“We’d Shoot Over His Head”- Hank Williams Jr. Reminisces On Unbothered Alaskan Bear Scratching On Their Cabin

Hank Williams Jr country music
Hank Williams Jr.

Hank Williams Jr. is an avid outdoorsman.

Hank Williams Sr. passed down his love for fishing and hunting to his son. While we love interview clips of Williams Jr. talking about his music or crazy tales of him and his partying days, this video clip might be one of my new favorites.

Back in 1992, Bocephus sat down and talked about his love for the outdoors. He shared some stories about the wildlife he’d interacted with over the years.

“My life and the outdoors, be it hunting and fishing, was passed down to me from my great grandfather, grandfather, and father. They were all hunters and fishermen; Daddy loved hunting and fishing.” 

He talks about how even though Sr. passed when he was three, his grandfather, who lived in South Alabama, would spend time with him in the woods—this time with his grandfather really solidified his love for the outdoors.

While discussing his passion, he touched on his near-fatal fall while hiking on the Montana/Idaho border. But the best story he had is about Alaskan grizzly bears.

In the middle of nowhere, they landed the plane on skis because of the ice and stopped at a tiny cabin where they slept and kept extra plane fuel…every no-frills kind of place to stay. Williams recalls seeing nails sticking out of the windows and asking the guide he was with why they were placed there.

“Oh, to keep the bears out of the cabin.”

He was told. Williams laughed until, in the middle of the night, he heard scratching on the wood outside the cabin.

“I got up and looked out the window, and there was a grizzly bear out there. I mean, we were in his country, we were in the middle of the Arctic…

That will definitely wake you up. He hung around all that night and walked around that airplane. And the guy got really scared because those bears will eat the tires off that little float plane and just destroy them. We’d shoot over his head… he paid us no attention whatsoever.

You really get the feeling about how small a human can be.”

As someone who has spent quite some time among all kinds of wildlife, his statement that the sight woke him up says something.

At the end of the chat, Bocephus notes that now that he has experienced nearly everything in wildlife, his favorite thing is to share it with others. From shooting old guns to taking folks to see an elk for the first time, he likes to share his passion with others.

If music hadn’t worked out for him, Hank Williams Jr. would have been one heck of a hunting guide.


A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock