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Thread: Animal defense when hiking, need ideas!

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    Tracker Archer008's Avatar
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    Default Animal defense when hiking, need ideas!

    Since its winter and 5 degrees, were all planning our spring/summer hike trips and for the first time in my life I'm ACTUALLY worried about defending myself from animal attacks! I think I have a pretty good skill set for other events in the wild but really have no idea besides my .40cal to defend against a cougar/bear etc...

    Over christmas a cousin of mine was telling me about a cougar stalking him last summer and how he had to scare it off from fifteen feet away...so im kinda shaking in my boots already. Its probably been discussed before but i couldnt find it so sorry if this has been brought up recently. Any ideas??

    All of mine so far are too heavy or bulky or simply not practical...
    Im looking for light, easy and scary enough to deter a big animal...so give me your best ideas. Thanks everyone!
    (P.S. Im in Utah, so this might be more of an area-specific question..no Kodiak here..)
    Last edited by Archer008; 01-04-2013 at 03:47 PM.

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    Guide OutdoorEnvy's Avatar
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    If I was about to be attacked by a large predator like that I would probably crap myself, and hope it didn't like it's food covered in crap

    But I suppose a handgun of ANY kind would be a good option. A lot of people I know carry something in woods. Where legal to do so of course. Other than a gun you're probably not very well off with a handweapon, though something is better than nothing. Let's just hope non of us have to deal with this situation in the first place.

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    Scout JPAZ357's Avatar
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    .357mag is a good woods round for pistol. As long as you're not expecting to see grizzly or moose it should be enough.

    maybe something like a 4" Ruger SP101

    Edit: just saw you said Utah. .357 should be good to go, unless you have some Sasquatch or something I am unaware of!
    Last edited by JPAZ357; 01-04-2013 at 04:09 PM.

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    Bushmaster Bush Class Basic Certified madmax's Avatar
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    I think I'ld pop for some good bear spray, if they sell it in Utah. I've camped out there (Utah) months at a time and never felt in danger of animal attacks. The 40 caliber is fine for the 2 legged critters.

    Go out and enjoy yourself. It's amazing...
    Last edited by madmax; 01-04-2013 at 04:18 PM.


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    A lot of people swear by bear spray and/or bangers. Bangers are kinda like projectile fireworks you can look them up on youtube.

    I carry a 45 acp concealed but in most instances a cat will probably catch you off guard so unless it is a situation like you mention where you knew it was stalking then a weapon would probably be of little use.

    I carry my handgun more for protection from the two-legged beast. There have been a large number of meth labs found around popular hiking areas here. I fear a meth addict far more than any bear or cat plus we do not have a large population of them.

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    Scout VinWild's Avatar
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    Pack Heat and a knife. Nothing smaller then a 9mm/.357. A .44 mag wouldn't be out of place.
    A knife that you could get to in a hurry, with a large enough blade to do some damage.
    Remember the best gun to have when you need one - is the one that's in your hand !
    We are on the food chain; and winter time is feeding time. Be careful out there.

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    Guide Supporter Bush Otter's Avatar
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    Poppers sound good but a firearm is a good idea too.
    The Cisco Kid is a friend of mine:)

    [B]THE AXE MOB

    FORMERLY KNOWN AS HOP

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    Honestly im more leery of people than i am the animals. I carry a glock 19, and a medium size fixed blade when hiking. Cougars are not as thick skinned as bears. If you are going to get attacked by a cougar there will not be much warning any ways. I can honestly only think of only one almost attack being reported in the last 7 years with cougars in utah. The guy was hunting and turned around to a cougar about to pounce on him, he shot and killed the cougar. The bear attack that made headlines had to do with a rouge bear that had been raiding camp sites for food. And was a very rare occurance that someone was killed. If its cougars you are worried about keep a watchful eye around you. If you see one set of tracks on the trail its probably a coincidence, if you pass two sets you could be getting stalked.


    If you are car camping and worried about bears take a shotgun with slugs or bear spray.

    Edit to add:

    I know a lot of people that think the judge is a great gun for cougars. My personal opinion on the judge is it is designed for very close encounters and with no one else around. the pattern that comes out of them is very large; meaning you may hit your target, but you may also hit someone/something else that you did not intend to hit. Personally I would say your .40 is plenty for a cougar, although others may disagree.
    Last edited by Yetee; 01-04-2013 at 04:49 PM.

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    As much as people like to scare themselves , tell tall tales and be over prepared the fact is its very rare for folks to have a serious encounter with wild animals . For the most part animals want nothing to do with us and for good reason. Bear spray and or bangers or small air horns work real well. There are a few exceptions. If your going into know grizzly habitat you should probably ask yourself why, and after that plan a bit more for an encounter as the odds go up . I've lived, worked and played in the mountains of BC , bear and cougar country, for 40 yrs and have rarely had a serious encounter. I've had more encounters with dogs.
    The other exception is/are parks that have a known bear problem.
    But to give yourself peace of mind you should do whatever you need to do,,,,,within reason.

    bill


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    I carry my S&W 99 its a 45 auto

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