Bear Down

I can’t read the phrase I used for the title without thinking of the Chicago football fight song, but blame that on my roots. I told Matt that he was going to be writing the post about the hunt, since I wasn’t there. But I wanted to at least get the pictures up: he got his bear.

The first text message I got on Monday night.

The first text message I got on Monday night.

Relieved, happy hunter.

Relieved, happy hunter.


17 thoughts on “Bear Down

    • We cut it all off when we butchered it Tuesday night. It was like pig lard! I’m going to render it and make a blueberry or apple pie. There’s plenty of it! We got about 65 lbs of meat too! About 7 roasts, and then a whooooole bunch of sausage and stew meat, plus the part of the heart he didn’t obliterate with the 30.06.

  1. Jealous! That’s a beautiful bear and we are so delighted you can enjoy our favorite meal: bear burgers. Bear makes THE BEST burgers (and THE BEST sausage – although moose is darn good too). That one looks like a nice fatty too! Can’t wait for the recipe posts!

    • Matt was told by the guides specifically not to do burgers! But having seen you guys do it aboard the boat, I will still give it a shot. I hope to make a variety of sausages- brats, boerworst (Hank Shaw had a recipe for that). Bear bacon, too. If our smoker was bigger I wanted to try bear hams or bear proscuitto, but I have no way to control humidity anywhere for prosciutto (one of my favorite cured meats). I’m excited to try some new recipes.

      • We can see why the guides would say that. There is a difference in taste between a fall bear and a spring bear (or so we are told). The problem with AK bears is that they may have a cold-resistant variant of trichinosis that does not disappear with freezing or curing the meat, so we ground almost the entire bear for burgers and sausage. Hams sound way more fun than burgers, but you should at least give them a try! Mix the meat with blue cheese and top with bacon and guacamole – that’s our favorite!

        • Everything I’ve read on trichinosis so far says it would need to be frozen at -10F for a month, and most at-home freezers can’t do that, unless they’re top-of-the–line. Even the industrial freezer at the restaurant I work in isn’t quite capable of that, though when I worked in a butcher shop, they had one that could do it. If he’d shot it last Winter, I could have left it outside for the month of January or February and been fine, though. -30 would have gotten the job done.

      • Congrats with the fruitful shot! 😀 Just curious about the boerworst? In dutch/southafrican we have something called boerenworst is that the idea? Or is boerworst something in English I do not have in my vocabulary?


    • I was hoping to get the heart and liver, but the guides cleaned and quartered it for him. He said they had it gutted, skinned, and quartered in about 15-20 minutes flat. The heart was left in, but there’s only about half of it- Matt shot it lung-heart-lung, and the 30.06 really destroyed it. Otherwise, I only have meat and bones. The dog got the bones, and the meat’s put up. I started rendering the fat yesterday.

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