Newfoundland and Labrador – Like Going Home... for Black Bears

Offhand, I honestly cannot tell you how many times I have hunted Newfoundland and Labrador over the past three decades. I was young and spry on my maiden visit, and although my heart and spirit seems unchanged, my body tells otherwise.

Although I have hunted caribou and moose in both locales, most of my hunts have been for black bear. “Why,” you might ask, “would someone want to hunt the same place for the same game animal so many times?”

My reply to that comes based on several things I know and know well. Yes, there are quality bear hunts all across the continent, but none are like Newfoundland or Labrador. There is something unique about this place. Whether it is spiritual or emotional or perhaps it is something in the air or water, when all is said and done Newfoundland and Labrador touches me like no other place, and for me each visit is like a visit home.

Newfoundland and Labrador may not have a lot of bear compared to other provinces across Canada, but the island is world-famous for its bears with a genetic predisposition for large body mass. Specimens into the 400- and 500-pound class are not uncommon, and larger examples in the 600-pound class have been harvested. Few places produce as many large-bodied black bears as Newfoundland and Labrador year in and year out. There are fewer bear hunters, bears are less pressured, and success rates are high.

Add in long spring seasons, a fall archery season and rifle season that coincides with moose and caribou, a two-bear limit and world-class hunting packages, and I have little doubt you will be calling Newfoundland and Labrador “home” too.