Roy Stroh Custom Muzzleloaders
Chapter Four
Flintlock Bear hunt, New Brunswick Canada
"Run around Sue" arrives in Rhode Island the end of May 2011, getting
ready for a Spring Bear hunt in New Brunswick Canada. Spent some range
time getting to know her 6/2/11. Video of my first shot with "Sue".
"Dancing with Sue"
My time with Run Around Sue begins with a trip to the gun club for a range
session. After verifying there was no load in the rifle and a basic swab of the
barrel I allowed the rest of the club members present to see and handle this
fine work of art before the session began. The load information that was
forwarded to me was perfect, so the session was easy and clover leafs from
fifty yards was punched out, what a pleasure to shoot. I only worked at fifty
yards because I was taking Sue to Canada for a spring Black Bear hunt. We
hunt from tree stands over bait in some pretty thickly wooded sections of
New Brunswick.

Sunday June 12, 2011 was the date we left Rhode Island for New Brunswick,
Canada and the drive up was very good till I got to the St.Croix border
crossing. The Canadian government requires you to register all firearms
coming into the country. The forms needed are available on the web so I
had them all filled out and ready to go, except for my signature, upon
arrival. The only problem was the rifle has no serial number to put on the
After three phone calls to supervisors and the RCMP plus thirty minutes of
waiting, the border officer allows Sue and me to enter Canada with the
proper papers.

After arriving at Pehqey Outfitters outside the small town of Harvey and
unloading the trucks I had the honor of showing Sue to Shawn McKinney
(owner), his people, and the other hunters. I had told Shawn and the fellow
hunters about Sue and shown them pictures from the web site, and they
could not wait to see her. None of them had any real experience with
flintlocks before I came to camp with one for hunting. A normal day at bear
camp goes like this; awake, have coffee, eat breakfast, check gear and make
ready for afternoon hunt, have lunch (big meal of day), shower ,dress in
camo, leave for stand site 2-3 pm and hunt till dark.

Monday: after breakfast I showed everyone the procedure of loading and
firing the rifle. After making sure the sights were still good I loaded and let
Shawn fire the rifle, he was impressed and all the other hunters could say
was “did you see the flames come out of that gun”. Mid morning it started
to rain and only became worse with the thunder and lightning so Mondays
hunt was cancelled. All was not lost though, Shawn had a small television
set up and we were able to watch the Boston Bruins win game six of the
Stanley Cup finals. Naturally there was no harassment of our Canadian
hosts who was cheering for Vancouver.

Tuesday: the only visits to the bait barrel were red squirrels and a snowshoe
hare during shooting times.
After shooting time 9:45pm (Atlantic Time Zone) while waiting to be picked
up a bear comes in and starts eating donuts (who said they can’t tell time).

Wednesday: I had two bears come into the bait. The first one was a small
boar that walked into the bait area looked around sniffed the air and
walked back into the woods before I could even pickup the rifle. He was just
looking for love (teenage hormones you know). The second bear was a nice
pretty 180-200 pound sow with cubs. My morals will not let me shoot a sow
with cubs even though it is legal. We have to preserve the resource.

Thursday: Weather prediction was showers and possible thunder storms.
Guess what; for once the weatherman was right.  Around 7:30 that evening a
Major storm and heavy rain arrived. I do not believe I’ve ever been as close
to a lightning strike in my life as that night.  We lost the best two hours of
hunting that night.

Friday: The weather called for more showers but held off. Around 8pm I
could hear a bear popping its jaws (a warning or challenge) and moving
through the woods. For almost 2 hours I could hear that bear off and on,
but, nothing came into the bait area.

Saturday: Rain showers and fog was the day’s weather so Shawn put me
into his deer hunting shed (wooden box blind with all the comforts of home).
Shawn runs a bait barrel there during bear season and I could keep Sue out
of the weather. I did see a nice whitetail buck shortly after setting up. Also a
small (80-100 lb.) bear, two raccoons, and what I think was a bobcat
chasing a hare.

I did come home without taking a bear this year, but after sixteen years at
Pehqey Outfitters for bear (and usually successful) there are no regrets.
Great friends and a fun camp is all anyone should ask for.
The week was a real success for I’m a hunter education teacher for RI and I
was able to introduce and teach six people about the trials, tribulations, and
great fun of hunting with a flintlock rifle.

Thank you Roy Stroh, for building such a fine rifle; it was a great honor
and privilege for me to be a part of this great program.

Edward Klosowski
North Kingstown, RI
My Adventure with Sue