Bears and Tents in Alaska

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Bigguy136, Jun 24, 2019.

  1. Fast1

    Fast1 Twisted Throttle

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    Looks like you found who is in charge of that campground. Better to see a visual in daylight than at night.

    Seems one of these might help that situation with a replacement campground host..



    ,
    #61
  2. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    Well, hello Mr Bear! I think that this emphasizes that just because you see a bear or there are bears in close proximity, impending death and dismemberment is not always the case.

    I kind of got the impression from those videos that maybe guys who made them we self proclaimed experts who had never actually had an encounter with a bear.
    #62
  3. Lizzard323

    Lizzard323 Solo rider. Lover of solitude and corn meal.

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    Well, either something eats you or it doesn't. Kind of like dating.
    #63
  4. Friz Freleng

    Friz Freleng Religious zealot Supporter

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    I just had an encounter with a bear down here in California. Camping at Whitney Portal, sound asleep in my tent that was maybe 25 feet from my truck. I heard something but thought it was other campers getting ready to climb Whitney. When I woke up, I found a bear had ripped into the canopy of my truck. Other than a tool box and some climbing gear, there was nothing in truck..no food, toiletries, etc. So, while insurance will be covering the $2600(!) in damage, does anyone have a suggestion how I can prevent this from happening again? Would spraying the truck exterior with bear repellent work? IMG_5637.jpg IMG_5633.jpg

    Attached Files:

    #64
  5. rick.r.calvert

    rick.r.calvert Adventurer

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    Don’t be sad. The problem is other people caused the problem by allowing him to get human food and that’s what he was looking for. Unless you left food in your tent or clothes that you may have gotten food scent on. In which case you are at fault. Bears reproduce to refill their environment very quickly. A problem bear needs to be put down before they harm a human. I know personally 2 people who have been mauled to death and 5 more who have been injured.
    #65
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  6. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    The parking lot at Whitney Portal has always had a black bear problem. I say always, but I've only known about it since 1968.:gerg

    Spraying bear spray works by putting a stinging/burning vapor in the bear's eyes, mouth, and nose. Putting it on or around stuff before a bear arrives will only attract bears. Bear spray is a deterrent not a repellent!
    #66
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  7. wee-twin

    wee-twin Been here awhile

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    Look into the electric perimeter fences.
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  8. Friz Freleng

    Friz Freleng Religious zealot Supporter

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    Interesting. I never knew that about bear spray. The last thing I want to do is attract the damned things.

    FWIW, I was told my truck had the dubious honor of being the first bear prowl of the season.
    #68
  9. AllSeasonRider

    AllSeasonRider Wandering, maybe a little lost...

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    It probably went for your truck because countless others before you have left food in their vehicle. Not much you could do, really.
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  10. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    Camp down at the base of the hill and drive up in the morning. But this thread was about Alaska and tents...................
    #70
  11. Alcan Rider

    Alcan Rider Frozen Fossil Supporter

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    While I have no evidence as to whether it is effective or not, in the past I have sprayed a 50/50 solution of Simple Green and water around things I did not want bears to mess with. Have you ever gotten a good whiff of that stuff? :puke2 Feels like it will rot your nostrils! And I imagine a bear, with its sniffer being far, far more sensitive than mine, would find it even more obnoxious. Might be worth a try, at least.
    #71
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  12. Friz Freleng

    Friz Freleng Religious zealot Supporter

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    Good suggestion. OTOH, I fear what might smell awful to me could smell tasty to a bear. I have to wonder if my tool kit--which could only have smelled like traces of solvents and motor oil--might have invited the bear in for a look.

    I definitely have to figure this out because I'm headed back to Whitney and Langley in September, and I'm sure my insurance company would be unamused by a second claim. I like the idea of a portable electric fence.
    #72
  13. Addapost

    Addapost Been here awhile

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    Yes I can! I just had a can rupture at 13.000' inside my tail bag. Then ensued 36 nightmarish hours of trying to get it out of all the bag contents and off me.
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  14. AllSeasonRider

    AllSeasonRider Wandering, maybe a little lost...

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    damn... Now I scared of bears and bear spray!
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  15. apexal

    apexal Long timer

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    I put my bear spray container inside a zip lock storage bag when I travel. Not sure if it would have helped in your case, though. Maybe I should double bag it.
    #75
  16. Addapost

    Addapost Been here awhile

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    Yeah that would have helped. I should have done that. It ruptured where the metal can meets the plastic trigger housing and it was blowing a thin stream of the vile shit into the pocket of the duffel I had it in. Luckily I happened to stop when I did. The leak must have just started. I heard it hissing as soon as I shut my bike off and I got it out of there before too much had escaped. Still, enough had contaminated the bag that I suffered pretty good for the next 36 hours. FWIW a citrus degreaser worked pretty good getting it out off my hands and out of my stuff. It is oil based and just laughs at soap and water.
    #76
  17. apexal

    apexal Long timer

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    I carried around a can of bear spray for quite a few years and decided to replace it with a new, "fresh" can. I'm going to practice with the old can to see how it works. I'll pick a non-windy day. I saw bear spray in use on a TV show about bears and was I was amazed at how much and how far the spray went. The can says 35 feet and that's probably how far it went on the show. The guy used it on a male grizzly and it chased the bear away.
    #77
  18. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    I used to use one of the cheap fabric holders that come with the bear spray and zip ties to hold it to the handlebars of my mountain bike. About halfway into the second season doing that, I thought I heard either a front tire or front fork air leak. I leaned over to locate the leak and got a small dose of bear spray that leaked out of a small puncture where the can finally wore through. Took awhile before I could ride the rest of the way down the hill. It took 3 cycles through the washing machine before the pepper spray was removed from my gloves. A full blast would be pretty darn incapacitating. But it would beat being chewed on by a grizzly.
    #78
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  19. apexal

    apexal Long timer

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    I've camped at Whitney Portal Campground and as you know they have bear boxes at the campsites and trailheads. But they also warn us not to leave anything in our vehicles including stuff that may look like a food source or picnic basket. Your photos show items in your truck that may have looked like food containers. Next time maybe you could cover the windows? Or why don't you talk to the rangers? They have hundreds of break-ins every year and probably have a darn good idea of how to prevent future problems.
    By the way, did you CLIMB Whitney? I've been up a couple times by the Moutaineers Route. Once I was going to climb the East Face route but my partner was sick so I did the scramble.
    #79
  20. Friz Freleng

    Friz Freleng Religious zealot Supporter

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    The stuff you saw in the photos were items I was loading into the truck as I took the photo. The only things in the back at the time of the dastardly attack was a black metal tool box and a plastic bin of climbing gear. The glass is a dark smoke tint. I can't imagine the bear seeing anything through it in the middle of the night. Funny you should mention the bear boxes. In that particular campsite the bear box used to be located near the picnic table, but for whatever reason it was moved next to where you park your car. I wondered whether the bear might have smelled the food I stowed in the bear box and confusingly thought it was in the truck.

    The camp hosts said I was the first bear prowl of the year. Yay, #1. Yup, I've climbed Whitney a couple of times. I do it in one day up the conventional route from the Portal but will probably do the Mountaineers route at some point.
    #80
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