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Bear spray?

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Re: Bears in Yellowstone

Postby Bob Sihler » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:16 am

mrh wrote:
Bob Sihler wrote:


And if this is accurate, it seems the bear should not have been killed and that humans, though not the victim, were responsible for the attack: http://www.examiner.com/x-53313-Bear-Attack-Examiner~y2010m7d29-Poor-excuse-for-killing-grizzly-bear


There is a lot more to this story. I don't know if the bear should have been killed, but the attack was largely the fault of the victim. They had been trapping and collaring bears in the area for a month. They had signs warning people. This happened on the last day soon after the trappers had cleared out and pulled down the signs. The victim wasn't an innocent who happened to walk up there after the signs were gone. He had watched the trappers go by for a month and according to family and friends was very curious about the operation. A noted bear expert was his friend directly told him to stay away from the area. He went up anyway. Judging from the time the trappers left the bear and when the coroner said the attack would have happened, its apparent the victim walked up on a bear who was fully awake, but was still drugged. Its not good to surprise a bear, but especially one on drugs who has just had an unpleasant experience with humans. They should have left the signs up longer, perhaps a few days. There is a big investigation and I'm sure that will be a change made. But the victim knew he shouldn't be there and had been told specifically not to walk up there. His family described him a "bull headed".

I read the official report on this including the written statements of all involved. It was a huge report and I don't think I have it anymore, but if anyone wants to read it, I'll see if I can find it.

Edit: The report I mentioned or one very similar to it is provided by linc in the article given above.


Thanks for that great information! It really adds to this and increases my sadness about what happened to the bear.
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Postby CBakwin » Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:31 pm

foweyman wrote:This is how they collect bear spray

Image


Foweyman - I believe you're mistaken, that photo shows the collection of a product introduced to compete with the popular "Cheese Whiz". It was named "Bear Whiz" and never really got off the ground commercially.
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Postby mfox79 » Mon Aug 02, 2010 2:09 pm

Bob, Idaho Mountain Trading is located in Downtown Idaho Falls Get off at the City Center Exit or Broadway take a right and drive over the bridge take a left on Shoup this will be the fourth street after the bridge or second one way street after the bridge follow it down for two blocks and it will be on the right hand corner. the address is 474 Shoup. Hope that helps and have fun!
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holster

Postby jimegan » Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:16 pm

Be sure to get a holster with the spray canister! I've seen folks toss the spray in their backpack and start digging/searching when they need to have some defense...it needs to be readily accessible
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Re: holster

Postby BobSmith » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:26 am

jimegan wrote:Be sure to get a holster with the spray canister! I've seen folks toss the spray in their backpack and start digging/searching when they need to have some defense...it needs to be readily accessible


Oh, yeah. I'll make sure we both have holsters. I'm a letter carrier and I know to have that pepper spray at hand when the dogs attack.
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Postby BobSmith » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:26 am

mfox79 wrote:Bob, Idaho Mountain Trading is located in Downtown Idaho Falls Get off at the City Center Exit or Broadway take a right and drive over the bridge take a left on Shoup this will be the fourth street after the bridge or second one way street after the bridge follow it down for two blocks and it will be on the right hand corner. the address is 474 Shoup. Hope that helps and have fun!


Yep! That'll do it! Thanks!
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Postby BobSmith » Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:34 pm

I thought that I'd update this to let you guys know what happened.

I bought the bear spray in Idaho Falls. As it turned out, the price in and around Yellowstone was exactly the same as what I paid. So if you're worried about getting gouged in the park or close to it...well, I just didn't see that as a problem.

Second thing is that I packed up the spray and put it in my checked luggage on the way home and it wasn't removed. Even though they put the luggage through an X-ray. So I guess it's okay to do that, as Bob Sihler had indicated.
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Postby Clark_Griswold » Sun Aug 29, 2010 5:34 pm

Where did you backpack in the park? I did a short trip there 2 weeks ago and saw no wildlife in the "back country". I stepped out back onto the road, and bam!, a bear traffic jam right on the road! It was especially ironic since I was talking to the rangers about how the wildlife doesn't hang out around the roads, people have to go into the back country to see it. Not for me, apparently.

Back country animals observed: 0
Roadside animals observed with other car tourists:
Moose: 4
Bear: 3
Bison: hundreds
Pronghorn, Mule Deer, Elk: too many to count
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Postby Arthur Digbee » Sun Aug 29, 2010 8:20 pm

studmuffin451 wrote: It was especially ironic since I was talking to the rangers about how the wildlife doesn't hang out around the roads, people have to go into the back country to see it. Not for me, apparently.

Back country animals observed: 0
Roadside animals observed with other car tourists:
Moose: 4
Bear: 3
Bison: hundreds
Pronghorn, Mule Deer, Elk: too many to count


As you probably suspect, the rangers you spoke to don't know what they're talking about. Most of the roads were *designed* to go through prime wildlife habitat. Your experience is typical.

