As an adolescent, my old man allowed me to do all the shooting when we hit the uplands. Why'd he even carry a gun? "In case we get attacked by a bear," he used to joke. But that very scenario became a grouse hunter's frightening reality on October 30.
Phil Anderson was hunting the thick brush of Wisconsin's Loon Lake WMA when he thought he heard a deer—it turned out to be a black bear sow with cubs, encountered by Anderson's dog.
"I heard my dog squealing in distress and I kind of figured out what was happening," Anderson told WQOW-TV, a local ABC affiliate. "I yelled for the dog and immediately the adult bear came from that direction and charged at me and knocked me on my back. She batted me a few times and shook me and then she went back to my dog."
Anderson got to his feet and yelled at the bear, hoping to scare it away. Instead, the bear left Anderson's dog and again charged him. This time, however, Anderson had his shotgun ready. He put a load of birdshot into the 275-pound bear from a distance of about three feet. The bear died instantly.
Anderson and his dog walked three quarters of a mile back to his truck, then drove home. Anderson's wife assessed his injuries and drove him to a nearby hospital, which subsequently airlifted him to a larger medical center to be patched up. Fortunately Anderson and his dog are now recovering at home.
"We're both on the mend, "Anderson said, adding that he can't wait to hunt grouse once he's healed up. "We're a little bruised a little sore but we're doing well and I'm sure we'll both be just fine."