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Thread: Bedside defense weapon in a tent

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    Bedside defense weapon in a tent

    This weekend's camping trip had a bear come through several neighboring camps. This trip we were much less diligent about keeping our camp free of bait so I'm surprised he didn't make a stop through ours. I didn't notice my dog our our neighbors' 5 feet from our tent barking at night, though people in cabins 100 yards down the hill reported theirs going crazy. Maybe she barked and I shushed her in my sleep.

    I'm not going to fire blindly into the dark from inside a tent unless I'm being attacked, but that's seeming less unlikely. Particularly with DW's lotions, etc. that never wash completely off. Bear spray won't help in that scenario. There will be plenty of noise coming from inside the tent if it's being torn into that an airhorn is a non-issue. But I don't know what to do with a pistol. With a 4 and 6 yo climbing into parent sleeping bags in the night, I'm hesitant to just lay it next to me lest it get kicked around. The hanging pockets in the tent aren't very sturdy. If we slept on cots, there are hanging pockets for those that would work. As it is, it gets locked up in the car or secured in a backpack depending on what kind of a trip it is since it'll do eff all good if I can't have ready access to it and keep it safe from wandering kids. Any ideas?

    With last year's Yellowstone grizzly attack on another camp the day we left, I've about decided I'll put my family in the tent and sleep with one eye and ear open outside with a 12 guage loaded with slugs next time we go. I don't know that I need to do that for Colorado black bears, though.

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    Regular Member sst0185's Avatar
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    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...ear-encounters


    Take a look here. Personally, I do most of my hiking and camping in VA, WVA I am more worried about people than bears. BUT, I have had a black bear bear snort through the camp one time while we were asleep. Hang your food! You will be interested in how backpackers hang food in CA, bears are smart! And a .357, and or 10mm will help you sleep good at night.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sst0185 View Post
    Hang your food! You will be interested in how backpackers hang food in CA, bears are smart! And a .357, and or 10mm will help you sleep good at night.
    Yeah, usually we hang our food while backpacking or lock it in the car if we're car camping. I talked to the rangers to check on activity and they said there hadn't been a sighting in a couple of weeks and he thought they were berry grazing deep in the forest, but warned us not to leave food out. We lazily left a box of food out, though I knew better. But the group campground down the hill had left lots of trash in open cans along with leftover food, which is where he spent most of his time.

    Thanks for the link.
    Last edited by mahkagari; 09-06-2011 at 04:30 PM.

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    Regular Member Polynikes's Avatar
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    A Ruger Redhawk Alaskan would fit nicely in the underside of your pillow case, don't you think? Even if you don't hit the bear, the muzzle blast will make that poor creature think the world is ending.
    Last edited by Polynikes; 09-06-2011 at 04:38 PM.
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    Regular Member HandyHamlet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mahkagari View Post
    ... This trip we were much less diligent about keeping our camp free of bait...
    So... You camp in bear country with your family and completely disregard safe and proven camping techniques.

    And all you are worried about where to put a pistol?




    Here is an idea.

    Learn how to camp in bear country. Be more than diligent in proper camping techniques. Only then will your family be safe. Only then will you be able to APPRECIATE nature. Instead of you personally being responsible for turning it into a threat. Maybe then you could swap out a pistol for a camera or something else useful.
    "Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."
    Abraham Lincoln

    "Some time ago, a bunch of lefties defied the law by dancing at the Jefferson Memorial, resulting in their arrests. Last week, a bunch of them pulled the same stunt and - using patented Lefist techniques - provoked the Park Police into having to use force to arrest them."
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    So... You camp in bear country with your family and completely disregard safe and proven camping techniques.

    And all you are worried about where to put a pistol?




    Here is an idea.

    Learn how to camp in bear country. Be more than diligent in proper camping techniques. Only then will your family be safe. Only then will you be able to APPRECIATE nature. Instead of you personally being responsible for turning it into a threat. Maybe then you could swap out a pistol for a camera or something else useful.

    Ouch dude, go easy...


