Spring bear is one of the best times to test and try out new backpacking gear for the year. I am always eager to test all the gear that I have upgraded during the winter. Below is my gear that I use for my backcountry spring bear hunt. Typically, I will try and be in the mountains for 5-7 days and follow a nomad style of hunting for spring bears. This style of hunting allows me to be light and mobile which is critical to find bears in rugged terrain. My bag weight will depend heavily on the weather forecast but I will try and keep it as light as possible for this style of hunting. I will be glassing most of the day during this hunt so a glassing chair will be worth its weight in gold. Depending on how stable the weather is, I will leave clothing at the truck or pack more clothing in my pack. 

Gear List Weight Summary

BaseFoodWaterWearWeaponFull PackTrailhead
480.1 oz114.5 oz3.50 oz93.81 oz163.2 oz594.61 oz786.31 oz
30.01 lb7.16 lb0.22 lb5.86 lb10.55 lb37.16 lb49.14 lb

Hunt Details: Spring Bear

 Duration: 7 Nights  

 Weather: Cold and Rain Predicted


The Kifaru pack is great for all seasons and types of hunts with interchangeable bags with the same frame. The Muskeg bag allows me to pack all my clothes and gear for 7 days.

Pack FrameKifaru Duplex Lite Frame48.00
PackKifaru Muskeg Pack40.80
88.80 oz
5.55 lb

Camp / Sleeping Gear

I choose the Big Agnes Tiger Wall UL2 because it is super light and full enclosed. A fully enclosed tent is great for bugs and ticks during bear hunting. The stone glacier chinnock 15 degree is a little warmer than I need but with changing weather and sometimes snow it is great to have.

ShelterBig Agnes Tiger Wall UL235.00
Sleeping PadBig Agnes Insulated AXL 78x2518.00
Sleeping BagStone Glacier Chinnock 15 Degree35.00
88.00 oz
5.5 lb

Clothing (Packed)

My packed clothing will be all of my heavier and insulating layers. The Sitka layering system is great for all the different weather that you might see during your hunt. I always have rain gear in case of rain or a great windbreaker for colder days. 

Top InsulatingBlackovis Anchor Point
800 Fill Down Jacket
- XL
Top (light)SITKA Core Lightweight Hoody -
Subalpine - XL
GlovesSITKA Traverse Glove - Subalpine - XL2.10
Socks (Extra)Farm to Feet Damascus
Lightweight Crew Sock
Puffy PantsBlackovis Anchor Point 800 Fill12.00
Insulating GlovesSITKA Blizzard GTX Mittens- XL5.00
Rain JacketSITKA Cloudburst Jacket - Subalpine - XL17.60
55.30 oz
3.46 lb

Clothing / Gear (Worn)

My worn gear is what I will wear the most throughout the day and hiking. I want gear that will be versatile and interchangeable during the day.

Base TopSITKA Core Lightweight Crew - Subalpine5.30
PantSITKA Mountain Pants14.65
HatBlackOvis Trucker3.12
FootwearHanWag Makra Combi GTX - Size 1244.00
SocksFarm to Feet Damascus Lightweight Crew Sock
Leg GaiterSitka Stormfront GTX Gaiter5.00
WatchGarmin Fenix2.90
UnderwearSitka Merino2.84
PolesBlack Diamond Alpine Carbon Z- Trekking Poles16.00
93.81 oz
5.86 lb


Optics are your best friend during bear hunting. I choose a 65mm spotting scope because I know I will be hiking a ton and the lighter weight version was a better option for this hunt. The NL Pure binos are great for glassing and a wider field of view. One area I could upgrade is my rangefinder.

