In Blog, Siberia Adventure

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Author: Denny Geurink

Danger and Adventure Hunting Brown Bears in Russia’s Forbidding Siberia

In the Land of the BearIn the early 1990s, the USSR wanted to boost its tourism industry.  Hunters and fishermen usually aren’t at the head of a list of invitees anywhere, but in 1991 the Soviet Union, working with a U.S.-based travel agency, looked primarily at the spectacular hunting opportunities of Siberia and invited the author, Denny Geurink, on a moose and brown bear hunt there.

Geurink liked that first (1991) experience so much he became an outfitter in Siberia.  As far as he has been able to determine, he was the first American guide/outfitter to take clients to the brown bear capital of the world.  (Sixty-seven percent of the world’s brown bear population is in Russia.)  Russia is a game-rich country, mainly because few people are allowed to own firearms or hunt, and thus there is no resident sport hunting culture.

He and his clients hunted Siberian brown bear (the largest, most aggressive brown bears in the world) moose (among the largest-antlered in the world), plus bighorn/snow sheep, red deer, wild Russian boar (the largest in the world), with now and then a grouse or wolf hunt.

Even more, he enjoyed the Siberian people, and learning about, adapting to and working within an unfamiliar culture and existence that, he felt, must have closely resembled the U.S. Wild West of 150 years ago or more.

For nearly 25 years, until he sold his business in 2011, Geurink lived adventure with a capital A, enjoying every minute of the hunts, the people, the culture, the political discussions, the travel … and in the process developing strong attachments to the people of Siberia and the land.  He travelled there more than 50 times and continues to hunt Siberia annually.

In addition to hair-raising adventure stories of bear hunting, his book contains historical perspective of what was happening politically at that time in Russia, detailing how ordinary people lived, worked, survived … and what they thought of Americans.

Now he’s written a 310-page book about it all —  23 chapters of bear attacks, bear hunts, rutting moose encounters,  red deer stag hunts, the people, the culture, the food, culture shock, how Russian game wardens dealt with poachers, tours of Moscow, hunter clients good and bad,  the political climate, and more..

IN THE LAND OF THE BEAR is 300 pages, paperback, $21.95. The book will be available for purchase on this website or by calling 1-262-242-3530 starting February 15th.

23 Chapters of Adventure

  1. Journey To The Evil Empire
  2. Hanging Out With The KGB
  3. Bears’ Natural History
  4. Bear Attacks
  5. The People
  6. The Food
  7. The Culture
  8. Surrounded By Bears!
  9. A Lesson On Fear
  10. Encounter With The WWF
  11. Hunter Taken To Police Station
  12. The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly (hunter types)
  1. Tales From Grizzly Camp
  2. If It Weren’t For Bad Luck…
  3. Bear Stalks U.S. Astronaut
  4. Excitement In Camp
  5. Big Stags On The Black Sea
  6. Lady And The Bull
  7. The Capercaillie Two-Step
  8. Encounter With Rut-Crazed Bull Moose
  9. Bear Charges Snowmobile
  10. More Tales Of Bear Attacks
  11. They’re All Heart…And More

Dennis Geurink

Michigan native Denny Geurink has been a teacher (now retired) and for several years the Midwest Regional Editor of Field & Stream magazine. He wrote a newspaper weekly outdoor column for nearly 40 years. He guided/outfitted in Siberia from 1992 through 2011, when he sold his outfitting business.