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#133487 - 05/10/10 10:35 PM Handguns
PapaSam Offline
newbie

Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8
Loc: Ohio
I am sure this is a hot sensitive subject and I went back through the older posts, but found nothing. I have stated my plans on here concerning my 90 day tour the USA by camping in National Forests and Federal Parks starting around June by myself. A lot of the people I have told this to have all asked this question. Am I taking my guns? Being a handgun owner and licenced CW holder I have considered it. Mostly for the nights I may be in a very remote campsite in a National Forest or even in a rest area parking lot taking a nap. The laws very from state to state and forests and parks. I myself am a trusting sole and believe that most people I run into in these places are good people as well. But one never knows. And as far as backpacking alone in the wilderness and maybe running into a bear or other wild animal. I have my pepper spray,noise makers etc. Obviously having to use a handgun would have to be a life threatening situation for me to consider it. I know there are many opinions both pro and con as to carrying a weapon. I'd like to hear yours. And please this is not meant as a "debate" on the subject or do I ask it to stir the pot. Simply asking the practicality of having a gun while I travel.


Edited by PapaSam (05/11/10 12:10 AM)

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#133489 - 05/10/10 10:48 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
taM Offline
member

Registered: 01/31/10
Posts: 112
Loc: Nashville, TN
Not much debate out in my neck of the woods, most national parks specifically forbid firearms.

A thought on carrying a sidearm in a backpacking situation, how would you plan to carry it?

The suspension of a backpack precludes a shoulder holster, any other concealment-type holsters would almost certainly be incredibly awkward for someone walking miles of trails a day. You could open-carry with a belt holster, but open carry is probably a no-no even more often than concealed. Leg holster would be a bunch of weight on one leg, again probably proving awkward for someone walking long distances.

That leaves the pack. If you carry the thing inside the pack, it sort of defeats the purpose in my mind. If a situation is dire enough to warrant deadly force, you're likely not going to have the time to unclip your straps, open the pack, rummage around, find the gun, draw, and fire.

If it's an animal encounter, you're unlikely to hit a charging predatory creature (if you could get a gun out in time), and if it's a person, they're not going to wait while you get a gun out.

Plus, it's several pounds of dead weight which I'm unlikely to use. By the typical philosophy of lightweight backpacking, that item gets left at home! smile
_________________________
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#133491 - 05/10/10 11:20 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
Trailrunner Offline
member

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 1835
Loc: Los Angeles
There have been some doozie gun threads here. When you search be sure to set the date range farther back than the default time of one week. Also check the archived thread links on the lower left corner of the forum home page. They require a different search engine. Believe me, they are out there. Here is one I found very quickly. Most gun threads I see here and elsewhere tend to bring out the.....errr.....passion in people.

I own guns, shoot guns, and have competed with guns. I have been through lots of firearms courses. I have also been paid to carry a gun as part of my job. I only mention this to give my opinion a little credibility.

For car camping: Maybe, if it makes you feel more safe.

For backpacking: Since your are statistically much more likely to suffer injury from a fall than from any harm inflicted by an animal (including the two legged variety) you would be much better off with a helmet, knee pads and ankle braces than with a gun. I'm dead serious. Also, guns and ammo are relatively heavy. If you look at a gun as a piece of safety equipment, there are much lighter and more practical things you can carry to protect yourself against the REAL dangers out in the woods. The odds of needing that gun to actually protect yourself from a genuine threat are very, very low.

_________________________
If you only travel on sunny days you will never reach your destination.*

* May not apply at certain latitudes in Canada and elsewhere.

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#133493 - 05/11/10 12:04 AM Re: Handguns [Re: Trailrunner]
PapaSam Offline
newbie

Registered: 04/26/10
Posts: 8
Loc: Ohio
Thanks Trailrunner...I'll delete my post and read what you have provided!

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#133503 - 05/11/10 02:45 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
CJC Offline
member

Registered: 04/16/04
Posts: 738
Loc: Southern Nevada
There have been some rather "passionate" threads on the forum on this issue. For me the question about carrying while backpacking is how and where so that I can access my weapon quickly when and if ever needed, but not have it interfere with how my pack rides or using poles. I have never taken it.

Car camping or driving cross county, maybe, but again, I never have.

Bear spray works great on bears and I bet it would cause the 2 legged variety lots of discomfort as well. I am not positive about this because of the concentrations; but pepper spray is pepper spray.

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#133506 - 05/11/10 05:35 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
countr21 Offline
member

Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Denver, Colorado
National Parks = zero firearms.

If you are ever going to be in core Grizzly country (like the Teton Wilderness or other remote wilderness area in Wyoming, Idaho, Montana) and feel that a firearm is an absolute necessity (a Griz can sometimes keep coming even after a blast of spray "reportedly"), you are going to need something more substantial than a regular handgun like a 9mm, 40SW, or 45ACP. You would just piss a Grizz off if you put some nines into it. Even a 45ACP would just glance off the skull of a big Grizz.

To insure yourself against a hyper-aggressive Grizz, you are going to need either a hand cannon (like a 44 Mag and bigger) or a small rifle that can deliver a punch. For the hand cannon, they make a variety of holsters that literally attach to the front of your chest using straps that wrap around your torso. It is the most easily accessed firearm option you have with a large backpack on. But you're talking about 5-8 pounds of gun, holster, and ammo attached to your chest. I've seen hikers in Colorado with these setups and I think they are ridiculous.

If you are really serious about it, I would suggest the rifle option, more specifically an assault rifle setup. A short barreled rifle with a folding stock is compact and easily and quickly brought into service in a second's notice. I have personally BP'd dozens of miles with an AK slung to my shoulder (for fun, for shooting - nothing serious as far as defense).

