Home Forums Campfire Forum How about hunting bear in Michigan?

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    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      My son and I are thinking about hunting bear in northern Michigan in the next year or so and I would like to hear from anyone who has had any experience there, good or bad.:roll: When do the seasons run and have you any info. on the better areas?
      Been a few years since I hunted bear in Quebec and really don’t want to get into getting a passport and dealing with customs. My son was up there and said there were bear and alot of sign, but need to hear from some of you Michiganders,like Patick or others to clue me in on your state laws and fees. Just alittle help,guys!
      Wayne8)

    • crash87
      Post count: 20

      Not a michigander, but, hunt and bum on the Wisconsin/U.P. border. Have been for the last 25 years or so. With that said I have been applying for a bear license since 2001. Not many given out, especially to non-residents like myself, but in the mean time I just make sure I get it in before the deadline each year. It will happen but in the meantime………………….Good luck 😉 Crash87

    • FUBAR
      Member
      Post count: 252

      With MI you get a point for every year you dont draw. You can also buy a point instead each year. Probably your best bet to drraw and to get a big bear is in the northern areas of the U.P. like around Baraga. The southern counties are the hardest areas to draw. On average, a local needs 10 points (Yep thats ten years). Guess who has 10 points this year (woohoo). There are bear everywhere and the U.P. has plenty. A guy from work got a 500 pounder 2 years ago in Baraga.

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Thanks,guys….I was already reading on the Michigan site for tourism and it sounded rather hopeless for us to even consider hunting bear there in the first place.:( I really don’t know where we go from here,but I don’t think it’s going to be Michigan. Hope you draw you’re drawn for a license and then get the big one.
      Wayne

    • FUBAR
      Member
      Post count: 252

      Yeah, I don’t know how hard it is for out of staters to draw. Before they went to the point system, it was just an open draw. I drew the first year they had it and now its been 20 years since I last drew. Glad they went to points, but it still stinks to wait so long

    • crash87
      Post count: 20

      IF, I’m not mistaken, I could be, a certain percentage, 10%?, goes to non-residents. If you go on the DNR website, you will see they have various seasons for the areas. They will also have how many licenses will be alloted. Lets just say, you are going for the 1st season, in Baraga, with 180 permits being issued. That would be 1, possibly 2 going to a non resident. There is a reason, that there are ALOT of bears in Michigan. The same goes for wisconsin, where 8 to 10 years of applying is the norm.
      BUT, all is not lost, start applying, someday it will happen. heck, I’m already making plans to hunt bears in the U.P. Of course , Ill have plenty of time as I will be retired. Lot of points (years) to go to by the way. CRASH87

    • LimbLover
      Post count: 299

      We have a lot of bears but they are definitely all in the U.P. You’ll be hard pressed to find a shooter in lower Michigan. You never hear about it.

      I know of one guy that shot one recently and I’m sure he did a LOT of scouting.

      Everyone I know goes up to Camp Larkin in Canada.A friend’s son owns it. And I’ve heard they have a pretty good group rate. Two guys I know came back with black bears already.

      You said you didn’t want to mess with passports though. Understandable.

    • FUBAR
      Member
      Post count: 252

      Oh there are good ones in the lower also. Just harder to find and harder to get a license. I hope to prove this point in Sept.:D A guy from work makes his own diesel fuel from old restuarant oil and he just gave me 30 gallons of filtered stuff. I will be getting much more by baiting time:P

    • rayborbon
      Post count: 298

      I don’t know a thing about Michigan but if you are sufficiently able to hike inthe mountains I will be out here for one week in August hunting bears. It’s in the Glacier Peak Wilderness and the bear numbers are usually good. Hardest part is getting close on that steep terrain with wind blowing. Bag limit is two bears each out here and the season is long in the fall with over the counter tags.

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Thanks for the offer,Ray…It would be a dream come true to venture to the northwest and hook up with you for a few weeks of bear hunting. Guess I’d have to figure in the travel as air miles and not road miles. Ohio to Washington state is a poke by road.:) It’s something to think about and I’ve heard yoyu talk before about the quality of bear hunting there.
      Thanks again….Wayne

    • Shane Balow
      Post count: 24

      There is also Colorado.
      I went on a elk hunt last year for my mid tour while stationed in Korea and a buddy of mine ran into a 6ft black bear while we were hunting in area 80/81. we didnt know it but my friend mike sat in a giant berry patch and the bear sat down eating berries about 12ft away. you will have a main logging road and you do see ohv trails but they were off limits for hunters. so everywhere you need to go will be hiking. There wasnt alot of hunters there either and the bowhunters we ran into were real friendly and not afraid to tell you what they saw and where! Elk is over the counter for archery and i believe bear is too! Mule deer is by draw though. saw a lot of bear signs but my friend was the only one to run into him. thought this might help. i recommend this area!

    • purehunter
      Post count: 63

      I know this may sound crazy but California is OTC for black bears. The season runs from mid August to the end of the year. Non resident tags are about 250 to 275 if I remember correctly. I live in the Sierra’s so I get a bear tag every year since the bears are in the same area as the mulies. However, most bears run 150-250 lbs average in my area. A big one would be 350 or better. (I go by weight since I can’t judge feet worth a darn out in the wild).

      I forgot to mention that California has a quota on bears and the hunts goes until the quota is filled or the end of the year, whichever comes first and they haven’t filled the quota for the last few years.

      Good luck on whatever you do. But I think it would be worth the money and time to hunt with a fellow trad hunter who knows the area. Love to hunt Washington one day!

      Craig
      PS
      Hunted 80-81 in Colorado for a few years. Nice area, relatively few hunters if you stay in the southwestern part, love to go back for archery.

    • purehunter
      Post count: 63

      Also forgot to mention California is spot and stalk only. May make a difference on your choices.

      Craig

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Spot and stalk would be my choice,as I’ve only previously hunted them over bait and wasn’t much of a challenge. I’d really like to hook up with someone who knows the area so I could get near to where the bear are. I wouldn’t have the time to get in and scout an area being limitted on my time there. Like to hear more about California and Colorado.
      Thanks for the info. Wayne:)

    • purehunter
      Post count: 63

      Wayne,
      Sent you a PM but I called you Gerald. Sorry if I got the names mixed up. 😕

      Take care,

      Craig

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Craig,not a problem with the name….I go by Wayne. Looks like you’ve got some pretty nice hogs to hunt too. Got to go find your email if my wife hasn’t deleted it already.
      Later…Wayne

    • purehunter
      Post count: 63

      Wayne it is! My email is on my profile. If you can’t access it, I’ll PM it to you.

      Take care,

      Craig

    • FUBAR
      Member
      Post count: 252

      Friend from work lives a few miles from me. Last night he took pics of a nice boar at his bird feeder. I would estimate this bear at 400#’s. He took pics of his 125# lab at the same feeder and this bear dwarfed it big time. Now if I could draw a license:P

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