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2004 Fall Black Bear Bowhunt With Fred Lutger
by Robert Hoague

EQUIPMENT: Sponsors of the Bear Hunt | Trailtimer Pictures | NorthStarr Treestands |
SPECIAL PROJECT: Locating the bears
OUTFITTERS: Fred Lutger's Wilderness Hunts |
HUNT STATUS:  Who Has Their Bear So Far? (The picture version.)
OUR GOAL: A Bear On The Ground From The Double Bull Blind The whole story, start to finish.

Fred Lutger
2004 Bear Hunt Wrap Up
Fred Lutger adds his wrap up input and comments to the 2004 Ontario blackbear bowhunting adventure. Fred"s Wrap Up...

Bear Hunt Equipment Evaluations
We used a Double Bull ground blind, TrailTimer EZ-Cam 500's, Tracer Lighted Nocks & MAGNUS Broadheads and, in it's own way, every one was an asset to the hunt, here is how...

The Group

"To the bears." Meet the Bear Hunters on our 2004 Bear Hunt.  Go...

Mike Ditchler  (Chef Klaus)
We had croutons left after lunch and Mike asked, "Do you want me to throw these croutons away?" Fred said no and to use them for the bear. So Mike did. At 4:00 he saw a big bear walking in the thick brush. It went straight to the croutons! To Mike's Hunt...
Joe Hajek
Joe had previously seen two bears at the Railroad blind and Fred suggested he change to the Culvert site. Joe started a bacon burn and climbed into the tree. Two hours later he heard the soft cracking of a branch. Immediately, a bear ran right under the treestand. It went to the bacon burn, grabbed the can in his teeth ... and ran off. To Joe's Hunt...
Our Goal: A Bear On The Ground
Fred Lutger's Hunt - It All Comes Together
Fred pointed toward the nearby ditch and signaled that he could hear the bear. I already knew, this big boy had the inside of my nose dancing again.
Soon we heard soft footsteps as the bear walked down the ditch to our left, it sounded like it was going to walk out  4 yards from us. To Fred's Hunt & Some Of The Best Hunt Pics We've Ever Had.
Every Picture Tells A Story, Don't It?
We analyze the TrailTimer pics from 3 different bear stand sites - and move off one bait and hang in on two. Caution Pics: one glance and you see a couple of sagging pot bellies and thick necks. Hose Bait Pics: we have a blondie, and more, but decide to move, here's why. K18 Pics: the Chef was going to move but now he's staying.
Fred Lutger - Wheew, is that a bear?
Fred joined me in the Double Bull blind at the Caution stand. He sat down in his chair and opened his camera bag. I tapped Fred on the shoulder and pointed. Straight ahead of us, 10 yards away, already standing by the bait logs, was a black bear. Fred hadn't been in the blind 90 seconds! To The Hunt...
Rob McNeff
When a sapling tree shook that was too large for a squirrel to shake Rob checked the area and saw the top of a bear's back. It ducked under a dead fall 20 yards away and stopped, looked up at the treestand, and then stood on top of a big log, looking all around. To Rob's Hunt...
Our Goal: A Bear On The Ground
Robert Hoague
Will They Notice The Blind? (Test #1)
On Blueberry Hill, one side and the top of the Double Bull blind was pushed in. A bear? Or was it from the rain and wind the night before? I fixed it and Fred refreshed the bait with hard candy. He stashed the bucket behind the blind. Two hours later a huge bear was an arm's length away clawing and licking that bucket. To The Hunt
Figuring Out Where to Hunt
More Bear Pictures from the Caution stand
We set a TrailTimer behind the bait logs so it faces our Double Bull blind 12 yards away. Fred identified 5 different bears from these photos. Two are big bears. To The Pics
Bob McNeff
Bob saw his first wild bear the 2nd day of the hunt and he decided to wait, even though the bear looked big. 
Two days later he noticed a bear's black ears 60 yards into the woods. When he got a look at the bear he quit waiting. To Bob's Hunt...
Bear02 Our Mission: A Bear On The Ground
Fred & I began our hunts for bears on the ground by evaluating pictures from our TrailTimer game cameras to see where the bear are right now. Here are the first pics in.
Setting Up Stands
Fred maintains over 5 dozen bait sites. Ladder Stands are a good match for the tall straight trees in Southern Ontario. We use North Starr Treestands ladderstands of several models. They are portable and light weight enough to carry deep into the woods. Here are our setups. To Setting Up Stands...
Joe Cushman
As of yesterday Joe had not seen a bear on the hunt. Fred suggested he hunt our Double Bull blind and Joe went there at 11:00. At 1:40 he saw bear legs walking on the hill above the bait logs. To Joe's Hunt...
Rob McNeff
Rob is hunting at Goodyear bait. The first day one small bear came in at 6:30, stayed for a while, and suddenly ran off. Rob heard a bear popping brush and making noise, and a bigger bear came in. And Rob got to watch the smaller bear pull one over on the larger bear. To Rob's Hunt...
Rusty Estes
First Bear:   Rusty was looking forward to his first bear hunt. The second afternoon he saw his first bear. From his treestand he could see a good ways into the woods and he saw a bear 50 yards away. 
Rusty had bacon and molasses cooking in a burn. "It was just a bubbling," he said. The bear stopped 20 yards from Rusty and stood up on a big log for 5 minutes, sniffing and looking. To Rusty's Hunt...
Jeff Cook
At 4:00 Jeff Cook got situated and settled in. He checked his pocket watch, oops, it slipped and fell to the ground. Jeff stood up and was searching the ground for the watch when a black figure caught his attention. A nice size bear 15 yards into the trees. The bear circled behind the bait and moved to it from the right side. Then it went directly to the bait. Suddenly it went on alert, looked behind itself, and darted a few yards into the trees. To Jeff Cook's Hunt...
Our Mission: A Bear On The Ground
This season Fred Lutger and I have a quest, both of us want a bear on the ground.