The AK-47 and its dozens of variants make for many choices. The AK isn't exactly a Grizz stopper with one round, but 30 rounds of 30 caliber would be enough to persuade a Grizz to beat it. I personally have a Krinkov with a folding side stock that is under two feet in length with the stock folded. Not me, but my exact model: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joEzmt9kghA You get an idea of the compactness and power delivered in such a small package. And for rifle standards, it is very lightweight. To reduce weight further you can get 20 round mags instead of the standard 30's and 40's.

You do need special permits for these Krinkovs but they make tons of "AK pistols." There are many semi-auto versions on the market, and if you're a gun guy/girl, you probably already know of them. They are basically a Krinkov with no stock at all. The semi-auto versions are legal to attach large capacity mags to them as long as there is no butt or folding stock attached (no special permits needed). Here is one for $350: http://www.atlanticfirearms.com/storeproduct866.aspx Slung around your shoulder, these are very LW for a "rifle," and will deliver 7.62x39 as fast as you can squeeze the trigger.

They also make very similar products for the AR series of rifles, but I would not trust the 22 caliber round to scare off a Grizz they way I would with a 30 caliber.

A short-barreled shotgun firing slugs would probably be enough to deter a Grizz, and these can be fairly compact and "lightweight."

FWIW, I am doing a 9 day trip into the Thorofare of the Teton Wilderness to fish the Yellowstone Lake Cutthroat spawn in June/July, and this is arguably the most Grizz-infested area of the lower 48 and I am not taking a firearm and/or spray. When people tote along firearms into the backcountry for "defense," it gives them the illusion of a license to run a dirty camp. Keep a clean camp, be aware of your surroundings, give all bears a wide berth, and you'll be fine.

Also, I'm not 100% on this but even if you were to shoot a Grizz in self defense and the gaming warden was to find out, you're in for stiff fines and penalties for poaching.


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#133513 - 05/11/10 08:07 AM Re: Handguns [Re: countr21]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Quote:
National Parks = zero firearms.


Most national parks now honor their states concealed/open carry laws/licenses.
http://www.nps.gov/ozar/parknews/upload/weapons.doc

Best to call the park and learn what's allowed.

_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

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#133521 - 05/11/10 09:21 AM Re: Handguns [Re: Dryer]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
Man, it's been awhile since we had a gun thread. Anyways, I would say that first you need to contact the parks to see what is legal. Then, determine why you are carrying. If you are carrying for 2 legged animals, any handgun will suffice. If for bears, I wouldn't go lower than a .357.
_________________________
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#133548 - 05/11/10 05:38 PM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: taM]
300winmag Offline
member

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
Get a Dana Wet Rib or Dry Rib (if still available) & attatch it to your pack's lower shoulder straps. Put the handgun in the pouch, where it's readily available. Apply lead as necessary.

The best backpacking handgun (IMHO) Is a Tarus titanium .44 magnum revolver. Light, powerful and absolutely
reliable.

Personally I would only carry a pistol in grizzly country, where it TRULY can be a lifesaver.
_________________________
"There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."

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#133566 - 05/12/10 02:36 AM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: 300winmag]
countr21 Offline
member

Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Denver, Colorado
I second what 300winmag suggested.....at only 28oz empty, this is indeed an "ultra ultra ultra lightweight" way to go!!!!! And the 44 magnum round is very much proven to stop an aggressive Grizz. I had no idea these types of pistols came in such a ridiculously LW package.

My only (personal) concern is accuracy. My friend has an iron short-barreled 44 magnum named the "Alaskan Backpacker." I think it is a S&W but not sure. I've fired it numerous times....it can light up an area the size of a football field with its muzzle flash at night!!!! BUT, the accuracy on the thing is crazy-bad. I am not used to large caliber handguns so I'm sure it has a lot to do with me. But I've seen others with this thing and they're not any better.

Give me my Krinkov anyday. I'll lug the extra few pounds to have the "luxury" of a shoulder slung rifle, 30 rounds of giddy up, and steady accuracy.

I've never had a boar Grizzly bearing down on me, but I know I'd be shaking in my boots if one was. And I could only deliver lead on target with a small rifle at my shoulder.

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#133570 - 05/12/10 03:35 AM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: countr21]
TomD Offline
Moderator

Registered: 10/30/03
Posts: 4963
Loc: Marina del Rey,CA
Up to now, national parks have been full of people who are not experienced campers and have never seen a wild animal up close. Now the parks will have these same inexperienced people roaming around carrying guns to fight off imagined dangers. The likely outcome will be a lot of dead animals and once in a while, a dead hiker who some gun toting newbie mistakes for a bear and opens up on with something like that assault pistol one of you likes so much.

This scenario isn't so far fetched. I can think of at least one instance where a teen age hunter killed a hiker with a hunting rifle-it happened in Washington. We had a thread on this a while back, but I think it disappeared when the site was upgraded. The kid's excuse was that he thought he was shooting at a bear.

These instances may be rare, but if you're the person who gets shot, that really doesn't matter.

Here's another example--
http://www.insidebayarea.com/my-town/ci_14787195


_________________________
Don't get me started, you know how I get.

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#133575 - 05/12/10 10:08 AM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: TomD]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Quote:
Now the parks will have these same inexperienced people roaming around carrying guns to fight off imagined dangers.


Maybe, but I'm not observing that. Guns were/are carried in national parks since parks were parks, only now it's legal. Those carriers have at least a minimal amount of training, per their license. As much time as I've spent in Big Bend...likely the most 'armed' park in the country due to its border with Mexico, I've never heard, nor heard of, a firearm discharge. I'm sure it happens but the rangers make it clear the consequences are huge if unwarranted. Folks being armed down there is no secret. To me, it's business as usual.
I think it will go the way of the Conceal Carry License....tremendous number of guns now being carried in public, openly in many states, yet fears of out-of-control accidents, violence, etc. have proven unfounded, in fact, the opposite has happened. Most of those carriers have no where near the training of the police, but they do have some training.
Time will tell...gun toters (me included) soon get bored with the idea and learn guns aren't a solution to anything but the direst of circumstances. Even then, there are alternatives. Many CCL holders stop carrying after the newness wears off. wink

Now, this is an ultralite board, and I do everything in my power to NOT haul a chunk of steel/lead around on the trail...just ain't needed.

