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#29297 - 07/22/04 01:34 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
NAro Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 494
You might be unpleasantly disappointed, wildcard, if you just settle for 12ga. slugs off the shelf. Breneke shotgun slugs are the best choice for dangerous game:
http://www.african-hunter.com/Rifle_Choice_4_Dangerous_Game.htm

I know.. we're not in Africa hunting with the shotgun. We're just trying not to be eaten by the bear. But these guys have been there.. done that.. I think they make sense.

I'm still sticking with my bearspray.

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#29298 - 07/22/04 02:15 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
norad45 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/01/04
Posts: 1506
In the woods I carry a Smith and Wesson Mtn. Gun in .44 Mag. I load the first chamber with a Speer shot capsule containing about a million #9 shot.The remainder I alternate between 240 grain hard cast lead and hollowpoint.
I worry about a bear attack about as much as I worry about "tripping over a tree root or a gopher hole" and shooting myself in the head: ZERO.
What I do want to be prepared for is encounters with human criminals and the occasional squirrel (hence the shot capsule.)
I do not consider myself "irresponsible" for that.
Regards, Vince

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#29299 - 07/22/04 03:43 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
My first grand hunting expedition was with a group of half drunk coasties. I took exception to one shooting a raven, a big no-no with the law and native belief systems. So, I had to walk back to base. I encountered a very large brownie. I decided to fire awarning shot. Unfortunately, ignorance and overzealousness resulted in copious amounts of oil freezing the action solid. Bear looked at me with contempt, woofed something about california coasties and ambled off. I got an after duty hours job cleaning the base exchange. I'm stripping the deck and swabbing a new coat of wax. In the perpetual twilight of winter, I backed full force into a mounted, upright bear, claws raised, fangs exposed in a perpetual Sylvester Stallone saliva dripping lip curl. It's rocking on the pedestal, shadow flickering over me like some Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon. I scream, run, hit the wax and slide across the room and into the wall. I see the stuffed bear, look around to see if anyone was looking in at this moment of my humiliation and feel like an idiot. years later I make friends with a canadian snowbird here in sunny California. Everyone is staring at his chest, thinking he went through a plains indian sundance. Somebody finally asked about the scars. Seems he was hiking in B.C. and encountered a momma blackbear. Bear reared up and clawed him. He punched her in the nose with 3 rapid hooks and uppercut. Bear fled. My friend was a provincial boxing champion. Later I managed to meet the late,great Bart the Bear. His table manners were better than mine. I'm no Timothy Treadwell. I tried to tell him ( along with countless others) that he was doing the bears as great a disservice as gun magazines with lurid graphics and logos about choosing the right gun and load for rapist bears. Meanwhile, theres a mosquito in my room and West Nile virus is in Southern California. Where did I put that SMLE? <img src="/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

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#29300 - 07/22/04 05:36 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
bountyhunter Offline


Registered: 11/14/03
Posts: 1224
Loc: Milwaukee, WI USA
Norad:

I think Aardwolfe meant a handgun loaded, cocked, and in your hand.

Also remember his disclaimer of weapons use. He may not know how much time, cartridges, and money some Americans spend on gun sports and you know the news media in Canada is going to give more press to dumb gun (especially handgun.) handling than even the US press does.

I have fallen once with a loaded M1 carbine while deer hunting. It was a tree limb that shifted under my foot. I went down backwards, and as my arms went out and back to break the fall, I threw my carbine away, with the chamber loaded and the safety on as always. The carbine landed on leaves and low growth, I landed on my well padded butt, and when we got back to the car, I found that I had lost my spare magazine in the fall. Only injury, the ego; the carbine was never in danger of going off.

I still like my .22's for Wisconsin, all power considerations aside.

Bountyhunter

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#29301 - 07/22/04 05:42 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
bountyhunter Offline


Registered: 11/14/03
Posts: 1224
Loc: Milwaukee, WI USA
You might want to use a CO2 glass frosting cartridge against that misquito and freeze her as the SMLE will vaporize the bugger and send the West Nile contaminated blood into mist form. <img src="/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

Bountyhunter <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

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#29302 - 07/22/04 09:28 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
Well, I wasn't addressing the issue of two-legged predators so if you have to worry about them, the rules change.

Nevertheless, even if human predators are a concern, I would look at the following:

1. A human predator, unlike a bear, is going to appreciate the significance of a firearm. A bear is probably far more frightened of the sound of my voice than of any firearm I might be carrying. A human is not going to be frightened by the sound of me reciting bawdy limericks, but is likely to think twice about attacking me if I'm carrying a rifle.

