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bigbill

Bear Hunting Experience

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Here's my true story. I been hunting bear and deer in central Vermont since 1973. We been all over this area in many decades of using my jeep as far as we could drive then walk.

Ok here's my true story.

We were parked on an access/logging road. To the right was old abandoned Apple orchards which leads into the bottoms. To the left it goes up the mountain to the higher elevation but it slopes in certain areas.

Me and my son were on the slope walking slowly talking low parallel to the road. I heard a clawing or scratching coming from the bottoms in the apple orchard. I didn't think much of it at first. We came down off the slope and walked into the orchard on the outer edge between the forest and the orchard. I looked at a nearby tree and seen fresh claw marks where a large cat just climbed it. It was a mountain lion. It heard our voices but couldn't locate us so it climbed up a tree to get a better look. We never seen it but I know they are there I've seen them before.

Being aware in the wilds wether we hunt or fish is very important. I've seen Lynx, bobcat, bears plus they have spotted mountain lions were we fish in ct. I fished these areas alone in the past. We have these predators in every state. Just being aware of them could save your life. Use your senses, listen, use your sight and smell. I like to look for tracks and scat.

No matter how good you know the area where your hunting or fishing in the wilds it pays to use a compass. When your tracking you can get turned around so many times we can lose our sense of direction. I always carry a compass and take a reading at the car for north and put the arrow in the exit direction. My road runs north to south. If I enter the forest to the west I set the arrow to the east to come out. In my 50years of experience in the forests I've needed my compass once. Trust me it's easy to get lost when tracking. I was tracking a deer when I came across bear tracks so I followed the bear tracks.

I got turned around many times. I knew I didn't know what direction was the way out. I didn't panic I had my compass in my jacket pocket. The way out I thought was wrong on the compass but put your trust in a compass mine was right. The bear tracks took me to an area I was never in.

Of course now we have GPS but I still carry a magnetic compass. It's the old boy scout in me.

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Having grown up fishing offshore in the Gulf of Mexico I fully trust a compass. I to keep one around all the time, GPS is fine till the battery dies, & trust me it will die during an emergency.

Excellent post ;)

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