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Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 18:40:01 MST Print View

Bob,
Any airport has to be able to receive mail, supplies, and parts. Somehow they get fuel in. They get solvents in spray cans.

I appreciate your search for alternative deterrents, but somewhere, somehow, I'm sure you can ship to your final airport. If you're talking about a final "in the brush" airstrip, I'll bet those guys know how to get it done.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife
UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 18:46:37 MST Print View

I've been sprayed in the face by a skunk. Unpleasant yes, but not enough of a deterrent for a motivated animal. I took a swing at it afterwards, with a shovel.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 19:38:32 MST Print View

Greg, there is no airport at my final destination. No fuel. No services. No post office. No store.

That is the nature of bush planes. They just land on whatever place they can, like a beach.

--B.G.--

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 19:43:05 MST Print View

Like I said, "I'll bet those guys know how to get it done." Protocol or no Protocol.

Edited by greg23 on 03/07/2010 19:43:46 MST.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife
UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 20:12:16 MST Print View

Well contact your pilot and ask him to supply you.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 20:27:27 MST Print View

Ken, I have no pilot, per se.

I have a paid reservation with an air service company. Further, I think they subcontract out the last air hop, so I don't even know the name of the company for the last air hop.

My best source of information will have to be NPS.

--B.G.--

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Re: Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 20:36:24 MST Print View

Call your air service and ask them what you're trying to ask here. I suspect they've dealt with this issue more than once. They can also give you the contact info for the last leg.

At least they don't have to try to guess which parks you're talking about and what regulations/restriction might apply.

As worried as you seem to be about being alone in brown bear territory, I'd suggest you just carry the shotgun and be done with it.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 20:46:06 MST Print View

I'm not particularly worried about hiking alone in bear country. I'm just trying to outsmart the bears so that I don't have to abandon some part of a photographic plan at the last minute.

I'm not sure what shotgun you refer to, since I can't fly there with firearms. I believe that there are only one or two NPS wildlife technicians who are authorized to carry and use them on bears, and their firearms are normally locked up at the park.
--B.G.--

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Transporting on 03/07/2010 20:48:45 MST Print View

For the first hop or two to airports heres an idea. I would assume the airport gets mail so maybe you could just arrange to mail it to them, might take a few phone calls but I assume its possible. There might be a way to transport hazardious materials to.
For the bush plane part I have heard of bush pilots in Alaska strapping spray to the wings in case it goes off, the problem is if that happens you're out of luck for bears. I saw somewhere a special container designed to carry bear spray and more or less protect it from pressure changes so it doesn't burst. You could also just bring two or three.
As a second idea I know its controversial but you might want to take a good look at how comfortable you are taking a firearm (which you can fly with look up TSA website). Rules have changed so its possible with some restrictions to carry in a park. From what I've seen most adults can handle a reasonable powerful gun with a bit of practice.

Nicholas Truax
(nicktruax) - F

Locale: Montanada
Re: Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 21:05:53 MST Print View

Bob, if you post where exactly you are going then maybe someone with prior knowledge of the given locale would be more likely to share some pertinent advice. Details...FWIW.

Otherwise, hiking alone in griz country w/out spray/horn/gun just may be asking for it. And if it is habituated bears or not also plays a big role. Lower 48 grizzly bears (ie Jellystone, Glacier) are often known to be fairly more curious and/or aggressive than those in prov. Canada and AK. Time of year also is a factor in their foraging and location. I've backcountry hiked in all of those griz areas and have not carried spray in AK/Canada (prior to the advent of spray), while carrying spray in the lower 48. I've been w/in 20 ft of griz and no attacks to speak of. YMMV

But as Dave C said earlier if a griz is gonna choose you as dinner then that's life - no need sweating the details.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife
UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 21:51:25 MST Print View

I'm sure your air service provider can provide you with your pilots info. No need to make it so freaking complicated.

nanook ofthenorth
(nanookofthenorth) - MLife
... on 03/07/2010 22:02:04 MST Print View

ken if I could give your post a trophy I would!

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Re: Transporting on 03/07/2010 22:09:01 MST Print View

Since you've already been to Glacier and Yellowstone NPs, I am only aware of two other NPs in the lower 48 where you might encounter the Grizzly: Grand Teton NP (moderate risk) and North Cascades NP (very low risk).

Grizzlies can supposedly be encountered in any Alaskan state or national park. Rifles and shotguns are allowed in Alaskan state parks, and you are allowed to shoot in self defense. Any bear shot and killed in self defense must be salvaged and turned over to AK Dept of Fish and Game. For details see http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/safety/bears.htm


For perspective, I used to run a cattle ranch at the base of the Grand Tetons, well within the range of the Yellowstone Grizzlies. I NEVER went into the high range alone without a loaded firearm of sufficient caliber. Fortunately, I never needed it, which was fine by me.

Seasoned bear hunters have told me that if you shoot a Black Bear, the odds are 50/50 he'll charge. With a Grizzly, it's a 100% certainty. Better to use a good SLR camera with a long lens. If all else fails, hit him with it!

Joseph Reeves
(Umnak)

Locale: Southeast Alaska
air horns on 03/07/2010 22:18:52 MST Print View

Bob,

forget about the air horn as an option. I've watched brown bears scratch their heads while air horns are being blasted in their general direction. The advice given above about the airport or air taxi service is sound. I carry bear spray in small aircraft with the knowledge and consent of the pilot, especially if they are interested in the return air charter. They don't get paid for bringing back bodies.

Samuel C. Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
Grizzlies in the National Parks on 03/07/2010 22:22:23 MST Print View

Bob,
I only hike outside National Parks, usually in wilderness areas, because I have two shetland sheep dogs along.
Before the shelties, bears were a problem for me as a solo long distance hiker for years, and I had some memorable, but not pleasant experiences. Since the shelties, not a bear to be seen for over ten years.
I understand why you want to see the parks, and would suggest a small music player loaded with whatever you find the least annoying and well within the grizzly auditory range. If they hear you coming, they will usually take off; but not always, so keep an eye out.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Grizzlies in the National Parks on 03/07/2010 23:00:00 MST Print View

Samuel, I don't have any portable digital music player, but I will have a tiny AM/FM radio (primarily for getting weather broadcasts). I'll bet a Grizzly can hear me coming with that.

I decided that a cow bell would not be good. The bear might think of it as a dinner bell.

--B.G.--

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife
UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/07/2010 23:05:51 MST Print View

No cow bell. Don't want to be mistaken for a walking delicatessen.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: UL Grizzly Bear Repellent on 03/08/2010 17:21:05 MST Print View

"I've been sprayed in the face by a skunk. Unpleasant yes, but not enough of a deterrent for a motivated animal. I took a swing at it afterwards, with a shovel."

In the face? And you still had enough left to swing at him?
Caramba! You're a better man than I, Gunga Din. :)

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife
"UL Grizzly Bear Repellent" on 03/08/2010 18:16:15 MST Print View

Every time I broke a sweat for the next few weeks I could smell it again. Good thing I had sense enough to close my eyes when he took aim.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: The face shot on 03/08/2010 18:22:17 MST Print View

"Every time I broke a sweat for the next few weeks I could smell it again. Good thing I had sense enough to close my eyes when he took aim."

You got me wondering, how did you get in position for the little b@$^@rd to pull off a face shot? That spray is pretty darned effective against animals. Just about everything heads the other way when one of 'em turns around and raises his tail.

I still wonder if it wouldn't make an effective component of bear spray, maybe mixed with capsaicins?