    I keep my pistol above my head when sleeping; i don't have to worry about children around.
    It would be safer to keep a semi auto and having a mag in but not chambered , i have yet to see a 6 year old rack a slide.
    Keeping a clean area is important, sometimes you get tired, forget something. Things happen.
    My friends and i go camping a few times a year and we always bring our weapons ( my 9mm on my hip, 30-06, 10/22 for fun) , although its more
    for mountain lions than bears and sometimes ppl- i've had a truck pull up to a remote area and dump things in the middle of the night by our tent, didn't know what they were doing but was on alert, only 100ft and some trees stood between us. I've only seen one bear and he ran his ass off after he saw us. Bear spray is also an option (we have some), it shoots 30ft and is safer to have around children i guess; if they spray themselves
    it's gonna suck, but better than the alternative.
    Thankfully we only have blackbears, if we had grizzlies i'm sure that 30-06 would be out more and i'd be carrying a 44mag. I worry more about mountain lions than bears where we go.

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    Regular Member HandyHamlet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skopro View Post
    Ouch dude, go easy...
    Absolutely not.

    A 4 and 6 year old plus the dog can hardly fend for themselves. Yet the OP camps in bear country next to ******** and even worse he admits to breaking the number one cardinal rule. Leaving food out in the camp site. Even though he KNOWS better. And all he is worried about is guns.

    I won't go easy. Life is too short for bullsh*t. He put his family at risk for absolutely no good reason. Camp smart or do everyone a favor and go to Disney instead.
    "Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."
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    "Some time ago, a bunch of lefties defied the law by dancing at the Jefferson Memorial, resulting in their arrests. Last week, a bunch of them pulled the same stunt and - using patented Lefist techniques - provoked the Park Police into having to use force to arrest them."
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    And all he is worried about is guns.
    Uh, no. Be a little less trigger happy there. Yes, I admit that this one night we did leave food out and yes, it could have been bad. You will note that I said that was "much less diligent" than we usually are. The first thing I noted was the "number one cardinal rule". I also noted that it's a very rare scenario where a gun would be a usable defense weapon. So, no. It's not "all" that I'm concerned about is "guns". Yeah, I faced up to my eff up. No, I'm not "only" concerned about "where to put the pistol". If you'd read the post in a manner not looking for someone to talk down to you'd see that "where to put the pistol" was at the END of a long list of other precautions. And you'd also note my current answer of "where to put the pistol" is locked in the damned car.

    Let me rephrase my post for those inclined to flame:

    "This w/e I had a close call. Neighbors down the hill left a bunch of food out and a bear made a mess of their camp. Though I know damn well better after decades of camping in CO, I also left a box of food out. Luckily, he passed us by and there were no two leggers he felt the need to turn negative attention on. It reaffirmed what I know and also taught a bunch of others a lesson.

    I usually carry bear spray and noise makers for primary defense during the day with minimal food out and have all food locked up tight at night. Additionally, I check in with local rangers and caretakers about bear activity when I arrive. I carry my pistol, but there's not a whole lot of good it will do in the dark. The only scenario it would be useful for is if a bear is actively attacking the tent and then only if readily available and only if the tent making noise doesn't scare him off and even then it will only be a deterrent. With a dog and two small kids wandering in the tent at night, I'm not comfortable laying it next to me. The odds of an accident are higher than the odds of a bear attack on that scale with a well kept camp, so I usually lock up my gun at night in the car or secure it in my backpack if we're in backcountry.

    For those of you who do keep a pistol with you in a tent, where do you put it while sleeping?"

    Better? Tell me it was stupid to leave food out, fine. I'll agree with you. But there's no cause to make **** up and say "all I am concerned about is the gun". That is really unhelpful. Like you said, life is too short for that kind of bullsh*t.

    A Ruger Redhawk Alaskan would fit nicely in the underside of your pillow case, don't you think?
    I don't camp with a pillow. I usually have my jacket wrapped around my boots under my mummy bag. But even at home I don't like the idea of resting my head on a firearm.
    Last edited by mahkagari; 09-06-2011 at 06:20 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mahkagari View Post

    Better? Tell me it was stupid to leave food out, fine. I'll agree with you. But there's no cause to make **** up and say "all I am concerned about is the gun". That is really unhelpful. Like you said, life is too short for that kind of bullsh*t.
    You are the one who camps like an idiot after decades of experience. You admittedly put your family at risk. There are bigger problems here than gun storage.
    "Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."
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    "Some time ago, a bunch of lefties defied the law by dancing at the Jefferson Memorial, resulting in their arrests. Last week, a bunch of them pulled the same stunt and - using patented Lefist techniques - provoked the Park Police into having to use force to arrest them."
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    You are the one who camps like an idiot after decades of experience. You admittedly put your family at risk. There are bigger problems here than gun storage.


    WTF IS GOING ON WITH YOU TROLLS ?!

