redhawk for walking in bear country.

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sharpblade7777

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jan 26, 2008
Messages
434
Location
north carolina
I am retired and take a 4 mile walk in the morning sometimes leaving before it get light. We seem to have an overabundance of bears around here in western north carolina. I have had several come out in the road when I'm walking, some just maybe 20 yards away and so far they have all just looked at me and gone on their way. Bear hunting season opened a few days ago and yesterday some hunters killed one that weighed almost 400 pounds just accross the road from my house. I have seen 5 in my yard. I always carry some kind of handgun in my pants, always an inside the waist holster. Usually I just carry a 9mm or a 357 snubnose but recently bought a 44 redhawk with the 4 inch barrel. I thought I couldn't carry that in my pants but today just for the heck of it, I have been carrying it around stuffed in my waistline and got to thinking it was not much of a burden so ordered an inside the waist holster for it from fist holsters. I believe I may have found the perfect outfit for walking in my black bear country. Can't wait to try it out.
 

maxpress

Buckeye
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Messages
1,280
Location
Central Washington
nothin wrong with a 240gr swc at about 1200 for the size your talking about. when i was in alaska the guides carried a short 12g with #4 then slug. the idea was to hit the bear in the face quick and take out most of its senses then line up with the slugs and drop it.
 

Quarterbore

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 9, 2008
Messages
904
Location
Valley Forge PA
I carried my 5.5-inch 45 Colt hiking a bit but decided the weight was a bit more then I wanted and the bigger threat I face is 2-legged critters. So, I gave up carrying the redhawk and I went back to the Glock 20 and this load:

http://www.doubletapammo.com/php/ca...ucts_id=105&osCsid=ldqfh6c98nhm2v6280nmmjcnm7

Sure, heavy 45 Colts individually have more punch but 15 of these things will get the job done on the typical PA black bear :wink: They shoot well through my Glock 20 too.
 

sharpblade7777

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jan 26, 2008
Messages
434
Location
north carolina
I surely believe that glock 20 with that many rounds would do the job. I have 4 glocks, 3 9mm's and a 45. Also have a new vaquero with the 4 5/8 inch barrel which I carried a few times but there is something so reassuring bout that redhawk. :)
 

Swampbilly

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jul 29, 2007
Messages
235
Since you're not hunting, and mostly for personal protection while out on casual walks, I would recommend, as a first level deterent, a good shot of potent bear spray. You're more likely to hit it...read stories of poorly placed shots in bears by the inexperienced and PO'd bears on you.

The "if all else fails" option...myself, I chose the Ruger Redhawk 44 magnum.


Regards,

MD
 

Knuckles

Buckeye
Joined
Jan 8, 2007
Messages
1,219
Make sure you can pull that Redhawk out of your holster as fast as lightning... 'cause that's about how fast Black Bears can charge.

There was a post here not long ago about the same scenario for this feller in Alaska... an ol' bore griz' came at him from the woods and he squeaked out 2 maybe 3 shots from the hip. (he wasn't sure but the last shot of .454Cas. dropped him).

That's a slower griz'... not a Black.

I bought the same gun you did in .45lc and will be carrying in a "Simply Rugged" OWB pancake style.
 

Redhawk4

Single-Sixer
Joined
Nov 3, 2008
Messages
124
Location
UT
Good choice of weapon, I'd recommend a simply rugged pancake holster for a comfortable carry and quick access, I think some spray would also be a good idea.
 

Knuckles

Buckeye
Joined
Jan 8, 2007
Messages
1,219
gramps":sc5kxpq1 said:
Sorry guys, I just don't see me drawing a can of pepper spray and finding the tiny nozzle to depress faster than a draw of a pistol.
gramps

+1 Gramps... it has been said that the grizzly, many times will give a heart-stopping "bluff-charge"... while if a black does not run away from you, something really bad is about to happen. :shock:
 

Calthrop

Single-Sixer
Joined
Sep 27, 2001
Messages
314
Location
Pima County Arizona
I would vote for the G20 also. Smooth packing and lots of shots. We do not have many bears yet we do have feral dogs, Mountain lion and the smaller cats. Closer to the Mexican Border and farther East are sign of Jaguar.

