Bears still moving in mid-late November?

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Timberman

Senior Member
My son and I are hitting some national forest during the week of Thanksgiving. Are bears typically still on their feet or are we just deer hunting?
 
I see Nov bears regularly, and depending on the weather, I see em well into Dec (especially males). I killed the one in my Avatar in mid December. Good luck.
 

Rabun

Senior Member
I see Nov bears regularly, and depending on the weather, I see em well into Dec (especially males). I killed the one in my Avatar in mid December. Good luck.
Would they primarily be foraging for acorns during this time frame? I'll be in the N Ga woods Thanksgiving week too.
 
Bears don't hibernate in Georgia. About the only thing that does are reptiles and amphibians, and even they will come out on warm winter days.

I'm not sure if bears get less active when it is really cold, but I imagine they probably do.
 

jbogg

Senior Member
From what I have read the bears in North GA become much less active as a result of food sources running out, as opposed to responding to colder temps. Physically bears are well equipped to handle very cold temps. It doesn’t get cold enough for long enough in GA to require hibernation, but once the acorns are gone it makes more sense for them to become inactive and conserve calories until the spring green up. There are likely a few city bears that have access to a year round food source and that is why there are some bears seen out and about all winter.

There was a good crop of Red Oak acorns in some areas this fall, so you will likely still be able to find bear in these areas until the mast is gone. Red oaks acorns require over a full year before they begin to germinate after they have been dropped, while white oaks will germinate and rot very fast. As a result, Reds can be eaten all year. So, if you can find a good late season stand of Reds it would be a great place to set up for deer, bear or hogs.
 
They are still moving I saw one Saturday morning and 3 yesterday evening. I was surprised to se them but with the warmer temps I guess there feeding more
 
Thread starter #8

Timberman

Senior Member
Good info! All my spots are high benches or gaps with a mix of red and whites bordering laurel mountainsides. If bears aren’t high I’ll be SOL unless I can catch a buck traveling.
 

HunterJoe24

Senior Member
One mistake that's commonly made about bears hibernating is that they do it because it gets too cold out. When the reason they actually hibernate is because a lack of food. That's why they fill up so much in the colder areas before winter, cause once the snow hits they have hardly any food. And since that is never the case in GA, they do not hibernate here. When winter sets in they might sleep for a couple days at a time because of there being less food, but they never go into complete hibernation. They will still be out and moving during the winter months, but just not as much
 

t8ter

Senior Member
Had about a 300 lb at 15 yards this morning.Snuck in behind me and stopped behind a tree.I couldnt get an arrow in him before he got spooked.
 
I located one a couple weeks ago. Hunted him last weekend, and was right on top of him. Had him in range both days and couldn't get a shot. He is still on the white oaks. Got a date with him again this weekend! He is at 2,700'.
 

Rabun

Senior Member
I located one a couple weeks ago. Hunted him last weekend, and was right on top of him. Had him in range both days and couldn't get a shot. He is still on the white oaks. Got a date with him again this weekend! He is at 2,700'.
Good luck on getting that bear!
 
I do not believe it gets cold enough most years in Georgia for bear to hibernate. In Twiggs county there is only one day to hunt bear and it is always in December.
 
When I saw a bear last Sunday coming through the gap, it was about 35° that morning in Blairsville, and he came through at 10:57. It had warmed up significantly. You might do good to hang in there for a long sit, and hunt daylight until dark. Might bust a buck in the a.m., or a bear during the warmer part of the day.
 
I got one 2 saturdays ago and he wasnt tired at all! Ha, I know they slow down but Ive seen them when the temps were in the low teens. Still plenty to go around! Hope everybody kills a couple each!
 

Rabun

Senior Member
Thanks for the info. Will be a frigid couple of mornings this weekend. Will do my best to stay on stand...hope I'm not found froze to a tree like Hatchet Jack. Good luck to all!
 
Spent the morning just south of Brasstown Bald. Snow was 12-14" deep in the old roadbed I walked. I came across a set of bear tracks leaving one laurel thicket headed into another.
 
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