We returned to Alberta after a year off due to the wildfires during the spring 2016 season, and for those that waited, they would not be disappointed. With 16 bears being shot, nine of these would be easy contenders for record book, and a wounded bear would have put it at 10. I can’t say that we saw more bears than in past seasons, just that the overall number of big boars was what was needed to complete one of our best ever spring seasons to date. Combine that with the fact that the hunters capitalized on those opportunities with only one lost bear for the season. Quite a few highlights, but Ben Sample nailing down the largest blonde bear I have ever seen, as well as cousin Jeff nailing a massive chocolate, one that we saw during the 2015 seasons, were just a couple of many great moments to our season.
All photos will be in our end-of-the-year booklet, but sample photos follow of Ben's bears and a wolf; Jeff Sample, Joel Batdorf, John Havens (2), Steve Bradley and Tracy Kauffman.
Wolf hunts continue to improve with five of seven hunters seeing wolves during our winter wolf hunt. Hands down, this is the most challenging hunt that we offer. It requires that the hunter have the right mind-set to wait patiently in the hope of that one opportunity during the course of the week’s hunt. One hunter got the photo of six wolves coming down the ice.
Life was never so good for myself as I woke up on November 9 in Alberta, Canada to hear about the Trump presidency win in the USA. That excitement never diminished throughout the month of November as our whitetail hunters hammered out one of our best ever seasons. Despite overly warm conditions, the only obstacle that slowed any form of success was the ability to access all of our traditional hunting areas. The real key to our success was up-to-date equipment that lasted daily, and allowed us to put our clients out. The other big game changer was an extensive amount of use with over 20 trail cameras that had us hunting particular areas harder than normal because we knew certain animals were in the area. I have always said the cameras are the real game changer with black bear hunts, but not until this year did they really prove just how effective they could be for whitetail. That is going to be changed even more so for our 2017 season.
Below are just a few photos, with more in next post, from the 2016 Alberta season. From top, then left to right, are:
Dave Kamysiak, Ed Haff, Mark Anderson and Gary Lijewski.