I think pepper spray may act as a deterrent or a tenderizer depending on which way the wind was blowing. The Redhawk in .44 or .45 would change the mind of a thirsty bear down form the mountains. Make enough noise to make him run home. Calthrop
 

hutchman

Blackhawk
Joined
Jan 8, 2006
Messages
865
Location
Benton City, WA
Bear Bells?

"Tell me something, mister," the hiker inquires, "how can you tell when
you're in bear territory, anyway?"

"By the scat," the old fellow replies, ringing up the hiker's purchases.

"Well, um, how can I tell if it's grizzly territory or black bear territory?"
the hiker asks.

"By the scat," the store owner replies.

"Well, what's the difference?" asks the hiker. "I mean, what's different
between grizzly scat and black bear scat?"

"The stuff that's in it," replies the store owner.

Getting a little frustrated, the hiker asks, "OK, so what's in grizzly bear
scat that isn't in black bear scat?" he asks, an impatient tone in his voice.


"Bear bells," replies the old man as he hands the hiker his purchases.

...sorry, I couldn't resist!
 

w5lx

Single-Sixer
Joined
Feb 25, 2002
Messages
334
Location
North Texas
MD":1y5p2n9p said:
Since you're not hunting, and mostly for personal protection while out on casual walks, I would recommend, as a first level deterent, a good shot of potent bear spray.


cid_1_1163572995web83008_mail_mud_y.jpg
 

BearBio

Buckeye
Joined
Oct 22, 2009
Messages
1,826
Location
Eastern Washington
This is my first post but I've been lurking for a while. Have Ruger autos, revolvers, rifles-at least 2 dozen total.

I'm a wildlife biologist who (guess what!) did my MS thesis on bear behavior. Live here in grizzly country (we have some; not a lot). I've seen about 2 dozen grizzlies and at least 100 black bears all in the WILD=not zoos and both here in the lower 48 and in Alaska. Been bluff charged once (black bear) and been bear-sprayed (hey, gotta test it, right?). Currently working in habitat restoration for species in danger (on several national committees). I can safely say, I've tranquilized more bears than most of the members have shot.

Regarding firearms for bears: A 458 is the minimum for grizzlies; anything less reduces the chance of success. Next down would be a 12 gauge with slugs, a .375 H & H, a .338 mag, and so on. NO HANDGUN is going to be more than marginally efficient on grizzlies. Personally, if I carry a firearm, it's a OM Vaquero with 325 gr @ about 1200 fps in 45 Colt. Refuge biologists in Alaska (who shoot multiple bears each year) carry 12 ga pumps with Brenneke slugs.

Black bears? Anything 357 or bigger in MOST areas. Certainly 41 Mag or better (My wife carries a Blackhawk in 41 Mag, again hardcast, heavy loads). Again, rifles are better, generally 30-06/308 on up with heavy bullet-for-caliber.

Personally, I prefer to carry bear spray. But (a big BUT) bears are fast! faster! and even faster! than you can imagine. Anything (pistol, rifle, spray) pretty much needs to be in your hands. The advantage to spray is you only have to be close and it spreads much faster than a shotgun does (It resists wind much more than you imagine).

Opinions vary and this is mine based on over 10 yrs experience dealing with sometimes large and dangerous animals. You mileage may vary!

BTW I recommend Steve Herrero's book on Bear Attacks: their causes and avoidance, although he has done some more recent research and published it in journals.
 

sharpblade7777

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jan 26, 2008
Messages
434
Location
north carolina
BearBio, Thanks for your input, I do believe you are very knowledgeable and do appreciate sharing with us. I see that this is your first post so welcome to the Ruger forums.:)
 

maxpress

Buckeye
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Messages
1,280
Location
Central Washington
welcome to the forum bearbio.

im in central washington and my theory is i carry a .44 vaquero for black bear and cougar. grizzly...yeah im pretty much pooched i figure.

when i lived in valdez ak. for a little. while i was driving into town a bear head came out of the brush on the side of the road way ahead of me so i started slowing. big mountains on the right, prince william sound and food on the left of the road. got stopped about 50yrds away from this thing and it just kept coming out of the brush. when it stopped and looked at me i think it nose was close to the center line and its but was on the fog line. i thought about my super black hawk and laughed. then started getting scared. i knew this thing could run faster than my little dodge pickup could backup and i didnt think it would take much to rip the door off. dont know if this was a kodiak or grizz and i dont care. it did keep going to go fishing though after a minute and i drove to work but i will always remember that monster staring me down.
 
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