Unless license exempt, participants must purchase a bear chase permit or youth bear chase permit and an annual hunting license.
Bears can be chased during legal daylight hours only. Hunters cannot chase bears from a baited area while bait is present or for 30 days after the bait has been removed.
The bear quota hunt with dogs season also is open as a chase-only season for any person with a valid bear chase permit, even if the quota for the bear quota hunt with dogs season has been met.
Unless license exempt, hunters must purchase and possess proof of the appropriate valid bear permit(s) in addition to an annual hunting license
Hunters who harvest a bear during any bear hunting season must telecheck it by 8 p.m. Eastern time, and also call 1-800-858-1549 within 24 hours of harvest to arrange for a physical check of the animal and receive a tag issued by Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. Bears physically checked during any hunting season must include a carcass or an intact hide that contains the skull and proof of sex.
Hunters must call 1-800-858-1549 after 9 p.m. (Eastern) on each day of a bear hunting season to check if the quota for that season has been reached. If the quota has not been reached, the season will continue through the next day.
If a harvest quota limit is reached, the season will close 30 minutes after sunset that day.
Bear hunters and those who accompany them, or any other person hunting on public or private lands in the bear hunting zones during a firearm season for bears, must comply with the hunter orange clothing law. This requirement also applies to any person chasing bears during the bear quota hunt with dogs season.
PUBLIC HUNTING AREAS
In Bear Zone 1: Asher Hunting Access, Boone Forestlands WMA (Bell and Harlan county portions), Cambrian Coal Hunting Access Area (Letcher County portion), Corrigan WMA (Bell County portion), Cranks Creek WMA, Daniel Boone National Forest (Harlan County portion), Elk Forest WMA (Bell County portion), Fortner-Davis WMA, Jefferson National Forest (Letcher County portion), Kentenia State Forest, Kentucky Ridge State Forest WMA, Kentucky Ridge State Forest, Martins Fork Lake WMA, Martins Fork Lake WMA and State Natural Area, Revelation Energy Hunting Access Area (Harlan County portion), Shillalah Creek WMA, Stone Mountain WMA and State Natural Area.
In Bear Zone 2: Beaver Creek WMA (Pulaski County portion), Boone Forestlands WMA (Leslie County portion), Buck Creek WMA, Buckhorn Lake WMA, Burchell-Beech Creek WMA, Cambrian Coal Hunting Access Area (Pike County portion), Cane Creek WMA, Carr Creek Lake WMA, Corrigan WMA (Knox and Leslie county portions), Czar Hunting Access Area, Dale Hollow Lake WMA (Clinton County portion), Daniel Boone National Forest (Clay, Jackson, Knox, Laurel, Leslie, Owsley, Perry, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Wayne and Whitley county portions), Dewey Lake WMA, Ed Mabry-Laurel Gorge WMA, Elk Forest WMA (Clay, Knox and Leslie county portions), Fishtrap Lake WMA, Grayson Lake WMA, Hidden Valley Training Area, Jefferson National Forest (Pike County portion), Lake Cumberland WMA (Clinton, Pulaski, Russell and Wayne county portions), Meadow Creek WMA, Mill Creek WMA, Paintsville Lake WMA (Johnson County portion), Paul Van Booven WMA, Ping-Sinking Valley WMA, R.F. Tarter WMA (Russell County portion), Redbird WMA, Revelation Energy Hunting Access Area (Breathitt, Floyd, Knott, Leslie, Martin and Pike county portions), Robinson Forest WMA, Wells Hunting Access Area, Yatesville Lake WMA.
In Bear Zone 3: Ashland WMA, Cedar Creek Lake WMA, Clay WMA (Bath and Fleming county portions), Dale Hollow Lake WMA (Cumberland County portion), Daniel Boone National Forest (Bath, Estill, Lee, Menifee, Morgan, Powell, Rowan and Wolfe county portions), Dennis-Gray WMA, Dix River WMA, Fleming WMA, Green River Lake WMA (Adair County portion), Marrowbone State Forest and WMA (Cumberland County portion), Miller Welch-Central Kentucky WMA, Mud Camp Creek WMA, Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge, Paintsville Lake WMA (Morgan County portion), Pioneer Weapons WMA, R.F. Tarter WMA (Adair County portion), South Shore WMA, Tygarts State Forest.
Note: Some areas listed above may have special regulations. Please consult the Kentucky Hunting and Trapping Guide, Public Lands Hunting section on this website or contact Kentucky Fish and Wildlife for additional information.