Idaho fall bear

Geno67

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Where to start? I'm snakebit on bear so far. Hunted on three occasions over three years in east TN with hounds and a guide. No luck. Took a decade off to get a few things done and now I'm back in the saddle so to speak. I applied for a controlled hunt in Idaho and if I don't get drawn, I'll just buy an otc tag and go anyway. I'm looking at unit 1 in Idaho in the northeast corner of the panhandle a month from now.

Anyone had any luck with bear? Fall or spring makes no difference to me, I just would like a bear to add to the list. Any and all help is appreciated.
 

kmott

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idaho
in the fall .find the berries find the bears.

they also like to hit the salmon runs , so glass around the rivers first and last light . glass ,glass and glass some more and you will find them
 

Geno67

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I am in the market for a spotter and maybe a rangefinder. I think I bought a rangefinder from a friend who needed money but I've never used it so I'm not certain I can find it.
 

Geno67

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Another question. Can a car get around the national forest service roads? My old Taurus gets better gas mileage than my truck and has a huge trunk. I hunt out of it in Florida, Georgia and Alabama but the forest service roads are well maintained. I will have a chain saw.
 

JLS

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Somewhere in the basalt rocks
Another question. Can a car get around the national forest service roads? My old Taurus gets better gas mileage than my truck and has a huge trunk. I hunt out of it in Florida, Georgia and Alabama but the forest service roads are well maintained. I will have a chain saw.
Hard to answer this one definitively. During the time period you are looking at, the bears will be focused on whatever berry source is available. Personally, I would hunt high into the alpine and look on slopes where the berries haven't burned off yet (i.e. more northerly aspects). Some roads are fine to get you to the trailhead. Others, not so much.
 

elker

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East Idaho
Use bait also, legal in Idaho. In the high bear area, bears will be on the bait in a day or two. Spring seems to be better than fall. Just got into bear hunting 4 years ago. I always go OTC and hunt where a lot of bears are. Some units have 2 bear tags, those areas have lots of bears and reduced prices for the tags. The F & G want to reduce bear populations in those. I've been successful 3 out of the last 4 years, 1 fall and 2 spring. There are some good FS roads that can be used by cars, just need to have your baits 200 yds from road, creeks. I know some great spots that I no longer hunt and can share those. I never have put in for the bear draws as there are lots of good places OTC. PM if interested.
 

twsnow18

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Boise, Idaho
I would focus on spring, and baiting. I have baited one time in my life, couldn't be more green, and we had 3 bears on it within 4 or 5 days.
They're so much easier to find in the spring vs. the fall. Focus on deer and elk in the fall!

It's pretty easy to have 3-4 different tags in your pocket at the same time in ID, as we have accidentally bumped into some big bears in the fall.
 

BAKPAKR

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West Virginia
If you are going to hunt bears in Unit 1, or almost any other place in North Idaho, I don’t think I would want to use a car as my hunting rig.

I agree with kmott, if you can find berries in the fall, you will find bears. By the end of August and into September, the berries are at the higher elevations and the well-maintained roads are generally not at those higher elevations. In the spring, it is not uncommon to have to bust through patches of snow that separate open sections of road.

FYI - I understand that grizzly sightings are getting more and more common in Unit 1. Make sure to identify the bear species before you shoot.

Good luck and I look forward to hearing about your hunt.
 

BAKPAKR

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I did not get drawn for a control hunt. Went ahead and purchased 2 over the counter tags for bear and 3 for wolf. Now to decide which unit.
Are both bear tags reduced price tags? If you will be driving a car, how far/high are you willing to hike from either a paved road or a well-maintained gravel road? Also, how long will you be in Idaho and what time period?
 
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Use bait also, legal in Idaho. In the high bear area, bears will be on the bait in a day or two. Spring seems to be better than fall. Just got into bear hunting 4 years ago. I always go OTC and hunt where a lot of bears are. Some units have 2 bear tags, those areas have lots of bears and reduced prices for the tags. The F & G want to reduce bear populations in those. I've been successful 3 out of the last 4 years, 1 fall and 2 spring. There are some good FS roads that can be used by cars, just need to have your baits 200 yds from road, creeks. I know some great spots that I no longer hunt and can share those. I never have put in for the bear draws as there are lots of good places OTC. PM if interested.
He specified unit 1. Baiting is not legal there. No bait, no hounds, no e callers, no reduced price tags
 

Geno67

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No. One bear tag is regular so I can hunt any unit for it. I also have three wolf tags and can hunt any unit. Ecallers are legal for wolves statewide so I could use one as long as I have a wolf tag in my pocket. I am not tied to any unit to be honest, I would just like a pelt. Color phase would be great but not required. Any color would be fine for my first bear.

I will be hunting from a GMC Envoy, 2wd. I will be in state 5 days starting Monday, September 16 through Friday, September 20. I am 52 with a sort of bad knee and a sort of bad back. As little hiking as possible. I can hike long distances 2-5 miles, but carrying hide/meat out would be a real task.
 
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elker

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East Idaho
Geno67, if you get a chance, shoot me a pm and I can give you a couple of specific areas I no longer hunt due to the driving time. These place are more north central Idaho, in high bear densities. The panhandle is a good area too, although baiting is not legal there. as DK pointed out. In 5 days you should have no problem getting a couple of bears in. Spot and stalk can be more difficult in the area due to thick forest usually can't see the ground, although there are a few open areas. GMC Envoy would be fine. Berry patches are magnets for the bears this time of year. I'm 63 and was able to get the bear hide and meat with similar challenges you face. One of the pluses with baiting is you only have to set the baits 200 yds off the roads and creeks. so the pack out is fairly easy. Good luck.
 
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