Chris Ellis: WVDNR taking applications for bear hunting | Sports

One of the most frequent questions I receive is how to plan a hunt out west. For many of us who live back east, the dream of hunting the Rockies or southwest for elk, mule deer, antelope, bear or even turkeys can be a bucket-list item we intend to check off someday.

For most of us, there are only two options – go with an outfitter or a go alone with a do-it-yourself adventure.

Depending on your budget, the options can greatly differ. If saving some cash on your adventure sounds appealing, apply for a lottery draw and hope you receive a tag of a lifetime. Once the tag is in your pocket, you can set your own budget for travel, lodging and meals.

The number one thing to remember when applying for a lottery draw for non-resident licenses is the deadline. So many folks, including me, have trouble remembering the deadlines. If you remember the deadline, the rest is as easy as planning, researching, calling the DNR and asking for help with hunting unit suggestions and applying.

I do recommend applying as a party if able. That way when you get drawn, you have a buddy or two to join you on your excellent adventure. In short, pick a species, a state and a unit and stay persistent and cross your fingers. You will never draw a tag if you don’t apply.

If you are looking to plan an adventure a little closer to home, I suggest a hunt here at home. According to our WVDNR, they are now accepting applications for a limited number of permits for black bear hunting during the traditional deer gun season in eight counties. The application deadline is midnight Aug. 13.

Hunters with these permits will be allowed to hunt bear without dogs on public and private land in Cabell, Doddridge, Harrison, Lincoln, Marion, Marshall, Mineral and Wetzel counties from Nov. 20 through Dec. 2, 2017. Resident landowners, their resident children or resident tenants who live on the land are not required to apply…

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