The smell of freshly baked cookies draws you into your kitchen. The same is true of a well-stocked bear bait; it can lure bears from miles away. Unfortunately, finding massive amounts of prime bear bait can often be as difficult as arrowing a massive bruin. My advice is hoard away bait ahead of time for success during spring or fall black bear pursuits.

black bear

The success of your hunt is largely dependent on the success of your bait-gathering abilities.

Determine your hoarding endgame by estimating how many bears will be visiting your bait and how much bait competition is ongoing nearby. High bear and hunter densities equal more bait to keep your site irresistible. Some situations could require 100 to 200 pounds of bait material per week, possibly more.

black bear

Black bears love meat, but you’ll have to keep it desirable by freezing it prior to baiting.

If You Store It, They Will Come

Begin locating storage spaces for your bait goods. Some materials require refrigeration. Reach out to friends and family for freezer space. Social media posts may also lead you to commercial-sized freezers for rent. You’ll need this to keep meats (right), food scraps, baked goods and produce from spoiling.

You’ll also need to store other goods, so locate a secure barn, storage container or even a rental garage. Keep packaged goods that don’t expire there. You can also store used restaurant grease in barrels or buckets at these locations.

Now that storage space is secured, start the hunt for bait. Check with friends and on social media, and begin asking grocers what they do with out-of-date goods. Meat processers have scraps perfect for bear invites, and large restaurants may sort out food goods for waste removal. Restaurant chains also use large quantities of oil and grease. Some of this is recycled, while some leaves as waste. Once congealed, grease is not only an attractant, but the greasy footprints left by bears as they tromp the woods create a red carpet back to your bait site.

As you consider various bait options, be sure to check all laws on acquiring and using these products. Finally, don’t forget to empty your storage areas after bear season.