Thursday, September 26, 2013

The story of "The break-in Bear) part 1

The break-in bear.....

I was hanging out at the cabin. it was a really nice sunny morning in early June.
Jesse had come up to his place to stay the weekend, as usual, but had left the previous day to return to work.
When he stopped by he mentioned that he had a black bear come through,
He was lying on his bunk with his dog reading a book, when he heard something at the door. Something was scratching, trying to get in.
When a black paw squeezed through the door, he first thought it was my dog Uljas, coming over to play with Bree (his dog).
But then realized that the paw was much too large!
He let out a yell and grabbed his rifle...
The paw disappeared and the bear took off. Cautiously Jesse opened the door and, rifle first, went outside....
Bree rushed by him and barked at the bear which ran a ways into the woods and treed...
Jesse contemplated shooting the bear, but he had no idea that this bear was going to be so much trouble later...
For that matter neither did I!
With little planned for the day other than light chores and a trip to check out the berry patches, I took a stroll with my bear dog, Uljas, over to Jesses' place. It's only about a mile if that, and a quick easy walk.
About 100 yards from Jesses' shack Uljas starts getting very upset, and alerts! (alerts to a threat)... he started barking and posturing, and I knew the bear had been back.
I chambered a round in my rifle and slowly circled the shack to the front door. The door was open and the place was a mess... but no bear.
Evidently we had just missed it. It took uljas awhile to calm down.
I started cleaning up the place, which consisted of much food being destroyed... but no other damage of property.
After about 15 minutes it was obvious I needed some supplies to get the mess cleaned up properly. So Uljas and I headed home.
Just as we where in the last stretch of trail Uljas once again alerts, and runs to the cabin!
Now the bear was in my yard, I knew it! I got to the yard, but could not see the bear. Uljas was pacing back and forth on the south west side of the cabin, between the cabin and my tool crib.
I went into the cabin and grabbed the camera, jumped up on top of the crib and started looking through the brush for the bear. I couldn't see it but I could hear it!
Sure enough it was just few yards from the cabin at the base of a big cottonwood. Even standing on the crib I couldn't see through the ferns and devils club to get a look at the bear.
Uljas was laying down a good smokescreen with his pacing and barking.
I put the ladder up to the cabin and got on the roof. I knew where the bear was but still couldn't see it!
I watched and waited.. the bear momentarily climbed the cottonwood and I got a few seconds of footage, but no clean shots presented itself. The bear was clearly pissed, by the growling and grunting it was making. Evidently it wanted to see if my cabin held a bounty of food as well.
After about 20 plus minutes it gave up and I could see the vegetation move as she made off through the woods.
Should I have risked a shot?.... One thing is for sure... I couldn't just leave my cabin now!
I gathered cleaning supplies and plastic bags. I closed my place up and put up the bear boards and returned to Jesses' place by late afternoon. So much for checking on the berries.
I cleaned Jesse's place up, and sat down for a break. I shared some biscuits with my Uljas and relaxed a bit. The bear had strewn beans and spaghetti and rice everywhere. It seems the only thing it had eaten was the tang, cool-aid and bar-b-que sauce.
It was now early evening. I wanted to go home, but wanted to see if the bear had come back. I had placed the food in a rubbermaid garbage can, away from the cabin.
It wasn't long before I heard something... so did Uljas! But instead of barking he remained silent!
The bear was making it's way around the back side of the shack! I unholstered "Thumper", my .44 Ruger. With my SKS "Mathilda", in my offhand, I proceeded to nudge the door open ever so slightly... Uljas was off like a shot, pushing the door open and heading off around the back of the cabin!
I chambered a round in the SKS and turned in the opposite direction that uljas went. Just as I cleared the doorway, I could see the bear stop just on the other side of the log cabin walls (the log cabin is not finished). It was only 30 yards away!..I raised my SKS, but the bear took off into the dense woods!
Well, wasn't that something!... Uljas came back with his tongue lolling and a big grin on his face!
I decided to stay a bit longer. I knew the bear wasn't at my place!... but I doubted it would return....but I figured to give it a bit to see. So Uljas and I settled back in....

Not 20 minutes later I heard a noise at the back of the cabin!

"What the!"....... once again we repeated the process! Uljas leading the way!... As I cleared the door I saw the bear about 4 feet up a tree right on the edge of the treeline! I raised the SKS, as it dropped to the ground and ran into the woods... dang it.. There is just to much thick brush up here. Even a brown bear could easily hide in this growth.
I called Uljas and we went up to the treeline and entered.
I have never seen so many game trails zigzagging back and forth in my life! It was like a maze... Some of the trails had been worn down to dirt! Jesses' place was quite the busy place! Uljas was quiet so I knew there were no threats nearby...
By now it was mid evening and even though it doesn't get dark this time of year, I was bushed! It had been a busy day, and no doubt was going to be busy for awhile!
I borrowed a bottle of brandy out of Jesses' shack.. The next few hours went better as I ambled home, wondering how to fix this problem quickly. I reopened my place, which was unmolested. Good thing because my little blind dog "Honeydew" was home alone. She was very old and at the point where she was aging fast. I used to joke that I got her from Methuselah......
I was guessin that I'd just have to keep the rifle with me, and stay alert, and follow up on what Uljas was saying to me...
I sat and had a few drinks to relax. It isn't often I have this much excitement....
The next morning, after breakfast I returned to Jesses'.... Another mess awaited me.... I swept up, and re blocked the door.. better this time...
Uljas and I started a patrolling ritual that lasted for several weeks. Every time I'd go check on Jesse's place I found signs of the bear. My door block worked at first. But the bear became more persistent. It seemed as though we were just missing the bear.. or maybe it was following us! I was keeping an eye on the other cabins. Both the Trapper cabin and Jeff's place got visits by me, but we never met up with the bear.
Eventually the bear broke back in to Jesse's place by simply pulling the plywood off the wall. It even managed to open a steel footlocker and dump it out!
I was getting very frustrated and quite tired of cleaning up the shack!
I knew one thing.. that bottle of brandy wasn't big enough!
It was time for me to go on patrol again.
to be continued...