Help a brother not get eaten in bear country

Discussion in 'Americas' started by f800kris, Jun 17, 2021.

  1. Fast1

    Fast1 Twisted Throttle

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    Lots of great advice here but one thing I've not seen mentioned which is just as important..

    Remember, that what has transpired several days before you arrive at your campsite can circumvent all your bear strategy to minimize a bear strolling in due to scent left before your arrival.

    If you get some idiot there the night/day before without any bear aware etiquette and spitting toothpaste out of their mouth when brushing their teeth, dumping left over food items into the brush, dumping bacon grease in the bushes, spilling snacks on the ground while eating, or who knows what else you could have a guest show up you weren't planning to feed and was uninvited.

    I had this happen while backpacking in Glacier National park after departing out of Many Glacier to spend a few nights at Cracker lake. Got a wake up call in the middle of the night after cooking 100 yards down wind at the prescribed cook area and using the bear poles that were another good 100/200 yards away from the camp spot to hang everything but myself with clean clothes, sleeping bag, tent and light. If you ever get woken with a loud sniffing grizzly bear 12" from your head on the other side of the tent you won't ever forget it. Girlfriend sat at the inside of the tent entrance all night with a headlamp doing perimeter scans and then went to sleep at sunrise.

    We had arrived at Cracker Lake late in the evening and were setting up the tent in the dark after eating and hanging all our gear. In the morning I found that we had a premier spot overlooking Cracker Lake but it seemed a few day hikers had rested there and eaten food right where we set up a tent in the prescribed tent area. They did not follow the rules and eat in the prescribed eating/cooking area. They left wrappers and uneaten food laying on the ground that I did not spot in the dark.

    Point is, do a good survey of where you intend to sleep in grizzly country to try and determine what others may have done before you arrived that could contribute to that unwanted late night guest.

    Cracker Lake in Glacier

    eating area

    upload_2021-7-12_18-54-11.png

    Bear poles

    upload_2021-7-12_18-54-50.png

    Camping area

    upload_2021-7-12_19-2-8.png
    #61
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  2. Fast1

    Fast1 Twisted Throttle

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    And for those carrying in WY, be aware that you require a valid reason to kill a Grizzly.
    While ram hunting out of Cody along the Yellowstone border about 10 years ago the outfitter warned me and was extremely nervous about having to shoot a problem grizzly in camp. We had bells hooked to guy line with 6 horses to wake us but the camp chef cooked many inviting and luring meals that I'm sure provoked many grizz and they were cooked right in camp. The outfitter, camp chef and myself all slept locked and loaded at night.

    Here is an example without proper justification (not saying I agree to this but showing you the liability in WY of killing a Grizzly)

    https://nbcmontana.com/news/local/wyoming-man-fined-25k-for-shooting-grizzly


    and potential fines if found the grizz shooting was not justified

    https://www.eastidahonews.com/2020/12/2k-reward-offered-in-wyoming-grizzly-bear-killing-case/
    #62
  3. lamotovita

    lamotovita DAMN SNOWBIRD! Supporter

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    Bear Lives Matter.
    #63
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  4. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    In addition to bear spray, I keep a small air horn in my tent. Not every bear will be scared off by it, but some will, and it is always good to have something to try before using the bear spray.

    airhorn.jpeg
    #64
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  5. Fast1

    Fast1 Twisted Throttle

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    #65
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  6. MTvtwin

    MTvtwin noob rymes with boob hehe

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    Bottom line is YES, invest in Bear Spray and have it ready at all times.
    #66
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  7. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    Statistically, bear spray is more effective than firearms. It covers a larger area, so is less likely to miss than a bullet.

    As far as grizzlies go, a .44 magnum is marginal. If the bullet enters at a poor angle, or doesn't hit anything vital, it won't stop them. They might die slowly, but that sucks for both the human and the bear. A .454 Casull is a better choice. .460, .480, or .500 are also good, but have progressively higher cost and weight. A 12 gauge with slugs is very effective when used to disable shoulders so the bear can't chase you.

    Personally, I'd prefer not to shoot a bear. I don't know how to cook them properly, so it would be a waste.
    #67
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  8. jaksavage

    jaksavage Smooth and a little sneaky

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    Spacing is good.
    Also leaving your cooking pans @ your kitchen gives you a wakeup call when the bear comes along.
    They have all run away from me when I start moving around and making some noise.
    But if they are on the food or if cubs are present don't bother them.