2. A human predator is either going to be deterred by the fact that you're carrying a firearm, or is going to try to take you by surprise. Either way, whether the gun has a live round in the chamber is likely to be irrelevant, unless you're aware of the predator's presence and have taken precautions. (Cops don't usually patrol with a loaded gun in their hands; they only draw their weapons when responding to a call, and not always even then.)

3. I'm personally far more worried about some colour-blind yahoo who thinks I'm a bright pink moose wearing eyeglasses than I am about someone who wants to steal my wallet and backpack. (I realise that in the US and parts of British Columbia, there is a higher probability of blundering into some back-country marijuana-growing operation owned by some trigger-happy paranoiac. <img src="/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" /> ) I've known many responsible hunters, and at least one incredibly irresponsible one (a guy I knew in the army, who bragged about shooting rabbits from a moving car on a public highway). I have no control over whether someone else is an idiot or not; the best I can hope to do is avoid being in the woods with them. <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

As far as shooting the squirrel goes, I would question whether the .5 or so seconds saved by having a live round in the chamber would counterbalance the inconvenience of picking #9 shot out of my kneecap should something go wrong ..... <img src="/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

Polar bears, of course, would be a different matter again, as they apparently do consider humans to be a legitimate food source <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Perhaps the greatest irony is that the most dangerous bears of all, the ones who have been hand-fed by European and Japanese tourists (apologies to any European or Japanese tourists reading this), are most likely to be encountered in National Parks, where of course carrying a loaded firearm is not a legitimate option. <img src="/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled."
-Plutarch

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#29303 - 07/23/04 01:03 AM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
bountyhunter Offline


Registered: 11/14/03
Posts: 1224
Loc: Milwaukee, WI USA
Sad to say Tim Treadwell was American born and not Europeon or Asian. Now his status is "The late departed", who unfortunately took the woman he loved with him to the belly of the beast.

I recall a little item a while back about some dimly lit bulb who set up his video camera to take pictures of a pride of lions while he approached them for some unknown reason. Somewhere there is supposed to be pictures of what the lions did to him. Anyone know if those pictures can be viewed on line somewhere? I want to see his face to see if I can tell what in blazes he was thinking when he did that.

Bountyhunter

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#29304 - 07/23/04 03:06 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
norad45 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/01/04
Posts: 1506
"Well, I wasn't addressing the issue of two-legged predators so if you have to worry about them, the rules change.”

No, actually the rules do not change, because there are no rules. There is simply the fact that I do not go into the woods without a visible firearm. (Let me point out I’m not talking about the local state campground here.)

“A human predator is either going to be deterred by the fact that you're carrying a firearm, or is going to try to take you by surprise.”

I think it is far more likely that a human predator will pass on an armed potential victim in favor of someone…..well, to be blunt, someone like you ( i.e.: not visibly armed).

“Either way, whether the gun has a live round in the chamber is likely to be irrelevant, unless you're aware of the predator's presence and have taken precautions. (Cops don't usually patrol with a loaded gun in their hands; they only draw their weapons when responding to a call, and not always even then…)”
“As far as shooting the squirrel goes, I would question whether the .5 or so seconds saved by having a live round in the chamber would counterbalance the inconvenience of picking #9 shot out of my kneecap should something go wrong .....”

I appreciate the fact that you do not hunt, and you have honestly and courageously admitted your lack of knowledge about firearms. I have grown up around guns and have hunted all my life, and I still consider myself very much an amateur. But your remark about a “live round in the chamber” being irrelevant is simply wrong; Revolver, semi-auto, bolt action, or pump—all can be brought into action MUCH faster with one in the pipe, and, at least in the case of a modern double-action revolver, just as safely.
And cops in Israel DO patrol with loaded guns in their hands; I guess it all depends on the general threat level, doesn’t it?

“I'm personally far more worried about some colour-blind yahoo who thinks I'm a bright pink moose wearing eyeglasses than I am about someone who wants to steal my wallet and backpack.”
"I have no control over whether someone else is an idiot or not; the best I can hope to do is avoid being in the woods with them. "

Stereotypes aside, I’m personally far more worried about the gent who mistakes his gas pedal for his brake when I am in the crosswalk. Idiots, yahoos, morons, and thugs are all more likely to get you in the city than in the woods. The threat is there, I know, but the fact remains that hunting is statistically far safer than most other forms of recreation. I respect the fact that you do not hunt but I would urge you not to let your fear stop you from enjoying a beautiful fall day in the woods.

“Polar bears, of course, would be a different matter again, as they apparently do consider humans to be a legitimate food source.”

