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Discussion Starter #1
I arrived at the guides house on the first day of the hunt and he said to be back at 2pm and we will go out to a stand near where I have taken a bear with him before.
So I thought great I know where I am going to be, but when I arrived he changed things up and said to follow this guide in my truck and he will take me to another spot. I thought cool whatever lets go.
we drove a pile of miles and we dropped a couple hunters off along the way and then came to a corner in a gravel road and he got out and came over to me and said to park and unload my wheeler we are going in the timber here. I looked around and couldn't help but notice 6 other hunters standing there waiting for us to show up. I asked the guide are we ALL going in here? and he said YES, I then asked him how far are we going in? he said that I would be the last on the trail (furthest in) about 2 miles in the timber.
I thought to myself that we are going to have 7 hunters hunting on a 2 mile trail in the timber....WTF? Then I thought well at least I am the furthest into the timber even though we were all hunting the same bear.

Well after it was pitch dark I came out last and met the other hunters on the road and asked them what they thought about the guide putting all of us on this 1 run into the timber and they did not get it. BTW no one even saw a bear.

So what do you think about this situation of stacking all these hunters together like this? I think that it sucked and was a waste of time.
This is a reputable outfitter too and have never heard of him doing this before and we have hunted with him several times with good luck but not this trip.
 

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Sounds like he may of lost some of his hunting areas and had all you guys in his last hunting area. What else could he do when 7 or 8 hunters show up and now where to put them. Sounds kind of fishy....
 

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Hunted first and only time with an Ontario outfitter that pulled something similar. He had hunters stacked so tightly that it was a joke. I don't know if you were in Ontario in the Wawa/White River area of not, but from what you described, it wouldn't surprise me.

Sorry for your bad luck.

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Discussion Starter #5
He is from Minnesota and runs over 100 bait sites and has about 30 hunters every year.
I just wonder what what he is thinking, is it just the money factor?


It sure sounds like they over hunt the area now and I will not ever hunt with him again and will not recommend him to other hunters.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I won't post who the outfitter is, I just wanted to know what you thought about the operation that I used and if it has happened to any of you.
 

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You can bet if I had a Guide do that to me, I would post his name everywhere. I would not want anyone else getting taken advantage of like that.
 

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Redhawk1 said:
You can bet if I had a Guide do that to me, I would post his name everywhere. I would not want anyone else getting taken advantage of like that.
Ditto. NO reason to protect his reputation.
 

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If it happened to me I'd demand a refund and would have moved on. I'd also post his name on the internet. We spend hard earned money, and set aside valuable vacation time, for professionally guided hunts. This was totally unfair to all of the hunters in that group and I wouldn't let him get away with it.

A friend of mine went to Canada for a week black bear hunting. Canada is loaded with black bears and it's the outfitters responsibility to know where the bears are. That's what you are paying him for. Normally they have been baiting for months before you get there. Anyway, my friend got no shots, saw no bears, and never saw bear dung, bear tracks or any other indication that bears were present. Now you know something was up with that hunt! He would have done better on a DIY bear hunt and walked around blindly.

I've been on several guided bear hunts. While I have not always taken a bear, I ALWAYS see bear and plenty of bear sign in the area. I've also seen a ton of moose droppings everywhere I went. Never a moose but plenty of sign.
 

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So what do you think about this situation of stacking all these hunters together like this? I think that it sucked and was a waste of time.
This is a reputable outfitter too and have never heard of him doing this before and we have hunted with him several times with good luck but not this trip.
I think the BIGGEST question of all is.... Why are you asking us about this, before you have asked him???

I would have talked to this guy about this BEFORE i even left the camp, to see what his thinking was... Isn't it only fair to ask him first???

DM
 

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There are guides up here who place bear hunters every 100 yards or so off of one road. They charge less and book as many hunters as they can get. Most hunters never even see a bear. Being a good bear guide is hard back-breaking work. I have helped my son-in-law and daughter and have great respect for bear guides, the good ones.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
blackbear said:
There are guides up here who place bear hunters every 100 yards or so off of one road. They charge less and book as many hunters as they can get. Most hunters never even see a bear. Being a good bear guide is hard back-breaking work. I have helped my son-in-law and daughter and have great respect for bear guides, the good ones.

Yes, it is hard work running bear bait, Ive done it for our party several times and we set up 25 - 30 baits every hunt. I know that I won't use a guide again after this (I was short on time and it was the "solution" to my busy August this year) unless we get some things straight ahead of time.

Where are you from up there?
Where does your son-in-law run their bear operation?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thats interesting, Bigfork is the same area that I hunt when we are on our own.
I will drop them an email and see what they have to offer, thanks
Do they run in zone 24 as well as 26?
 

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I don't know. I don't have anything to do with the business. I am just cheap (free) labor, mixing bait, tracking etc.
 

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Lesson learned. References in the guide business are everything. You have to talk to people who have hunted with these guides before you book. Even call the game warden and DNR for that hunting area and ask questions about the outfit. You can learn alot from how these people respond as well. Game wardens and DNR are reluctant to respond to questions about specific outfit's, but if they don't say anything good about them, then they are holding back the bad. Research, research, research.......before you book a hunt.
 

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Very true. I know my son-in-law gets a lot of business through conservation officers and the D.N.R. around the state. Repeat hunters are a good sign too. Ask for references from hunters who have used the guide service.
 
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