fishing,hiking in bear country

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by 2tap, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. 2tap

    2tap New Member

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    I will be in bear country, I have pepper spray!! and two choices for firearms. 1st 357 mag 3" and 2nd 45 auto both capable of +p. I have a box of buffalo 180gr 1400 fps which gives a energy calcs 700 plus but the 45 230gr 950 fps gives better Taylor KO. This is you and your family these are the two guns you own and your only choices, what ammo would you use, which gun would you take and why.
  2. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    How long before you go? You may have time to get a 44mag and be better equipt. If those are the only choices, then go with the 357mag first and then carry a .45 for back-up. Buffalo Bore makes some very good ammo, good choice.

    Also, welcome to the forum, just noticed that that was your first post! Hope to cya around and see some pics of the bear country when you return.
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2011
  3. 2tap

    2tap New Member

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    thanks woolleyworm that made my choices very clear, I might as well take my 7mm Rem Mag and my riot 12 gauge also, better to be sure. Well 44mag yes but money is in short supply these days ( daughter in college ) and a second heading there, so I will not be spending money on myself anytime soon.
  4. RandyP

    RandyP Member

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    I'd take whichever firearm is loudest and hope that the boom gets the bear to go away. There are darn few handgun rounds that I'd rely upon to take down a charging bear, frankly not many rifle ones either - lol.

    I've read recommendations that wearing annoying bells in bear country also helps to avoid 'surprising' one at close quarters which often does not end well for the non-bear participants in the event.
  5. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    I would feel fairly comfortable with the 357 and a 45 for backup. Not sure what your experience level is with the great outdoors, but so long as you're very aware and keep your wits about you, you'll be fine. I'd be more worried about running into an angry moose than I would most bears, except for sneaking up on a momma bear.
  6. 2tap

    2tap New Member

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    RandyP
    loudest would be me screaming like a little girl, or the 357 plus I can shoot fire out the sides of the cylinder and barrel, so even If I don't hit them maybe I can burn um.
  7. Zhurh

    Zhurh Active Member

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    I see bear all the time soon as the snow melts, both blks & grizz. Our biggest problem with bear is them breaking into the cabin or busting up caches. Those buggers will sit and watch your comings & goings; real opportunists. Vast majority bear run at whiff of man, unless they have been conditioned by food or have never seen people before. Just have a gun, any gun. I usually have a short, light rifle so I can shoot at everything. Indians downriver, killed a polar bear 2 years back with AR-15, I know all their relatives and saw the pictures.

    I have 44's, 480's, and a couple 460's. The S&W 460 is by far superior to any 44. I had a 3/8 pipe. 44 just scratched it, 460 blew quarter size holes through it. 460 also reaches out much further with 200 grain, so much faster.

    Something else, Twice I have had blk bear put the sneak on me. They are always young males and come in with front quarters down and butt high, ears going like crazy back and forth; just like a cat sneaking up on a rabbit. The first time, I was able to wave & hollar the bear off, from like 6 feet, and then he came in a second time before walking off into the woods. He wasn't wanting me to pet him either. The second time, I shot the bear as he came in on me the same way from open brush. They came in real slow, didn't run in on me; so I had plenty of time. Two bear out of probably hundreds I have seen over the years, not much to worry about actually. I see less than a dozen grizz/year, mostly along the road at night and around salmon. I've never felt threatened by any of them yet; the ones close always look at me and walk on; honestly most are running full speed away. I really like watching them playing in the creek, bobbing up and down, ha.

    Set yourself up a bait station and get a game camera. My son comes home from school every May, before he starts working always shoots a bear. We use buttered pop corn in red onion bags in tree. works better than salmon in barrel. We usually have 10 or so bear coming in all night long to bait station; get over 100 pictures a night. If we had cell coverage here, the wife would buy a monitor to watch all the game cameras live 24/7,,, ha, no joke.