    Theres one in every thread all of a sudden.. I don't mind ppl from other states coming in but you ******* won't stop bitching and flaming others. Your behavior is unacceptable. Shape up or GTFO.

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    Regular Member TheLittleMan's Avatar
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    The guy admitted to leaving a box of food out, he didn't say he left it in his tent. Bears don't just rampage through tents like Godzilla for no good reason, that's why some people recommend leaving food in a separate tent. So being an overbearing ******* in this thread is a bit uncalled for.

    As for where I left my gun while camping this year; I have a 9month old so he was tucked away in his portable crib. I just left it resting above my head in its retention holster, w/o a chambered round pointed in a safe direction. I figured that was safe enough for just me and my girl in the tent.
    "The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses."

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    I too, am sick in tired of trolls and their BS!

    I sleep with mine under a pillow. I don't have have kids, just me and my dog. I hang my food on a tree downwind and and sleep in clothes I haven't cooked in. Not one problem if it's just me and pup (tap on wood)! When I was a youngster (15-16 or so), I had a few bear encounters while camping, one was trying to break into the trailer we were sleeping in. It rocked and shook the trailer like crazy, my friends dad loaded his 30-06 and fired a warning shot out the window. It scared him away! We analyzed the damage at dawn, and wow! A lot of sheetmetal clawed and dented like crazy!

    As far as kids inside the tent, I'd advise don't let them see you're going to bed with a gun! I'd personally keep a loaded mag outside my sleeping bag, gun inside bag on my chest.

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    Regular Member HandyHamlet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skopro View Post
    WTF IS GOING ON WITH YOU TROLLS ?!

    Theres one in every thread all of a sudden.. I don't mind ppl from other states coming in but you ******* won't stop bitching and flaming others. Your behavior is unacceptable. Shape up or GTFO.
    You are right. I should reward stupid and dangerous behavior. Because it can be fixed by a well placed firearm.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheLittleMan View Post
    ... that's why some people recommend leaving food in a separate tent.
    That is about the dumbest thing I have ever read on the internet. Congrats. Might want to google "bear bag".

    Quote Originally Posted by Keens View Post
    I too, am sick in tired of trolls and their BS!

    I hang my food on a tree downwind and and sleep in clothes I haven't cooked in.
    So you use a bear bag. If what I posted is BS then why the bear bag at all? Why not a separate tent for instance?




    p.s just because we don't live there doesn't mean we don't know how to camp and how to deal with bears.
    Last edited by HandyHamlet; 09-06-2011 at 11:06 PM.
    "Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."
    Abraham Lincoln

    "Some time ago, a bunch of lefties defied the law by dancing at the Jefferson Memorial, resulting in their arrests. Last week, a bunch of them pulled the same stunt and - using patented Lefist techniques - provoked the Park Police into having to use force to arrest them."
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    You are right. I should reward stupid and dangerous behavior. Because it can be fixed by a well placed firearm.

    You realize your personally attacking someone you don't know?! That's really immature of you and we
    all here are getting tired of it. Theres nothing constructive about it. Keep posting i'll start reporting them, i'm not gonna get into a verbal war with a 16 year old.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    You are right. I should reward stupid and dangerous behavior. Because it can be fixed by a well placed firearm.



    That is about the dumbest thing I have ever read on the internet. Congrats. Might want to google "bear bag".



    So you use a bear bag. If what I posted is BS then why the bear bag at all? Why not a separate tent for instance?




    p.s just because we don't live there doesn't mean we don't know how to camp and how to deal with bears.
    I never said anything about a bear bag! Or about keeping food in a separate tent (someone else said that!). Come on, get your facts straight and quit being a troll!

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    Regular Member HandyHamlet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skopro View Post
    You realize your personally attacking someone you don't know?! That's really immature of you and we
    all here are getting tired of it. Theres nothing constructive about it. Keep posting i'll start reporting them, i'm not gonna get into a verbal war with a 16 year old.
    So the answer is yes. We will reward dangerous and stupid behavior on the Co forum. Even though the OP admitted he was in the wrong. Now that I know the protocol I will hand out memos.

    Quote Originally Posted by Keens View Post
    I never said anything about a bear bag! Or about keeping food in a separate tent (someone else said that!). Come on, get your facts straight and quit being a troll!
    I'm sorry for giving you the benefit of the doubt when you said you hung your food on a tree. I thought you meant bear bag. I stand corrected and will not make that mistake again.

    And the way it works is we quote, then reply to that specific quote, repeat. Try to keep up. I know you didn't say that specifically. Doesn't mean I can't use it to make a point.

