10mm glock for bear protection?

ADfields

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I spent a summer riding heard on dudes in Bob Marshall and Glassier Park back in the 80s. Yea it’s wild and full of critters . . . I saw 16 bears that summer and was very impressed by the size of some of them. But I had never been anyplace but Arizona and New Mexico before that. Here in Alaska I have been to spots where there are more and way bigger bears than that at the same place all at once.

Montana is great, you got us beet for elk and I have never seen so many big antelope any other place but just as Smitty points out there just isn’t enough or the right habitat to support bear anything like Alaska. Here the costal bears are nothing like a Montana or inland Alaska bear, they are piled on each other and used to being pushy with each other all the time for food and space. They are nothing like a bear inland or Montana where the food is all spread out, they are much larger and much less inclined to give you room.

It’s plumb different here even the cloven hoof critters are less inclined to run away from people and will very likely to fight if you don’t give them space . . .
 

MontanaRifleman

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C'mon now, MR:
The man never said it was in the Bible. It's just a bit of intuitive wisdom, oft repeated and commonly believed.

And, you just said that YOU were GUESSING about the "Montana Ecosystem". (That's probably the only one down there.)

Back to perhaps the most important part of your lesson today, namely, your own survival in the "Montana Ecosystem"

Next time you see black bears hangin around, as in, they don't go away, you better "Watch Out". They're not interested in the BBQ, although that may have attracted them, but they are interested in eating.

Also, don't go runnin around amongst bears without a gun. Don't the new laws apply, and you can carry firearms now?

It's too bad about the 41, but I understand.

Smitty of the North

The BBQ bear had been hangin around the house and neighbors for a few days, getting into the garbage and being a nuisance. I live next to a Cottonwood creek bottom that's about a half mile wide and about a mile or so from the foothills of the Gallatin mountains. Bears. Moose, Mountain Lions and other critters use the creek bottom to roam and travel out of the mountains. I've been chased by moose in my own driveway and a neighbors house cat was eaten by a cougar. I was with my sons BBQ'ing and when I heard him milling around in the brush and went in and got the 41 and a 12 Gauge pump and we continued the BBQ and he never came out of the brush. That was before I became a UDAP fan. We had a run in with him earlier in the day in the driveway and tried chasing him off. I even tried firing a shot right over his head with my 41 when he was back in the brush... it didn't work. I have other "backyard stories", but we'll save them for another time.

Yeah, you can carry in the Park now but guns are just a bulky, heavy nuisance when I fish. The best fishing id well off the beaten trail and I don't feel like carrying a gun when I'm fishing. One of my favorite spots is way up Slough Creek near the Park/Absoroka-Beartooth Wilderness boundary. It's 11 miles in and 11 miles out and i do it in a day trip. I didn't used to even carry spray, but I've had enough run-ins (nothing bad) with bears back there that I figure why press my luck. A can of spray is much lighter than a Redhawk and I really don't want to be the first Supreme Court case defending my DLP rights in the Park. Anyway, I feel myself slipping down a road I don't wanna venture on.

Let's hope they let us start hunting these critters... I would really like a rug.
 

MontanaRifleman

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I spent a summer riding heard on dudes in Bob Marshall and Glassier Park back in the 80s. Yea it’s wild and full of critters . . . I saw 16 bears that summer and was very impressed by the size of some of them. But I had never been anyplace but Arizona and New Mexico before that. Here in Alaska I have been to spots where there are more and way bigger bears than that at the same place all at once.

Montana is great, you got us beet for elk and I have never seen so many big antelope any other place but just as Smitty points out there just isn’t enough or the right habitat to support bear anything like Alaska. Here the costal bears are nothing like a Montana or inland Alaska bear, they are piled on each other and used to being pushy with each other all the time for food and space. They are nothing like a bear inland or Montana where the food is all spread out, they are much larger and much less inclined to give you room.

It’s plumb different here even the cloven hoof critters are less inclined to run away from people and will very likely to fight if you don’t give them space . . .

Andy, both Montana and Alaska have their unique qualities and it's hard to compare them. As for griz numbers, ours have been concentrated around YNP and the Bob/Glacier areas. I did a search on the Yellowstone Griz population and found this.

