A southeastern Minnesota stream reflects brilliantly colored leaves in fall – until the splash of a trout on the end of an angler’s line breaks the surface. Anglers can enjoy scenes like these now through a variety of fall trout fishing opportunities.  

      north-branch-whitewater-river_govdelivery2“Fall is a beautiful time to experience trout fishing in streams in southeastern Minnesota,” said Brian Nerbonne, stream habitat consultant with the Department of Natural Resources. “Anglers are fewer, the scenery can be awe inspiring and fishing can be quite good.”

      In most of the state, trout fishing is open until Friday, Sept. 30. However, anglers can make a longer go at it in southeastern Minnesota streams.

      Catch-and-release trout fishing is open through Saturday, Oct. 15, on streams in the southeastern Minnesota counties of Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Wabasha and Winona. In these counties, fishing then reopens for a winter catch-and-release season that runs Sunday, Jan. 1, to Friday, April 14, 2017.

      For even more fishing, anglers who want to trout fish all year long can do so in streams in Beaver Creek Valley, Forestville and Whitewater state parks, whether through a catch-and-release or harvest season depending on the time of year.

      “If you think trout are hard to catch in winter, consider the research over the last year that shows trout continue to feed heavily in winter,” Nerbonne said. “Different teams of researchers found trout with anywhere from 30 to more than 100 prey items in their stomachs, depending on the study.”

      Vaughn Snook, Lanesboro assistant area fisheries supervisor, said numbers of brown trout longer than 12 inches are at record highs or close to it on some trout streams in southeastern Minnesota.

      “Now is the time to take advantage of those great fish. Numbers of young trout look good for coming years,” Snook said.

      Reports of anglers using hopper patterns (grasshopper imitating flies) have been good in areas thick with grass. Grasshoppers will become active, and thus more likely to fall into the stream, as the sun warms their bodies in the afternoon. Blue-winged olive hatches (try using no. 20-22 olive mayfly) will be seen until the first frost, sometimes even after.

      Because both brown trout and brook trout become aggressive in the fall, closer to their spawning time, anglers should also consider presenting streamers (minnow imitating flies) in deep runs and pools.

      “Numerous brown trout over 20 inches have been reportedly caught by anglers already this late summer and fall period,” Snook said.

      Minnesota has 3,817 miles of designated trout streams, plus 2,699 miles of designated trout stream tributaries. In 2015, the state’s five coldwater hatcheries produced 1.7 million fingerlings, yearlings and adult fish for stocking in 75 streams and 158 lakes – roughly 201 tons of fish. Last year, 106,463 anglers purchased a validation required to fish for trout, an all-time high. However, fewer anglers tend to fish in the fall.

      Anglers fishing on designated trout waters must have a trout stamp in addition to an angling license. Maps showing trout fishing locations in southern Minnesota, as well as other information on trout fishing, can be found at www.mndnr.gov/fishing/trout_streams.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • Hunters who were not chosen in the lottery to receive an antlerless deer permit can obtain one of 12 surplus antlerless permits for deer permit area 260, which covers the northwest corner of Minnesota and borders North Dakota and Manitoba. 

      Permits will be available starting 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3, on a first come, first served basis, anywhere DNR licenses are sold, or online on the buy a license page. Both residents and nonresidents can purchase these permits but must first purchase a firearms or muzzleloader deer license. Permits purchased online will be mailed. Orders by telephone will not be accepted.

      In lottery deer areas, including permit area 260, firearm and muzzleloader license holders who intend to take an antlerless deer must possess an antlerless permit; otherwise, they are restricted to hunting bucks. The total bag limit for deer in lottery areas is one deer per year.

      To stay informed about the deer management and other important deer-related topics visit the deer page and to receive updates via email, consider subscribing to the Deer Notes email list by entering an email address at the bottom of the page.

      The DNR works to protect and maintain Minnesota’s white-tailed deer. The deer population, which varies in density from place to place and year to year, is dependent on adequate habitat and directly influenced by the severity of winter weather. Deer are ecologically, socially and economically important in a state where hunting and wildlife watching generate more than $1.3 billion in annual economic impacts.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

    • Pheasant hunting can put food on the table, supports grassland conservation and is a fun sport that doesn’t require a lot of specialized or expensive equipment.

      Once you’ve identified some areas you might hunt – the hunting usually takes place in grasslands or frozen wetlands – there are a few things to consider to make the most of time in the field once the Minnesota pheasant season opens on Saturday, Oct. 15.

      Here are some tips from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

      Regulations handbook and hunting license
      A small game license and pheasant stamp are required. Hunting regulations are covered in the 2016 Minnesota Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook. Licenses are available at the buy a license page  or in person at any DNR license vendor, and handbooks are also available there or online at the hunting regulations page. Hunting licenses are also available by phone, any time, by calling 888-665-4236. Don’t forget a $3 Walk-In Access validation, so you can hunt another 23,000-plus acres of private land.

