Really don't know what he weighed. The arctic grizzlies are considerably smaller than their coastal cousins the big brown bears.
Guide thought he was an old bear, maybe even 15 years old. Apparently the ivory colored claws are only found on older bears. He was considerably larger than either of the other two grizzlies we saw that week. While skinning him, it was difficult for two strong men to just man-handle the carcass. I'm including me as a "strong man" there.
But honestly, I couldn't give you an accurate weight of the bear. No scales out there on the tundra. They're measured by two methods:
1. Squaring the hide. Which is just laying the skin out flat, then taking the length from tip of nose to tip of tail, and the distance from outstretched claws across. Mine squared a bit over 8', big for an arctic grizzly, but smaller than the coastal brown bears.
2. Measuring the skull. Bear skulls are simply measured by the length plus width of the skull. This one was 22.5" as I recall, about an inch from being able to make the Boone & Crockett book. That's fine with me. He's a magnificent bear.
All I was really after was to experience the arctic grizzly hunt, and try for a good chance at an adult grizzly. I got that and more. It was an incredible hunt. Hunt of a lifetime for me.
To put it in perspective, the fellow I was hunting with was on his third grizzly hunt and didn't shoot one until this trip. His squared 6.5' or so, and he was delighted with it. Beautiful hide on that bear! Also, both guides remarked on the size of the bear I shot, that it was considerably larger than most arctic grizzlies they'd seen during their years of guiding in Alaska.
Talk about North American big game hunting.
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