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JMT ? need bear can below MTR?
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Sam Sockwell
(sockwellsam) - MLife
JMT ? need bear can below MTR? on 05/30/2012 05:30:03 MDT Print View

Perusing a few JMT threads I hear this refrain about bear cannisters not needed below MTR(headed south of course) Is this true? Can one simply carry a bear container and mail it out at MTR? Or just take one instead of a couple each needing to carry one?

This is a crucial logistics question but I had not seen it in the books, or on the Yosemite conservancy info.

Thoughts? See you out there first two weeks August.


Chris S
(csteutterman) - F

Locale: Tahoe
Re: JMT ? need bear can below MTR? on 05/30/2012 13:09:42 MDT Print View

Last year when looking into it I found this discussion on the Yahoo JMT group:

Basically, it's required in some sections, but not the section right after MTR so you can probably get away with a smaller canister.

Manfred Kopisch
(Orienteering) - F
Bear Canister required at Rae Lakes and Mt. Whitney on 05/30/2012 13:49:42 MDT Print View


you don't need a bear canister for the 50+ miles south of MTR until Pinchot Pass. But bear canisters are required at Rae Lakes and at Mt. Whitney.

So shipping back your canister from MTR won't work. But at least you don't need to fit all your food into a canister for the first couple of nights after MTR.

Have fun out there,


Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
JMT ? need bear can below MTR? on 05/30/2012 14:06:33 MDT Print View

I don't know if this map is still the accurate version of bear can requirements:

Assuming the map is accurate, you will need a canister after Bench Lake into Kings Canyon UNLESS you (a) rush through that area or (b) use existing campsites with bear lockers. Both those options seem . . . limiting.

As an aside, I know that all of us on BPL, who are either going to hike the JMT or have dreams to hike it someday, wish that we didn't have to carry bear canisters. The lower right corner of that map lists some reasons to carry a canister. No. 7 is "this is the single most effective thing you can as a backcountry visitor to protect Sierra black bears."

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
JMT ? need bear can below MTR? on 05/30/2012 14:44:40 MDT Print View

Just because they are not required in a given area does not mean they are not needed.

Remember, bears do not read maps; they just use their nose.

If it smells good, they will come.


Hobbes W
(Hobbesatronic) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: JMT ? need bear can below MTR? on 05/30/2012 14:57:16 MDT Print View

I always take a bear can. Why? Because, at the end of a long day, I don't want to d!ck around trying to hang a food bag - especially above tree line.

Once you get used to the convenience of not having to deal with guarding your pack during rest stops, naps, fishing breaks, etc (marmots & rodents are sometimes worse than bears) ie just take out the can and put it aside, or even better, not needing to wake up to protect your stash during the night, the 2 lbs or so (I use a BV450) becomes practically inconsequential.

The trick is to find a pack that handles the can. Properly sized & configured, you shouldn't even know it's in your pack.

Sam Sockwell
(sockwellsam) - MLife
thanks on 05/30/2012 15:22:59 MDT Print View

for all the helpful responses, that makes it all clear. Thanks again to all Sam.

Susan Papuga
(veganaloha) - M

Locale: USA
Re: JMT ? need bear can below MTR? on 06/01/2012 03:05:11 MDT Print View


I saw threads like you described, so i decided on a smaller can, the BV450. But I won't mail it home at my last resupply as you suggest, because it is needed again later on as others have posted here.

I'm hoping the the extra 2+ lbs for the BV will be offset by not having to carry so much water at any one time.

Have a nice trip.