By Michael Christianson
When Randy Zeman heard about the big bear with the black muzzle he knew that was the one he wanted. While out hunting with his wife Jami he told her that they’re not going to get a big one if they shoot a little one, his patience would pay off.
The couple from Baraboo, Wisconsin came to Indian Point Camp on Wabigoon Lake for their 38th wedding anniversary. In Wisconsin there is no spring bear hunt and bear hunting works on a point system that can take 6-8 years to draw.
Zeman said there was only one way to describe what he saw when hunting from his popup blind.
“I saw just this massive black blob coming out from my left and it so dwarfed this other bear that we sized for quite some time; that it was a decent bear and I see this blob and I looked over at my wife and said ‘here he comes.’ I knew immediately it was just a different animal all together,” recalls Zeman. “So it comes in real slow, it probably took five minutes to get all the way up there. It comes up and it just makes a half circle out of its legs and stares at us from 18 yards. I’m sitting in the popup and I’m having trouble breathing now. I just got to get it together so I stopped breathing through my mouth and started breathing through my nose and he’s just standing there staring at us. Then he sits down, backs up, sat down and stared at us, he knew we were there! After a little while he got up again, took a step, I picked up my bow and pulled up, took another step, it was probably five minutes and he stopped again and he just stared then he took a step towards the site and I waited for him to put his left leg forward and I pulled back and it was angling just a little bit toward me and I pulled the trigger and the arrow went and I watched the arrow go through him and into the ground on the other side but he turned and ran.”
Zeman said his legs were in knots after the kill; he has hunted elk and bucks but nothing compared to this.
Zeman and his wife both ended up killing bears during their week at Indian Point Camp and they stressed that this was the best hunting experience they have ever had and it was because of Indian Point which made them feel like family.
Marc McNay from Indian Point and host of The Real Deal was happy to be welcomed into their hunting experience and says the spring bear hunt not only creates lasting experiences for hunters but also helps to boost the economy.
“The spring bear hunt in Ontario it was controversial, there’s no doubt about that; but when you’re harvesting mature boars like that you’re not harvesting cubs with sows at heel, you’re not harvesting sows at all if you can help it,” says McNay. “The influx into the economy from the area has got to be huge because you have people like Randy and Jami coming up, they’re hitting Wal-Mart, they’re hitting restaurants, they have to buy a few things and that gets the economy flowing earlier in the year for the tourist outfitters.”
Scenes from the hunt will be featured on season three of ‘Indian Point Camp’s The Real Deal’ while season two is set to debut this month with a special screening party and banquet happening at The Centre in Dryden on June 25.