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Alaska 2002 Spring Bear Hunt -- Report

Bill Hefner

New member
Dec 17, 2000
St. Petersburg, FL USA
Alaska 2002 Spring Bear Hunt -- Report

Well, spring grizzly season in Alaska is over for my outfitter buddy, Tony Lee, owner & operator of Westwind Guide Service at www.westwindguideservice.com . Normally I talk to Tony via satellite phone right after the kill and e-mail this info to hundreds of hunters I have on file or post it on bulletin boards but this year I’ve been busy with work and related travel.

High winds, 5 straight days of rain and 12” of snow in the middle of the season allowed only 5 good flying days during the last 3 weeks. Despite Mother Nature, 11 hunters took 10 bears, which about half will score in the top 20 of SCI. The smallest was 8’9”, taken by an 80-year old hunter (his 3rd bear hunt with Tony) and the largest was a nice 9’6”. The 2nd to last bear taken (9’0”) on May 5th had perfect, long hair. Half of the bears taken were killed during the last 3 weeks of the season. And because of the location where it was killed one bear scored in both SCI and B&C. Four bears had skulls over 26” and two had skulls of 25 7/8” and 25 5/8. Every time Tony was flying back to the lodge to pick up his hunter, after spotting a bear on a moose kill, he always saw another bear. This spring there were plenty of bears.

On one stalk Tony and his hunter saw a large pack of wolves on a moose kill. They didn’t see a bear but after several well-placed rounds between Tony and his hunter the pack quickly left with several members less than they arrived with. Unfortunately there wasn’t time to film this little skirmish, but plenty of other bear kill footage was taken and will be added to the 1999, 2000, & 2001 footage, which will be produced into a video and made available to all hunters.

When they weren’t killing bears (or wolves), they killed a lot of time ice fishing for Northern Pike. There were 17, 18 and 19-pounders, which were the average. Great dinner fare.

For the record, over the last 5 years 42 of Tony’s hunters have taken 37 bears, including the new pending #1 SCI grizzly, which was taken last year. That’s an impressive record not many other outfitters can match. So, if you’re considering a grizzly hunt for 2003 Westwind Guide Service is already half booked and has 3 bookings in 2004.

Over the next 2 months Tony and I will be working on getting photos, names, copy, etc. and updating his website. If you’d like to mark it as a favorite place, you’ll see some real nice bears.

Also, if you didn’t get drawn for elk and haven’t made any commitments for the fall, Tony has a few dates left for 6-day, unguided, fully outfitted (tent, food & camp tools), drop camp caribou hunts for the 2002 season. So, if you’ve been waiting for bargains on discounted caribou hunts and have a flexible schedule, now’s the time to make the move. For 2-3 hunters the price is $1,200 each; and groups of 4 or more, the price is only $1,000 each. Your hunt begins when you arrive at main camp. Transportation, license/tags, of course, are extra. Give Tony a call at home at (907) 373-2047 to discuss the details. The best time to reach him is about 7:30 a.m. or after 6:00 p.m. Alaska Time, which is 4 hours behind East Coast time.

Happy hunting.

Bill Hefner
(Tony Lee’s long time buddy & marketing guy)
St. Petersburg, FL
GOHUNT Insider

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