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Location: Tulsa
Joined: 03/20/2006
Posts: 5
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

Hello everyone,
I am going on my first bear hunt in May and have a lot of questions. I am heading up to Alberta. Since I can shoot two bears I am thinking about bringing my bow and rifle.
Gun: I have a Marlin .30-.30 and was wondering what grain of bullet I should bring with me?
Bow: I am using a Beman 400 with a 3 blade 100 grain muzzy. Will this work or should I use a heavier arrow or broadhead?

Is there anything else I should know about going on this trip that any of you wish you knew on your first trip? When I get to Canada do I need to declare my bow as a firearm

If these questions are already posted somewhere on this site please let me know. Thumbs up

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Location: Alberta
Joined: 01/24/2005
Posts: 56
first bear hunt

I'm not familar with your firearm ballistics but I would guess that a bullet in the 150gr range would do fine. I know nothing about bows. If your hunting over bait I would think that your shots would be limited to 15-20 yards with the bow and under 50 with a rifle. You might want to make sure your guide knows what your intentions are as far as bring gun and bow and ask him how his baits are set up. As far as your bow = firearm question, you might want to call Canada Customs ( or do a search online on their website) with your question, the goods new is that the gun laws are supposed to be changed (due to a Conservative Gov), the bad news is it'll never be changed by the time you get here. What part of the province are u going to (wmu). What guide are you using? I live in AB and am hunting bears this spring too I plan on hunting in 515, 504 or 258 depending on how things go some over bait and some spot and stalk. Good luck and post your pics! Thumbs up

ADKBEAR's picture
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Location: Central NY
Joined: 09/16/2003
Posts: 823
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

BF what kind of hunting is it? Overbait? Spot and stalk? Sitting on game trails?

Over bait or on a game trail (depending on distance away from trail) the 30-30 should be fine with 150 grain loads. If it is spot and stalk hunting min I would go with would be a 30-06 or 270 and I would be looking at 165 grains and up then.

As for the bow the 100s will work over bait at 20yds or less but I perfer more weight. Even though as with gun hunting shot placement is everything I feel that more retained energy in an arrow is an advantage over a lighter faster arrow. Personaly I shoot 125 grain broadheads with the heavest alum arrow that the easton charts recomend for the poundage that I am shooting. As for getting the bow into Canada I have crossed the boarder twice with my bow and was waved right through with no proubs. Since you are taking a gun also you will have to have the approp. forms filled out and it will take about an hour (depending how busy they are) for you to get through after a firearm insp and pay canada there $50.

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Location: Tulsa
Joined: 03/20/2006
Posts: 5
thanks guys

Cowboy Al, I will be hunting in Alberta up near Slave Lake with Northern Wilderness Outfitters. We will be in stands over bait. They have both gun and bow hunters. They also said they have about 200 baits with distances for bow and rifle hunting.

ADKBEAR, thanks for the info, I didn't really want to buy a new gun and I am sure my wife would agree. I was also thinking 150 grain loads. Can I just get heavier arrows and use the 100 or do I need to get a heavier arrow and heavier broadhead?

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Location: northeast tn
Joined: 12/28/2004
Posts: 493
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

i'd go with around a 170 grain bullet

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Location: Middle Tennessee
Joined: 08/25/2005
Posts: 409
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt
tnhoundsman wrote:
i'd go with around a 170 grain bullet

Same here...

Also the 100gr broadhead will be fine as long as it is razor sharp and you dont hit the shoulder.

AS for the other questions...your outfitter should be able to answer those for you.

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Location: Tulsa
Joined: 03/20/2006
Posts: 5
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

tnhoundsman:
thanks for the advice, what brand of 170 do you suggest? I also do some hog hunting with a buddy of mine who has a couple of Dogo Arginteno's dogs. Have you ever looked into them for hunting?

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Location: northeast tn
Joined: 12/28/2004
Posts: 493
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

anything that is solid and not a corbond will do ya fine. i'd also concider the new hornady lever revolution in 160 grain, it's got really good balistics and have heard good things about it's performance.
i've got a friend who has hunted with them in argentina and know a few people who use them for catch dogs in texas, but have never had any experence with them personally. they don't have the nose i like on a dog plus they can be fairly ill tward other dogs, even dogs they have been raised with. that i will not put up with in a dog. my plotts and curs that i hunt bear and hogs with are not ill tward other dogs at all. i don't know alot about the stamina of the dogo, but i like a dog that can run all day and most of the night if need be and still have the grit to catch, bay or tree what ever it happen to be they were after either hog or bear. from what i've read and heard the dogo is a hot nosed dog meaning they can't smell a trail more than a few hours if that and from what i've gathered they are mainly a sight hunting dog. so the chases with them are short. you could use them for catch dogs if you wanted to use them but be sure to vest and colar them up with a top quality stuff sense catch dogs tend to take quiet a beating. and would not recomend trying to hunt bear with them at all! if you are wanting bay dogs look into plotts or curs or a cross between the two. you'll have more than enough nose, speed , stamina and grit to get the job done.

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Joined: 09/17/2005
Posts: 58
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

well i live in alberta and the one thing i would suggest is that you were long sleeves because the bugs get really bad around here. Your 30-30 will have no problems. i use 150 gran and it works great for me. so yeah bugs are bad.

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Location: Tulsa
Joined: 03/20/2006
Posts: 5
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

tnhoundsman: you are right about a lot of those things about the dogo. We use them as catch dogs but use curs to bay the hogs. We don't hunt bears, don't even think there are any in OK or TX. We use cut collars and vests on the dogs. It sounds like dogo's wouldn't be the right dog for you.

thanks for the info on the ammo

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Location: northeast tn
Joined: 12/28/2004
Posts: 493
New Member with a lot of questions for my first bear hunt

bearfever: you're fight they are not the right dogs for us there are some times when we don't know if we've bayed a bear of a hog so we don't let the catch dogs run with the bay dogs for that purpose, a lot of the time our bay dogs catch hogs by themselves to the point that the catch dogs don't have anywhere to grab. bear hunting with hounds in mountains that have hogs and bear in them is a tricky endevor but a fun one due to the suprise factor.

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