      Maps
      Scouting an area will increase your odds of finding pheasants and good maps will help your efforts. Visit the wildlife management areas page for free online, interactive maps that identify wildlife management areas and Walk-In Access areas. Combined, these programs provide over 400,000 acres of public hunting land in Minnesota’s farmland zone. A local plat book may also come in handy to identify specific pieces of land.

      Shotgun and shells
      The best shotgun is one you are comfortable with. The style or gauge isn’t nearly as important as your ability to use it. Since pheasants are fairly tough birds, choose a load such as 4 or 5 shot and limit your shooting distances to 40 yards or less. This will result in fewer wounded birds. Nontoxic shot is required on federal land and many hunters prefer to use it any time they’re in the field.

      Blaze orange
      Minnesota pheasant hunters are required to wear at least one visible article of clothing above the waist that is blaze orange. This could be a hat, jacket or hunting vest. Consider that the more blaze orange you wear, the more visible you’ll be to other hunters.

      Good footwear  
      Pheasant hunting involves lots of walking on uneven terrain. Good quality, above-the-ankle shoes or boots will provide comfort and support for a day in the field. Since crossing creeks and marshy areas is common, many hunters prefer waterproof boots.

      Layered clothing
      Cool fall mornings often turn into sunny, warm afternoons. Layered clothing will prepare you for a variety of weather conditions. Long sleeves and gloves will help keep you from getting scratched up when moving through tall grass, cattails or woody cover. Hunting chaps or brush pants are an option to protect your legs and keep you dry on mornings when the grass is wet.

      Eye and ear protection
      Any time you use a firearm, protect your eyes and ears. Sunglasses and foam ear plugs provide basic protection. More expensive options include coated, colored, high impact lenses and digital hearing aids that enhance some sounds while protecting ears from loud noises.

      A good dog
      A dog is not required to hunt pheasants, but a good hunting dog will be a companion in the field and increase chances to harvest and recover birds. Be aware that owning a hunting dog is a year-round commitment of care and training. Be sure you’re willing to invest significant time and energy before taking on the responsibility of a dog.

      Refreshments
      Be sure to carry at least two bottles of water in the field and have jugs of water at your vehicle. Water your dog and yourself, often. Bring snacks to keep your energy level up and consider canine energy bars for your dog.

      Finally, grassland habitat is the key to supporting pheasant populations, and much work remains to improve pheasant habitat in Minnesota. The grasslands that support pheasants have multiple important benefits for people, other wildlife, pollinators, water quality and local economies.

      To learn more about pheasant hunting, as well as about what the DNR and partner organizations are doing to improve pheasant habitat, visit the pheasant page.

      Discuss below - to view set the hook here.



  • Posts

    • BlackArrow1
      Went up north of Tofte last weekend camping/looking for a few grouse and to see the fall colors. Was in the region of the grade and 600 road. Pulled off on a walk only trail to run my lab and see if I could kick a few. Anyhow, my lab sits and barks like hell with anticipation at me every time I'm getting the gun out and getting ready to hunt her. So for about 5 minutes she's harassing me loud barking with excitement. We start walking down the trail maybe 50 yards and I see all this brown commotion jumping around ahead of us about 75 yards. At first I think we startled some deer. Then one came out full on the trail and stood watching me/dog. They were timber wolves. That one slunk off in the woods and another came out and just sat there looking at us for about a minute or so. When I noticed they were wolves I grabbed the dog by the caller. They seemed interested in my dog. Her barking must have drew them in. They ran off after looking us over a bit. I turned around and left that spot to avoid any issues. I'm thinking that maybe some younger bird dogs would be enticed to chase after wolves that show this kind of interest in them. In my opinion that would be bad and a dog may not come back alive, given their boldness and interest in my dog. It was fun seeing them, but we didn't just walk up and surprise them, they were coming to see the barking dog. Just curious? Maybe. Looking for an easy meal, maybe. I'm just putting this out there to inform bird hunters up there what I saw, so they can be aware if they have dogs. And no they were not coyotes. 
    • ANYFISH2
      Made it out yesterday evening, SAW 4 deer. The same small buck and 3 does.  They sure seemed skittish with the wind. For the fact I am getting very few daytime pics of any deer, I am at lest seeing a few every sit.
    • delcecchi
      The crescent and south switch meet all the criteria, except for boat access.   And they even usually have some sort of craft beer on tap, like surly furious etc.  The only place near the lake that has upscale food that I am aware of is the casino.    We try to get to the wilderness grill for lunch a time or two.   And daughter and husband will sometimes go there on date night while they are up, although the pull to the east is less now that the quilt shop in tower shut down. 
    • ozzie
      I am going up this weekend with a few buddies and the plan is to fish hard...will post back and let ya know if we find anything.
    • cabin040
      Was up for the week of Sept 10-17th.  First day spent on East and West Fox lake and we did well on bass, crappie and northerns.  Second day was very slow fishing.  Spent one day on Kego and did well on bass and norhterns.  Hit Mitchel twice and did well on sunfish and bass.  A few nice crappies in the mix as well.  Went to Little Boy for a day of walleye fishing, and it was very slow.  1 walleye and 1 smallmouth bass.  Great week of fishing on a few new lakes.  A very nice area to explore.