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Re: Bear Spray

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avatar Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 10:46AM
Hikers and campers venturing into bear country this spring may be safer armed with 8-ounce cans of bear pepper spray than with guns:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080325171221.htm

avatar Re: Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 11:35AM
It would be considered a weapon and not legal in Yosemite NP. I specifically asked a ranger last summer. He also said why bother with black bears.

My understanding about NPS regulations is that bear pepper spray is only allowed if the park superintendent approves it. I think a grizzly bear population is likely why it's approved in some parks. Bear pepper spray was sold in gift shops on my visit to Grand Teton and Yellowstone in 2006. A naturalist leading a hike carried a can in a holster.

I was also listening to a group of GT rangers talking about the bear spray they were issued. One said that he thought that he'd be more likely to use it on a person (defending himself) than on a bear.

avatar Re: Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 11:57AM
y_p_w wrote:

> It would be considered a weapon and not legal in Yosemite NP.
> I specifically asked a ranger last summer. He also said why
> bother with black bears.


Yeah, there's not need with black bears.

avatar Re: Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 12:37PM
eeek wrote:

> y_p_w wrote:
>
> > It would be considered a weapon and not legal in Yosemite NP.
>
> > I specifically asked a ranger last summer. He also said why
> > bother with black bears.
>
>
> Yeah, there's not need with black bears.

I think a predatory attack is exceedingly rare. However - simply fighting back is supposed to be quite effective against black bears. Most of the cases I've heard are where the victims were freaked out and probably thought the best thing would be to stay still until the attack was over.

avatar Re: Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 02:12PM
i've read about this in the past quite a bit, and after coversing with others on other forums, i've concluded that pepper spray in many cases attracts bears! (the scent of the spray)... so rather than carry something that may be illegal in National parks (as someone mentioned to earlier), i personally carry a small air horn, small enough to carry in a fanny pack (something quick and easy to get to). you can buy them at Walmart (in the boating or camping sections).
Re: Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 05:26PM
forrestranger wrote:

> i've read about this in the past quite a bit, and after
> coversing with others on other forums, i've concluded that
> pepper spray in many cases attracts bears! (the scent of the
> spray)... so rather than carry something that may be illegal in
> National parks (as someone mentioned to earlier), i personally
> carry a small air horn, small enough to carry in a fanny pack
> (something quick and easy to get to). you can buy them at
> Walmart (in the boating or camping sections).

The bear spray really only has an odor if it has been used; otherwise it is basically sealed. Anyway, if it has already been used once, it should be discarded - the cannisters are essentially single-use devices.

We always pack them in Yellowstone / Tetons. Never had to use them. Hope to never have to. For black bears, I would not bother. Nobody has ever been killed by a blackie in Yosemite, and they've never given me the tiniest trouble in many dozens of visits.

I am puzzled as to why the park super considers them weapons, when they are essential gear in grizz country. Oh well - humans are nothing if not inconsistent.





Wilderness forever,
Bruce Jensen
avatar Re: Bear Spray
March 26, 2008 07:39PM
bpnjensen wrote:

> forrestranger wrote:
>
> > i've read about this in the past quite a bit, and after
> > coversing with others on other forums, i've concluded that
> > pepper spray in many cases attracts bears! (the scent of the
> > spray)... so rather than carry something that may be illegal
> in
> > National parks (as someone mentioned to earlier), i
> personally
> > carry a small air horn, small enough to carry in a fanny pack
> > (something quick and easy to get to). you can buy them at
> > Walmart (in the boating or camping sections).

It's basically concentrated capsicum pepper. Once it dissipates, it's going to smell like spicy food, which can be an attractant for animals. Only the full strength out of the can is going to serve as an extreme irritant.

> The bear spray really only has an odor if it has been used;
> otherwise it is basically sealed. Anyway, if it has already
> been used once, it should be discarded - the cannisters are
> essentially single-use devices.

