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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The article fails to mention that just recently almost that many people have been killed, and eaten, outside the park. Many victims were served cajun-style to the horror of the meal's friends with the pepper spray. Do not rely on pepper spray if you value your life. I suggest .44Mag or at minimum .45ACP with FMJ.

Yellowstone Revealed: Death in Yellowstone
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Moral of the story: if you don't have a firearm make sure you have three professional biologists with multiple bear spray trainings and the super-duper and super expensive government cans of bear spray... And even then if the bear is in hyperphagia (every fall) you're screwed.
 

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" Of the 72 cases where persons sprayed bears to defend themselves, 50 (69%) involved brown bears, 20 (28%) black bears, and 2 (3%) polar bears. Red pepper spray stopped bears' undesirable behavior 92% of the time when used on brown bears, 90% for black bears, and 100% for polar bears. Of all persons carrying sprays, 98% were uninjured by bears in close-range encounters. "
 

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I ain't going to be in the 8-10% of bear attacks that pepper spray fails. The stakes are too damn high.
How many failures happen with using a gun when attacked by a bear? Problems happen whether armed with bear spray or guns. I personally would have both while in grizzly country. but your statements are not supported by anything more than your opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
How many failures happen with using a gun when attacked by a bear? Problems happen whether armed with bear spray or guns. I personally would have both while in grizzly country. but your statements are not supported by anything more than your opinion.
Unless the individual is undergunned a firearm is 100% effective since bears are a melee not ranged weapon. I like, but don't use, the new chest holsters since when attacked by a bear a person's natural response is to curl up. If you miss from a matter of inches, well, I guess that could be called suicide.
 

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Unless the individual is undergunned a firearm is 100% effective since bears are a melee not ranged weapon. I like, but don't use, the new chest holsters since when attacked by a bear a person's natural response is to curl up. If you miss from a matter of inches, well, I guess that could be called suicide.
A gun is only 100 percent effective if you get in a kill shot. That does not happen all the time. Guns are just a tool and not always the best one when encounter a bear. Deterrents are situational and from the studies, one is not better than another.

Here is another study by the same people who authored the report on bear spray. This one is on guns as a deterrent.


"Moreover, firearm bearers suffered the same injury rates in close encounters with bears whether they used their firearms or not. Bears were killed in 61% (n = 162) of bear-firearms incidents. Additionally, we identified multiple reasons for firearms failing to stop an aggressive bear. Using logistic regression, the best model for predicting a successful outcome for firearm users included species and cohort of bear, human activity at time of encounter, whether or not the bear charged, and if fish or game meat was present. "
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey, your life is yours. If you want to rely on questionably effective non-lethals when dealing with a super predator, that's your choice. I want something that has the potential to actually stop a killer bear in it's tracks not make it ask if you have and chips and guac for it's appetizer.

Edit to add: I actually deal with black and grizzly bears on a regular basis on my homestead. That 8-10% failure rate would, positivity, catch up with me. Nope, nope, nope. Just a few months ago a had to put a shot in the ground when a sow grizzly and two yearling cubs wouldn't stop approaching me.... Not 100yds from m home.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
What we haven't taking about is getting training with both. Me, I've never discharged a can of pepper spray but I did start shooting, competitively at 12YO. Even back then I could hold my own against the rich kids with Auschwitz target rifles while I was shooting a Ruger 1022. Any bear that wants to eat me will find the tables turned.
 

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I have no problem with what you do to protect yourself. I just believe that you don't have all the answers or even as much experience as others.

I lived 8 years in Glacier National Park in Canada where I hiked almost daily and dealt with grizz and blacks/browns on a daily basis. I lived in and around Whistler Canada for 12 years where I also encountered blacks and grizzlies several times a year. I then spent 3 years on the edge of Yellowstone where we also had bears on the property on a weekly basis. I have another almost 20 years in the mountains close to Jackson Wyoming where bears are the norm. I also have 20 acres in SW Montanna where again bears are the norm. I have been trapped by a grizz in a pool and had it shot as it was coming in to get us. I have had bears on the porches and even had my husband wrestle a cougar under one of our buildings to save our dog.

That is over 40 years of living in bear country and I still know that I am no expert. I would take bear spray over nothing any day because it has been proven to be very effective.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have no problem with what you do to protect yourself. I just believe that you don't have all the answers or even as much experience as others.

I lived 8 years in Glacier National Park in Canada where I hiked almost daily and dealt with grizz and blacks/browns on a daily basis. I lived in and around Whistler Canada for 12 years where I also encountered blacks and grizzlies several times a year. I then spent 3 years on the edge of Yellowstone where we also had bears on the property on a weekly basis. I have another almost 20 years in the mountains close to Jackson Wyoming where bears are the norm. I also have 20 acres in SW Montanna where again bears are the norm. I have been trapped by a grizz in a pool and had it shot as it was coming in to get us. I have had bears on the porches and even had my husband wrestle a cougar under one of our buildings to save our dog.

