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#3723312 - 08/01/14 08:33 PM Bear hunting the Foothills WMA
AdamMcK
Spike


Registered: 07/31/14
Posts: 21
Loc: Southern Indiana

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I am planning to come down for the bear season opener and was wondering if anybody is familiar with the Foothills. Is it even worth it to try there. I can't find any bear #'s harvested. I believe they are just tallied in with the county kill. I've called the region offices and left a message for the area manager but haven't heard back. It seems there would have to be decent numbers due to the proximity to Smoky Mountain Natiional Park. I plan on coming down the weekend before as well to scout. What are the bear munching on in sept? Acorns? Will they still be dropping at the lower elevations or should I start higher? I sure would love a crack at a Black bear with my crossbow. Also has anybody ever tried calling them with fawn in distress with any luck. I thought I might try that as well as stand hunting. Any help would sure be appreciated.

Edited by AdamMcK (08/02/14 05:37 AM)

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#3723507 - 08/02/14 07:57 AM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: AdamMcK]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12928
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
Other guys will be able to give you more information as my experience is limited, but, it seems very to difficult to pattern bears, especially on large, unbroken properties. Archery hunting without the use of dogs is going to be very tough. Specifically hunting bears from a stand is going to frustrating. I would consider making it a "Deer or Bear" trip and/or consider waiting until rifle season when you could cover more ground/ spot and stalk. Bears have huge ranges.
I think that if you go down there during archery season looking to hunt bear from a treestand, you maybe disappointed. Now, if you considered it as a "opportunity" hunt for deer or bear, you might find it more rewarding.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3723546 - 08/02/14 08:50 AM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: Poser]
dmonty
6 Point


Registered: 07/19/12
Posts: 792
Loc: Knoxville,TN

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Like Poser said hard to pattern bears when still hunting.You might try and schedule your hunt to coincide with the dog hunting days,I have friends who do this and have been successful since the dogs get them moving around,just make sure you hunt the open areas and not where draw hunt people are.
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#3723733 - 08/02/14 03:06 PM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: dmonty]
AdamMcK
Spike


Registered: 07/31/14
Posts: 21
Loc: Southern Indiana

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Thanks fellas, I was looking at the Foothills because bear and deer season open up on Sept 27th. I understand its gonna be difficult and I might not see a bear. I Guarantee ya one thing though I've got zero chance of seeing a bear in Indiana. I have hunted bears over bait in Canada and it was exciting. I'm just looking for something a little more challenging. I will love to follow some dogs on track just don't know anyone and the fees by the outfitters are a little beyond my means. I would love to just tag a long and watch the dogs work. Looks like it would be a blast. I know its gonna be hard just trying to gain every little advantage I can. Have you guys ever heard of predator hunters calling in bears down there? I've seen a little bit of it on Youtube. Just don't know if it would be effective in TN.

As far as hunting during the chase season. I might do that later on. Its only 4 hours away. I would really hate to get in a position if I shoot a bear that runs by and it was being tracked by hounds a mile back that I'm not aware of. The dogs and the houndsmen show up while I'm gutting it. Any thought on that situation. Has it happened to anyone?


Edited by AdamMcK (08/02/14 04:07 PM)

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#3723772 - 08/02/14 04:13 PM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: AdamMcK]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1650
Loc: East

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I live just a couple minutes from the wma and have spent hundreds and hundreds of hours in it. None of it recently bear hunting due to TN's requirement that it has to be checked in whole and can't be quartered. There's plenty of bears. I would hunt the last week of the archery season and as far away from the dog season as possible. They will be feeding on acorns. High or low just depends on which acorns they like best. I wouldn't screw with a stand. You need to cover ground and there are closed logging roads to walk on. Hunt with your eyes and ears. You'll hear them in the tops of the oaks breaking branches and chewing acorns from a hundred yards or more.

They will come in to a call. I've ruined a few perfectly good pair of underwear on more than one occasion while calling coyotes. Sometimes they charge right in and others they sneak in quieter than a bobcat. Sometimes they run like their arses are on fire when you stand up to make yourself known, and sometimes they think they want to stick around and fight you for the dead rabbit you've been imitating.