Some recommendations I've heard are to test spray to see if it's leaked and/or to get practice. I've even heard of some bear spray manufacturers that sell cans of inert liquid for technique training.

https://store.udap.com/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=P&Product_Code=12-I&Category_Code=BS



> We always pack them in Yellowstone / Tetons. Never had to use
> them. Hope to never have to. For black bears, I would not
> bother. Nobody has ever been killed by a blackie in Yosemite,
> and they've never given me the tiniest trouble in many dozens
> of visits.

If it ever happened, just fight back with all you've got. Probably wouldn't deter a brown (grizzly, Kodiak, etc) bear, but most accounts are that black bears don't like a physical struggle. Same goes for mountain lions.

> I am puzzled as to why the park super considers them weapons,
> when they are essential gear in grizz country. Oh well -
> humans are nothing if not inconsistent.

They're considered weapons by most state laws. Basically it's up to the park superintendent as to whether or not they allow an exception to the standard NPS regulations that don't allow dangerous weapons. Of course campers/backpackers bring in knives, but I don't know when they are considered weapons. There's a Yosemite Superintendents regulation that allows a pack leader to carry a weapon, but only to put down an injured animal.
Re: Bear Spray
March 27, 2008 11:09PM
I considered getting a can of bear spray a few years back, when I was relatively new to Yosemite. After reading both sides of the issue, I chose not to, and after the few bears I've encountered while hiking, would not carry it if I had it.

Aside from the fact that it's really not needed, there are too many things that can go wrong when using it. Just give the bear some respect and try to stay out of his way, and there shouldn't be any issues. If there is, stand your ground or fight back in the unlikely event it's necessary, and don't run.

Last night at the Lodge a ranger told a story of a friend who had gone ahead of his buddies hiking, and along a narrow trail with thick brush on both sides. They found him in a clearing lighting a hastily-assembled torch to scare away the bear that was 'chasing' him. Then a mother and cub walked calmly by them and on up the trail. The narrow trail basically required that the bear walk on it to get where she was going, and he kept looking back and seeing a bear, which led him to conclude she was after him. So he'd run up the trail, and naturally, here came the bear, still going where she was going.





Gary
Yosemite Photo Galleries: http://www.pbase.com/roberthouse/yo
Anonymous User
Re: Bear Spray
April 27, 2009 12:48AM
Bear pepper spray has been proven to be effective, and is unlikely to cause residual injury to healthy
bears when used properly. When activated, it fires a highly concentrated fog barrier of pepper ingredients.
It is designed for one-handed operation, and is proven to work on wild animals.
Re: Bear Spray
April 15, 2018 09:14AM
Personally, I think that the material is overrated. My hunters tried it https://bestoutdooritems.com/best-bear-spray/ on bears with little luck. Only one bear from about half a dozen actually reacted as if it were affected by it.
How many attacks this stopped, I'm surprised. It would be interesting to know. The chances that you will get it in your hand when you need it are also thin. My thoughts on this. Watch this video, how people used it on a living example Embaressed


Re: Bear Spray
April 16, 2018 11:23AM
Quote
0tl6ic
Personally, I think that the material is overrated. My hunters tried it https://bestoutdooritems.com/best-bear-spray/ on bears with little luck. Only one bear from about half a dozen actually reacted as if it were affected by it.
How many attacks this stopped, I'm surprised. It would be interesting to know. The chances that you will get it in your hand when you need it are also thin. My thoughts on this. Watch this video, how people used it on a living example Embaressed


Where your hunters trying it on bears just for the heck of it or were they in danger of attack or were the bears tearing up things in your camp? Are you sure your hunters were using it correctly? Hopefully your hunters are not going to use it in national parks for the heck of it since that would be in violation of park rules on harassing animals. Although deterrents are not effective all of the time, every research article I have read has said that pepper spray is an excellent deterrent. When in grizzly country, I always carry my bear spray on the front strap of my backpack or if I am not wearing a backpack, on my hip so it is easily available at all times and I have the Velcro on the carrying case opened so I can get the can out quickly. One mistake many people make is carrying it inside of their backpack or someplace on their back where it is not easy reached. I am really surprised that the rangers in Yellowstone didn't control the crowd so they would not get that close to the bears. Every time I have been in a park where rangers were there with crowds, they told the people to move further away and not try to move the bears. Ummmm
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