Bear Holiday

By Holly Creer

Holly CreerHolly Creer, as told by Brent Creer
Alaska, 2008, DIY, Public Land

After living in Alaska for the past three and a half years while on assignment serving in the U.S. Army, I have had the opportunity to hunt and harvest many great animals including moose, bear, and caribou. My next goal was to include my wife, Holly, on a coastal bear hunt to attempt scoring on a beautiful Alaskan black bear.

Holly grew up in a good household with great parents near the mountains of northern Utah; however, she had limited experience in the outdoors, especially hunting. When I introduced her to hunting in 2006, we connected on a 62- inch Alaskan moose in the final minutes of the hunt. Since then, Holly has had the desire to duplicate the same adrenaline rush she felt that magical night.

The 2009 hunting season brought a lot of planning and preparation, and I had promised Holly I would take her on a coastal bear hunt before the season was over. I spoke with one of my good hunting friends, Ken Boschert, about a special spring black bear hunt near Prince William Sound. We planned to drive from Fairbanks to Valdez, where Ken’s boat was docked at the harbor. From there, we would travel south by boat on Prince William Sound, where we would spend a June weekend chasing coastal black bears.

After finalizing the plan and obtaining the equipment necessary for the hunt, we were ready to go. Ken supplied the marine transportation and my good friends Shane Rhoton and Greg Sneed came along for a great hunting experience and to assist in making the hunt successful.

We couldn’t dedicate a lot of time to the hunt. We were limited by child care arrangements and time off allowance, but by my estimation and experience, four days would be more than adequate to provide an opportunity to harvest at least one good coastal black bear in the area we planned to hunt. It turned out to be a great weekend to hunt bears. The weather was beautiful, allowing us a clear view of Alaska’s pristine mountain waterfalls, and miles of towering rocky cliffs lining the coast of the Prince William Sound.

Bear Holiday

For a full account of Holly's adventure, go to page 38 in the December/January 2010 issue of Eastmans' Hunting Journal.