6 secrets of hunting success from the Canadian who filled 6 tags last season


Staying fit helped the author catch up to this black bear


In late May last year, I was hunting black bears in southwestern Alberta when I spotted a bruin across a river bottom and up the other side of the valley I was in. With just two hours of legal light remaining, I wasn’t sure I could get there in time, but I had to try. By the time I descended the 700 feet to the valley bottom and started scrambling up the other side, I was sweating bullets and my legs felt like they were filled with lead. Being in good shape, I persisted and managed get to within 80 yards of the bear just as the sun was setting. I took a moment to catch my breath and calm my nerves before squeezing the trigger.

Staying fit allows you to hunt in such tough to reach places, capitalize on opportunities and generally enjoying hunting more (because, let’s face it, sore muscles suck). And you don’t need to be able to bench-press a fridge or know that HIIT stands for “high-intensity interval training.” A simple exercise routine of jogging, climbing stairs or lifting weights can make all the difference.