_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

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#133579 - 05/12/10 11:31 AM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: Dryer]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By Dryer

Now, this is an ultralite board, and I do everything in my power to NOT haul a chunk of steel/lead around on the trail...just ain't needed.


Amen to that. As someone who has definately done both, allow me to attest the simple observation that bear spray is a lot lighter, and likely more effective. (Unless you are in polar bear country, at which point, carry a 12 gague and skip the handgun)
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
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#133588 - 05/12/10 11:59 AM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: phat]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Quote:
allow me to attest the simple observation that bear spray is a lot lighter


As is 'people spray'. I carry a tiny pepper sprayer 24/7 as a staple, just like my dinky pocket knife. You can hose down several people and walk away, no consequences, unlike shooting somebody. Yeah, it's close quarters, but most people attacks are. grin

I've hiked Alaska and Canada. Bears weren't ever a problem (saw plenty!) but one of the party always carried a rifle or shotgun with slugs/00. A slung Remington 870LW 20ga. is lighter than many big hand guns and doubles as a club or tarp pole. In the park I care for, dogs are the main issue and I carry a 9mm just like the cops/animal guys do. Spray don't work well on dogs. I have been attacked, twice...blindsided both times. Fended of a pit bull with trekking poles, and the rottweiler with pruning loppers. grin

Here in Texas, Mexican Black bears are so shy, you are lucky to see one. Mountain lions are here too....I don't bother arming myself for either lions or our bears. I'd rather take their picture.
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

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#133595 - 05/12/10 01:36 PM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: phat]
Pika Offline
member

Registered: 12/08/05
Posts: 1726
Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
I'll endorse those sentiments. I have been hiking and climbing and doing forestry work in the western U.S. and Canada as well as Alaska for a long time. While I have been armed at times, in over 60+ years of being outdoors I have never been in a situation where a firearm would have influenced the outcome at all. I concluded some time ago that, in most circumstances, they just aren't worth the weight.
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May I walk in beauty.

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#133633 - 05/13/10 04:12 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
chndlr04 Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/10
Posts: 34
Loc: spotaylvania, va
i carry a glock 19, been carrying for the last year and half. when i spend my time out in WVa and southwest va on my friend's properties, there are loads of wild dogs. so i have found neccessary use of a firearm however my friend carries a .45 desert eagle(wow big gun). i use a maxpedition sabrecat versipack attached to a belt like a fanny pack to carry my g19 along with my medkit. i dont believe in using unless u can see the threat and is life threatening.

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#133643 - 05/13/10 10:10 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
DJ2 Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 1347
Loc: Seattle, WA
I sometimes carry a Glock 19 when backpacking with my wife, to protect her from anyone who might want to sexually assault her. When alone I don't carry a gun.

I started carrying the gun after 2 or 3 trips (in Washington State) where we ran into people that scared me.

Being a scaredy cat/worrywort costs me in terms of weight that I carry. On the trip we just returned from I was carrying about 3.5 lbs in protection/insurance (gun, personal locator beacon, bear spray). Oh dear, the price of fear.

All three items are in/on my front pack and ready for use as needed. The bear spray hangs on the outside and is ready for immediate use.

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#133645 - 05/13/10 11:14 AM Re: Handguns [Re: DJ2]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Shave some ounces by going to a Glock 26 and even more by going to a Ruger LCP .380. Yeah, thats a lot of protection insurance weight you are carrying! NOBODY wants to get tangled up with my wife....big mistake...I use her for my protection. grin
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

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#133650 - 05/13/10 01:19 PM Re: Handguns [Re: Dryer]
chndlr04 Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/10
Posts: 34
Loc: spotaylvania, va
Originally Posted By Dryer
Shave some ounces by going to a Glock 26 and even more by going to a Ruger LCP .380. Yeah, thats a lot of protection insurance weight you are carrying! NOBODY wants to get tangled up with my wife....big mistake...I use her for my protection. grin


glock 26 is too small for my male hands and i am not a fan of rugers. a gun may be heavy for most people but like i said i have been carrying for an year and half so it feels like its not there nymore

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#133653 - 05/13/10 01:45 PM Re: Handguns [Re: DJ2]
aimless Online   content
Moderator

Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 2838
Loc: Portland, OR
Oh dear, the price of fear.

Someone in another thread aptly distinguished between dangers and fears. It helps a lot if you can calibrate your fear to reflect the actual amount of danger you face. All too often fear is the product of unbridled imagination, only loosely connected any real danger.

As others have pointed out, the odds of being attacked by any creature (including the two-legged variety) while backpacking are vanishingly small, whereas the odds of getting hypothermia, or even being struck by lightning are substantially greater, and just as deadly.

It's just that imagining dying of hypothermia doesn't inspire the same flesh-creeping horror as imaging being torn to bits by a rampaging bear, so we focus on the more horrific idea that is almost certain not to happen and we discount the much greater danger that kills hikers by the dozen every year.

This is a design flaw in our brains.

Generally speaking, any strong emotion we experience is designed to fix the memory of the event that caused the emotion indelibly, so we can never forget it. This has many benefits for learning when the event is a personal experience. It can even allow us to learn from the experiences of others, by imaginatively placing ourselves in their position.

But this mechanism goes haywire on us pretty often, too. The fear of wild animal attacks is typical of this.

