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Fart smeller
Paid to post this crap.
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19,539 Posts
Ohh, bear story time?

This is the closest I've ever been to a bear.

I was backpacking the "Wonderland" trail around the base of Mt Rainier (~93 miles, 22k ft elevation gain, but we were only doing about 1/3 of it at the time), when my group ran into a group of women who were hiking, and were freaked out that a bear was on trail shortly up the trail. So now our group (6-7 people now, as I was hiking with 2 buddies). They said it had been 15-20 min since they saw it though, so we all decided to hike back up and see if it was even still there.

It was. It was sitting directly on the trail as we came around a corner. I'd guess it was 50-60ft away tops. It didn't move when we yelled out "hey bear!", but when the group grouped up and started walking towards it, it ran up the tree that is just barely out of frame on the right.

Luckily I was hiking with my DSLR in hand, and got this shot. A touch of motion blur because of the low-ish shutter speed and apparently shakier hands than normal. But its not bad enough to totally ruin the photo luckily.

View attachment 1939244

We had to hike directly past/under that tree though, so we ended up getting much closer in linear distance after it had climbed up (the bear was maybe 10-15ft up the tree, but the trail was only 10-15ft from the base of the tree). But we stayed as a group, all facing it as we went past it.

I've not had tons of experience around bears, but I wouldn't say I have no idea about what to do around them either. I know we probably could have handled the situation better, I'm aware of that. However, the bear definitely looked/acted more worried about us, and was clearly skittish. So I felt comfortable making a move towards it, which paid off. But if the bear had shown ANY signs of aggression/agitation, we wouldn't have moved ahead at all.
Yeeesh. No thanks!
 

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Disgruntled Peccary
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2,222 Posts
Logan, great shot and story.

Remember with Black Bears you do not play dead or run or climb a tree. You fight back, yell, make yourself as big as possible and if it attacks try to punch it in the muzzle. Good luck!

Grizzly Bears you play dead, leave your pack on and lay on your stomach. Hands on the back of your neck and spread your legs out as far as possible to lesson the chance of the bear rolling you over. Good luck! X10
Which can be problematic, since black bears can be brown and brown bears black.
 

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change is good
Switchblade with a 38, 29+ rigid WaltWorks
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3,343 Posts
I’ve done some stupid things in bear country when RVing I hate to admit. No concept. No more. At the very least I could get a bear killed.

Backpacking, I’ve been kosher.

I’ve met people from the north country and they’re big guns even though the rangers state the data supports spray. I would carry both


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

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Self Appointed Judge&Jury
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39,606 Posts
Which can be problematic, since black bears can be brown and brown bears black.
Well, with little time to interview them maybe look for telling signs like facial structure, a hump on the back or lack of and claw length.
 

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Elitest thrill junkie
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36,051 Posts
I come upon bears semi-regularly, but haven't at all yet this year. One time, I came around a corner and there was a big mama with a couple cubs just a few feet from the trail. It was funny though, she "froze" when I came around the corner, like I've seen hikers do, thinking that if they "freeze", somehow I won't notice them. Usually if they are off the trail and you come around the corner they'll just continue on their merry way or run off. Very occasionally they'll charge, but really rare for a black bear.
 
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