Black Bear Hunt in Wyoming

Contact us for our current price list, dates and contract.

The quoted trip price will exclude Wyoming Game & Fish Department license, Conservation stamp, Special management stamp, Archery permit, County sales tax, National Forest Service fees, BLM fees, Tips, Travel and Personal gear.

Archery/Rifle Spring Black Bear Hunts
General Area 14 & 22 – Spring Bear
Purchase Over the Counter

Season Dates: Special Archery April 15 – Quota is met or April 30
Rifle May 1 – Ouota is met or June 1

Lodge Hunt
5-day | 1-on-1

Archery/Rifle Fall Black Bear Hunts
General Area 14 & 22 – Fall Bear
Purchase Over the Counter

Season Dates: Special Archery August 15 – Quota is met or August 31
Rifle September 01 – Quota is met or October 31

Drive-in Camp
5-day | 1-on-1

Deposit
A 50% deposit of the value of your hunt will reserve your dates for the year you are successful in the license draw – (non-refundable). Remaining balance of 50% is due 60 days prior to your hunt dates or you may pay with cash the day before your hunt begins.

License Fees and Application Deadlines
Follow this link to the WG&FD Regulations

Nonresident Fees
Acquire anytime | $373.00 + Conservation Stamp $12.50 + Wildlife Management Damage Stamp $10.00.

Note
An applicant must be at least eleven (11) years old at the time of submitting an application to purchase a preference point and must be at least twelve (12) years old by December 31 of that year | All prices are subject to State taxes, 3% Forest Service and/or BLM Use Fee | All are subject to change at any time.

License Fees and Application Deadlines for all trophy game and big game species are set by Wyoming Game & Fish Department, purchased on the WG&FD website, drawn by the WG&FD lottery system or purchased over the counter at a WG&F preapproved site. We can and recommend that we process your license applications, preference points and etc. as a service to you or you may apply online yourself at: Apply Here

Black bears are hunted during the spring and fall in Wyoming’s mountain ranges. Baiting is legal outside designated wilderness and grizzly areas in Wyoming in some hunt areas. Bait type may be restricted in those areas open to baiting.

Hunter harvest within individual hunt areas is regulated through a female mortality quota. Once the quota is reached, the season closes. It is the hunter’s responsibility to determine if an area is still open prior to hunting by calling the black bear area mortality quota hotline at (800) 264-1280.

Once a bear is harvested, the license holder must present the unfrozen pelt and skull within 72 hours to a local warden or biologist or at any of the WGFD offices during normal business hours for registration and the collection of two premolar teeth.

What could be better than a Black Bear hunt in the Greater Yellowstone Region? First, you get to go to the Yellowstone region; second you get to hunt one of North America’s greatest big game animals. Bear hunts are often exciting and much of the fun is the adrenalin rush of courting danger.

The black bear ranges across forested Canada from Newfoundland to British Columbia as well as much of the United States. The population here around Yellowstone is very high, and the bear harvest is good.

They can be seen at any hour of the day, especially during berry season which often is with early fall hunts, but are most active at night. Black bears can be found from northern Alaska east across Canada to Labrador and Newfoundland, and south through much of Alaska, virtually all of Canada, and most of the U.S. into central Mexico. Prime habitat is characterized by relatively inaccessible terrain, thick understory vegetation, and other general obstacles that make hunting such a thrill. During periods of inactivity, black bears utilize bed sites in forest habitat; these sites generally consist of a simple shallow depression in the forest leaf litter.

If you will be shooting Black Bear in Grizzly country, you better know what they look like. They are usually black in color, particularly in eastern North America. They usually have a pale muzzle, which contrasts with their darker fur and may sometimes have a white chest spot. Western populations are usually lighter in color, being more often brown, cinnamon, or blonde. Black bears are distinguished from grizzly bears by their longer, less heavily furred ears, smaller shoulder humps, and a convex, rather than concave, profile. 
Bear sizes run from 85.8 to 899.8 pounds to a length of 47-inches to 78-inches.

Several techniques can be used when hunting black bear. Spotting and stalking requires patience, extensive knowledge of the region, a keen eye, and expensive spotting equipment. Still-hunting is best done in an area where there is evidence of bear activity, as you can simply sit and wait for the bear to come to you. Black bear hunting from a tree stand is most effective when done near natural game trails and common black bear food sources. Predator calling is a good early season technique. Bear baiting and hunting with the assistance of dogs is allowed in some Yellowstone Region states but not in Montana.