So, carry the gun if it makes you feel better, but you're much better off putting your energy toward dangers that you'll encounter in real life, rather than in imagination. grin

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#133654 - 05/13/10 01:49 PM Re: Handguns [Re: chndlr04]
Cstolworthy Offline
member

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 74
Loc: American Fork, Utah
I have been doing martial arts for most my life, I specifically learned how to fight with a staff. I carry a "walking stick" which can become a weapon quickly enough. Also, people who are considering attacking you usually don't see it as a weapon.
Perhaps someone with legal experience can confirm / deny this, but I would imagine that shooting someone is going to be a lot harder to justify than smacking them with a walking stick.

_________________________
A tent is a bad place for an argument, because when you are angry you walk out and slam the flap. How are you supposed to express your anger in this situation? Zip it up really quick? ~Mitch Hedberg

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#133657 - 05/13/10 02:21 PM Re: Handguns [Re: Cstolworthy]
chndlr04 Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/10
Posts: 34
Loc: spotaylvania, va
Originally Posted By Cstolworthy
I have been doing martial arts for most my life, I specifically learned how to fight with a staff. I carry a "walking stick" which can become a weapon quickly enough. Also, people who are considering attacking you usually don't see it as a weapon.
Perhaps someone with legal experience can confirm / deny this, but I would imagine that shooting someone is going to be a lot harder to justify than smacking them with a walking stick.



very true, shooting someone on the country usually results in death. then when you get arrested, there is a 50-50% chance of going to prison for murder 2 even with self-defense defense, when a good hit with a stick gets maybe a slap on the hand or 6months jail time max.
i forgot to mention that om deaf so i have to analyze potential dangers more than those of hearing individuals.

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#133659 - 05/13/10 02:53 PM Re: Handguns (& responsible use) [Re: Dryer]
300winmag Offline
member

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
Tom,

To allay your fears of irresponnsible civilians toting guns, to wit:
The actual statistics (according to my concealed carry class instructor) of civilians using pistols in self defense show that civilians are more accurate than the police and have fewer "collateral damage" casualties than police. Amazing - and my instructor was a cop himself!

Eric
_________________________
"There are no comfortable backpacks. Some are just less uncomfortable than others."

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#133660 - 05/13/10 03:22 PM Re: Handguns [Re: aimless]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
The brain also provides anesthesia that allows us to forget painful experiences. Otherwise there would be no second marriages or second children. crazy crazy

_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

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#133661 - 05/13/10 03:29 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
TerraPathic Offline
member

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 20
Loc: Kentucky
I carry (legally) a Ruger LCP, sometimes, when I backpack. I don't plan on ever using it, but there are some places where I have run into some rowdy partiers. This is especially true on trails that are accessible by horse. Horses allow people to pack in beer and I have seen some wild campers. If I'm hiking past 10 drunk guys while hiking with my wife, my LCP provides some comfort. It weighs 9.4oz.
_________________________
When you truly understand nature, there is no such thing as a bad day.

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#133662 - 05/13/10 03:37 PM Re: Handguns (& concealment) [Re: TomD]
countr21 Offline
member

Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Denver, Colorado
Originally Posted By TomD
and opens up on with something like that assault pistol one of you likes so much.

This scenario isn't so far fetched. I can think of at least one instance where a teen age hunter killed a hiker with a hunting rifle-it happened in Washington.

Here's another example--
http://www.insidebayarea.com/my-town/ci_14787195


How do you equate hunting accidents to carrying an assault pistol (on obviously non-hunting firearm!!!) while backpacking? Hunting accidents are not that rare....it's a shame how people act while hunting. In your bay area example, the guy shot his buddy because his friend was wearing camo and crawling through some brush on his hands and knees and his friend was only yards away.

When people are backpacking, they are not anticipating to use their firearm around every corner. The "likely outcome will be a lot of dead animals"??? Really???..........Really???? confused


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#133666 - 05/13/10 04:38 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
I respectfully submit that even though you say you are a trusting soul, that you are considering the weight and the liabilities of a gun on your journeys says something else....

I grew up around guns. I also grew up in the mountains, around snakes, bears, and all the other critters my family hunted. I am not afraid of any of them - somehow I have made it into my forties without being bitten by any of them, even the rattlesnake that was coiled at the foot of the slide in the backyard when I was playing on the swingset. (We killed it with a hoe.) We only had guns out in hunting season. That's what they are for. Hiking and fishing, we left the gun at home.

In practical terms, you are better served by a good hiking stick or poles, and a holster with pepper spray. You will not be arrested for carrying it without a permit. You won't need to purchase or acquire any sort of permit at all. You won't need to aim perfectly if you are using bear spray.

If you are in a national park or forest in California, and you see an area that looks like it is being cultivated... you leave, being mindful of where you step and as quietly as possible. A gun won't do you any good. If the marijuana growers are present, they know you are there and have you in sights.

If you see a snake, you avoid it. If you are careful of where you put hands and feet (don't stick them in crevasses or holes out of sight) and don't step on them, they won't bite you.

In bear territory, you follow recommended food storage regulations and practices for the area you are in - do not assume you can hang food in Yosemite, for example. You follow grizzly precautions in grizzly territory, and worry about food storage for the most part in black bear territory.

Statistically speaking, you need to worry most about insect bites and domestic dogs. Deer kill more people than bears do. There have been no bear related fatalities in Yosemite - but one deer related death.

Weird people are more concentrated in the city - I say this as a social services worker. You are more at risk walking down the street than on a trail. The most danger will be at the trailhead - and that's a remote chance at best. I have gone alone backpacking without a qualm. Trail crime is a problem sometimes in places where people other than backpackers go hiking - I've heard anecdotes from folks about their tent disappearing in a backcountry Yosemite campground - but almost as rare as bear attacks.

