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"Don't Feed The Bears..."

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In Bear Country, When Faced With A Bear...
I run like hell, screaming all the way
 0%  [ 0 ]
I run just fast enough to stay ahead of my camp buddy
 33%  [ 1 ]
I roll up in a ball, the 'gooders say bear will think i'm dead
 0%  [ 0 ]
I draw my hogleg, allowing bear to see it's loaded
 33%  [ 1 ]
I get my big can of *BEAR* pepper spray ready
 33%  [ 1 ]
...Never been there, so have no idea what I'd do
 0%  [ 0 ]
Total Votes : 3

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Joined: 12 May 2004
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Sun May 23, 2004 6:01 pm    Post subject: "Don't Feed The Bears..." Reply with quote

Although statistically you are more likely to be mauled by someone's worthless house-hound right in your own neighborhood, the fact remains that when you go into the outback you are sharing the environment with God's creatures. The top of the food chain out there is brother bruin and he is not terribly afraid of humans.
************ "Don't Feed The Bears"**************
DWR reminds us (after the latest bear attack in Desolation Canyon...) to not feed the bears. That's either intentionally or unintentionally of course. Bears are attracted to campsites by the smell of food ("Don't run, it makes me think you're food...") or because they already associate campsites, and campers, with chow. The same old suggestions are still valid; don't leave food laying around camp, keep your cooking area clean, don't wear the same clothes you wiped your bacon-grease hands on when you go to bed. Food can be stored in "bearproof" containers (you know, they're built kind of like the business end of a Thiokol rocket booster...) or suspended in midair at least 12 feet high between two trees. That's so when the bear climbs up one tree to untie the knots there, the container will swing down, banging against the other tree so you can wake up. Or, maybe food can be locked in your trunk so you can wake up hearing the bear tearing the car doors off during the night to get some breakfast from the trunk...
DWR says the first thing they have to do with a marauding bear is to tickle it with rubber-dubs and let the dogs bark at it to see if that will scare it away. If that works, they figure it's a rookie-raider and got so scared it won't shop the campground again. But if that doesn't work, then they try to haul it away to some other locality, so it can hunt up a new set of campers. Kind of like when the 'gooders from Jellystone back in the '90's hauled their troublesome bruins down here to make liberals think they were being kind to animals, and make us think our Utah bears had finally gone bad. You'll remember, one of them drug a little girl and her sleeping bag right ourt of the back end of her grandpa's camper window up by Strawberry. Little brother screaming bloody murder, and grandpa in his bare feet grabbing a handy two-by-four chased the bear out through the sagebrush, bear dragging it's ready-made bag-wrapped lunch and grandpa yelling things he didn't learn in Sunday School while beating the bear's brains out with his two-by-four Thank heaven for a bright moon. Bruin finally let go the bag and ran off. The little girl was unharmed 'cause she had slid down to the bottom of the bag during the chase and the bag protected her skin from the bumps and bangs of going through the sagebrush at warp-speed. Took the DWR nearly a week with trackers and dogs to locate the bruin and dispatch it like it should have been a long time ago in another part of the west.
Anyway, don't feed the bears. And keep your camp clean so they can't smell too much food, keep your clothes clean, keep your foods stored in locked containers or maybe in your trunk (stays real cool in there, doesn't it?), and keep your eyes and ears open, 'cause the poor brutes are coming lower in the mountains hunting for food that used to be up high but isn't anymore because of the long drought.
And, all kidding aside, when it comes to bear defense, if you ain't packin' 'heat, the best bear medicine you can have is a large pepper-spray can (about $30 to $50 depending on where you get them and about the size of a large spray canister for hornets), that shoots a solid stream of liquid pepper out to twenty feet or so. Solid stream so the breeze can't deflect it so easy and blow it back in your own face where you can't tell just when the bear is going to take his first bite out of you. Now, *don't* think I'm talking about those little cans of pepper spray that ladies keep in their purse for the average mugger, those ain't what will do the job best. You need the range and volume of the *BEAR* pepper-cans. Get the *big* canister, with the word "BEAR" printed right on it. One good one is made up in Montana by a guy who got mauled up really proper and managed to live through it. By the way, your canister with "BEAR" printed on it will likely manage to get through Canadian Customs, while the little one for the ladies to protect themselves from criminals will get confiscated. After all, the criminals have to have government protection in places that outlaw citizen guns. That is, if you really want to go to someplace like that.

