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Discussion Starter #1
It happened to me as I'm sure it has happened to most of us who hunt bear. I wounded a big black bear on friday night. I thought I'd made a good hit. I shot him just before dark. Given the nature of the terain we decided it best to look for him in the morning.

Saturday morning brought fog which delayed our search until around 1pm when the fog had cleared off. Myself and two of my cousins went out to find him. They went down in the clear-cut while I guided them to where he was when I shot via two-way radios. They found blood and a fresh bed all within 20 yds of where he was when shot.

Then I saw him. He was still alive. He cleared some brush and showed himself for a brief moment as he walked slowly toward the timber. No more blood was ever found, The bear was not seen again. I didn't hit him well enuff to drop him, but I hit him well enuff to make him bed down for 15 hours. I hope this 400+ pound Washington trophy makes it through. This is the first animal I know to have wounded and got away.. I'm sick inside.

I'm now going to buy a good rangefinder. I was able to range the shot later and it was pushing 400yds. We'd estimated 250-300yds. I'm hoping for a leg or lower chest wound that missed vitals. I fear a gut shot but I'm not sure he'd have survived as long as he did/has.
 

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Don't beat yourself up for mis-judging the distance on a bear. It's happened to most of us that have hunted bears for any length of time. Easy to do. Alive they always look bigger than when they are dead. As for a bed within 20 to 50 yards, wounded bears are known for laying off to the side to ambush whoever hurt them and may follow(been there). You could have walked into a nasty situation if you had followed the night before. I too hope he makes it and that you get another chance at him. Good luck and Good hunting. Lawdog
:toast:
 

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Lawdog said:
Don't beat yourself up for mis-judging the distance on a bear. It's happened to most of us that have hunted bears for any length of time. Easy to do. Alive they always look bigger than when they are dead. As for a bed within 20 to 50 yards, wounded bears are known for laying off to the side to ambush whoever hurt them and may follow(been there). You could have walked into a nasty situation if you had followed the night before. I too hope he makes it and that you get another chance at him. Good luck and Good hunting. Lawdog
:toast:
I second what Lawdog said. :D
 

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It happens

Wolfe,

Good on ya for feelin' sick inside. You've got compassion and that's what makes you a hunter and not a killer. You'd be amazed at how many critters have been shot and not killed. I shot a squirrel with a pellet under the hide and a friend shot a deer with a broadhead encased in gristle in it. It happens to the best of us.

Your call, but I count blood drawn as a tag filled in my personal ledger.

Regards,

Matt
 

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friend of mine got a monster buck 1 year with tree broad heads in it. one in hind quarter, 1 in scapula, and one in the neck....at least a couple broadheads were year old.



hey it happens....and its too bad that it does...but anyone who has hunted any amount of time has wounded game. i have killed ever deer ive pointed at..............except 1. the dreaded too far forward shot....loged arrow into shoulder bone. my neighbor shot that deer last year and gave me my bent broadhead back. it made it over a year....ans was healed up real good...in fact it grew a big fleshy deposit all around the broadhead.

unfortunately your assesment of gut shot....he coulda been. the entire digestive tract can shut down with little or no blood flow to stomach and intestines...and they can go for a week or better before they die...im sorry to say.
 

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Bear Hunting

Wolfe

Sorry to hear about your misfortune, Don't take it so hard. A lot of fellers would not have had the guts to tell us about wounding an animal so for that i say you are a **** of a man. I hope you never have to go through this again. Every one of us hopes this never happens to us, But stuff happens. Good luck on your next hunt..........Joe..........
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks guys. I wasn't sure what kinda response I'd get but you've all made me feel a bit better about it. I haven't had a chance to get back out there, hopefully tomorrow night. I know it's a part of what we do but it ain't easy..especially with a bear. I've always had a real respect for these awesome animals.
 

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Sorry to hear your misfortune. Twice I've put my bow up after losing an animal, each time due to my own mistakes. Ultimately it'll happen to everyone, and it's part of hunting. I know that sick feeling you get in your stomach though, and I feel for you.
 

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Sorry to hear that.

Where are you hunting in WA that has 400+ lb bears? I know they are out there, but very uncommon. I got a big one this spring and would like to get a bigger one.
 

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Sorry to hear it but it sounds like you missed the vitals and the fat closed up the hole, hence the bleeding stopped. I think he'll make it ok but he will be really weary of his surroundings from now on, he's a tad smarter now. My shot at a bear has been very close like under 25yds yours was 400yds? I have been tracking some big bruins for years but i can't seam to get close for a shot yet these are trophy sized bear too. Its paws are as big as my 13" sorel boots.

Don't feel bad one year I had some guys from CT come into my camp in Vermont in a monsoon heavy rain they came over two mountains tracking a wounded bear they gut shot. The 3 of us went out looking too but we never found it and it wasn't a year later we shot a bear and it had an extra bullet in its back in the meat when i sliced it up. It happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well to update this thread the bear was seen alive during deer season. We're sure it was him do to his size. He was in the same clrearcut, waaay outta rifle range. I feel much better knowing he survived.
 

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Wolfe-
If I may ask what you shot the bear with. I count 400yrds or even 300yrds as too long a shot on a bear, especially a large one. I can understand +/- 50yrd error, but 100-150yrd error is allot. I hope that you do invest in a range finder, I go out some times to eyeball distances and then range to find out how close I am to the right distance. It has been one of the best things I have done to practice and train my eyes. It is unfortunate that this happened, but it is even more unfortunate that these things do happen.

Good luck, Qaz
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The bear was shot with a 7mag 160gr accubond zero'd at 275 yds, 2" low at 300 and 13" low at 400.
Long shots across clearcut's are very normal here. This was a bowl style clearcut that has lot's of ridges and draws that make distance very difficult to eyeball. The terrain looks flat from the vantage point, but is far from it when you're down in it. I've taken plenty of deer from 300yds and always have a rest of some sort, usually a bipod, as was the case here.

I do now have a rangefinder.
 

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Thanks for the info Wolfe, I am always interested in what people are shooting. I enjoy watching the hunting shows on TV, but I wish more of them would state the caliber of gun, grain bullet and range the shot was taken at.
 
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