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/unl...-population-is-at-its-highest-in-decades.html

The article says that the Yellowstone Griz population has grown to "at least" 603 in an area that has grown to 22,000 square miles and I suspect the actual number is probably closer 1,000. I'm not sure what the 22,000 sq mi encompasses, but the Park itself is only 3,468 sq mi and the bulk of that population is concentrated in the Park and about another 3,000 - 4,000 sq miles adjoining the Park in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho.

If we use 603 as the population in 22,000 sq miles, we come up with population density of 1 griz per 36 sq mi. If we apply that population density to Alaska's 663,268 sq mi we come up with 18,400 grizzlies. Are there that many Grizzlies in AK? I don't know, maybe you guys have some figures on that? Keep in mind that 603 is a conservative "known" number. There is more food for the bears in the Yellowstone area than the Bob and Glacier so there are higher numbers. The griz population pretty much stretches form the Canadian border, down through the Rocky's to YNP. and as you probably know, the rest of the state has little to no griz except for a few individuals here or there in some of the other mountain ranges, and that's fine.

Another point of interest is that a huge 900 lb + bear was captured in the spring about a year or two ago near the Bob. They figue he would have gone well over 1000 lbs in the fall. There were two other large bears in the 700-800 lb range killed/captured in the same region that they figure were his offspring. That is very rare as most adult Montana griz top out at about 300-500 lb., i.e., the one pictured in the article. I wonder if this brute was a migrating Coastal from BC? There was also a 700 lb + bear killed on a road just outside Yellowstone about 3-4 years ago.

FYI, the article states that hunting griz was stopped in 1975 and that is wrong. I don't recall the exact year it was stopped, but I know for a fact you could still hunt them in 88 and I think 89. The article also states the US Fish and Wildlife service took them off the endangered species list, but a wacko Judge decided he would put them back on (along with wolves) all by himself. A lot of Montanan's are getting quite irritated with the Feds and Fed judges.

BTW, I met the guy in charge of the Yellowstone area study of grizzlies 2 weeks ago. A real nice guy, but we didn't get a chance to talk much.

Well, time to get to loading for this spring's bear season which opens in about a month.... and I won't be using a 10mm.
 

tailwind

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There are over 30,000 griz in AK. That makes your whole point laughable. Hey, it's worth that!
 

HUNTERKJL

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M.R.

I would be pretty concerned about them big cats you guys have down there sneaking in on me while out in the back country. I hear they are so stealthy that many times a guy does not know he is being stalked. I imagine they get hunted some there though so they may be more fearful of 2 legged critters than the ones in Libifornia. Still yet, a good Redhawk would be comforting to have just in case.
 

La Pine

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Well I feel the 10mm isnt what your going to need. If you get that one pissed off Grizz your going to need the tool in hand to get the job done. I pack the Smith 500 Alaskan, enough gun to get the job done if need be and you won't become part of the food chain. The last thing you want to do is leave a wounded bear out there for someone else to discover.
I am new to this site, and dont have much experience with handguns in general, but i find i am drawn more twards automatic's then i am to revolvers, and i was wondering if there was an automatic pistol at least marginally acceptable for bear protection. I'm lookin for something i can take on long hiking trips , i have a mossberg 835 12g that i take with me on any camping trip that dones't invlove long hikes, it is a rather large and unweildy thing to take hiking . I was told recently that a glock 10mm was decent for bear protection, but i thought i would get your insights, thank you for your input .
 

ADfields

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Andy, both Montana and Alaska have their unique qualities and it's hard to compare them. As for griz numbers, ours have been concentrated around YNP and the Bob/Glacier areas. I did a search on the Yellowstone Griz population and found this.

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/unl...-population-is-at-its-highest-in-decades.html

The article says that the Yellowstone Griz population has grown to "at least" 603 in an area that has grown to 22,000 square miles and I suspect the actual number is probably closer 1,000. I'm not sure what the 22,000 sq mi encompasses, but the Park itself is only 3,468 sq mi and the bulk of that population is concentrated in the Park and about another 3,000 - 4,000 sq miles adjoining the Park in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho.

