Being a Brown Bear Guide

A Word From the Guide's Perspective

Hunting the great Alaska brown bear is something that most North American hunters dream about from their youth. It is indeed the stuff of fantasy, and takes the mind back to the days of Lewis and Clark and the giant plains grizzlies. Thoughts of facing down the largest carnivore (the debate still continues on brown bear vs. polar bear!) on Earth can certainly cause some hunters to grow weak at the knees, and rightfully so!

My desire to become a guide in Alaska has long been linked to my fondness for the big bears. Wildlife has inspired me from my earliest years and the brown bears of Alaska were certainly at the top of the list of animals that I desired to see in the wild, not to mention hunting. Personally I don't think anything quite breeds the excitement that the big bears do, especially if individuals wind up in close quarters with them.

Over the years I have studied, and researched, and studied again in an effort to find just the right combination of location and techniques in pursuit of brown bear in the great state of Alaska and I have come to a few conclusions. Some of these conclusions are common knowledge and others are gained from simple experience in the field. One conclusion is that brown bear are quite intelligent and between their extraordinary sense of smell and their more than adequate hearing, they are more than capable of eluding the average dim-witted hunter. Don't mistake their seeming lack of interest in you at any given time as an indication that they don't have a plan or an agenda of their own.

If there is any one thing that I can tell a prospective hunter about brown bear that I think can make a difference in a hunt it would be "Don't stop looking!" The guy with the most time behind the glasses will almost certainly see the most bears, and even the biggest of bears can seemingly disappear into thin air.

brown bear

An 8 ft. Peninsula brown bear that took 4-5 well placed shots to anchor within 100 ft. of initial impact!