    Cowbells or horns.
    Bear spray.
    #68
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  9. lamotovita

    lamotovita DAMN SNOWBIRD! Supporter

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    At what range?
    #69
  10. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    Close enough to smell their breath. :lol3

    I have a theory about why that is. I think it has to do with fear of death. Probably 80% of people or more are so afraid to die that they panic during bear encounters. You probably won't know if that's you until it happens. Sometimes you only get seconds to react.

    If you let loose with bear spray, even if you miss the bear is going to be very irritated by the smell in the air, and want to get out of there. If you miss with a bullet, there bear is on you and its discomfort is over. It can then enjoy its meal in peace.

    Read this:
    https://www.fieldandstream.com/phot...tacks/2009/08/charging-grizzly-killed-alaska/

    [​IMG]
    #70
  11. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    You would be amazed at how far away you can smell a bear, they stink!

    Although the presenter is a rather clumsy speaker it is a pretty good vid on using bear spray:

    #71
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  12. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    I added some to my previous post. I hope I never get close enough to one to smell breath nor body odor. :eekers
    #72
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  13. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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  14. Arbolmano

    Arbolmano Not so Studly

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    In another life, I lived out of a backpack in “bad” black bear turf . My solution was a good dog, experienced in hunting bears, lions and pigs. Dog kept them away. An inexperienced dog would merely been bait. He’d be up all night barking and patrolling while I got some sleep. Not sure I’d sleep in a tent in active bear country without a good dog.
    #74
  15. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    A fellow Geology student at Idaho State was camping alone with his dog along the Idaho/Wyoming border. In the middle of the night his trusty companion woke him up with his barking. He yelled at the dog to shut up a couple of times and the dog stopped barking. He went back to sleep and several minuets later a black bear came through the side of his tent. The bear clawed through his sleeping bag giving him a gash in his calf and causing him to scream. The scream startled the bear who ran off in an instant. Come to find out the dog was smarter than he thought because after trying to alert his master, he decided to run off away from the bear. The dog came back while he was tending his wound.
    #75
  16. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    Howdy gang,
    This just popped up on the Bozeman news. The video at the top of the 'article' shows Bo, a local problem grizzly that's now a resident of the Wolf And Grizzly Discovery Center in West Yellowstone. About a minute into the video, it shows some of the bear resistant containers after Bo and other grizzly bears had a go at them.

    https://www.kbzk.com/news/local-new...gL72BuffIgJmoYwX02An4tVKMWwPUQg4qbXnK0nvSaljE
    #76
  17. ADV Wanderer

    ADV Wanderer Been here awhile

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    I would have liked to have seen the bears trying to get into an actual bear cannister. The stuff shown all busted up in that news report were plastic recycling bins etc. Although the big bear-proof trash bin in the background seemed to be in good shape (like the ones you see installed in campgrounds).
    #77
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  18. Strong Bad

    Strong Bad Former World's Foremost Authority Supporter

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    Did you know you can search on the Youtube site?



    The main advantage to the small bear containers is that it will save your food from getting eaten by the bear. That doesn't mean he won't fuck everything up you've got in order to get find something he can get to. I see the containers as really something for wilderness backpackers who would need enough food to hike out after a bear has destroyed you camp. Motocamping tends not to be so remote that you can't survive long enough to get back to town. If there are no bear boxes, I hang every thing when possible or store it at least 100 yards from my tent. But that is just the way I've done it for a number of years, please do what you feel works best for you.
    #78
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  19. ADV Wanderer

    ADV Wanderer Been here awhile

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    But... I need my coffee in the morning! :drink
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  20. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    I got to watch one of the bears at the Discovery Center get into a bear resistant ice chest - Yeti or Pelican or similar ice chest that was locked shut with a padlock. It took the bear a few minutes to work a claw under the lid and rip it off the reach the treat inside - some honey and salmon. Most bear cannisters work well but the square blue plastic one with the screw on lid (I forget the brand name) failed one time but still kept its bear proof certification. I have one of barrel style ones that hasn't failed but it almost defeats me getting inside - it's a PITA to open.
    #80