I had friends who hunted mountain lions with dogs when the cats came down to kill calves and sheep. It was the only time we ever saw them...

No, I don't think you need a gun at all. Most trouble you might get into can be avoided by developing an awareness of your surroundings and a knowledge base that includes basic bear safety for the region, the habits of poisonous snakes in the area, and basic first aid to address various insect stings. You will also want some awareness of poison oak/ivy and how to get the oils out of your clothes... that's even more likely to "get" you than anything else.
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#133678 - 05/13/10 07:19 PM Re: Handguns [Re: Cstolworthy]
MarkNM Offline
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Registered: 05/03/10
Posts: 141
Loc: Pompton Lakes, NJ
Originally Posted By Cstolworthy
I have been doing martial arts for most my life, I specifically learned how to fight with a staff. I carry a "walking stick" which can become a weapon quickly enough. Also, people who are considering attacking you usually don't see it as a weapon.
Perhaps someone with legal experience can confirm / deny this, but I would imagine that shooting someone is going to be a lot harder to justify than smacking them with a walking stick.


here here...i have to agree...i too am a long time martial artist...and even if i wasnt a jab with a trekking pole from anyone is going to make anything think twice about persisting, those tips hurt...if you wind up in danger with an animal i tend to say its probably your fault...
BTW a knife is considered more lethal at close range than a firearm-its a legal fact

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#133683 - 05/13/10 08:53 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
Tango61 Offline
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Registered: 12/27/05
Posts: 931
Loc: East Texas Piney Woods

We should start a thread that has all the links to all the other gun threads in it and make it a sticky.

And ban all future gun threads.

Everything that can be said. Has been said over and over and over.....


mad mad mad mad
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#133700 - 05/13/10 11:00 PM Re: Handguns [Re: MarkNM]
Cstolworthy Offline
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Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 74
Loc: American Fork, Utah
Originally Posted By MarkNM

BTW a knife is considered more lethal at close range than a firearm-its a legal fact


I will second this, and I would also point out something that seems to happen a lot. People who are going to pull a gun on YOU seem to forget that a gun at 10 feet away works just as well as a gun at point blank. The difference being that I can't take the gun from you at 10 feet. laugh

This is what I mean: [video:youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nwJr8pxU14#t=34s[/video]
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#133714 - 05/14/10 02:46 AM Re: Handguns [Re: Tango61]
countr21 Offline
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Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Denver, Colorado
and everything has been said about ULW backpacking so.........

mad mad mad

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#133718 - 05/14/10 08:39 AM Re: Handguns [Re: countr21]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Quote:
and everything has been said about ULW backpacking so.........


I would agree with Tango61...over the years, gun threads come up often, and not much changes. As an avid shooter/carrier, I have to admit, a firearm is the least useful and heaviest thing in my pack, and has yet to see the light of day in over 30 years, unless I'm hunting. Awareness and stealth trump the gun, any day when out in the boonies. (except my nature preserve..different story... grin) Maybe we need a "Self defense on the trail" forum....some folks like to focus on specific pieces of equipment/technique. They can hang out there. wink



ULW Backpacking however, is so much more of a broad topic, which might include paddling, bushwhacking, regions, equipment choices, health, food, heat, tents/hammock/tarp/bivy....we still see interesting ideas come through.
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#133724 - 05/14/10 11:00 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
Claus Offline
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Registered: 04/19/10
Posts: 56
Loc: Central Iowa
Originally Posted By PapaSam
Simply asking the practicality of having a gun while I travel.


Not practical. But then the only practical use of a gun is to kill someone. As for protection, stupid stuff will happen sooner or later.
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#133791 - 05/15/10 02:31 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
longhair29 Offline
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Registered: 06/11/03
Posts: 1328
Loc: Floridad
Country21,

Some points to consider about those ultra-light Titanium revolvers in .44 and .357 Magnum are while they are quite light to carry the user suffers greatly in 'felt' recoil and controlability being they are too light for these respective calibers.

You need the weight of steel to compensate/absorb the harsh recoil of full Magnum handguns. Titanium revolvers are best for small less powerful calibers like .38 Special, 32 Magnums, etc.


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#133807 - 05/16/10 06:55 AM Re: Handguns [Re: longhair29]
countr21 Offline
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Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Denver, Colorado
Originally Posted By longhair29
Country21,

Some points to consider about those ultra-light Titanium revolvers in .44 and .357 Magnum are while they are quite light to carry the user suffers greatly in 'felt' recoil and controlability being they are too light for these respective calibers.

You need the weight of steel to compensate/absorb the harsh recoil of full Magnum handguns. Titanium revolvers are best for small less powerful calibers like .38 Special, 32 Magnums, etc.



It's "countr21" I never personally endorsed these firearms, I said I was very surprised at their weight, you will see I expressed concern about the accuracy of such pistols.

I personally stand behind the decision to take some serious firepower like an assault rifle or a dedicated shotty into the back country if you really want to insure yourself against the "unimaginable."

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#133814 - 05/16/10 12:31 PM Re: Handguns [Re: countr21]
oldranger Offline
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Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
I would rather insure myself against the "imaginable"(that which is likely to occur) rather than the unimaginable. Therefore I find mundane items like a FAK, extra clothing, and even a climbing rope (depending upon terrain) to be more useful. Most fatalities in the woods are related to bad weather or falls.

Don't get me wrong. I have used firearms since I was a kid, both in the military, as an enthusiast, and in the NPS. There have been occasions when I felt very happy to have my S&W M28 riding on my hip. It is, in fact, one of my most cherished possessions. But venturing into outdoors in the lower 48, there are many far more useful items which claim space in my pack.

Have we touched on anything in this thread which hasn't been mentioned before in other gun threads? We all get to choose what we carry, so let's make our choices and hit the trail.