Black bears possess a high level of intelligence and exhibit a high degree of curiosity and exploratory behaviors. Bears have three senses you need to consider: they possess one of the keenest noses in the entire animal world; get upwind of your target and you won’t have a target for long. They possess acute hearing and contrary to folklore and heaps of literature on bears; they can see quite well. Considering these exceptional senses make your stalk from downwind; put your nose into the wind and walk as light as a feather. If you hunt in steep terrain of which we have an abundance of around Yellowstone, remember to test prevailing air currents, currents go up in the morning then down in the afternoon as the temperature warms then cools. Use terrain, trees and other sight-blocking obstructions to hide your approach, and find game trails or other routes where you’re walking won’t be a warning bell to all the critters of the forest.

Spotting and stalking commences once a bear is targeted, and you’ve made the decision to pursue it, your movements to get closer to the animal will test your predatory prowess. A black bear is a predator too, and will be on full alert for signs of trouble.

During fall they are more concerned with building fat reserves for the coming winter by eating fruits, nuts, mast crops (acorns pine nuts etc.) and berries than by targeting meat sources. Here around Yellowstone Huckleberries, choke cherries, service berries are plentiful and all attract hungry bears. Finding bears in fall is really just a game of finding each of those food sources as they ripen in bear country. You find these food sources during summer scouting, and experience and networking will tell you when the right forage will ripen in your area.

Still-hunting is very effective if you chose a good spot to install a tree stand. It is important to build the tree stand in at a height that will not make the trajectory too steep preventing double-lung shot optimum height will be between ten and twelve feet. The tree stand should also be built where it allows the hunter to remain as still as possible so the bear does not become aware of the hunters presence.

Predator-calling is productive in late summer, before berry crops ripen; you can take advantage of the black bear’s predatory ways to fill your tag. Insects, leaves, and flowers of broad-leafed plants make up the summer diet so a bear isn’t likely to turn up its nose at a wounded varmint or other small animal, the sounds of which are reproducible.

Predator calls are designed to, well, call in predators so don’t be surprised the first time a predator comes into your call, also be prepared for It to not be a bear. A bobcat, fox, coyote, or mountain lion, grizzly or wolf could all be interested in wounded varmints. So don’t use predator calls to attract bears when you’re hunting alone. This is a tactic for which at least two hunters, sometimes three, are needed to hunt safely and efficiently. A lone hunter with a varmint call will have a field of vision of about 230 degrees, without the ability, to see what is sneaking up behind. Your position should offer a good field of view from a secluded, elevated stand that allows you and your partner to sit facing opposite directions. You watch for critters approaching his backside while he watches for those approaching yours.

Talking to your partner is not recommended, a quiet kiss sound has no noticeable adverse effect on bears, especially if you can follow the sound with another squeak or squeal without getting busted. This is a good way to communicate with your partner when you need to get their attention. This is an exciting way to hunt black bears and usually gives you ample time to check over your potential target for size, pelt condition, or other considerations you may have.

There are no guarantees in hunting, but bear hunting over bear bait is often as close as it gets. Most bear hunting outfitters have close to 100% success rate when hunting over bait. Bear hunting over bait is not as easy as you may think. Big old bears often wait until dark to venture into bait piles to avoid being shot by hunters.

Most guided bear hunts are relatively inexpensive compared to many big game species. Many bear hunting outfitters offer bear hunts that cost anywhere from $800 to $3,000 dollars and last up to seven days.

Bear hunting over bait, is perfect for bow hunters. Bait piles are often less than 30 yards away. Frequently, bait piles are positioned so that when the bears approach the bait, they are broadside. With a well-placed arrow, bears will typically die within 100 yards from where they are hit. Gun hunters should sight their guns in for close range to prevent shooting over the top of them.

When bear hunting over bait you should try to remain as scent-free as possible, most experienced bear hunters wear scent-eliminating clothes like Scent Blocker or used odor-eliminating sprays. Bears keen sense of smell will detect human odor, they often avoid a bait pile until after dark.

Bear baits often are barrels filled with smelly food like old doughnuts, grocery meat that the grocery store has pulled off shelves, dead farm animals, and roadkill. In some places outfitters take out old horses and put them down where they think a bear might come in. Winter killed carrion is a big food source in the spring and that is when many hunt bear hunts are in the spring and that is when the bear coats are in the best condition.