By late summer, wildlife is in the higher country (like Mirror Plateau) so they are somewhat harder to see from the road.
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Postby BobSmith » Mon Aug 30, 2010 6:32 pm

studmuffin451 wrote:Where did you backpack in the park?


I bagged Avalanche Peak in the eastern part of the park, and Washburn in the central part. I saw no wildlife at all on Avalanche, but I did photograph a griz just before I started the hike up. I saw a herd of Bighorn sheep on Washburn, about 500 vertical feet from the summit. I also saw much wildlife on many of the other short hikes I took in the park, and around the roads. Similar to your own experiences.

I never did see a wolf, although I did see a coyote. I photographed two griz, one of them sleeping along the banks of the Lamar River. I photographed one black bear at close range, but that was in Tetons on Signal Mountain. He was eating berries and never once pulled his head out of the berry bushes to look at me.

Three moose, also in Tetons. I missed a moose in Lamar Valley by about two minutes. Another hiker showed me the photo he took right before I walked up.

Like you, hundreds of elk, deer, bison. Never did see a mule deer, but about a dozen or so blacktail deer. Some pronghorn, but not a lot. Didn't see a lot of them until my drive through Wyoming back to the airport in Utah.

Image
This is the sleeping griz in Lamar Valley, my favorite part of the park.
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Postby peakhugger » Tue Aug 31, 2010 3:47 am

BobSmith wrote:Never did see a mule deer, but about a dozen or so blacktail deer.


They are the same in Yellowstone, technically all mule deer.
http://fieldguide.mt.gov/detail_AMALC02010.aspx
http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=625196
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mule_deer
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Postby BobSmith » Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:14 am

peakhugger wrote:
BobSmith wrote:Never did see a mule deer, but about a dozen or so blacktail deer.


They are the same in Yellowstone, technically all mule deer.
http://fieldguide.mt.gov/detail_AMALC02010.aspx
http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=625196
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mule_deer


Well, then! I did see mule deer!
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Re: Bear spray?

Postby Bark Eater » Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:10 pm

Wanted to re-ignite this thread after my recent trip to Wyoming. When we visited Banff and Jasper Parks in 2001, I don't know if bear spray existed. I didn't know about it anyway.

Considering all the grizzly hype this year, I played it conservative and was shocked to plunk down my $45.99 in West Yellowstone for an 8-ounce can and holster. I then received all sorts of warnings not to leave this in a hot car or it could blow up.

First and foremost, I think the bear spray is a great idea. My problems are (1) retail cost and (2) packaging integrity.

Being a chemical engineer, I know darn well that a roughly 8-ounce aerosol can with 2% pepper oil and 98% propellant should cost about $5 to produce. Add in a buck for the holster. At 100% profit margin, these should retail for $12-15. So why do they charge 3x this price? Greed, liability insurance? Unscientifically I saw perhaps 10% of parties in the back country visibly carrying spray. I'm betting if the motive was really to protect the backpacking/hiking public, they could probably increase sales 5x by lowering the price point.

Second is package integrity. Responding to earlier posts about sneaking these past TSA in checked luggage: Hey, if the thing accidentally goes off in the cargo hold and you want to risk a $10,000 fine and possible jail time...be my guest. I'm certainly not going there. I heard a tale about one of these exploding inside a parked car and they totaled the car. Every time it got warm the pepper would come seeping out of the carpet and upholstery. So, if someone is going to charge an outrageous price for this, why can't they do some packaging engineering to make a secure container?

I left my spray with a friend of a friend in Jackson. Asked him if I could come by and get a loaner for my next trip to the area. Sounds like a good strategy for others.
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Re: Bear spray?

Postby trevbo » Thu Sep 01, 2011 9:28 pm

Here in Canada you can purchase a 225 gram (i think thats' 8 ounces) can of bearspray for $26 from MEC, I don't know if they are selling this at a loss or what to promote people using it... but check it out

http://www.mec.ca/AST/ShopMEC/HikingCamping/HealthSafety/OutdoorSafety/PRD~5025-357/frontiersman-bear-spray-1-225g-cannister.jsp

Even at $50 it's not a bad deal... is something that should last you for a few years. A bit of a pain to have to throw down $45 to $50 just for a short trip when flying into a particular area, so good idea to leave in storage with your buddy
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Re: Bear spray?

Postby Mountain Goat » Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:45 am

Florida Frank wrote:Wanted to re-ignite this thread after my recent trip to Wyoming. When we visited Banff and Jasper Parks in 2001, I don't know if bear spray existed. I didn't know about it anyway.


I've been carrying it since 2001. It's probably been on the market longer than that. I'm glad to say I've never had to use it.

First and foremost, I think the bear spray is a great idea. My problems are (1) retail cost and


They can charge whatever they want because people are terrified of bears. But it's still a good idea to carry it.

One guy I know uses an airhorn. Whenever he's in an area where there might be a surprise encounter, he just sounds it. Cheaper than spray and avoids the primary source of bad encounters.
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