Montana Wounded Warriors

In April 2017 we had the privilege to do a spring bear hunt with the Absaroka-Beartooth Outfitters in Big Timber.  Our two awesome and hardworking Wounded Warriors were Josh Beckett and Dean Murray.  These two Warriors were excited to get this opportunity to bag their first bear.  Before the week long hunting trip even started, Dean went out scouting with one of the guides to just see the huge abundance of elk in the hills and they drove right up on a gorgeous cinnamon sow crossing the road.  Dean hopped out and positioned himself to get a shot on the bear before she spotted them.  She did indeed spot them and scattered to a brush pile and stood up, but Dean was ready for her and made a great shot to drop her without a problem.  With a very pleased guide and a very excited Warrior, they loaded up the bear to bring back to the lodge and tell their story.  This was a great bear and tested to be very old.  With one Warrior tagged out before the second Warrior even had shown up for the hunt, we were doing pretty good.  Josh showed up and had all the work cut out for him, or so he thought.  The very next day of hunting had a little surprise.  There were over ten inches of snow and a cold weather front was forecasted to stay for his week of hunting.  That didn’t stop Josh or his guide.  For six straight days of 12-16 hours of walking and spotting in the cold wet winter weather, Josh never quit or gave up as not one bear had presented itself in this weather.  On the last evening of the last day, just before dark, Josh headed into the Timber to walk down a hillside.  Just at that moment, a quick flash of a big black bear ran out in front of Josh about 100 yards and stood up only presenting a partial face.  With very little light, Josh pulled up and fired at the big black bear.  The bear disappeared and we searched for any sign of a hit, but could not find anything and another storm was quickly moving in.  The guide and Josh went another day looking for the bear but with several inches of fresh snow again, they could not find any sign that the bear was hit.  Josh was disappointed but had an absolute amazing time and would not admit failure.  It was a great trip that was one of the most challenging trips we have experienced but was well worth the experience to see these great Warriors thrive.  Great job Josh and Dean, and a huge thank you to our outfitters.

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