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Eastmans Hunting Journal - Fear In The Backcountry The Title



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Fear In The Backcountry

Back when I was 19, I made a big move from my home state of Washington to Montana for more hunting opportunity. I had made friends with a local guy and opening day of bow season we found ourselves hunting hard. The first morning I heard bugle and even saw a handful of elk. In the afternoon we tried to find where those elk had disappeared to. Suddenly, I heard a bunch of scraping and clawing. I looked up and saw a bear skidding down a tree then jumping out and coming at us at a full charge. My buddy Pat carried a pistol and had it out in time to fire a shot at the charging bear. The shot ended up hitting a branch right above the bear and that turned him. Right at that moment a bear twice his size stood up and started coming at us. It was the mama grizzly and she was not backing down. You know that feeling when your arm falls asleep and you get pins and needles – my whole body was doing that. She was close, maybe 30 yards and just walked at us as we slowly backed up to the timber edge. She was a good bear and did not charge us but that experience scared the hell out of me.