We’ve all seen the email forwards with pictures and tall tales about the next world record elk or a charging man-eating bear that was shot at 10 paces. Many of these stories seem to grow like a game of telephone, with each person adding their two cents. Just such a story involves my buddy Luke Randall (left in this photo), and he set the record straight during a recent trip to Afognak Wilderness Lodge. The story that was making the rounds on the Internet told of a huge, livestock-killing grizzly taken in Alberta. In fact, Outdoor Life had posted the photos and the supposed story a while back. The only problem was that this bear didn’t come from Alberta, but instead—as a couple of commenters accurately pointed out—from Afognak Island, Alaska, and my buddies Luke and his brother Josh had guided the hunter. So, to put all the rumors to rest, here is the true story straight from Jesse Wallace, the hunter who actually took this amazing brown bear.
While glassing a big cove, they spotted the giant on a beach more than a mile away and formulated a stalk plan. “We knew this bear was big, but didn’t know how big he really was. All I knew was from a mile away we didn’t even need binos to see him. We took every precaution in the approach, covering the boat windows with our coats to prevent glare,” says Jesse.