Frank Church Wilderness Spring Bear

82ndshawn

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Jun 27, 2018
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14
Has anyone had any luck chasing spring bear in the Frank Church? A group of friends and I have decided after looking at this area for several years as a place to possibly return year after year to hunt multiple species that we will try to do a spring bear hunt for 2021. So far what we have come up with is to go in late May-early June and to use McCall Aviation to fly into one of the airstrips and hike from there.

Any info or advice is greatly appreciated.
 

Spoonbill

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Jan 15, 2020
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323
I’ve spent a little bit of time in the Frank and as far as general advice, it is rugged. Lots of steep country that can be pretty inhospitable. Another thing to keep in mind is you have to pack out whatever you shoot back to the airstrip or to a raft (if you choose to raft out). Make sure to have a Spot, or some other way to call for help if you get in a jam.
That being said, a sheep hunter killed a nice bear a few years ago, I linked the article for you.

 

bwidrick

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Nov 29, 2020
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30
Thinking of doing the same in the Spring. Wondering myself when it becomes accessible for drive in access. Spent some time in there in Fall 2019, southern 27. Big, steep country. Be prepared for swelled stream crossings in the Spring.
 

bird_nerd_60

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May 28, 2020
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3
Flying in is the way to go, as the roads to access by foot are typically impassible through most of the spring bear season. Most are iffy in the best of times. Bears will be following the green up the mountain and it's likely that at that time of year you'll need to climb. Good news is its really steep so you don't have to go "far" to gain a lot of elevation :)

One of the other posts mentioned rafting. You need a permit to raft the Middle Fork, and from May 28 until September 3rd the permits are issued through a highly coveted lottery. Also, the river will be high and very dangerous at that time of year. I'd recommend either finding a pack bridge or not bothering with crossing the main river, depending on which airstrip you fly into.
 
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82ndshawn

82ndshawn

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2018
Messages
14
Flying in is the way to go, as the roads to access by foot are typically impassible through most of the spring bear season. Most are iffy in the best of times. Bears will be following the green up the mountain and it's likely that at that time of year you'll need to climb. Good news is its really steep so you don't have to go "far" to gain a lot of elevation :)

One of the other posts mentioned rafting. You need a permit to raft the Middle Fork, and from May 28 until September 3rd the permits are issued through a highly coveted lottery. Also, the river will be high and very dangerous at that time of year. I'd recommend either finding a pack bridge or not bothering with crossing the main river, depending on which airstrip you fly into.
Thanks for the info. After talking with a few different sources I believe we are looking at flying into either Thomas Creek or Cabin Creek. Also going to push the hunt forward by a few weeks.
 
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82ndshawn

82ndshawn

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2018
Messages
14
I’ve spent a little bit of time in the Frank and as far as general advice, it is rugged. Lots of steep country that can be pretty inhospitable. Another thing to keep in mind is you have to pack out whatever you shoot back to the airstrip or to a raft (if you choose to raft out). Make sure to have a Spot, or some other way to call for help if you get in a jam.
That being said, a sheep hunter killed a nice bear a few years ago, I linked the article for you.

Sounds like all you got to do is pitch a tent and wait for them to come eat you lol

We have the communication basics covered I believe. We all have Inreach plus one of the guys has a sat phone.
 

jdmaxwell

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Mar 8, 2014
Messages
545
Get in best shape you can, then get in even better shape.
Buy couple wolf tags.
I would go earlier than June.
Take an Inreach.
 

Spoonbill

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Jan 15, 2020
Messages
323
Sounds like all you got to do is pitch a tent and wait for them to come eat you lol

We have the communication basics covered I believe. We all have Inreach plus one of the guys has a sat phone.
Yes exactly, or sleep in a bivy sack so you can be a bear burrito.
Sounds like y’all are prepared. Should be a fun time.
 

Broomd

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Sep 29, 2014
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2,645
Location
North Idaho
I would not go earlier than June unless the area has an early Spring.

Extremely tough hunt, much better options out there, especially having to fly into that place. I get that some guys like spending money and time on a challenging experience.

Get in really great shape, no shortcuts.
 

Coloradokid

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Joined
Aug 17, 2018
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3
Location
IA
Following this thread! We are looking at Unit 17 and dropping into The Frank from the north. We are targeting first week in June. We went earlier last year and got jammed up on the snow...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Big_wals

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Joined
Mar 14, 2020
Messages
18
Location
SE Idaho
Gonna follow this one and see what y'all have to say. Finally moved back to Idaho after 3 years and I'm interested in exploring the Frank for bears
 
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