Wind direction is crucial here as it is in all hunts. Putting it together in the field takes practice, patience and, most important, time. Now go out there and make some bear hunting stories.

Best of the West Outfitters offers spring and fall bear hunts over baits. Even though our bears average well over 6’, the true trophy here is the color phases that we harvest; with very few bears actually being black most of our bears are blond cinnamon and chocolate. Season dates for bear hunting is May 1st – June 15th in the spring and September 15th until the quota is fill in the fall.

Wyoming’s premier black bear area is the Greys River country. This area produces mainly color phase black bears and some big bears with large heads. We hunt these bears over baits using ground blinds and tree stands. The baits are tried and true, having produced many black bears over the years. They are placed in early spring and fall, and then constantly re-supplied to keep the bears’ interest. With the use of trail cameras we can monitor the baits and help determine the size, color and number of Bears coming to the bait. We will be hunting at 7,000 feet to 8,000 feet, in mountainous terrain; these conditions help prevent Greys River Bears from having slipped hides. Our 5-day bear hunt is based out of the scenic and very comfortable South Piney camp. The day starts with breakfast at about 8 am; afterwards your guides will head out and check baits. You are free to fish the South Piney creek or just take a drive. We have our main meal around 3 pm and then head out to the baits and get ready for your trophy black bear to arrive. We have baits that can accommodate most physical abilities.

Black bear hunting in Wyoming is one the most sought after, exciting, hibernating and free ranging trophy game animals in the world to pursue.  Mature boars are wary, extremely cagey, and can make for a very challenging hunt.  The mountains and plains of western Wyoming are famous for producing trophy class bear and are home to one of the greatest black bear populations in the world.  There are several factors specific to our areas which allow our bears to grow and reach their genetic potential at maturity.   These factors include ample feed stuff, outstanding genetics and fabulous habitat.

Our South Piney Creek drive-in camp lies within the boundaries of area 14, which allows us easy access and the ability to hunt one of the best areas in Wyoming for black bear.  This area will routinely produce high percentage color phase bears measuring 6-7 feet in length and skulls measuring from 18” to over 20” gross, each and every year. Our spring season typically runs from May 1 thru June 15 and our fall season typically running the month of September or until the quota is met, offering us a wide range of hunting opportunities, such as hunting over baits in the spring out of hibernation, grazing grass slides in the spring, to combination hunts in the fall.  These reasons are why these areas are without a doubt, not only some of Wyoming’s finest black bear hunting, but also considered some of the best bear hunting in the country.
Along with hunting in an area with superior genetics and low pressure, another key to success in a bear hunt is our preseason scouting and baiting.  These baits are maintained each and every year, prior to our first hunt, we are also glassing with high quality optics in the mornings and evenings, which always prove beneficial to our clients and contributes greatly to the odds of harvesting a trophy while on your hunt of a lifetime.

Our hunts take place in Western Wyoming’s high country, with elevations up to 6,000 feet and over 10,000 feet in many cases.  You will be hunting baits, high alpine bowls, boulder fields, rocky slides, and timber areas often higher than 7,000 feet.

Your mornings will begin at 8:00 am; we will all meet in the dining tent for a hearty breakfast and discuss the plans for the day. After breakfast, your guides will head out to check baits in order to see which ones are active and also recharge the sites as needed.  Meanwhile you are welcome to fly-fish the nearby little green river for cutthroat trout or simply play a game of cards. After lunch, still well before dark, you and your guide will ride from camp and head up the trails a horseback or atv for a full afternoon of hunting.  Once you reach your destination, we will spend most of the afternoon glassing and waiting for your boar to come in to the site. Our time and efforts are focused on areas where we have historically baited and/or recently located mature boars in our scouting efforts.

In summary, the rugged and steep terrain is challenging.  This is a mentally and physically demanding hunt, one you will need to start preparing for long before your hunt dates.  The better shape you are in, the better your chances of success.  It is also very important to be familiar and proficient with your firearm because it is often necessary to shoot from an average of 300 yards, after a long hard hike up the mountain.  The rough mountainous terrain of the Wyoming Range has more record class boars than any other part of Wyoming and most of the country.  This is without a doubt the hunt of a lifetime for that hunter who is looking for a true trophy class bear.