    I wouldn't worry so much about caliber, just have a gun with ya.
  8. hunter29180

    hunter29180 Well-Known Member

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    just remember Alaska troopers and wildlife management there all use 12 guage slug guns loaded with a noisemaker sometimes a rubber slug or straight slugs when expecting to encounter bears! they recommend a handgun of 44mag,454 casuel,or 500 caliber as the minumium..
  9. RandyP

    RandyP Member

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    This whole topic reminds me of how I describe scuba diving in shark waters. I only carry a tiny flat tipped dive knife on my BC and explain that I don't need it to defend myself.... just to nick my dive buddy so the shark gets him while I swim away - lol

    So always go into bear country with someone who cannot run as fast as you can.
  10. 308 at my gate

    308 at my gate New Member

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    I went into yellowstone last July and I carried a guide gun 45-70 with 350 gr bullets loaded in it. For a back up I also had a 44 mag. My brother in-law who I went with carried the same thing. We did not take any bear spray because we were on horse back and did not want any of it around the horses or mules. We spent five days out in tents and fished in a different spot every day. No problems and everything went fine. I did not go anywhere not even to relieve myself with out the 45-70 being right there with me.
  11. BETH

    BETH Well-Known Member

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    Zhurh how about some pictures of those critters
  12. Zhurh

    Zhurh Active Member

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    I posted all kinds of picts on here about a year back or so. I'll have to see if I can find my photobucket password. I use to take all kinds of picts, when we first came to our community so many years back. I never even take the camera nowadays. Everything has lost it's novelty I guess.

    Tell ya what's funny is bear up on their hind legs trying their best to break that onion bag of popcorn. I actually have some of those picts on cards for game camera. I also have a tape of a bear up close, like 5 feet. You can see the blk bear and the tips of my tennis shoes in frame; I was taking the cam pict and didn't realize how close the bear was.

    I've had a couple friends that were mauled, they hate all bear; will shoot them and let them lay. Also some of the Indians who were treed by grizz as they were walking to the bootleggers cabin. Indians always claim, bear only eat White People, but I've known a few Indians who were awful scared of bear and for good reason, ha ha.

    Another good bear story a friend once told me. This local guy had Indian wife, who eventually went back to her people & the booze. They had a cabin across the river and my friend would go over there to ponder why they didn't stay together and all. This guy was a pot head too. So he would sit over there and burn one. So anyway, soon as he was all high and all; this momma grizz shows up with 2 big cubs. He shoots her like 4-5 times, out of ammo, about flipping out and all. His dog was going crazy barking at the cubs who were hanging around circling my friend who only had his dog to protect him. He said it lasted only a couple of minutes. The cubs knew their momma was dead and they didn't like it but between the dog barking and the cubs age; they lost their integrity and wandered off into the woods. True story, and this guy is super good guy too, just so funny to hear him tell it.

    Sorry to get off track, on the reloading section, no more from me.
  13. JTofGPD

    JTofGPD New Member

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    If you aren't sure about the capability of your gun, get one of these.... always good to have a back up plan....
    [​IMG]
  14. mikld

    mikld Active Member

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    If I had to pick one of the two, I'd go with the .357 loaded with 180 gr. gas checked boolits up around 1000 fps...
  15. creektrails

    creektrails New Member

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    I hope your suggesting this to nick your buddy with. Because unless your brad pitt in legend of the fall Ill bet fighting a ticked bear with that will only make him grin.
  16. TheGunClinger

    TheGunClinger Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    I bought one of those things. I got some pics somewhere in my album. First thing I did was cut myself!

    2Tap.. If those were my choices I would take both.
  17. Buckshot

    Buckshot Active Member

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    Don't forget that the best gun in any situation is the one ready to hand. No one will argue that the best brown bear medicine is a big bore rifle or a 12 ga. with slugs. But it's much more difficult to have one ready to hand than a handgun in a holster, especially if you are involved in any other activity.

    Then comes the obvious answer that the absolute biggest handgun rounds available will be none too much for some large bears. And you've made it clear that for the time being you'll have to rely on something a fair bit smaller.

    If that weren't enough to give you a good pucker, here's one of the most sobering things I ever heard, and one of the best analogies, about defending oneself against a brown bear with a handgun. I wish I could remember the Alaskan guide that spoke these words.

    If you intend to defend yourself against a charging brown bear with a handgun you should consider the task you have taken on. Imagine that at whatever distance you first notice the charging bear, there is a champion NFL quarterback holding a football that he immediately throws at your head as soon as you make eye contact. Your job...is to draw your gun and shoot the football before it smashes you in the face.

    To say the least, all of my arm-chair illusions about defending myself against a determined, charging brownie with a handgun, any handgun, were pretty much shattered by that.

    Of course, like all of us, considering the alternative, I'd give it one hell of a try!
  18. redwing carson

    redwing carson Former Guest

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    So True. If attacked you are going to get hurt count on it. I know two fellows who lived thru Grizz attacks. They have both suffered thru countless operations and will never fully recover. Both were attacked while stalking elk. :eek:Good luck

    RC
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