If we use 603 as the population in 22,000 sq miles, we come up with population density of 1 griz per 36 sq mi. If we apply that population density to Alaska's 663,268 sq mi we come up with 18,400 grizzlies. Are there that many Grizzlies in AK? I don't know, maybe you guys have some figures on that? Keep in mind that 603 is a conservative "known" number. There is more food for the bears in the Yellowstone area than the Bob and Glacier so there are higher numbers. The griz population pretty much stretches form the Canadian border, down through the Rocky's to YNP. and as you probably know, the rest of the state has little to no griz except for a few individuals here or there in some of the other mountain ranges, and that's fine.

Another point of interest is that a huge 900 lb + bear was captured in the spring about a year or two ago near the Bob. They figue he would have gone well over 1000 lbs in the fall. There were two other large bears in the 700-800 lb range killed/captured in the same region that they figure were his offspring. That is very rare as most adult Montana griz top out at about 300-500 lb., i.e., the one pictured in the article. I wonder if this brute was a migrating Coastal from BC? There was also a 700 lb + bear killed on a road just outside Yellowstone about 3-4 years ago.

FYI, the article states that hunting griz was stopped in 1975 and that is wrong. I don't recall the exact year it was stopped, but I know for a fact you could still hunt them in 88 and I think 89. The article also states the US Fish and Wildlife service took them off the endangered species list, but a wacko Judge decided he would put them back on (along with wolves) all by himself. A lot of Montanan's are getting quite irritated with the Feds and Fed judges.

BTW, I met the guy in charge of the Yellowstone area study of grizzlies 2 weeks ago. A real nice guy, but we didn't get a chance to talk much.

Well, time to get to loading for this spring's bear season which opens in about a month.... and I won't be using a 10mm.

From Alaska DF&G website:
Brown Bear densities averages:
North Slope as low as 1 per 300 square miles
In central Alaska (like Fairbanks) 1 per 15-20 square miles
Along the southern coast 1 to 3 per square mile.

They live in pockets of abundant food and those numbers are deceiving because we have thousands of miles along the coast that are glaciated with little life other than ice worms. These mountains count as miles but contain no bear at all so the bear is concentrated thicker than the numbers show in places, we have very dance population pockets.

These pockets that the bear live in are also where people are because who hunts, fishes, or lives on an ice field? Bears and people live in the same pockets here all stacked up together, we don’t live on the edge of a wilderness area . . . we live right in the big middle of all the action. You’re as likely to encounter a moose in downtown Anchorage as you are a dog or cat. Here wildlife encounters are an everyday deal not just in the woods or our driveways but in the cities too.

Our average size coastal male is estimated by F&G at 600, big is around a grand, and record is pushing 1700lbs. Coastal browns are well over twice the size of the biggest Montana bears I saw, they come big here I have seen some bigger than large saddle horses!

For us walking the dog, going to work, or taking out the trash is stepping into the food chain so forgive us if we like to discuss ways to stay safer. It’s not much different to us than knowing what to do when we break down 200 miles from anything in sub zero weather, it’s not paranoia it’s just our reality here in the Great Land where ourselves may be the only help to be found for days or even weeks.
 

Smitty of the North

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For us walking the dog, going to work, or taking out the trash is stepping into the food chain so forgive us if we like to discuss ways to stay safer. It’s not much different to us than knowing what to do when we break down 200 miles from anything in sub zero weather, it’s not paranoia it’s just our reality here in the Great Land where ourselves may be the only help to be found for days or even weeks.

That's very true, and very well put.

And, I'm glad to know that I'm not paranoid. WELL, not because I'm concerned the with unique aspects of surviving in the Greatland.

Smitty of the North
 

MontanaRifleman

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M.R.

I would be pretty concerned about them big cats you guys have down there sneaking in on me while out in the back country. I hear they are so stealthy that many times a guy does not know he is being stalked. I imagine they get hunted some there though so they may be more fearful of 2 legged critters than the ones in Libifornia. Still yet, a good Redhawk would be comforting to have just in case.

There's only been one Montana mountain lion fatality that I know of and that was a 12 year old boy back in 89. There have been a small number of other attacks and numerous reports of cats stalking people, including several people I know. Two of those that I know were returning in the evening from bow hunting elk in the Bridger Mountains. it was a little too close for comfort so they shot it with a handgun and turned it in to F&G.