As do, apparently, some black bears around here (Utah). A few years back one came into a campground at night and dragged a five-year old girl out of her family’s camper. IIRC, her grandfather chased it down beating it with a maglite until it released her. She lived but was terribly scarred. I still consider bears to be at most a minor threat.

Regards, Vince


Edited by norad45 (07/23/04 03:11 PM)

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#29305 - 07/23/04 06:59 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
norad;

I'm not exactly sure what we're arguing about here - if we ARE arguing, that is.

We both seem to be furiously agreeing that there are a lot of far more dangerous things to worry about than being eaten by a bear. My original response was to state that, if being eaten by a bear is your primary concern, then taking "precautions" which significantly increase the danger to you and your travelling companions is IMO a disproportionate response. If you're concerned about critters other than a black bear, especially Bigfoot's hairless cousins <img src="/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />, then you're into a completely different threat scenario and those comments may not apply.

I agree that one's response should be modified to deal with the threat level. Obviously, I would not expect a police officer investigating an armed robbery in progress to react the same as if he/she were directing traffic.

Your point about an armed criminal preferring an unarmed victim like me to an armed victim like you is obvious, but irrelevant. I never suggested otherwise; what I did say was that a criminal is as likely to be deterred by an unloaded firearm as he/she is by a loaded one, as there's (normally) no easy way for them to tell at a glance which one you have. (Obviously, if there's no magazine in the chamber, this may not apply, but if there's an empty magazine, or a full magazine with no round loaded in the chamber, and/or the safety is on, it would.) Thus, having a live round in the chamber and the safety off is not likely to act as a greater deterrent than having the chamber empty and the safety engaged.

A bear, on the other hand, is not going to know the difference between a human carrying a rifle and one carrying a trekking pole or a camera tripod. Thus, my point being that if you want to avoid a confrontation with a bear, you're far better off yodelling "The Hills are Alive" than you are carrying a rifle. <img src="/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

What exactly do you mean by "Much faster"? It's been over 10 years since I served in the military, but I've fired FNC-1 semi-automatic rifles, FNC-3 fully automatic rifles, Browning 9mm semi-automatic pistols, and 9mm SMGs; very limited experience, I admit, but in none of those cases can I see it taking more than a second to load the magazine and cock the weapon. I suppose if you're into black powder or muzzle loaders, it would take longer; but I've never gone beyond what I did in the military.

I've heard that, in some locations, Black bears have been observed stalking humans for prey and it's not unheard of for them to attack campers in tents. I suspect these are almost always bears that have been fed by humans and have learned to associate us with their din-dins. <img src="/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled."
-Plutarch

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#29306 - 07/23/04 08:44 PM Re: Lions and tigers and bears oh my! again
norad45 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/01/04
Posts: 1506
What I objected to was your statement: “If you walk through the woods with a loaded gun that's primed and ready to fire, I consider you irresponsible.” I understand now that you were speaking about another type of firearm: the semi-automatics and automatics that you used in the service. At least I think that's what you meant.

My aforementioned Mountain Gun is a double action revolver. I carry it exactly as you describe: I can either thumb the hammer back and then pull the trigger (very light pull), or I can simply pull the trigger and it will fire (much heavier pull and my preferred way of shooting it.) I do not believe it can go off even if dropped as long as the hammer is not cocked, but of course I act as though it can and will. In the old days of single action Colt Peacemakers and such it was considered prudent to carry your pistol with an empty chamber under the hammer to prevent a scenario just as you describe: tripping, dropping the gun, and having it go off accidentally. These days guns are manufactured with internal safety devices to prevent that sort of thing, but there is still no substitute for safe gun handling.

What I meant by “much faster” is just that. Take your example of the Browning 9mm pistol. If it’s a Hi-Power and I’m understanding your technique in the service correctly, then you would draw the weapon, rack the slide to chamber a round, aim the weapon, and then fire. With the Mountain Gun you simply draw the weapon, aim, and fire. If you first have to load the magazine then the revolver would be “much, much faster”. (FWIW, if the Hi-Power was carried “cocked and locked” it might be a hair faster even than the revolver.)

Using your .5 second difference as an example, in a confrontation with a bad guy that might mean the difference between making it to cover or not. And don’t forget that, at 30 MPH, a charging bear covers 25 feet in .5 of a second. No, if I’m going to carry a gun in the woods, it’s going to be loaded and if it’s a revolver at least, it’s going to have a full cylinder.

I just thought of another threat which is probably more serious than a bear: the rabid fox (or coyote or porcupine.) Anybody ever encounter one of those? I’ve got to admit, rabies makes me a bit nervous.

Regards, Vince

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