Published on July 12, 2019
Tim Wells Kills A Grizzly Bear With A Spear
Most bowhunters dream of killing a grizzly bear with their bow. For Tim Wells from Relentless Pursuit TV, the dream for the last several years was to kill a grizzly bear with a spear! “I have been bowhunting for decades. Over the last few years, I have been spearing different types of big game animals. One of my goals was to kill a grizzly bear with a spear. I went on several hunts before the dream became a reality, but this spring I was able to successfully harvest a grizzly bear with a spear,” Wells said.
The most obvious challenge when hunting with a spear is you need to be very close to the bear in order to get a shot at the animal.
“I often practice from a tree like I do when I am bowhunting. I even throw my spear into a Morrell Target to prepare for the hunt,” said Wells. The goal when spearing bears is to get the bear to walk within 5 or 6 yards of the tree. “On this particular hunt, I had multiple bears within 20 yards that I could have taken with a bow. Getting one to walk inside of 10 yards was incredibly difficult. I sat in a tree for hours, waiting on my opportunity to take a bear. My opportunity presented itself, but there were times on the hunt where my guide and I were beginning to wonder if I was going to get my shot.”
Old grizzly bears are super smart and always play the wind. Like a mature whitetail, they always trust their nose so as soon as they smell a human, they bolt. “Black bears and some other big game animals will often come in even if they smell a little human odor. At the very least, they stop to figure out what is going on which sometimes gives a hunter a chance to take a shot. The moment a grizzly bear smells a human, they run. On many occasions, I got winded on this hunt by bears.”
Wells has killed many animals with his spear. His knowledge of how to get within kill range of a bear finally came together. “I was hunting over bait, but hunting grizzly bears over bait is never easy. I finally found a tree in an area along a river where several paths that the bears used came together. My hope was that a mature grizzly bear would take one of the paths along the river and eventually walk right under my tree, giving me a good shot,” Wells noted.
To increase his odds of success, Wells brushed himself in. “Grizzly bears will often look up in the trees and bust hunters. I put brush all around me to break up my silhouette. When a bear is super close to you, they can easily spot you, so making sure I was brushed in well was a must.” The downside of being completely brushed in was Wells couldn’t see around him very well and he only had one opening for a shot, which was directly below him. At one point, a nice bear snuck in, walking right down the trail and under Tim’s tree. By the time he noticed the bear, he couldn’t get a shot in time before walking away. “I only had a limited amount of time to react and by the time I was ready for the shot, the bear was right under me and debris was in the way of the shot, so I didn’t take it.
“My guide wasn’t far away when the bear walked under me and he was going crazy. He couldn’t figure out why I didn’t shoot the bear. I didn’t have a clear shot, so I had to pass him up,” Wells said.
Eventually the same bear came walking back down the trail, going back the other way and this time Tim was ready for him. “I threw the spear was he was underneath me and I hit the bear in the vitals. The moment the bear was hit, he started to flip out. “I put hickory handles on my spears because they are hard for the bears to break, but in one swift bite, the bear broke the handle of my spear in half as he was fighting it after the shot,” Wells exclaimed.
The bear went a few hundred yards after the shot and died. The bucket list hunt was complete and Tim Wells had officially killed an Alaskan grizzly bear with a spear!