Here's a hunt that happened in late May of 2007 in Northern Manitoba.
I had decided to accept an invitation to guide at a remote camp on Costello Lake for Sunset Eagle Outfitters. I had never been with them before or travelled to that area. It would be a 3 hour drive North from Thompson Manitoba and another hour by boat. I found out it would be bait hunting with the baits located near the shoreline all around the lake.
We loaded the boat with supplies and made our way snaking up the river system to the Swaney Lake, then crossing the lake to another river system up to Costello Lake and all the way to the far end to the remote camp. I was met by several hunters whom were heading out as soon as the boat was unloaded. They had been there a week and all had taken bears except 1 hunter named Wayne. A new batch of hunters were slated to arrive later that day.
Wayne told me he was going to stay for 1 more night and asked if I would guide him for that day. I told him I would take him out and see which baits had been hit. The owner also came with us and we located a fresh hit at the other end of the lake. The tree stand was like a raft nailed to the top of a BIG tree and the plastic drum had been knocked over with bait strewn about.
I gave my shot gun to Leslie the owner and told Wayne to get his kit ready. He was an archery hunter and was excited about the fresh hit. I rebaited the barrel and hung up some scent pads. I began a honey burn and heard a loud grunt. I looked back and could see Wayne and Leslie whispering to each other next to the BIG tree so I motioned to them about the grunt. They were still by the BIG tree and I took out my vanilla spray and began spritzing the air. A loud crack and gunts could be heard as the bear was approaching. I was about 10 yards from the bait barrel hidden behind a small stump. The bear was now visible approx 20 yards from me and sniffing the air. It was a large black bear with a white patch on its chest. I looked back and saw Wayne had taken a position behind the BIG tree he was set with arrow and shaking a bit. The bear had stopped and I began spraying the air again Wayne was almost directly behind me about 10 yrds away. The bear came forward and was about 5 yards from me now and turned sideways.I was was hunkered down and I looked back and saw Wayne at full draw now leaning out from the BIG tree. I nodded and the arrow flew true. I could hear it fly over me and smack into the bears side. I saw the fletching just sticking out and saw the bear bolt into the thick bush.
We all sat down by the BIG tree and the blood and excitement could be seen pumping though all of us. I told them we would sit for an hour and then begin the track. While reliving the hunt for the 5th time I heard a loud grunt, not a death cry. We waited the full hour and found the blood trail. We then located the arrow and the blood trail began to peter out. The bush was thick and sometimes we were on all fours looking for blood.
We located the bear not to far in and then handshakes were given all round. We transported the bear back to camp while we told the story over and over on the boat ride back and upon arriving the new load of hunters were waiting on the dock. Wayne had a smile on from ear to ear and related the story. From the time we left to the time we arrived to camp with the bear only 2 and 1/2 hours had passed. Not bad for a guide whom just arrived to camp and didn't know the area. Note: over the next week we took 2 more nice bears from that site but a nice white colored bear eluded the hunters. What's funny is the white bear is now using the BIG tree as a rubbing post.