Shane Arnold Idaho Bear Hunt Report
Black Bear Hunt in Idaho – May, 2017
How would your rate this hunt?
FIVE STARS – It was all I thought it would be and more!
For me, the entire trip was planned with one goal in mind. Get my dad, on video harvesting a black bear. I didn’t really have any expectation further than that. Dad is not as nimble and quick as he was in my eyes as a child. I don’t expect him to make many more road trips with us for Hunts. Years of hard work has begun to take a toll on the indestructible giant that is my Dad. Explaining this to the Guide was the first order of business when we arrived. Bob nodded in agreement and stated he understood and would do all he could to make that happen.
Dad flew in on the morning of the first hunt. I was already there scoping things out and trying to get my mind on how this would go down. I had never hunted bear and this was going to be a learning experience for me as well.
On the evening of the first night, after an exceptional meal that I still talk about, (Ronnie the cook produced amazing food EVERY meal), Bob pulled me off to the side and informed me that he had just the place in mind. He explained the set up, landscape and the expectation.
After Ryan our wrangler/guide and I teamed up to call in a Gobbler for my cousins first turkey the next morning and watched the Jelly head choke, claim another beard, we went back to camp to find Bob loading things up and getting ready for the evening hunt. Ryan, immediately went to work. I have been on many hunts over the years but I don’t remember ever seeing a wrangler and guide work as hard as Bob and Ryan. The guys just didn’t stop!
Dad and I mounted a four-wheeler that evening and followed Bob and Ryan out to a beautiful spot, sitting right next to a small stream. The stream masked our noise level and the wind was in our favor. It was just an eighty yard shot and Dad can shoot the wings off a mosquito at that distance.
Bob and Ryan mercifully helped me get the rather large Cannon camera set up and added some branches to our blind to hide it’s hideous outline. Once that was done, the guys exited our spot and we were set in for the hunt.
Sitting next to my Dad, as I had done many times in my youth, was a great experience as we took in the breathtaking view before us.
A few hours passed and Dad’s back began to give him some issues. We were about to let him get up and adjust a little when I spotted a rather large brown spot moving down the mountain through the limbs of the trees above us.
Dad’s pain seemed to disappear when he locked on to the blob of brown moving at a canter down the steep incline before us.
I hit the button on the camera and began manipulating buttons and zoom properties until I had a great brown color patch of hair in the cameras screen. Dad had already slid the Primos Gen 2 Bipod Trigger Stick, 24-61-Inch in place and the 45/70 made its iconic “click” as the hammer locked in place.
The Boar stood up on his hind legs, looked around for what seemed like an eternity. Just when we thought he was going to become a ghost, he loped down to all fours and waddled to the bait.
I whispered to Dad, “when ever you are ready”. The years of industrial equipment has taken most of his hearing so after a few seconds of silence, I retreated from the viewfinder of the camera screen and slowly turned to see my Dad looking at me. It was a look that I knew well in my youth. I knew what he was thinking. “Well! WE BURNING DAYLIGHT BOY”! He hadn’t even heard me. I smiled and shook my head and repeated my statement. My eyes had barely focused in on the boar in my view screen when the old 45/70 barked at my side.
The Boar flattened to the ground as if a piano had fell from the sky and landed square on it’s shoulders. It was done. I panned the camera to the face of a smiling old man. His age is well seen on his face. Torn by years of labor. But for a few seconds that are forever etched in my mind, I got to see my hero look like a a young boy that had just won the little league batting trophy. Whats better is that I have that experience on camera. A memory that I have and will continue to share with my children and hopefully, my grandchildren.
As we were slapping hands on a high five and laughing, unable to contain our joy, I looked over Dad’s shoulder, only to see another bear standing up the mountain looking at our celebration. Dad saw my face and without a word, with his back turned to the bear, handed me my Ruger RPR. In a quick, split second decision, I decided to take the bear. One shot and it was down. I knew it was small, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to have the icing on the cake. Two flat footers from Mississippi harvesting Bears. An experience we will never forget and always cherish. The next morning was even better as I called up a gobbler that almost ran into Dad’s shotgun barrel before he stopped due to Dad dropping the hammer on him. It was an amazing experience.
Thanks Matt, Bob, Ryan, Ronnie and the gang. You guys helped me obtain a goal and a memory that I have been wanting to make for years.
God bless and good luck on the rest of the season.
The flat footers…….