Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

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Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby M-Quigley » Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:19 am

https://www.outdoorlife.com/how-i-survi ... SOC&dom=fb

He had a 10mm pistol and a can of bear spray. He chose to use the bear spray, and chose poorly.

Although the article was about a grizzly, or brown bear, I had a black bear encounter about a month ago, in Tenn. It was no uneventful I didn't post about it. I didn't get any pics or video, because my cell phone makes a noise when I click a picture. I also didn't want anything in my hands, just in case he (she?) charged. It was an adult black bear, no little ones with it. I don't know if a 200 grain .45 HP would've been effective if it had charged, but fortunately I didn't have to find out. :)

I also wasn't carrying bear spray because I had no idea there were any bears left in that part of Northeastern Tenn. Unlike the author of the article, I stayed still and as quiet as possible, not yelling or jumping up and down. It definitely saw me, but didn't seem to care.
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Re: Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby Brian D. » Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:47 am

Noticed that when the author eventually found and accessed his handgun, he cocked the hammer for whatever reason. I wonder if it was a 1911 that he hadn't been carrying in condition 1, a double action semiauto or revolver that he shouldn't have needed to cock to fire, or perhaps a single action revolver? Maybe it just gave him a bit more confidence.
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Re: Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby Javelin Man » Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:05 am

He wrote like a tree-hugging liberal, just give the bear what she wants and she won't bother you again! Even the second time! :roll:
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Re: Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby schmieg » Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:32 pm

He wonders what he did to deserve that! He didn't have to do anything except be in her territory. Bear Spray and bells might work with black bears most of the time, but the old saw about identifying grizzly scat is that it smells like pepper from the spray and has bells in it.

I carry a .460 Mag revolver when in bear country and I hope I never have to use it, but it would have been my first choice. Bear spray on a griz isn't better than nothing; it is nothing.
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Re: Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby calvin56 » Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:14 am

schmieg wrote:I carry a .460 Mag revolver when in bear country and I hope I never have to use it, but it would have been my first choice. Bear spray on a griz isn't better than nothing; it is nothing.


There is no handgun cartridge effective against grizzlies. Add to that the fact your target is so small and hard to hit. If you're picky about the spray and only choose one with a flammable propellant you have a flame thrower on your belt. Everybody I know that has fired on a grizzly has done so with a 12 gauge or at distance.
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Re: Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby M-Quigley » Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:26 am

calvin56 wrote:
schmieg wrote:I carry a .460 Mag revolver when in bear country and I hope I never have to use it, but it would have been my first choice. Bear spray on a griz isn't better than nothing; it is nothing.


There is no handgun cartridge effective against grizzlies. Add to that the fact your target is so small and hard to hit. If you're picky about the spray and only choose one with a flammable propellant you have a flame thrower on your belt. Everybody I know that has fired on a grizzly has done so with a 12 gauge or at distance.


Many moons ago when I was a teenager, I had the opportunity to spend some up in Northern Canada. Some of the local up there carried .44 magnum revolvers for bear protection. Not to replace a long gun, just in case they didn't have a long gun in their hands at the time. I don't know if a .44 magnum would've worked or not. I never saw any shot while I was there. I only saw one live one, but I and the person that I was with were watching it from an enclosed tractor type vehicle. I still got an up close look at it though, as at one point it stuck it's head up to my window. Judging from the size of that bear, I don't think I would've wanted to be outside with it period, particularly with a handgun. :shock:
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Re: Good luck if you're depending on bear spray in the woods

Postby Brian D. » Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:47 am

I carry a Glock model 20 (10mm) when in "bear country", and it's stoked with .41 magnum-equivalent 200 grain full metal jacket hand loads. Way more worried about penetration than any expansion, I sort of doubt any solid body hits would go all the way through even a black bear. Also here in the eastern U.S., there are other predatory animals in the mountains and elsewhere. Wild boar travel in packs (as do feral dogs, even here in Ohio). Mountain lions are seen occasionally; who knows what they might try if they get hungry enough or think you are threatening their young?

Any long gun brought along on the trip is probably going to be back in the vehicle, so it's pretty much up to what you have at hand.
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