While calling up a huge gobbler occupies many a hunter’s mind in the spring, wild turkeys aren’t the only game worth pursuing at this time of year. And few things get the blood going like an up close encounter with a big bruin.
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In 2009, I enjoyed my first taste of spring bear hunting north of the border with a two-bear adventure in upper Alberta. After hammering this nearly 7-foot bruin on a brief spot-and-stalk adventure in which the bear’s sidekick, another hefty bruin, took a sudden interest in me and my guide forcing us to run it off, I was thrilled to get the chance to visit the Canadian province again. This year, I’m about five miles farther south than I was last year, hunting with Red Willow Outfitters in Valleyview. For the past three years in a row, the outfit has won the Outfitters Award for the largest black bear taken by a nonresident hunter, and our group is hoping to help owner Todd Loewen make it four.