I sympathize with your fears------------I've lost many a night of sleep worrying about bears and hearing noises.
I've had nights I just couldn't shake it.
It's really no fun when that happens---------but I don't let it stop me from going.
In BC and Alaska me and my buddy packed bear spray--------never used it.
And in the states my buddy carries a loaded 40 caliber automatic on his hip.
Makes me feel a lot better-------we've been traveling out West mostly and it's been legal in those states.
He's been asked twice tho to take it outside where they served liquor-------as that is illegal.
Just a couple weeks ago we got pulled over for having our headlights off and his gun was right
out for all to see----------I'm sure the officer had to see it----------he never mentioned it.
So a gun is a possibility for you here is the states------the ones it's legal in-------I have no idea which ones that is.
I know he's carried it in Idaho, Arizona, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon and Washington.
That's where we seem to hang out-------that's where all the best riding is in the country.
And looky here: this mean old grizzly ate somebody----along with his Gerber LMFII survival knife and can of bear spray.