How to build—and hunt from—your own bear box


The author with a bear taken when hunting from his DIY box blind

Black bears are powerful and majestic animals, and any sign of their presence evokes a sense of awe. For hunters, bear sign also means the game is on, especially when daytime photos of these secretive, nocturnal beasts appear on our trail cams. What’s even better is when a quality boar you want to harvest shows up in the photos. Just because you have pictures of a target bear, however, it doesn’t necessarily mean the hunt will be a slam dunk.

Several times, I’ve had a large black bear appear during daylight hours on my bait-station trail camera, leading me to think it was only a matter of time before I could shoot or arrow him from my treestand. My excitement turned to frustration every time, however, as I was never able to harvest the bear. That was until three years ago, when my hunting partner and I started discussing the problem and brainstorming solutions.


We came to two conclusions. First, the larger mature black bears we target are smarter and more vigilant than other bears, clearly able to detect—and not tolerate—our scent at the bait station. Secondly, we realized that the longer we waited to start hunting our target bear, the worse our chances became. Our solution? Build a box blind and hunt choice bears as soon as they appear on our camera. Yes, we could have bought a ready-made ground blind, but we wanted something more solid and safer, and better at concealing our scent. In the end, we built four.

The author’s children have had success hunting from a box blind

Hunting from one of these do-it-yourself blinds has not only increased my success, it has also allowed me to hunt alongside my children as they’ve taken their first black bears. I like these blinds so much, in fact, I no longer bowhunt black bears from a treestand if I can help it. It’s just way too frustrating to go through all the work and expense of setting up a bait station, then sit in a treestand and not have the target bears come in. If that’s what you’re also dealing with, try a bear box blind. Here’s how I constructed mine, and put them to good use…

For the author’s complete cut list of components for making a box blind, go to