North west riders weigh in; Firearm for bear country travel (Montana)

Discussion in 'Americas' started by 5 speed, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. Chrismcp12

    Chrismcp12 Been here awhile

    Mar 9, 2013
    EVOO... and lots of butter.

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
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  2. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

    Aug 16, 2004
    CA dez (it's a dry heat)/West Yellowstone,MT
    Kind of apropo. After posting, I went for a mountain bike ride on the Continental Divide trail west of West Yellowstone. Jumped a bear on my way back - I think it was a grizzly but my 2 second view of half a sprinting bear body prevented positive ID though I did get an image of a similarly colored bear in the same area with my hunting cam. So in 4 bear encounters on single track in the last 3 years, obnoxious noise has proven effective in running off bears. Once was the noise of a dirt bike and the other 3 times were my lousy boisterous trail songs designed to alert forest animals of my approach. Being incapable of good singing, I have no idea whether artistically performed beautiful songs would attract or repel those same bears. I'm just grateful my song repels them (so far).

    My original lyrics:
    "Oh bear, please don't kick my ass
    All I wanna do is pass
    If you're gonna eat me, wait a bit
    Because if you eat me now, I'll taste like shit."
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  3. Zubb

    Zubb he went that-a-way... Supporter

    Sep 8, 2002
    San Diego
    Years ago reading Lewis and Clarks journal entries I was amazed to read they somewhat 'discovered' Grizzly's. These monsters mostly got pissed off when you shot them. It took a lot of guys and a lot of rifles to put em down. I highly recommend reading their journals


    Nov 1, 2008
    GFY, Montana
    Good friend of mine is hiking with about 5 other grown men. ALL are carrying bear-grade handguns, which are holstered. All of these guys grew up hunting, gun enthusiasts, level-headed smart guys that know their stuff. Some are military Veterans.

    Black bear cub wanders in front of them. Whole group stops, silent. Mom brown bear RIPS out of the bushes, charges the group from about 100+ feet away from where she was (they didn't even see her through the brush / trees).

    She did was is called a MOCK CHARGE. Since they ALL froze, and didn't make a sound, Mama Bear screetched to a stop about 40 - 50 feet away. Then sauntered off herding her cub off the trail.

    All 6 guys are AMAZED that they didn't even have time for one of them to draw their gun.

    That is the amazing part that my friend told me who was there. They were all just amazed that not a single man even drew. They were all so shocked that she shot out of the woods so fast, no one had time to think.

    Just something to think about. Chance favors the prepared mind, but it's an interesting story to keep in mind.
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  5. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

    Jul 18, 2002
    Over the bridge of sighs..
    Indeed it is....
  6. Tewster2

    Tewster2 Long timer Supporter

    Jun 17, 2011
    DeLand Flatistan a high risk situation a holstered firearm is's a proven statistic that when faced with a deadly force situation you only 1.3 seconds to get the first shot off (based on the 21 foot rule that a person with a knife/animal charging from that distance you only have 1.3 seconds to draw and fire)...the guys should have been walking with their firearms in their hands at low ready if they really wanted a chance to defend themselves.
  7. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

    Apr 5, 2011
    Western Sierras
    That worked out well. It would suck to kill a momma bear and leave the cubs to starve, when all she was doing was a mock charge. Had she actually attacked one of them, the others could have shot her.

    There have been people who drew their weapon, fired multiple shots, and survived what was likely going to be an attack, in less time than that.
  8. Wreckchecker

    Wreckchecker Ungeneer to broked stuff. Supporter

    Dec 18, 2008
    Damascus, MD
    So it was a fake charge or it wasn't.

    Fake - If any of them had gotten off a shot, that fake charge would have turned into a real one. Or - They would have left an orphaned cub for no reason.

    Real - Walking with a hand near a holstered pistol all the time is not natural. Btdt and it doesn't happen for long periods of time in the real world. If hunting, you carry your weapon drawn, which has it's own down-sides for what was just a hike. Carrying a rifle or shotgun and being surprised like that, most hunters can tell stories about how easy to watch a deer or any other animal flush from right next to them and never get a shot off too.

    I'm fairly experienced and stay proficient shooting. There are times for a gun, such as when the smell of blood is in the air near an accident. But all of this reinforces my belief that for just getting around in the bush, I'll stay with the spray and keep it in hand.
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