Good luck and have fun.


Edited by Buzzard Breath (08/02/14 04:22 PM)

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#3723774 - 08/02/14 04:20 PM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: Buzzard Breath]
Buzzard Breath
8 Point


Registered: 07/31/06
Posts: 1650
Loc: East

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If you want to see a good way to get a bear off the mountain whole, do a search on this forum for blountcountyboy. He has a pick with a write up he did a couple years ago.
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#3723799 - 08/02/14 05:08 PM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: Buzzard Breath]
AdamMcK
Spike


Registered: 07/31/14
Posts: 21
Loc: Southern Indiana

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Buzzard your post gave me goose bumps. That's exactly what I was looking for. Thank you so much! I was planning on going the 26th -1st so it looks like we will have 2 days, the 27th and 28th, to spot and stalk and to call em in, before dog running starts on the 29th. That would afford us the opportunity to gun hunt as well. I kinda have to go that weekend due to my work schedule but I may be able to squeeze in another hunt in late October during the week. If your in the woods opening weekend. My brother and I and maybe a Marine Corps buddy could help ya drag one out if you if that's keeping you from hunting.
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#3723870 - 08/02/14 06:47 PM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: AdamMcK]
Poser
Mud Dauber
16 Point


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 12928
Loc: Tennessee

content Online
Adam,

Like BB said, the tagging regulations for bears is quite a prohibitive system. With some coordination, a few of us on here started submitting that this regulation be changed during the TWRA comment period. Here is a write up of my first attempt at bear hunting in Tennessee: http://gocarnivore.com/2013/11/26/tennessee-bear-hunt/

You seem to have the right attitude for it. Stick around on this forum as there are a couple of guys on here that run dogs and might be willing to help you out, espeically if their tags are already filled.
_________________________
It doesn't have to be fun to be fun.

Wild & crazy, can't be stopped. Only the strong will survive.

Keep your knife sharp and your skillet greasy.

http://www.GoCarnivore.com

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#3723915 - 08/02/14 07:28 PM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: Poser]
AdamMcK
Spike


Registered: 07/31/14
Posts: 21
Loc: Southern Indiana

Offline
Thanks poser I have read your blog before in my research. That was a really nice buck. I know its gonna be more than tough if we succeed in getting a bear especially if its a big one. I have talked with my hunting partners about this and we have come to the conclusion we might have to pass on a really big bear depending on the weather. No point in wasting good meat if it takes 2 days to drag it out in 8o degree weather. I was thinking about using a plastic rescue litter (slides rather easily and a block and tackle system if needed. Also I don't know if any of you guys will be in the area but if you hunt it as well maybe we could exchange #'s and if anybody gets a bear we could all get together and help drag it out in the evening.
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#3724129 - 08/03/14 12:50 AM Re: Bear hunting the Foothills WMA [Re: Poser]
scn
16 Point


Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 10025
Loc: Brentwood, TN US

content Online
 Originally Posted By: Poser
Adam,

Like BB said, the tagging regulations for bears is quite a prohibitive system. With some coordination, a few of us on here started submitting that this regulation be changed during the TWRA comment period. Here is a write up of my first attempt at bear hunting in Tennessee: http://gocarnivore.com/2013/11/26/tennessee-bear-hunt/

You seem to have the right attitude for it. Stick around on this forum as there are a couple of guys on here that run dogs and might be willing to help you out, espeically if their tags are already filled.


In the for what it's worth column, your comments were considered during the season setting process, and changes were made. Proclamation 14-05 in the Big Game Tagging section reads:

(2) All harvested bears must be checked in at any approved checking station (excluding internet and mobile applications). Bears may be whole or field dressed, but must weigh 75 pounds or greater when checked in. If bears are quartered or boned out, the total of the meat, hide, etc. must equal or exceed 75 pounds. The reproductive sex organs shall remain attached to each bear harvested at least until the bear has been officially checked out at any official checking station.
_________________________
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