    Look, it is painfully obvious none of you know how to or care about safely camping in your own mountains. That's why you would rather talk about gun placement in a campsite. Because guns fix everything.

    Please continue. Don't mind little old me.
    Last edited by HandyHamlet; 09-07-2011 at 12:30 AM.
    "Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."
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    "Some time ago, a bunch of lefties defied the law by dancing at the Jefferson Memorial, resulting in their arrests. Last week, a bunch of them pulled the same stunt and - using patented Lefist techniques - provoked the Park Police into having to use force to arrest them."
    Alexcabbie

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLittleMan View Post
    As for where I left my gun while camping this year; I have a 9month old so he was tucked away in his portable crib. I just left it resting above my head in its retention holster, w/o a chambered round pointed in a safe direction.
    My auto is a 9mm and that's too small for cats and bears, IMO. If I had a .45 I might consider one of those dummy safety rounds. They expand if the trigger's pulled and lock up the gun. You need a tool to eject them. However, racking the slide in their safe state will eject it as the first round and then chamber the live round. Faster than leaving the magazine out. If I used my 9mm as a bedside defense weapon at home outside of a lockbox, I'd consider it. Maybe leaving a couple of snap caps in the .357 revolver, but leaving one under the firing pin and one in the next chamber sacrifices a third of my ammo space.

    As far as kids inside the tent, I'd advise don't let them see you're going to bed with a gun!
    Keens, do you mean so they don't see it and go after it or so they don't see me leaving it laying it around as an example of improper handling? I'd prefer they knew where it was and to steer clear of it. I'd be more worried about them stumbling around in the dark and little toes tripping over it. Not that I'd be comfortable sleeping with them having ready access to it.

    I drill with them pretty regularly on gun safety. The older one has been through hunter safety and I make sure she gets practice. Recently, I took my pistol off my hip and asked her to hold it for a minute. Like she learned and practices, she asked me to open it. I showed her the cylinder and she backed away and said, "No, I can't touch it" when she saw it was loaded.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mahkagari View Post
    My auto is a 9mm and that's too small for cats and bears, IMO. If I had a .45 I might consider one of those dummy safety rounds. They expand if the trigger's pulled and lock up the gun. You need a tool to eject them. However, racking the slide in their safe state will eject it as the first round and then chamber the live round. Faster than leaving the magazine out. If I used my 9mm as a bedside defense weapon at home outside of a lockbox, I'd consider it. Maybe leaving a couple of snap caps in the .357 revolver, but leaving one under the firing pin and one in the next chamber sacrifices a third of my ammo space.



    Keens, do you mean so they don't see it and go after it or so they don't see me leaving it laying it around as an example of improper handling? I'd prefer they knew where it was and to steer clear of it. I'd be more worried about them stumbling around in the dark and little toes tripping over it. Not that I'd be comfortable sleeping with them having ready access to it.

    I drill with them pretty regularly on gun safety. The older one has been through hunter safety and I make sure she gets practice. Recently, I took my pistol off my hip and asked her to hold it for a minute. Like she learned and practices, she asked me to open it. I showed her the cylinder and she backed away and said, "No, I can't touch it" when she saw it was loaded.
    Personally I don't know if I would want to use one of those dummy safety rounds. It would really suck to be under duress for whatever reason, pull the trigger without racking the slide, and now you can't clear your gun to be able to use it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    So the answer is yes. We will reward dangerous and stupid behavior on the Co forum. Even though the OP admitted he was in the wrong. Now that I know the protocol I will hand out memos.



    I'm sorry for giving you the benefit of the doubt when you said you hung your food on a tree. I thought you meant bear bag. I stand corrected and will not make that mistake again.

    And the way it works is we quote, then reply to that specific quote, repeat. Try to keep up. I know you didn't say that specifically. Doesn't mean I can't use it to make a point.

    Look, it is painfully obvious none of you know how to or care about safely camping in your own mountains. That's why you would rather talk about gun placement in a campsite. Because guns fix everything.

    Please continue. Don't mind little old me.
    I think you have made your point, more than once. Personal attacks are not allowed on this forum. Neither you nor anyone else on here is the "forum police." Give it a rest.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mahkagari View Post
    My auto is a 9mm and that's too small for cats and bears, IMO.

    I've been shot with a 9mm corbon 115gr +p JHP , trust me they do ALOT ,ALOT of damage, you put a couple of those into a cat and you'll be surprised. With bullet technology coming along like it has, all these older myths are no longer valid. The corbon JHP +P are approaching .40 SW in terms of performance.