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#133816 - 05/16/10 02:33 PM Re: Handguns [Re: oldranger]
aimless Online   content
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Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 2838
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Have we touched on anything in this thread which hasn't been mentioned before in other gun threads?

Nope. It's all been covered before, many times over. Every new gun thread sounds like a repetition from an echo that won't die. smile

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#133822 - 05/16/10 04:15 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: aimless]
Dryer Offline
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Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
grin

Quote:
Nope. It's all been covered before, many times over. Every new gun thread sounds like a repetition from an echo that won't die.


Well, here, I'll try and start something different....
"Dual purpose for firearms?"
Hammer.
Kayak/canoe anchor.
Pack ballast. (for leveling your pack)
Signaling device.
Source of springs/pins/screws.
Compass tester.
Drinking straw...(metallic taste...yuck)

Gee, am I missing anything?

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#133823 - 05/16/10 04:35 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: Dryer]
Jimshaw Offline
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Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Dryer
You did not mention fire starter or can opener and with all the lead perhaps not a drinking straw after all.

My question would be - if you do carry, how do you load?
I prefer a round of snake shot first, then a magnum or P+magnum full jacket hollow point, then maybe some .44 specials to round it off because they recoil little in a magnum handgun and are therefore more accurate. My hammer is always down on an empty tube, so I would carry 5 rounds. If I was to carry. The snake shot is first for snakes or other minor annoyance and for frightening off potential problems without having to hurt them, and the second load, a big magnum is in case they don't frighten off.

Finally if you must carry an ultralight magnum, don't carry magnum loads, "special" loads will be more accurate and kick less. A .38 special is all you will ever need backpacking in the lower 48. Revolvers are more forgiving about ammo so snake shot is preferably used in a revolver not an auto.
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#133827 - 05/16/10 06:48 PM Re: Handguns [Re: oldranger]
Rick Offline
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Registered: 05/10/04
Posts: 708
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By oldranger
Have we touched on anything in this thread which hasn't been mentioned before in other gun threads? We all get to choose what we carry, so let's make our choices and hit the trail.


I find these conversations fascinating, intriguing and educational. Every last post. Every time the topic comes up.

I google every model mentioned. I would love to fire one someday. I would even like to own one - something for Polar Bears.

If there is one striking difference between above and below the 49th, its handguns. If the bleeding hearts here had there way we would not even be allowed long guns. Owning a hand gun is next to impossible - legally.

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#133830 - 05/16/10 09:13 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: Jimshaw]
Dryer Offline
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Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Jim, with jacketed bullets, I wouldn't worry too much about lead and heavy metals have been removed from propellants for about 15 years now. Ever try to light a camp fire with a gun? Quite exciting! ..even with only a primer and the powder dumped in a pile.
Now, "can opener".....I like that! "Ok everyone, hold out your plates!" tosses can in air grin

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#133834 - 05/16/10 10:34 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: Dryer]
oldranger Offline
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Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
Dual purpose - climbing protection, placed like a cam or chock, particularly a revolver with the ability to swing the cylinder open. A break top revo could be used as a sort of carabiner. The ultimate master key for opening stubborn locks - mind the shrapnel and the spatter. You could leave a trail of rounds, instead of bread crumbs, to find your way home. ULers would want to use use empty casings - much lighter.

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#133838 - 05/17/10 08:26 AM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: oldranger]
chndlr04 Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/10
Posts: 34
Loc: spotaylvania, va
dual purpose- bear bag rope weight, spin the gun(spin the bottle), empty shell could sub as an emergency tooth cap, window breaker, tent weight, bullets as nose plugs, splitting wood, if the gun is stainless steel and obsessively polished it could double as a mirror, black powder to seal big wounds, half a second flashlight, tick removal, cig lighter. thats all i can think of right now

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#133839 - 05/17/10 09:22 AM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: chndlr04]
balzaccom Online   content
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Registered: 04/06/09
Posts: 1719
Loc: Napa, CA
You guys are leaving out the shell casing as an emergency whistle---for when you are outgunned by the deer, and need to call for help!
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#133843 - 05/17/10 11:39 AM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: balzaccom]
finallyME Offline
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Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
Originally Posted By balzaccom
You guys are leaving out the shell casing as an emergency whistle---for when you are outgunned by the deer, and need to call for help!


Or in case the raccoons mount an assault and overrun your position. wink
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#133854 - 05/17/10 06:56 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: chndlr04]
300winmag Offline
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Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
Yeah, very funny 'm lady. BUT... the two women murdered on Shennandoah Nat'l. Park on tehe Applachian Trail back in 2000 (I think) would have rather liked to have had a handgun. I was backpacking through there W/ my bbuddy at the time & we were interviewed by a Park Ranger whe we came out to a park concesion store. It was a chilling time to be on the AT. Women attatched themselves to groups W/guys for safety.


Eric
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#133861 - 05/17/10 08:47 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: 300winmag]
aimless Online   content
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Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 2838
Loc: Portland, OR
I don't think anyone here would take the position that no crime has ever occurred at any time to any hiker anywhere, nor that a handgun could not possibly do any good under any thinkable circumstances. So, your citing one heinous crime that happened to someone somewhere is not exactly going to change the argument, or even change many minds. It is already factored in to our conclusions.

But that isn't to say you should never carry a weapon, if you do so legally and responsibly. I don't think anyone here would mind if you did.

