Bear hunting

Read this important notice

Unless otherwise specified, all dates and information on this page apply to the 2022 season, which is closed. Details for 2023 will be available in April. Season dates for 2023 are available by browsing to the bear section of the hunting and trapping seasons page.

News & notices

Bear guides updated

The sortable list of bear guides and outfitters has been updated. DNR provides this list as a courtesy. Being listed does not constitue an endorsement.

See a bear, report a bear

Minnesota's black bear range has been slowly expanding southward and westward. If you see a bear outside of the animal's normal range, report it to the DNR.

2022 regulations available

Updated bear hunting regulations for the 2022 season now are available. Please download this PDF file and view it using Acrobat Reader.


Lottery application deadlineMay 6
Winner notificationMay 20
Licenses on saleJune 1
License purchase deadlineAug. 1
Unsold licences availableNoon on Aug. 4
Area 451 licenses availableAug. 5
Permits availableListing by permit area
Baiting beginsAug. 12
HuntingSept. 1 - Oct. 16


Resident, age 18 and older: $45 (includes fee)
Non-resident, age 18 and older: $231 (includes fee)
Ages 13-17, regardless of residency: $6 (includes fee)
Ages 10-12, regardless of residency: $1 issuing fee

Limits & requirements

Quota areasOne adult bear per licensed hunter; includes permit area 451
No-quota areaOne adult bear per licensed hunter
All areasSuccessful hunters must submit a tooth sample
Don't shoot collared bears


Firearm legal for big game
Bow and arrow legal for big game

Permit areas

Bear season map Bear season map of areas 28 and 47

View online
Download: Main map • Leech Lake detail

Tagging & registration

A person who takes a bear must tag it appropriately before transporting it. You may register a bear at a bear registration station, by phone, or the internet, but you must also obtain a bear tooth envelope at a bear registration station. To register in person, the hunter must present the harvested bear for registration at a bear registration station within 48 hours after taking and obtain a big game possession tag. See complete rules in the tagging and registration section of the bear hunting regulations.

A person may not place bait for bears unless the person has a current year bear license or is operating under the direction of a person with a current year bear license. Registration of all bait stations is required. See complete rules in the bait stations section of the bear hunting regulations.

Guides & outfitters

DNR provides names and contact information for current year licensed bear outfitters when all registrations are complete. This is not an endorsement of any individual on the list. We do not provide referrals or other types of information, and licensure by the state does not mean that the outfitter has been certified as to competence, quality of hunt, success, etc.

Learn to hunt

Do you value strong connections to your outdoors and the food you eat? Are you looking for a new way to interact with the fields, woods, and waters around you?

Then discover September forests with help from our getting started guide to bear hunting.


Hunting is only one aspect of the DNR's effort to manage bear for the public trust. We are committed to socially and ecologically responsive and responsible bear management for the benefit of all Minnesotans now and into the future.