Spotting ScopeSwarovski ATX 65mm55.90
BinocularsSwarovski NL Pure 12x4229.50
RangefinderVortex Ranger 18007.70
Bino HarnessMarsupial Gear - Coyote Brown12.00
Rangefinder PouchMarsupial Gear Rangefinder Pouch2.50
Bino AdapterOutdoorsman2.00
Tripod HeadManfrotto 700RC217.00
TripodManfrotto Carbon Be-Free32.00
Digiscope CameraiPhone 12 Pro Plus with Phone skope10.14
168.74 oz
10.55 lb


The Christensen Arms MPR is a great backpacking rifle due to the foldable stock. This option makes the overall length smaller during hiking and can quickly be deployed when shooting. The 6.5 PRC is a great caliber for bears because it is flat shooting and has long range ballistics for cross canyon shots.

RifleChristensen Arms MPR 6.5 PRC128.00
ScopeVortex Viper PST  Gen II 5-25X50 FFP31.20
BipodAtlas Bipod BT46-LW17 PSR13.61
SlingMagpul MS4® Dual QD Sling GEN25
Scope CoverVortex Scope Cover1
AmmoBerger 156 EOL bullets with RL26 powder
163.20 oz
10.20 lb


There are two gear items that I want to highlight. First is the Helinox Zero Chair. This is an absolute game changer for long hours glassing. It is just under a pound and makes a huge difference. The second item is my Garmin InReach Mini that allows me to communicate with other hunting partners and my family when in remote country.

Glassing ChairHelinox Zero15.5
Stuff SackKifaru Ultralight stuff sacks0.13
Satellite MessengerGarmin InReach Mini3.50
Battery PackPoseidon Dark Energy8.87
Wind CheckSmoke in a Bottle.60
KnifeEsee Izula Silver1.02
KnifeTyto 1.1 Knife 1.60
Hunting LicenseLicense0.28
Game BagsOvis Sacks Lightweight Game Bags22.00
Water PurificationSteriPEN Ultra Water Purifier5.00
Water ContainerMSR DromLite 6L Bag4.64
Charge CordiPhone Charge Cord0.65
Charge CordHeadlamp and Sat Messenger Charger0.44
Extra Batteries4 AA Energizer Ultimate Lithium2.09
RopeUtility Rope
53.34 oz
3.33 lb

Cook Kit

There are lighter options because the MicroMo allows you to change temperatures to simmer or sear food. I like the versatility that the stove gives me to cook different food. 

StoveJetboil MicroMo Cooking System12.00
UtensilsTyto spoon attachment0.20
Gas canisterJetboil Fuel3.53
15.73 oz
0.98 lb

Safety Gear

My headlight has died one to many times on the mountain and there is nothing worse than traversing sketchy terrain in the dark with no light. Also keep a spare light and batteries for backpacking.

HeadlampBlack Diamond Storm 375 Lumen
Headlamp (Spare)Petzl E+Lite 50 Lumen Emergency0.90
Bear SprayCounter Assault Bear Spray w/Holster12.12
Toothbrush & PasteZPacks Travel Toothbrush0.28
First Aid & RepairAssorted First Aid Kit 2.16
Toilet Paper
Toilet Paper in ZipLoc Bag
20.18 oz
1.26 lb


Food for backcountry hunts has two purposes. The first is to fuel your body and give you enough energy to hunt hard and feel good. The second is to taste good. I have packed great food on paper for a hunt but it tasted so bad that I could not even eat it. Make sure you try your food before going in the field.

BreakfastProtein Shake Mix72.00
Breakfast Fat ContentMCT Oil70.35
LunchPeak Refuel75.90
Afternoon snackHoney Stinger Waffle71.06
Afternoon snackJustin Maple Almond Butter71.15
DinnerPeak Refuel75.90
114.52 oz


WaterPlatypus - 2L Hoser
Electrolyte MixWarrior fuel Elevate90.5

Gear List Weight Summary

BaseFoodWaterWearWeaponFull PackTrailhead
480.1 oz114.5 oz3.50 oz93.81 oz163.2 oz594.61 oz786.31 oz
30.01 lb7.16 lb0.22 lb5.86 lb10.55 lb37.16 lb49.14 lb