Does anyone have first hand exp. with the different fences? Are they worth the effort? Who makes the most practical or most effective? I've seen 3.7 lbs and 24 lbs. Any thoughts or help on the matter would be greatly appreciated. I'm doing a 10 float in early Sept. for moose.
Check the archives. I'm not sure a bear fence is totally practical on a float hunt since I'd assume your floating/hunting daily it would be a pain to set up/take down every day. I've always thought a bear fence would be more practical on a drop hunt-imo.
My 2 cents
I will be taking two bear fences on my float hunt. I do not plan on moving everyday. One fence is for the two Levs and the other is for the two tents. The bear fences are a cheap insurance policy and are easy to set up in minutes to protect $10,000 worth of gear. OBTW if a bear makes a chew toy out of your raft you are up **** creek with no raft. Good luck getting home. I have had two friends have their rafts destroyed by bears. The bears left the food and meat on the meat poles alone, and just chewed up their rafts for something to do. You can purchase the supplies for a charger seperately and save about $200.00. My total cost was $75.00 for the set up. I bought the fencer at Alaska mill and feed for $45.00. The fencer says for small animals, but the fencer puts out more watts than the bear fencer kits. PM me if you would like additional info. Good luck this fall.
My bear fence kit
I bought a Fi-Shok SS-2D fencer. The fencer box says for small animals. I called the company and the fencer puts out 6000 Watts off of a couple D or C batteries. 6000 is 2000 more than the bear fencer kits that cost around $300.00. The fencer cost me $49.95 at Alaska mill and feed in Anchorage. I just picked up ten 6 foot hard plastic, round, green plant stakes. .69 a piece. I plan on cutting the posts in half.
I have to pick up the wire yet, but 500 feet of wire runs about $40.00. I plan on using the white or yellow plastic rope wire with the metal intertwined. I plan on running two strands. I bought a tester as well for $8.95. I will be on gravel bars and the ground is not great for grounding properties. I found a 3 foot copper rod that I will use for my grounding rod. The nail that comes with the fencer in my opinion is just not enough.
I plan on attaching the wire to the stakes with rubber bands.
To be honest, I dont think the fences are worth a hoot. They only make you feel good, until the bears walk through them and do their damage.
Here is why I say that. Im a guide and have several lodges. Since we had grizzly getting into the meat shed and tearing up the screens as well as taking the meat, I put up a fence a few years ago.
The first try was one of those 12 volt units that had a solar charger, with 4 wires on steel posts. All the insulators and good stuff, as used for livestock. At full charge the bears walked right through it. They went in, took meat and left to eat it a few yards away, then repeated it. The fence did not bother them at all. After 3 days with one day of cloud cover in the arctic where the days were 24 hours long, there was not enough charge left to shock your hand.
Second try. A 12volt unit made for livestock, with heavy duty deep charge battery, charged with the camp generator daily. Exactly the same results as the above unit. No result at all, bears walk right through it.
Third try. A 24 volt unit charged daily. You guessed it, nearly the same result. This time I had to shoot the bear as well. He just kept coming back for more meat, and started terrorizing the camp to boot. It was turned in as a DLP bear and Im sure it sold at some auction...I sure wish I had that hide, it was beautiful. Maybe F&G kept it... they should have it was beautiful.
Fourth try. I ran a piece of 12/2 wire from the 10K generator across camp and to the meat shed. One wire was connected to a copper rod driven in the ground. The other wire was connected to the fence. With 10K of 120 volt AC hooked to the fence the bears left it alone, we just heard a bunch of roaring at night, for the first two nights. Then the bear learned to go inside the fence fast, stay until he was done, then leave fast. He still ate his fill.
Final solution. Bring the meat into camp, cut, wrap and freeze the day it arrives. Put nothing in the meat shed. That works real well. You only need to haul a generator and chest freezer with you on your hunt.
Something that does work... sometimes, but may help lure the bears in as well. Rub some bacon grease on a couple of ammonia bottles, and set them around the meat. When they do bite the bottles (plastic please) they depart the vacinity quite quickly.
I thought that the ammonia idea is very interesting. I'm curious how many other have used or tried it. Would that application be worth trying or using on a successful float hunt..
If it were me I think I'd chose to take a Corillian Bear Dog with me instead, ...or a buddy that you can outrun, LOL.
I'd like to see if Michael Strahan or BrownBear would address supercub driver's opinion of electric bear fences. Is he correct or have you had different experiences than his?
I'm planning to spend atleast part of moose season solo in an area with a very healthy populations of both blacks and grizzlies...so I have been considering buying a commercial bear fence, although I may take 1 or two dogs instead. Would the kyakers killed on the Hula Hula River 2 years ago perhaps be alive today if they had used a "fence"? So, what's the answer Mike and BrownBear....are they effective, or are they just another bunch of high tech gear that is all hype?