- Sep 11, 2020
Is spring bear hunts still just every other year up there?I am prepping for a Spring Grizzly back pack hunt in Alaska taking place very soon. My guide had some suggestions. I have been conditioning by: 15 and 20lb weights for arms couple times a week. 100 stair climbs with 10 Bulgarian split squats x3 twice a week. This alone will get your legs and cardio mountain ready. 3-4 mile hikes in local hills and mountains on Saturdays with 45lb+ backpack, add about 11 pounds with rifle, bino's and drinking water and a once a month with no pack but fast and hard strictly for cardio and legs. Half up hill, half down. (down hill with a pack is almost as hard in a different way) The one thing I have always done which I think had really made a significant difference is I do planks every other day without fail. 2 minutes. Started at 30 seconds a couple years ago, worked up to 2 minutes within 6 months. Can't go beyond 3 minutes or I start to shake too much. That is a butt kicker but if you want a strong core, none better. My back use to hurt constantly as I had back surgery 10 years ago. Now, hardly ever. I am 68 years old and these exercises have put me in better shape then I was at 48. My stomach is tight. No overhang of fat and I weigh 220lbs. No lie. In fact, it's addicting now. I like to condition and look forward to it. I am going to stop the entire regiment in 2 weeks as I have a month to go and will rest for the last 2 weeks. I am sore from conditioning almost everyday and do not want to be as sore when doing the real thing, so a 2 week break just before I go. I am as ready as I can be but when I started I never thought I would make it to this point. That's the benefit of starting months earlier. I want to emphasize....I have prepared mentally as well. I think about the hardest part of the hike and just watch myself walk thru it. I have a no quit mentality, always have, always will. IMO, mental conditioning is as important. I am prepared for long hours of glassing in crap weather. I have accepted it is going to be a challenge, but I thrive on challenge so I am good with that. I will do this as long as my body and mind are willing. A side benefit is I will continue this after the hunt as I like how I look and feel and am already planning my 2022 Griz hunt. The next one will most likely be an inland float hunt in a rubber raft which is considered an easy hunt unlike the back pack hunt.
I am also 68 and impressed with your regimen. Not sure if it wouldn't be overkill for what/where I hunt. Pardon my ignorance but what are "planks." I get a little soft every spring but lose 15-20 lbs in hunting season. Fortunate to have nothing to do but hunt and fish. My dogs drop a lot of weight every fall. Have to be careful and work my way into it or I'll pay for it. Plantar fasciitis a couple of years ago was a bitch. Unfortunately, I'm an upland junkie with too little self control. I usually don't slow down till the dogs' feet are bleeding. Here's Ellie after seven weeks of hard hunting in Montana last fall.