We talked to Double Bull Archery about this and they sent us the blind to use. Today we set the blind off of a remote logging road at Spring Bait. To pics & what happened...

WATCHING THE BAIT 24 HOURS A DAY - When Are The Bears Active?
Fred already has a dozen TrailTimer cameras and counters out at bait sites. We use two kinds. Here is how we set them up and what we learned from them. To Set Up & Results...

Fred maintains over 5 dozen bait sites. Ladder Stands are a good match for the tall straight trees in Southern Ontario.

August 12 - Continued

Fred gets the TrailTimers ready. A bait of candy is about to be covered with logs. 

I brought along two each TrailTimer EZ Cam game cameras and 500 Event monitors and Fred set them up. He already has 6 other TrailTimers set out. While Mike and I went into town Fred and the Duck ran the numerous baits. Every bait had been hammered. 

Blueberries and fresh fish for lunch tomorrow.

Blueberries ... bears like 'em ... we like 'em too. Fred picked a bunch for Chef Klaus to make into something good. Once the baits were attended to he Duck & Fred caught some fresh fish for lunch tomorrow, small mouth bass. They eat good.

A Road Sign on the way to camp, Chicago's Chef Klaus doin' his kitchen thing.

August 12 - Yesterday I flew to International Falls and arrived before midnight. Fred Lutger and the Duck (Don Beckwith) met me.
Surprise! When I woke up this morning Chef Klaus (Mike Ditchler) was in the kitchen, he had driven in around 3:00am. That was good news because he cooked us up some very fine omelets for breakfast. 
Then he and I drove into Atakokan. The ISP I used for my internet connection last year had gone out of business. After checking around I found DSL connections at the Library and a place called the Internet Cafe.
Also while in town, Mike and I bought our licenses and ran errands for camp supplies. Tomorrow I expect to have some pictures and updates on the preparation for our bear hunts.
We ate supper and everyone hit the sack for a good nights sleep. Tomorrow will be another busy day.

- AZ RIM - Arizona EZ Fletcher
- BowTech - bows
- Carolina North - Rope Ratchets 
- Double Bull - blinds
- Fine-Line Archery - bow quivers
- Freddie Bear Sports
  archery & bowhunting gear
- Golden Key Futura - arrow rests & more
- MANGUS Broadheads - Broadheads
- North Starr Treestands - Treestands, ladderstands & climbing sticks
- Pro Release -archery release aids
- Sticks N' Limbs camouflage
- TRACER Nocks - lighted nocks
- TrailTimer - game cameras & monitors
- VENOM Peep Sights - peep sights

- Fred Lutger's Wilderness Hunts

Fred LutgerFred Lutger, the owner of Freddie Bear Sports in Tinley Park, Illinois, is well known and respected in the archery and bowhunting community. His doors opened 27 years ago and his love for archery, bowhunting and helping new bowhunters and archery enthusiasts has made him one of the premier Archery & Bowhunting Pro Shop owners in the country. For information on our bear hunts visit or email us at
Fred Lutger's Wilderness Hunts
Ontario Black Bear, Illinois Trophy Bucks, Eastern Wild Turkey.

Freddie Bear Sports
Full line Archery Pro Shop for over 25 years. Online & phone ordering.

Phone: 708-532-4133
Online Store:

17250 So. Oak Park Ave.
Tinley Park, IL 60477

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