Plans were made early for Birdee to get back to Nova Scotia to join our friends Markus and Alison for a Bear hunt. She made the trek in 2016 but the timing was poor that time and she was unable to harvest a Bear. She still had a blast spending the weekend and it wasn’t long before her return was being planned.
We booked her flight in April. She would arrive two days after season opener this time around, way better chances at seeing a Bear. I decided sometime in August that I’d join her on the trip. I couldn’t keep the secret from Birdee but we did keep it from Markus and Alison. They were some surprised at the airport when I showed up!
Within Mark’s group of friends that he hunts with they all made the decision not to hunt any stands before Birdee was there and had her shot. Classy move by all the guys!
The first evening Birdee and Markus headed to one of Mark’s stands, steady action on the trail cams for days leading up to it. Hopes were high. They settled in and had a Bear come in late that was very tentative and she never had the perfect angle to make it happen so that night ended fruitless.
The next day we headed out to bait a few more sites and check trail cams, the woods in Nova Scotia are very different than here.
Mark’s uncle Alden offered up one of his stands that had steady action. The good news for me was that his stand is like a tree house! Room for 3! I was some excited to come sit with them for the afternoon/evening sit. One thing we didn’t account for was the temperature. Temps nearly hitting 30 degrees. It was a little warm to say the least!
The walk in had us sweatin!
We settled in to Alden’s awesome stand. I set up the GoPro and we sat…and sat…and sat. Personally when I go out with Birdee in the tree stand here it’s 2 hours tops, we were in for a 4 plus hour sit.
Around 6:30 I saw Birdee reach for her bow to raise it, I know this is game on time. I hadn’t seen or heard anything, I leaned over and whispered “See something?”. She pointed her eyes downward for me to look. I slowly turned my head to see a Bear looking right at me. I’m always amazed by how these animals can move around in the bush and never make a sound! There he was at 20 yards, but not at the right angle.
Birdee was all set to let the bolt fly just waiting for her moment. Markus saw a glimpse of something else coming so he threw the brakes on Birdee in case it was a Cub, you don’t orphan Cubs.
Once the second Bear cleared the treeline Markus assured her that it was no Cub. It walked out past the first one and Birdee lifted off the first one to target the second that was now broadside, 2 seconds later the bolt hit the target. High Fives! Birdee is always emotional after harvesting an animal, it’s respect for her quarry and the adrenaline all wrapped into one in that moment. A “death moan” from the woods and we knew her Bear was down and not far.
The first Bear had bolted upon hearing the crossbow but he didn’t go far. Within two minutes it swung back around in front of us and Ol’ Quick Draw Markus had has rifle up and fired in 2 seconds taking the opportunity for a true double header of Bears.
This video shows it all go down from the stand.
We made the call to Alden and his friend Laurie to come help with the recovery, it wasn’t long and we had two beautiful Black Bears out of the bush and on their way to the butcher shop.
This photo will be proudly displayed on our wall of fame at the house forever, an amazing experience with great friends. HUGE thanks to Alden for letting us sit in his stand!
The butcher shop work was done fairly quick, we’d flash freeze it and be able to take it home on our flight. We made it home safely carrying 50 plus pounds of Bear meat onto the plane, the security screener even gave Birdee a fist bump when she told him what was inside!
Our last night in Nova Scotia since all the hunting was done we went to the Hants County Fair. It was like every fair around these parts (as they are all the same lol). Birdee did get a kick out of at least 4 people congratulating her on her Bear, they had seen it on Mark’s Facebook page.
Since home we have enjoyed the harvest a few times. Back straps on the BBQ were a hit!
We can’t thank Markus and Alison enough for having us out, I know Mark and Birdee are already talking about next year. We’ll see how my schedule works out but I did enjoy the pace of life out East for a few days!