Just two days ago I was hiking on a fairly empty trail, when I met a man coming down the trail with a Doberman on a leash and a sidearm in a holster. The dog was friendly and well-behaved. So was he. We chatted. The gun made no difference to me. To each his own. wink

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#133911 - 05/18/10 06:30 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: aimless]
Jimshaw Offline
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Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
I don't have a problem with people carrying guns in holsters. I figure they probably have some idea why and what they're doing, and anyway here in Oregon its legal to walk into the grocery store packing a loaded gun in a holster, or to drive with a loaded gun on the seat or dash.
Jim
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#133925 - 05/18/10 10:01 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: Jimshaw]
aimless Online   content
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Registered: 02/05/03
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Loc: Portland, OR
On the dashboard? Not an ideal location, if you ask me. As a school bus driver, I am not allowed to have ANYTHING sitting loose on the dash. Not even a Twinkie(tm). grin

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#133930 - 05/18/10 11:40 PM Re: Handguns "Dual purpose for firearms?" [Re: aimless]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
aimless, I sometimes wonder about the hidden meanings of that name, but I automatically assumed that someone named aimless should not be involved in a gun fight. laugh

Well what can I say, thats the law here in Oregon. You can't walk away and park the vehicle with a gun in the window, but on the dash it is officially "non-concealed".
I'd be scared my .44 might break the window while out four wheeling on bumpy terrain.
Jim
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#133933 - 05/19/10 03:27 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
skippy Offline
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Registered: 12/27/09
Posts: 129
Loc: CO
I don't have a problem with people carrying a gun in the backcountry. I've done it myself on a few trips. I am a cop and have never had any problems with anyone with a concealed carry permit.

Before I became an officer I was threatened twice with a gun. Both times I was lucky enough to be armed. At the time I lived in a questionable area and my access to my carport was blocked on the south end of the alley due to construction. So I went to the north end and it was blocked by my local gang banger/drug dealer as he was talking (later I realized he was probably selling dope) to someone in a car. I waited a minute and then asked nicely if they could move the car so I could get through. They told me to F-off. This kind of pissed me off and so I honked my horn and the guy in the car pulled out a small handgun and put it out the window of his car (pointing up in the air) and lowered his hand back into the car. I had just gotten back from the gun range and had a loaded stainless 6" .357 magnum sitting next to me so I stuck my gun out of the window and I've never seen someone back up so fast. I acted out of instinct and probably should have just backed out and called the cops. It could have gone downhill fast.

The second time I was car camping in a remote area and during the night some drunk guys pulled in and decided to camp right next to us. They played loud rap music all night long and I went and asked them to please turn it down (I was armed and they didn't know it) and they told me no in a not so nice way. They were getting high when I had walked over there.

The next day they were talking really loud about killing our dog and doing things to the women in the group that were with us. They were also carrying around a little .22 rifle and saying they were going to kill us. They still didn't know that they were way outgunned as there were several firearms in our group and we had discussed what to do. We had contacted the sheriff but they were at least an hour from getting to us. We were also concerned because they had a young girl and she seemed very frightened and not well cared for.

They actually walked through our camp to start a fight and then saw that we had several guns and then backed down. They packed up really fast and hit the one road out of there but were snagged up by a deputy not far from our camp. We met the deputy on the road and it was very satisfying to see those losers cuffed and sitting in the weeds on the side of a dirt road. The deputy told us that one of them had felony warrants out for his arrest.

As a cop I've nearly had to shoot two people. One guy pulled a gun and then thought the better of it smile. The next guy was going to the bar to kill his wife and her new dancing partner and decided he would rather live than be shot so he let go of his gun.

Sorry if I somewhat went off on a tangent.

-Skippy

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#133934 - 05/19/10 05:43 AM Re: Handguns [Re: skippy]
300winmag Offline
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Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
Having been an armed security guard here in Nevada, and having taken several days of training in procedure and policy, and more in action shooting reacting to various scenarios, I am well aware that If I draw my firearm it is beause I'm defending my life or someone else's.

Furher I know full well that IF I shoot (ALWAYS to kill, NEVER to wound)I will face at least a civil suit from the perp's family in which I'll have to spend a minimum of $50,000. for my defense. It's a sobering situation all the way around. But at least know the the downside and am prepared to deal with it if it means saving one life, or more.

As an armed guard we were prepared to use increasing levels of "force'.
1st your physical pesence, and uniformed appearance
2nd, your voice
3rd, pepperspray
4th, the Asp, a telescoping steel baton, and very deadly if misused
5th, your handgun, in my case a Glock 17

Nevada encourages only using one level of force higher than that used by the criminal.

Eric



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#133939 - 05/19/10 11:41 AM Re: Handguns [Re: 300winmag]
oregonhiker Offline
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Registered: 04/12/10
Posts: 7
As a woman backpacker hiking areas of the PCT I always carry a 22 or 38, just seems wise, never know what crazy situation may arise. I have a permit and know how to correctly use a gun so feel confident if I ever had to actually use it. Just my 2 cents worth.

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#136742 - 07/26/10 05:06 AM Re: Handguns [Re: oregonhiker]
Whiskeyguy Offline
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Registered: 06/11/09
Posts: 103
Loc: Northern California, USA
You guys cover everything on this board. I was actually thinking about this as I am going backpacking in northern California in about a month and thought I might bring my 1911 along. I do not have a CCW so I would have to open carry.

I would carry it mostly for protection against two-legged creatures. I have never had to use a firearm against an animal, and don't really anticipate needing to... although mountain lions are getting slightly more confident up here.

Marijuana cultivation is a problem up here in Northern California... and the growers seem to be getting more violent and reckless. I don't really anticipate problems with other hikers, as most people who are willing to hike into the wilderness seem to be decent people... even the ones who like to drink (also been part of those groups occasionally), but the trail heads and back roads can attract some undesirables.

I'm waiting back on an email regarding specific laws in the wildernesses I am considering going, and right now I'm split 50/50. I know of very few things that provide the peace of mind a firearm gives you... yet they are heavy, and open carry may make some people uncomfortable. Also if I decide to take it, it will have to be on me at all times. Can't leave a handgun in an unattended camp while I go climb a peak. Tough decision...