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    Hey, Mahk. I always sleep with my firearm under my pillow, whether at home car camping, or overnighting out somewhere on the trail.

    To help keep it more secure, I simply leave it holstered. That protects the trigger from being inadvertently pulled, particularly as I've been known to reach for it when I hear a noise, then fall asleep with my fingers wrapped around its butt, ready to unsnap it and draw it if necessary.
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

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    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Howdy Pardner!
    When I camp, I usually use a little bit of natural deterrant. I mark my territory.
    There are times when you gotta go, so why not go outside your camp. Just circle the camp and mark your camp so that any bear will catch the scent and know that it's "your" territory while you're there?

    We've camped in bear country without much incident, and all the men in our party would mark the territory around our camp in this natural way that critters relate to. It is what bears do, and big cats as well. Mark your territory and it will help discourage visitors in the night. First line of defense.

    Obviously, the camp cleanup before bedtime is something you don't want to neglect, but you already know that so reaffirm your dedication to keeping critter bait at safe distance from camp.

    Finally, I carry my .40 cal and haven't camped yet since I got my pistols. In this scenario, I believe I'd want my Judge loaded with .45 Colt longs under the pillow. I don't have kids either, but even if I did, I'd want my pistol in easy reach. I don't think a little kid would have the power to pull the trigger on the Judge, but if that was a concern, I could just as easily use my Ruger and keep the safety on. Even with the safety off, being a double/single action pistol, that first trigger pull requires a bit of determination.

    Something harder to learn is how to sleep with a higher level of awareness. It can be done. Really! If you can learn to sleep lighter, so anything will easily awaken you, then that's a talent worth developing.

    Finally, it doesn't hurt to have trip wires around the campsite with a bunch of empty cans or pots and pans to make a little noise if a critter comes along.

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    Absolutely not.

    A 4 and 6 year old plus the dog can hardly fend for themselves. Yet the OP camps in bear country next to ******** and even worse he admits to breaking the number one cardinal rule. Leaving food out in the camp site. Even though he KNOWS better. And all he is worried about is guns.

    I won't go easy. Life is too short for bullsh*t. He put his family at risk for absolutely no good reason. Camp smart or do everyone a favor and go to Disney instead.
    You seem very set upon controlling the actions of others.
    Quote Originally Posted by HandyHamlet View Post
    It's called FREE WILL. Try it sometime. You'll like it.
    Here I thought you were about "free will." It must be only you are for "free will" if it is only YOU, not others.
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Benjamin Franklin

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    Marking territory may have some validity, but I don't know if I would stake my life upon it. Unless you can "mark" higher than the bear........


    Quote Originally Posted by M-Taliesin View Post
    Howdy Pardner!
    When I camp, I usually use a little bit of natural deterrant. I mark my territory.
    There are times when you gotta go, so why not go outside your camp. Just circle the camp and mark your camp so that any bear will catch the scent and know that it's "your" territory while you're there?

    We've camped in bear country without much incident, and all the men in our party would mark the territory around our camp in this natural way that critters relate to. It is what bears do, and big cats as well. Mark your territory and it will help discourage visitors in the night. First line of defense.

    Obviously, the camp cleanup before bedtime is something you don't want to neglect, but you already know that so reaffirm your dedication to keeping critter bait at safe distance from camp.

    Finally, I carry my .40 cal and haven't camped yet since I got my pistols. In this scenario, I believe I'd want my Judge loaded with .45 Colt longs under the pillow. I don't have kids either, but even if I did, I'd want my pistol in easy reach. I don't think a little kid would have the power to pull the trigger on the Judge, but if that was a concern, I could just as easily use my Ruger and keep the safety on. Even with the safety off, being a double/single action pistol, that first trigger pull requires a bit of determination.

    Something harder to learn is how to sleep with a higher level of awareness. It can be done. Really! If you can learn to sleep lighter, so anything will easily awaken you, then that's a talent worth developing.

    Finally, it doesn't hurt to have trip wires around the campsite with a bunch of empty cans or pots and pans to make a little noise if a critter comes along.

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Benjamin Franklin

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    Quote Originally Posted by wrightme View Post
    Marking territory may have some validity, but I don't know if I would stake my life upon it. Unless you can "mark" higher than the bear........
    Challenge Accepted, Sir!


    You'll find me attempting to piss on tree tops next time I go camping.
    "Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it; no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it." - Judge Learned Hand

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