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Thread: More bear encounters

  1. #1
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    More bear encounters

    I have been doing alot of hiking in SNP and GWNF and have now had 3 separate bear encounters (despite Peter Nap's suggestion that I would probably never see one in my related post), one with mama bear and 2 cubs, others with somewhat sizeable males (I think). The latest happened yesterday going up the Cedar Run trail in SNP (which is a magnificent 8.5 mile waterfall canyon hike, coming back down White Oak Canyon).

    I was proceeding up a steep section of trail around 8:30 am, with the mountain rising extremely steeply above me to my left, came around a corner in the trail, and the bear was above me to my left maybe only 25 feet away. This was startling, as it felt like he could jump down on me within seconds, but he quickly dashed uphill and directly away from me. I had my hand on my weapon quickly but did not draw seeing him retreating. I think he did not hear me due to the sound of the nearby water. He retreated maybe 30 yards and stopped and was staring down at me. I slowly started moving up the trail and away from him without turning my back. My main concern now was that he would follow me, but the undergrowth was very thick so I thought I may hear him unless he got on the trail behind me. I got around the next corner on the trail and moved quickly uphill, listening carefully and frequently checking the trail behind me. I started feeling safer after I put some distance between us.

    Anyways, it seems there are quite a few bears in SNP and GWNF, and while it seems the danger of a bear attack is rather low due to the generally timid nature of the black bears, and because you all have convinced me that 2 legged critters are an even bigger potential danger, I will be open carrying on all my hikes when legal to do so. My further research into black bears shows that extremely occasionally they become predatory towards humans. It will be interesting to see how others on the trails and the rangers react to me, as many visit SNP from DC, Maryland and other gun unfriendly areas. Is anyone else on here ocing in SNP?
    Last edited by Jonesy; 07-20-2011 at 01:26 AM.

  2. #2
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    Watch out for the bears in McLean, too: http://www.myfoxdc.com/dpp/news/virg...ackyard-071811

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Take a camera and enjoy them Jonsey. They're better company than those tourists you'll run into.


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    Regular Member wolf-father's Avatar
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    One found a mile from my house in a church yard.
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  5. #5
    Regular Member Marco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    It will be interesting to see how others on the trails and the rangers react to me, as many visit SNP from DC, Maryland and other gun unfriendly areas.
    I haven't had an issues. One passerby asked why the hardware, my reply why not.

    I made the mistake of OC'ing in one of the NPs before it was legal, fortunately for me the Ranger didn't noticed or didn't care.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    Is anyone else on here ocing in SNP?
    Yes, one member of this board even attempted to have a picinic in SNP a few weeks ago.
    The family and I will get at least one more camping trip in before the snow starts to fall.


    As for Bears, take Mr. Nap's advise.
    Just yesterday, my dogs went crazy in the middle of the day as I looked out the window I spied a mother w/cubs heading into the brush just behind the house, she was headed to the lake for a swim.

    Keep an eye on the Bears but don't let them worry you, there are things that pose a greater danger to park visitors.
    If you think like a Statist, act like one, or back some, you've given up on freedom and have gone over to the dark side.
    The easiest ex. but probably the most difficult to grasp for gun owners is that fool permission slip so many of you have, especially if you show it off with pride. You should recognize it as an embarrassment, an infringement, a travesty and an affront to a free person.


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    Founder's Club Member Skeptic's Avatar
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    lol, I thought this thread was like old CB lingo "Break 19 good buddy, this here's the Snowman, with a bear report, got a bear taking pictures down on Route 60 near the 522. Keep it under the double buffalo"

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    lol, I thought this thread was like old CB lingo "Break 19 good buddy, this here's the Snowman, with a bear report, got a bear taking pictures down on Route 60 near the 522. Keep it under the double buffalo"
    Does anyone use CBs any more? Truckers?

    TFred

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    Founder's Club Member Skeptic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    Does anyone use CBs any more? Truckers?

    TFred
    I beleive some people do, but I doubt they use that lingo anymore. I could be wrong on either count

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    Does anyone use CBs any more? Truckers?

    TFred
    Dog Hunters do!

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    Campaign Veteran Schlitz's Avatar
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    http://www.newsherald.com/news/ridin...r-bicycle.html

    Dude gets hit by a bear riding his bike to Tyndall AFB.

    We have a lot of bear here on base, the best part is you're not allowed to carry a firearm to defend yourselves from bears when running on the trails. They're just bears with a good heart who are hanging around the wrong crowd, who are we to shoot them if they attack us while running on base? *face palm for military base policies*

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    I beleive some people do, but I doubt they use that lingo anymore. I could be wrong on either count
    I have a CB in my Frontier and I refer to LEOs as bears.