From the
Northwest Territories Website
A bear charges at high speed on all four legs. Many charges are bluffs. Bears often stop or veer to the side at the last minute. However, if contact appears unavoidable, you have three options: shoot to kill if you have a gun; play dead if you are attacked by a grizzly; or fight back if attacked by a black bear.
The right moment to squeeze the trigger depends on your nerve, experience with a firearm, and how fast the bear is aproaching. The decision can be made only by the person facing the bear, and must be made quickly.
An accurate shot fired at close range has a greater chance of killing a bear than one fired from farther away. The first shot is the most important. If you must kill a bear, aim for the shoulder if the bear is broadside, or the back of the neck between the shoulders if the bear is facing you. Avoid head shots - they often do not kill a bear. Do not stop to check the results of your shot. Keep firing until the bear is still. Try to kill the bear cleanly and quickly - a wounded bear is very dangerous.
PLAYING DEAD: or, "practicing for the real thing"
Playing dead may prevent serious injury if you are attacked by a grizzly bear. Do not play dead during a black bear attack or if a grizzly bear is treating you as prey. Playing dead will help protect your vital areas, and the bear may leave if you appear harmless. There are two recommended positions: (1) lie on your side, curled into a ball, legs drawn tightly to your chest, hands clasped behind your neck. (2) lie flat on the ground, face down, fingers intertwined behind your neck.
Stay in these positions even if moved. Do not resist or struggle - it may intensify the attack. Look around cautiously, and be sure the bear is gone before moving
If a black bear attacks you, or a grizzly bear shows signs that it considers you prey, and you do not have a firearm, do not play dead. Act aggressively. Defend yourself with whatever means are available. You want to appear dominant and frighten the bear. Jump up and down, shout, and wave your arms. It may help to raise your jacket or pack to make you look bigger. Maybe the bear is real dumb, or easily fooled.

(and the treehugging liberals tell you to "play dead"?
Just a quick note on firearm calibre for the outback:

"What should I carry in the outback" could be chewed on all day long and most of the night. Topics such as survival, food gathering, self-defense from two-legged perps and four-legged critters being the main course, as well as how long you're going to be remote. The chances are you will never actually need a firearm in the brief outback excursions most people make, if common sense and keen observation are employed. However, ask any Sheriff and he'll tell you stories of druggies using the remote areas for their nefarious activities, criminals hiding out in the outback, and of course the occasional encounter with large predatory animals or someone's hungry, aggressive feral hound.
So, whatever you do, make sure your firearm is of good quality, well maintained, and most important that you know how to use it accurately and clear a jam if it should happen while in action.
Most experienced outdoorsmen prefer the "wheel gun", or revolver, because of it's reliable nature and simple design.
If I were to go remote, my preference would be at least a .357 mag, or .44 mag, or 45 long colt. On the other hand, I sure would not throw rocks at a good .22 long rifle calibre if something larger was not available. And on the other hand, a decent shotgun with alternate buck and rifled slugs for your choice of need (check that choke!) can harvest just about anything for survival, and protect you against just about anything for self-protection.
Just make sure you're legal, and trained in your firearm use. Smile

Last edited by bewforg on Mon Jun 07, 2004 10:30 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Wilderness Guide

Joined: 23 May 2004
Posts: 53
Location: Utah

PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2004 2:44 pm    Post subject: Bear spray and hoglegs. Reply with quote

Wellll, I gues I missed the correct answer. I figure my hogleg is so small that the bear would either laugh himself to death, or maybe decide to forget all about me; I wouldn't be man enough to eat. Either way, I guess I'll get a big can of spray if I ever go into bear country. Laughing
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