Herman Meyer brought the immense brown bear into his sights and fired. The bear dropped, but then it got back up. Things could get real dicey right away. Meyer chambered another round into his 300 Winchester Mag rifle, fired again hitting the bear in the skull and this time the bear was down for good. He has the skull of the animal on his desk, clearly showing where the bullet entered.
If you lived in Katy any length of time, you probably know Herman. The best chance of meeting him is down at Midway Barbecue, 6025 Hwy 90. He also owns Midway Food Market about a quarter of mile down Hwy 90 to the east, and if you’re a deer hunter, his crew may have processed deer for you.
Herman is a big game hunter and angler extraordinaire. Stop in Midway Barbecue and enjoy some of the great barbecue, but be careful. Your barbecue may get cold as you look upon all the different trophy mounts that line the walls. From flounder to mule deer, white tail deer, bear, elk and species of African big game, there must be at least 40-50 mounts. In his office at the grocery store there are probably another 10-15 trophies.
The rug he had made from the bear we talked about earlier is hanging on the wall in his office. A full mount, standing brown in the restaurant is even bigger.
Back to the bear hunt…
“In May in Alaska, it can be snowing even though it’s spring,” says Meyer. “We were flying the beach near Port Heiden. There was a place where the walrus congregated. They fight, they die of old age, and of course the bear are going to find the dead carcasses and feed on them.”
Guides and their parties fly the beaches looking for the dead carcasses. Bears may come out during the day or at night, depending on how fresh the kill might be.
“We found this carcass and decided we would land, camp and see if a bear would come up.”
They found a suitable place to land along the beach, set up camp and waited until the next morning. According to Meyer, in Alaska you can’t hunt the same day you fly in.
“Whatever animal you locate by air whether it’s moose, caribou, or bear you have to give them what is known as a “fair chase”. It’s not just finding them by plane, landing and then run over there and shoot the animal. You locate them and give them all night to do whatever they are going to do, which might be relocating to an entirely different location—giving them fair chase.”
The next morning dawned with dense fog. “I couldn’t see across the street,” figuratively he said. “I didn’t know if a bear was there or not.” Daylight finally burned off the fog and there was no bear.
He and his guide went back out in the afternoon, but no bear. “I’m ready to quit. Right at dusk here comes this bear…” and you know the rest of the story. The bear measured 9’5” and probably weighed out at 500-600 pounds.
What if he hadn’t dropped the bear on his second shot? “When you are bear hunting, especially an out of state resident, you always have a guide with you and he is well armed.”
Meyer has lots of good stories. With the exception of maybe one or two, he can tell you the story on all the trophies that line his walls. He likes to talk but if you drop by in September and October, you might miss him. This year he will be chasing elk in Arizona and possibly a mule deer hunt in South Dakota and Mexico. A mule deer hunt in Colorado is definitely on the calendar; Colorado is one his favorite places to hunt. He wants to be home in Katy when the Texas deer hunters start bringing in their deer for processing.