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    Regular Member t33j's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    Anyways, it seems there are quite a few bears in SNP and GWNF, and while it seems the danger of a bear attack is rather low due to the generally timid nature of the black bears
    Yes... I've chased after them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    Is anyone else on here ocing in SNP?
    All the time since it's been legal, but not lately because of the heat. Nobody really seems to care including the rangers. Name:  icon14.png
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    Sic Semper Tyrannis

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    lol, I thought this thread was like old CB lingo "Break 19 good buddy, this here's the Snowman, with a bear report, got a bear taking pictures down on Route 60 near the 522. Keep it under the double buffalo"
    My first thought, too.

  14. #14
    Regular Member hermannr's Avatar
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    If you advance toward a bear they will not think you are food, but a danger. Great big (400-500lbs) males might not back down, but the rest will. Absolutely never turn your back to a bear, (or a couger), and if mama has babies, back off from the babies (the babies will scoot up a tree if possible). A female bear with cubs will run over you to save her babies, but if the young are not in danger (you are not between her and them) she will send them up a tree and retreat.

    I live with bears in my yard on a regular basis. Food oders are their normal attractors...and we are very particular with food and food oders...other than that, they normally do not want anything to do with you or your dog(s).

    BTW: A doe can and will attack and can beat you up with their hooves if "defending" young. Actually, the deer will be more concerned with your dog, so be carefull if you hike with a dog where there are a lot of deer and it is that time of year for them to give birth to their young. If a doe attacks, let the dog loose, she will go after the dog.

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    I had a full grown male RUN out in front of my car on my way home a couple of weeks ago. I was doing about 60 with all four windows down. My first thought was OMG, if I hit him, its going to total my car, piss him off and he's going to attack me through my open windows before I can even get my gun out from under my seat! Lucky for my front bumper he was running flat out and I missed him by INCHES. He was HUGE. Scared the daylights out of me. Think I even tinkled a little... Come to find out from a friend who lives about 1/2 a mile from where I missed him at, he's a local bear, been around since he was just knee high to a grass hopper. Goes by the name of Pooh. Now when I ride home with the windows down I keep the gun in the seat beside me, just in case he makes another run for it...

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    Regular Member Kevin108's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    Does anyone use CBs any more? Truckers?

    TFred
    Coincidental to the OP's hiking location, I offer a resounding yes. There are many offroad trails for 4x4 vehicles in the GWNF. Frequently those who travel in groups will install CBs to communicate with each other while deep in the woods. There may or may not be cell service there and addressing the entire group at once is beneficial in scenarios where help may be needed or advice on an obstacle offered.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Yes Sir, lots of entertaining times every year listening to CB.

    Hunt Club President:
    Bubba, you drive down the old road and see if any Deer run across. If you see that a$$ wit the BIG GUN, tell him you lookin fo yo dowgs....Over

    Bubba:
    I ain't goin down there. That man tell me he gonna shoot me the dowgs and burn my house down....Over

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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Yes Sir, lots of entertaining times every year listening to CB.

    Hunt Club President:
    Bubba, you drive down the old road and see if any Deer run across. If you see that a$$ wit the BIG GUN, tell him you lookin fo yo dowgs....Over

    Bubba:
    I ain't goin down there. That man tell me he gonna shoot me the dowgs and burn my house down....Over
    At least they know what they have comin' to 'em.

  19. #19
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    great looking black bears! i used to run into them alot when i lived in northern maine. few of them got really really really close a few times. but there are a few things you should know about blackbear incounters.

    they are small. 200-260 max in most places. mostly foragers, not hunters *except for fish* diet of berrys leaves and roots.

    not very territorial unless cubs are with them. if that is the case, get away silently and quickly becuase they will have a vicious response if they feel threatened.

    they are faster than brown or grizzlies so if one charges, dont run! especially up a tree, they will follow. #2 most blackbear charges are false, they are just trying to see your reaction, if you run, they will chase, catch and maul you. stand your ground, make yourself look bigger and become very loud! odds are they will rear up about 10ft away, sniff, roar, hounch down and retreat if you dont move.

    IF THEY DO ATTACK!!!.

    black bears are not brown or grizzlies, and they ARE more vicious when fighting. few things to know


    DO NOT PLAY DEAD! this only works with brown/grizzlies a blackbear eats carcases, so if you play dead it WILL KILL YOU.

