At Any Given Time There are 250 black bears, 65 grizzlies in

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KIR

Blackhawk
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Mar 2, 2022
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645
I don't know anything about bears, but could a loud high pitched sound (air horn?) scare bears away? Just curious...
 

noahmercy

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jun 13, 2015
Messages
419
Location
Sheridan, WY
I don't know anything about bears, but could a loud high pitched sound (air horn?) scare bears away? Just curious...
100% dependent on the bear. I've seen video my buddy took of a 1,000+ pound Alaskan monster running off like his tail was on fire when a guide smacked two fist-sized rocks together a few times, and I've seen one continue walking towards a group of fishermen after someone plunked a 45-70 round right between its front paws and kicked a huge shower of gravel into it. We had a guide killed and eaten here in Wyoming a couple years ago after blasting the bruin full in the face with bear spray. And talking (off the books) with a couple G&F, Forestry Service, and BLM guys & gals, I get the impression that it's much like the situation with humans...some bears are more affected by the spray than others, and those which have been sprayed before are sometimes not as bothered by it each successive time. The question of efficacy aside, Wyoming is the windiest state in the USA, and there are times where spray would be more likely to incapacitate me, so I rely on something that throws 300+ grain chunks of metal. No bear immune or inured to that, and no wind is blowing 'em back in my face either! 😉
 

Ride1949

Buckeye
Joined
Dec 4, 2021
Messages
1,228
Location
Oregon
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Except bears. Bears will kill you.

The best defense against Bear attack is to STAY AWAY FROM BEARS.
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173rdLRRP

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 17, 2022
Messages
199
Location
Colorado
Saw Grizzlies-in BC and Denali just the way I want to see them: from inside an automobile on a good straight road with the engine running and good tires
 

BearBiologist

Blackhawk
Joined
Dec 4, 2021
Messages
653
I don't know anything about bears, but could a loud high pitched sound (air horn?) scare bears away? Just curious...
Fog horns have been shown to work but, like anything else, bears will get habituated. On the other hand, car alarms don't seem to bother them much!

There was an apiary in my study area and the bears got used to the electric fence. Most people are too paranoid about bears and will use deterrents too readily, be it spray, firecrackers, horns, rocks, dogs (BAD idea!), or firearms (can lead to legal issues!)
 
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outlaw_dogboy

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Aug 2, 2005
Messages
171
Location
Maryland, USA
I've camped with black bears in the area. This was in Shenandoah Nat'l Park. So, they weren't habituated to the possibility of being hunted (I don't know if it was legal in VA at the time, or even now, to hunt bear outside the Nat'l Parks). Sow with cubs. First saw them when we were out gathering dead wood for a fire. Don't know if they saw us (I'm guessing they did), but we stayed away from them, never had an issue. Took the appropriate measures to keep food inaccessible, didn't blanket the area with strong smells. Never had an issue. They were there the several days we were. We stayed clear when we saw them, if they got near us, I never knew it.
Next encounter was in Olympic NP, Washington. Walking down a trail with my recently pregnant wife. Came out of the woods into a clearing. Black bear. In my frightened eyes, he/she looked huge, but I'm guessing only between 200-300 lbs. We froze, wife started to turn and run. Stopped her, and backed away from the bear area immediately, keeping an eye on it, but otherwise doing nothing odd other than walking backwards. Never got anything more than the look from the bear. As soon as we were our of sight of the bear, we ran/quick-stepped out of there, back to the car, and went elsewhere. Only did more populated trails after that.
We were in Whistler in BC back in 2018. Coming down the mountain in a gondola suspended over the mountain-biking downhill trails (it was high summer), we see a black bear sow and 3 cubs. They're walking in the MB trails area. As we watch, they go behind a dirt hill that M-bikers were jumping over. Biker goes over the ramp, sow and all three cubs come running out as biker continues down-hill. None of the bears seemed to give the biker, or any others, a second look. Continue foraging in the same area, bikers continue biking, craziest thing I've seen.
We get to the bottom, and I call one of the staff aside and told him what we saw. He just kinda grinned funny, and said, "Oh, that happens occasionally." And that was it.
I know if I went over a jump on a mountain bike, and nearly hit a sow and/or cubs, it would be my last run of the day. Because my shorts, my seat, and probably my entire bike would need a steam cleaning.
So far I've never carried bear spray. I HAVE carried firearms when in an area that might have (black) bear, cougar, or coyote. Never have had to use it. Hope I never will. Nowadays, where I can, I'll likely have both (if I'm in a grizzley).
People have hunted and killed bears with smaller calibers (I'm talking 357Mag, 44 Spc, 243, even, I think). But hunting a bear is entirely different from defending yourself from a bear. Hunting, the bear is likely surprised at the impact, and his only thought is to get away, dying in the process. But if a bear is riled and intending to do harm, their adrenaline is already up, and they're going to be much more determined. Much harder to defend against. At least that is my thought. For myself, I don't want to hunt bear, defend against bear, nor season bear. Just leave them be, and let me be. I'm hoping to always keep it that way.
 

173rdLRRP

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 17, 2022
Messages
199
Location
Colorado
The aggressive bears in Yosemite are moved to back country once. Was Rick climbing in Yosemite Meadows 65 years ago and a large bear came through campground checking garbage cans. If nothing in them, he smacked it so it flew to end of keep down chain. We slept in car thereafter

Early next morning the car lurched hard and woke us up and thought we were being attacked by bear. It was Fred Beckey, the dean American climbers from 1938 till his death at age 93 several years ago harassing us and wanting to see if we wanted to head out with him on an excellent first ascent. We did.
 

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