While you might be able to get away with a less-than-perfect shot ON a Boo-Boo, when a Yogi-sized bear arrives at your bait site you’d better know where to place your bullet or arrow. I can think of no better way to learn proper shot placement than purchasing the “Mini” 3-D Bear Model from the National Bowhunter Education Foundation. This 12½-inch-long teaching tool is made by McKenzie Targets and features high-quality durable foam and cut-away reverse side showing the vital organs and bone structure. A stick pin is included to simulate the path of an arrow or bullet.
Although some veteran gun hunters recommend “breaking a bear down” with a bullet through the shoulder, Vance Hrechkosy, owner of Trail End Camp & Outfitters, says you’re better off playing it safe and aiming for the lungs. “I tell every one of my hunters—regardless of whether they carry a bow or gun—to wait for a broadside shot at the lungs, which is the largest vital area and gives you the most room for error. I don’t like to say ‘error,’ but with two dozen bear hunters per year at my camp, it’s safe to say we usually have three or four who miss completely or make a terrible shot. That won’t happen to you if you aim for the biggest target.”
Want a “Mini” 3-D Bear Model ($75) for your hunting camp? If so, call the National Bowhunter Education Foundation at (479) 649-9036.