    FIGHT IT with everything you have, a rock a stick eye gouge do everything you can, its the fight of your life.

    small caliber weapons will only piss it off, 9mm , 380........if thats all you have pick one spot on the animals body and pick away at it to create a very large wound. and prey it deters it.


    dont ever believie you will "hear" a bear approaching, they can travel with speed bursts of 30mph silently, and if they are stalking. you WILL NOT hear them..

    take note of the following signs

    bee-hive looking skat filled with berries, twigs exct, if its arm a bear IS within 1000ft

    broken twigs on the sides of bushes's trees, bears get itchy from bugs and rub purposefully against them to scratch,

    well cleared paths through brush that the ground is not disturbed on , this is a good sign of a high traffic area for bears, their feet dont mar the ground but you will see a path where shoes have been.


    most bears are more affraid of you then them. they will run away in MOST cases. if your going to take photos, turn off any "shutter effect" you have, and turn off the flash, it will startle them. get your photo and move on quickly. dont EVER approach cubs, and stay away in mating season. :-)


    hope this helps all you nature friendly people, and remember bear spray IS 10x more effective than your sidearm :-)

    other than that usually they will keep their distance.
    i would rather run out of blood, breath and life. and die fighting. than run out of ammo , and die with my pants down -Tom Scantas

  20. #20
    Regular Member sst0185's Avatar
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    That was the best post I have read about black bears!

    I have had 3 or 4 black bear encounters in VA, all during the day when hiking and once on my ATV. They really did not even pay me any mind just went on their way across the trail in front of me, no closer than 25-30 yards.

    Due to the increasing bear population I will be picking up the bear spray before my next trip, just in case.

    As always I will also have my scandium alloy .357 magnum, or my 10mm. More for the 2 legged creatures though.

  21. #21
    Regular Member sst0185's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin108 View Post
    Coincidental to the OP's hiking location, I offer a resounding yes. There are many offroad trails for 4x4 vehicles in the GWNF. Frequently those who travel in groups will install CBs to communicate with each other while deep in the woods. There may or may not be cell service there and addressing the entire group at once is beneficial in scenarios where help may be needed or advice on an obstacle offered.


    Yes we do!

  22. #22
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ClumsyCandy View Post
    I had a full grown male RUN out in front of my car on my way home a couple of weeks ago. I was doing about 60 with all four windows down. My first thought was OMG, if I hit him, its going to total my car, piss him off and he's going to attack me through my open windows before I can even get my gun out from under my seat! Lucky for my front bumper he was running flat out and I missed him by INCHES. He was HUGE. Scared the daylights out of me. Think I even tinkled a little... Come to find out from a friend who lives about 1/2 a mile from where I missed him at, he's a local bear, been around since he was just knee high to a grass hopper. Goes by the name of Pooh. Now when I ride home with the windows down I keep the gun in the seat beside me, just in case he makes another run for it...
    Haven't you learned anything yet?

    Carrying your gun under the seat is a great way to break you ankle when it goes flying forward as you are trying to stop in a hurry. Pretty much the same thing goes for keeping the gun on the seat next to you, except your ankle is not the immediate target. Maybe you ought to read up on the Miami FBI shootout (no, I'm not going to give you a link to it) and see what happens when you carry your gun on the seat.

    You have hips (We've seen them!! Thank you, Peter.) and that's where you are supposed to carry your gun, in a nice holster (We've seen yours - it's OK.).

    stay safe.
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    Regular Member zoom6zoom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schlitz View Post

    Dude gets hit by a bear riding his bike to Tyndall AFB.
    I've never seen a bear riding a bike. Must have escaped from the circus. And I have no idea why a bear would be going to an air force base. Unless he was Russian.
    Last edited by zoom6zoom; 07-22-2011 at 05:11 PM.

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    Regular Member tcmech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Yes Sir, lots of entertaining times every year listening to CB.

    Hunt Club President:
    Bubba, you drive down the old road and see if any Deer run across. If you see that a$$ wit the BIG GUN, tell him you lookin fo yo dowgs....Over

    Bubba:
    I ain't goin down there. That man tell me he gonna shoot me the dowgs and burn my house down....Over
    I see we are neighbors
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  25. #25
    Regular Member B. Reddy's Avatar
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    Bears R Us- Shenandoah Natl Park

    Anyways, it seems there are quite a few bears in SNP and GWNF, and while it seems the danger of a bear attack is rather low due to the generally timid nature of the black bears, and because you all have convinced me that 2 legged critters are an even bigger potential danger, I will be open carrying on all my hikes when legal to do so. [/QUOTE]

    From the SNPark website-

    Did You Know?
    Shenandoah National Park has one of the densest populations of black bears documented within the U.S.


    Also their website claims there may be as many as one bear per square mile of parkland, so they are talking HUNDREDs of them furry little critters.

    My wife and her friend were hiking on Limberlost Trail, stopped to eat lunch, and felt acorn shells dropping on them. A black bear was 40 feet above them having his own lunch. See attached photo. He finished his lunch, climbed down, and ambled off. Totally ignored them.

    IMHO, unless you trip carrying a gallon of honey and roll thru some fresh acorns, your chances of a black bear attack have to be mighty slim.
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