I've only ever seen one in the wild while elk hunting with a friend. It jumped out in front of us on a FS road that we hunting up in fresh falling snow. It made no sound at all. When it saw us, it turned around and disappeared very quickly. The rate of incidents with cats is just too small to be very concerned about. More people are struck by lightning in Montana than attacked by a cat. People also get chased and stomped on by moose here more than cats, me included in my own yard. :)
 

LuJon

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The best fishing id well off the beaten trail and I don't feel like carrying a gun when I'm fishing. One of my favorite spots is way up Slough Creek near the Park/Absoroka-Beartooth Wilderness boundary. It's 11 miles in and 11 miles out and i do it in a day trip.
WOW MR!!! You must be in insanely good shape to knock out 22 "off the beaten path" miles in a day and still manage to have time to fish!!
 

MontanaRifleman

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From Alaska DF&G website:
Brown Bear densities averages:
North Slope as low as 1 per 300 square miles
In central Alaska (like Fairbanks) 1 per 15-20 square miles
Along the southern coast 1 to 3 per square mile.

They live in pockets of abundant food and those numbers are deceiving because we have thousands of miles along the coast that are glaciated with little life other than ice worms. These mountains count as miles but contain no bear at all so the bear is concentrated thicker than the numbers show in places, we have very dance population pockets.

These pockets that the bear live in are also where people are because who hunts, fishes, or lives on an ice field? Bears and people live in the same pockets here all stacked up together, we don’t live on the edge of a wilderness area . . . we live right in the big middle of all the action. You’re as likely to encounter a moose in downtown Anchorage as you are a dog or cat. Here wildlife encounters are an everyday deal not just in the woods or our driveways but in the cities too.

Our average size coastal male is estimated by F&G at 600, big is around a grand, and record is pushing 1700lbs. Coastal browns are well over twice the size of the biggest Montana bears I saw, they come big here I have seen some bigger than large saddle horses!

For us walking the dog, going to work, or taking out the trash is stepping into the food chain so forgive us if we like to discuss ways to stay safer. It’s not much different to us than knowing what to do when we break down 200 miles from anything in sub zero weather, it’s not paranoia it’s just our reality here in the Great Land where ourselves may be the only help to be found for days or even weeks.

Andy, No need to forgive you. You do what you think is best, and I have absolutely no problem with it. As Smitty knows, I have my own ideas about being safe and so far it has worked alright for me. I know all about being in the "food chain" environment, even in my own yard. One night when my dogs were barking, I went to the door to see what was up and when I opened it, there was a good size blackie walking by at not more than 10 ft. Another night, I was sitting back by my fire ring just after I had finished eating my BBQ, just enjoying the stars and moon when a blackie came strolling up the path out of the creek bottom. He didn't see me until I stood up about 30 ft away, and then turned and beat paws back to the creek. On another occasion I backpacked up into the Frank Church Wilderness in ID to do some elk hunting. The first night it snowed about 1-2 inches and when I got up and out the first morning, i found a set of very freah bear tracks that had passed my tent by not more than 10". I had made sure there was nothing (other than me) that bear would be interested in, in the tent and my food was hung high in a tree. There was no indication that he stopped and sniffed around. Just a straight track through my camp. I have had numerous encounter with bears under different circumstances. Sometimes they run and sometimes they don't, but so far none have been aggressive. Of course, there is always the chance. As far as the "food chain" thing goes. Very few griz attacks are preditory. Most are just being in the wrong place at the wrong time, or hunters trying to call game as is quite often the case here in MT. Stats seem to show that blackies are actually more predatous toward humans than griz.

It's true that there will be varying concentrations depending on location and the same holds here as well. There are about 150 grizzlies in YNP which works out to be about 1 per 23 sq mi. And of course, within the Park boundaries there are areas where griz are more concentrated than other areas... like Slough Creek and the Lamar Valley which are places I like to fish. These areas are probably easily 1 in every 5-10 sq mi. I will concede that bear concentrations are greater in a lot of areas of AK than MT or the Yellowstone area, but never-the-less we still have plenty of bears and other critters in some areas that I like to hang out in. When I was younger, I used to be quite nervous in bear country. Over the years, I have gotten very used to it, but hopefully not complacent.

