Idaho Unit 12 - Spring Black Bear

engineered2hunt

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Joined
Sep 1, 2015
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14
Location
Troy, Michigan
I am hunting Black Bear in Unit 12 this spring east of Lowell. I've already booked my plane ticket for the 1st week of May. Did I screw up? Is that too early?

I've looked at historic snow cover maps but I can't find any information for that exact area. If it's definitely to early and the area will be impassable on foot or the bears won't be out, I'll bite the bullet and pay to switch dates. If it's not ideal but doable, I'll stick it out.

Thanks for the help in advance.
 

Jason Snyder

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Apr 3, 2013
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Somewhere between here and there
East of Lowell is pretty high elevation, and it's been a pretty good snow year. I think early May is pretty ambitious, but you might call the Forest Service and see what their projections are for being able to access that country. I've always found the Ranger District offices to be very helpful in telling you which roads will likely be passable and which you're wasting your time on.
 
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engineered2hunt

engineered2hunt

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Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
14
Location
Troy, Michigan
I called the station in Kooskia this morning and, understandably, they said they have no way of knowing. The rain is helping it melt and it's been above freezing. They basically said call a couple weeks out and they could give me a better idea.

I'm not really worried about the roads so much. I do a lot of backpacking and I like to be on foot. I am more worried about being stuck down low in the thick stuff because of the snow.
 

Bramk

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Dec 10, 2014
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155
I couldn't get in that area until June a few years back


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engineered2hunt

engineered2hunt

Junior Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
14
Location
Troy, Michigan
Roads are a necessary evil to get you to your jump off point, no? :)

Are you bringing snowshoes? Nice to have in the event you have to cross some north slopes/timbered faces.
I moved my flights back 2 weeks. I didn't want to be out there for memorial weekend.

I have snowshoes and have thought about bringing them. I could always leave them in the truck if I don't need them.

As far as the roads go, I was planning on going in on foot off of 12.

I really appreciate all the advice and allowing me to bounce plans off of you all. Losing public lands across the board, people are going to have to travel further to get out and enjoy the sport. Sharing local tactics and tips really tightens up that learning curve.

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black dawg

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Jan 17, 2017
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251
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sw mt
We did some scouting this week up the lochsa farther, and at 3500 ft there was 3-5 foot still. Last year at this time we had baits put in in this area with 1.5-2 foot of snow everywhere and it was all gone by may. So I think mid may would probably be ok. Some of the higher elevations wont be clear until june.
 
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engineered2hunt

engineered2hunt

Junior Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
14
Location
Troy, Michigan
Awesome, thanks for the info. If you head up that way again would you mind giving me an update if you think about it?

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