That is over 40 years of living in bear country and I still know that I am no expert. I would take bear spray over nothing any day because it has been proven to be very effective.
Thanks for that great reply, it's good to hear from others with RL experiences- I still wouldn't classify 91% as very effective though
 

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Memory of the attack in The Revenant as I read through this thread. We only have black bear around here with an occasional "cinnamon" which seem to have all kinds of tales associated with the color variation. Fortunately I've never had an experience in which a bear did anything but try to get away quickly. I count that as a win but am still cautious. What I am much more concerned with are the big kitty cats.
 

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Would you guys say bear spray is pretty effective with curious bears who maybe aren't that hungry? But maybe they're more impetuous when hungry, or when guarding? That's how dogs are sometimes, even the smart ones. I've seen dogs blow right by underground fencing without a peep when normally they yipped. I also saw one blast the rivets off an aluminum door panel on his way through the door just to get to prey that wasn't even there anymore.

On the other hand I have basically zero experience with bears. I saw a couple black bear cubs once when I was out helping a friend scout for deer hunting. We saw the one by the ATV trail on our way out, very quietly walked down the hill back to camp. Saw another right by the road near camp, tripping its way into the woods. We figured with the one at least 70 yards ahead of mom while the other straggled across the road, momma bear was probably already fed up with the cubs. We got out of there before she got tired of us too.

Our dumb arses maybe had knives? I know I had one, not sure he even had that.
 

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I'm not going to debate if a gun or bear spray is better for self protection against bear but I will point out that it's illegal to fire a gun in Yellowstone National Park.

"Can I shoot my gun?"

"In a word, no. The overarching permission that allows guns in Yellowstone doesn’t note the range of additional rules surrounding the presence of firearms in the park. The most important caveat is that visitors aren’t allowed to shoot them. Hunting is strictly forbidden in Yellowstone, as is target practice. And visitors should not use guns as self-defense against large wildlife, but rather carry bear spray and take other safety precautions. Firearms are also prohibited in facilities like visitor centers and government offices. These locations are labeled at all public entrances."


"the discharge of firearms remain prohibited in Yellowstone."

 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I'm not going to debate if a gun or bear spray is better for self protection against bear but I will point out that it's illegal to fire a gun in Yellowstone National Park.

"Can I shoot my gun?"

"In a word, no. The overarching permission that allows guns in Yellowstone doesn’t note the range of additional rules surrounding the presence of firearms in the park. The most important caveat is that visitors aren’t allowed to shoot them. Hunting is strictly forbidden in Yellowstone, as is target practice. And visitors should not use guns as self-defense against large wildlife, but rather carry bear spray and take other safety precautions. Firearms are also prohibited in facilities like visitor centers and government offices. These locations are labeled at all public entrances."


"the discharge of firearms remain prohibited in Yellowstone."

The right to self defense trumps bureaucractic regulations. Not to mention, I'm sure that that archaic regulation will be challenged in light of the recent supreme court decision if it's enforced now.
 

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"Firearms are not a substitute for proper bear avoidance practices and knowing how to properly handle a bear encounter.

Bear spray is the recommended tool for self defense against a bear.
Bear spray is easy to use without much experience, and it’s a highly effective tool for stopping or deterring attacks.

The NPS strives to protect wildlife populations. If a firearm is effectively used during an encounter, it can be lethal for the bear, while bear spray allows the bear to likely remain in the population.

If a firearm is used in self-defense against a bear, contact park authorities immediately. Federal regulations prohibit the use or discharge of any weapon within a park area. The applicability of a state statute pertaining to self-defense in a wildlife encounter may vary state to state and by park area and will generally take into account any provoking or negligent actions by the person."

It looks like the park service will assume you were negligent or provoking an attack if you shoot a bear.

I would not want to be the one to test either the pepper spray or the shoot the bear actions.
 

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"Firearms are not a substitute for proper bear avoidance practices and knowing how to properly handle a bear encounter.

Bear spray is the recommended tool for self defense against a bear.
Bear spray is easy to use without much experience, and it’s a highly effective tool for stopping or deterring attacks.

The NPS strives to protect wildlife populations. If a firearm is effectively used during an encounter, it can be lethal for the bear, while bear spray allows the bear to likely remain in the population.

If a firearm is used in self-defense against a bear, contact park authorities immediately. Federal regulations prohibit the use or discharge of any weapon within a park area. The applicability of a state statute pertaining to self-defense in a wildlife encounter may vary state to state and by park area and will generally take into account any provoking or negligent actions by the person."
Are you even allowed to carry in Yellowstone?
 
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