What Kind of Bear is That?
Hiking in Bear Country
If You Encounter a Bear
Camping and Bears
|If You Encounter a Bear?||
A commonly asked question is "What do I do if I run into a bear?" There is no easy answer. Like people, bears react differently to each situation. The best thing you can do is to make sure you have read all the suggestions for hiking and camping in bear country and follow them. Avoid encounters by being alert and making noise.
Bears may appear tolerant of people and then attack without warning. A bears body language can help determine its mood. In general, bears show agitation by swaying their heads, huffing, and clacking their teeth. Lowered head and laid-back ears also indicate aggression. Bears may stand on their hind legs or approach to get a better view, but these actions are not necessarily signs of aggression. The bear may not have identified you as a person and is unable to smell or hear you from a distance.
If you surprise a bear, here are a few guidelines to follow that may help:
This kind of attack is very rare but can be very serious because it often means the bear is looking for food and preying on you.If you are attacked at night or if you feel you have been stalked and attacked as prey, try to escape. If you can not escape, or if the bear follows, use pepper spray, or shout and try to intimidate the bear with a branch or rock. Do whatever it takes to let the bear know you are not easy prey.
|Camping and Bears||Odors attract bears. Our campground and developed areas can remain
"unattractive" to bears if each visitor manages food and trash properly.
Regulations require that all edibles (including pet food), food containers (empty or not),
and cookware (clean or not) be stored in a hard-sided vehicle or food locker when not in
use, day or night.
This aerosol pepper derivative triggers temporary incapacitating discomfort in bears. It is a non-toxic and non-lethal means of deterring bears.
There have been cases where bear spray apparently repelled aggressive or attacking bears, and accounts where it has not worked as well as expected.
Factors influencing effectiveness include distance, wind, rainy weather, temperature extremes, and product shelf life.
If you decide to carry bear spray, use it only in situations where aggressive bear behavior justifies its use. Under no circumstances should bear spray create a false sense of security or serve as a substitute for standard safety precautions in bear country.
Bear spray should not be confused with anti-personnel defense sprays. Anti-personnel defense sprays are not suited for bears. Likewise, bear spray is intended as a deterring mechanism for bears, not humans.
Some brands of bear spray may
be transported across the U.S./Canada
border while others may not; check before attempting.
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