Hope you have a great day in the Great Land,

Mark
 

MontanaRifleman

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[
QUOTE=LuJon;910934]WOW MR!!! You must be in insanely good shape to knock out 22 "off the beaten path" miles in a day and still manage to have time to fish!!
[/QUOTE]

Lujon, It's about 3 hours in and 3 hours out which gives me about 6 hrs to fish :) I try to stay in shape which allows me to enjoy a lot of opportunities. The best fishing I know requires backpacking high into the Beartooths with 60 lb plus pack 10-15 miles. I've had many very rewarding experiences.
 

Smitty of the North

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Lujon, It's about 3 hours in and 3 hours out which gives me about 6 hrs to fish :) I try to stay in shape which allows me to enjoy a lot of opportunities. The best fishing I know requires backpacking high into the Beartooths with 60 lb plus pack 10-15 miles. I've had many very rewarding experiences.[/QUOTE]

That sounds about right. I usta go 3 miles in an hour, pretty easy.

I can't see the 60 lb. pack though, unless I'm packin meat.

Backpack camping is something I never got to do enough, of.

What Lujon may be referring to, is that "off the beaten path", up here can be difficult, or even impassible due to the terrain. It can reely slow you down, to say the least. Of course, I dunno how that compares with Montana.

Smitty of the North
 

HUNTERKJL

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Smitty, you nailed it on the terrain thing up here, at least in some places. I thought of hiking in 5 miles a few years back up on the Haul Road to use the rifle on the bou since I could not get within 100 yards with the bow. I tried a stalk (with the bow) and went 2.5 miles out per GPS, did not get within bow range of the caibou, and thought I would keel over from exhaustion on the hike back! Man, that tundra is like walking on a giant sponge with those tuft things sticking up everywhere for you to turn an ankle on. Only way is to step over them which requires one to basically high step. Worse walking I've seen in my world travels!
 

Matt

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WOW MR!!! You must be in insanely good shape to knock out 22 "off the beaten path" miles in a day and still manage to have time to fish!!

The ground is a lot flatter down there. Think about walking around the state fair all day and that is probably what it is like down there. :D
 

Smitty of the North

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I know all about being in the "food chain" environment, even in my own yard. One night when my dogs were barking, I went to the door to see what was up and when I opened it, there was a good size blackie walking by at not more than 10 ft. Another night, I was sitting back by my fire ring just after I had finished eating my BBQ, just enjoying the stars and moon when a blackie came strolling up the path out of the creek bottom. He didn't see me until I stood up about 30 ft away, and then turned and beat paws back to the creek. On another occasion I backpacked up into the Frank Church Wilderness in ID to do some elk hunting. The first night it snowed about 1-2 inches and when I got up and out the first morning, i found a set of very freah bear tracks that had passed my tent by not more than 10". I had made sure there was nothing (other than me) that bear would be interested in, in the tent and my food was hung high in a tree. There was no indication that he stopped and sniffed around. Just a straight track through my camp. I have had numerous encounter with bears under different circumstances. Sometimes they run and sometimes they don't, but so far none have been aggressive. Of course, there is always the chance. As far as the "food chain" thing goes. Very few griz attacks are preditory. Most are just being in the wrong place at the wrong time, or hunters trying to call game as is quite often the case here in MT. Stats seem to show that blackies are actually more predatous toward humans than griz.

Hope you have a great day in the Great Land,

Mark
Those are Interesting stories, and Skewwy, ones too. Not, what happened, but what could have happened, as unlikely as it seems.

From what I've been able to determine, most Grizzly attacks are aggressive responses, and black bear attacks are predatory.

In my own experience, any black bears I've encountered, either run like crazy, or showed little, if any, response at all. They may leave reluctantly.

I seen a Grizzly once that wasn't scared, and not even curious till I yelled at him, and then, he decided to investigate me. Fortunately, his curiosity was satisfied before he got very close. He took his sweet ole time, leaving too.

In hindsight, some of the things my wife, and I, and our girls did in years past were very dumb. Now, we've decided to take appropriate measures, to protect ourselves.

Smitty of the North
 

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