So, here is the story! I kept a brand new 8 frame hive at a friends house this summer. excellent, fertile area with plenty of food and water for the girls. We pulled about 4 gallons of honey so they did very well for themselves. Because the queen had laid brood in one of the supers I left it on. So the picture is two deeps and one super. Then on Oct. 3rd we had a bear attack, the bear just ripped off the top super, of course then destroyed it, but only knocked over the two deeps. The bees were pretty angry but we tipped it back up, put on some insulation to help them through the winter. (Yes, I know bear fence, but my understanding was that there was an electric fence around the hive. However there was not!) I strapped the hive with a small come along and was told the fence would be in place by the weekend. Well bears being what they are, she came back for seconds, understandably so, this time she ripped into the top deep. I drove over this morning early, picked up what was left of my hive and brought them home. I do have a bear fence and it is in operation. End result is I have one 8 frame deep chock full of bees, I feel there is a 50/50 chance of still having a queen. I can open er up and see but I am thinking it is already to cold around here to spend that much time in a box. Question being how to keep them alive through the winter. I live at about 7500 feet in Colorado, typically lots of snow and cold, though not necessarily wet. My thoughts are to buy a queen excluder and place this one deep on top of a healthy hive with the excluder between them. Bees get to roam around, share the warmth, and food, and the queens stay in their respective places. Thoughts or ideas would be appreciated. Over all it has been a great experience, all is theory until put into practice. So yes sad too loose the bees and all but it as been all very interesting too.