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#136744 - 07/26/10 08:00 AM Re: Handguns [Re: Whiskeyguy]
DTape Offline
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Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 654
Loc: Upstate NY
The following is pure speculation on my part since I have no direct or indirect knowledge of the psyche of drug criminals. I have however come into contact with armed individuals of whom was unsure of "why" they were in the woods (ie not hunting or hiking).

My guess is if you did come across some drug criminals, they are 1. probably armed 2. probably more than one of them, 3. more "afraid" and trigger happy. Thus an unknown person who startles them will be met with a drawn (or visible) weapon in an attempt to scare them off. If the unknown person either had a visible weapon, or showed theirs it may escalate the situation and increase the danger. For me, the safer bet would be to not carry a weapon, especially visible and if an encounter happened, play dumb and tuck tail. back at the car I would then notify the authorities. In most cases an armed civilian increases the threat level of the situation and the likelihood of harm for the civilian, as opposed to the feeling of "peace of mind" that carrying provides. my .02cents only
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#136865 - 07/28/10 12:14 AM Re: Handguns [Re: Whiskeyguy]
RHodo Offline
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Registered: 01/22/09
Posts: 60
Loc: Texas Hill Country

I'm guessing that an armed criminal won't waste much time deciding whether you're a cop or another armed criminal coming to steal his stash. In his mind, you're certainly NOT a recreational hiker, they don't carry guns.


How fast can you pull your weapon and from how far can hit what you aim at?

I figure you might have 3/4 second with a crook; mountain lion, probably 0.

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#136902 - 07/28/10 11:32 PM Re: Handguns [Re: RHodo]
Keith Offline
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Registered: 01/04/02
Posts: 1664
Loc: Michigan's Upper Peninsula
So as not to hijack this thread, I have posted a gun-related question in the Off Topic forum.
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#136933 - 07/29/10 03:50 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
akluvitlivit Offline
member

Registered: 07/29/10
Posts: 15
Loc: Alaska
I am a liftime firearm enthusiast and consider myself competent with them. However, I always carry both gun and spray. I would prefer to not have to ever fire my weapon at a charging animal if I can help it (which is why I carry the spray) but the weather and wind are so unpredictable where I live that spray alone cannot be relied upon independently, IMO.
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#136984 - 07/30/10 01:58 AM Re: Handguns [Re: akluvitlivit]
Whiskeyguy Offline
member

Registered: 06/11/09
Posts: 103
Loc: Northern California, USA
First, I do have a little experience dealing with armed marijuana growers, as where I live (Humboldt County, CA) is probably the center of the cultivation industry in America.

I have noticed a couple things when I've had to deal with these types. First, they try their absolute best to avoid you. Second, they are not really likely to have weapons on them (while they love to have a stockpile in their camp for whatever reason), or when the weapons are on them they are not fire-ready (not cocked, not easily accessible, etc).

One thing that has been pretty consistent with confrontations in the mountains is the "pack" method of intimidation. I've gotten into some less than desirable situations with a group of guys, and know a few people who have been robbed by a group of guys (one guy was then jumped and beat up).

I don't see a firearm as escalating a situation, I see it as leveling the playing field. I am pretty competent with my handgun. You're right, against a mountain lion I may not have a chance unless I was aware of it before it attacked. I have caught a mountain lion trailing me before, and if it attacked I would have had time to draw and fire... even if I missed the simple noise may have been enough to intimidate it.


Edited by Whiskeyguy (07/30/10 01:59 AM)

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#136985 - 07/30/10 08:09 AM Re: Handguns [Re: akluvitlivit]
oldranger Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
Just before clicking on your post, I read an account of an NPS employee using bear spray to ward off a charging brown bear in your fair state. Bear was fifteen feet away when he pulled the trigger. Prior training probably came in handy.

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#137104 - 08/02/10 05:47 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
Mike1239 Offline
member

Registered: 07/13/10
Posts: 20
I've never used a gun or pepper spray to defend myself from a human or animal (although humans are probably the most dangerous animal.)

However, I have read accounts of people killing grizzlies with a 357 mag. I think you could, but might be tough if the grizzly was charging. I believe you have to disable the bear, with a shoulder or hip shot. Otherwise it may not die before it kills you. Remember a bison can run a mile after a heart shot. Makes a CNS shot necessary to get the meat to the truck.

You might look in to a single shot rifle or pump shotgun for the car. Both can be fairly compact, and there are FAR fewer restrictions on long guns.

From what I have heard, Big Bend National Park ENCOURAGES people to have guns.

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#137402 - 08/08/10 09:37 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
lonewolf Offline
member

Registered: 01/23/05
Posts: 292
Loc: Oregon USA
PapaSam.
There has been a lot of feed back/information given but not all of it is correct. As everything else you may read on the net you have to take things with a grain of salt.
1) If you are concerned about weight, ie, every little once over 10 pounds will break bones and tear ligaments, Then leave the extra wt at home.
2) If you are not practiced and skilled with the handgun it will probably be of no use when you need it. Kind of like a first aid kit. You can have the greatest first aid kit in the world but it is useless if you lack first aid knowledge.
3) If you can not find a way to get the gun out and in a ready position in under 3 seconds... re read #2.
4) If you do carry know that their is a large percentage of antigun types that will make you a reckless villain.
5) You must know the regs and updates of carrying wherever you go. A single slip up, even if it is a simple clerical error can land you in a lot of hot water.
6) You must be mentally prepared to use a gun. This is not being "macho". This means are you prepared to take a life, animal or human, if the need arises.
7) carrying does not give you a license to be sloppy. You must always be aware of your surroundings and avoid confrontations in the first place. The gun is an absolute last resort, not an all around "go to"
Case in point, If you are at a nat park and want that special picture(close up) of an animal thinking the gun will save you when things go wrong it will not go well with you when the authorities arrive. However, if you shoot a cougar that is stalking your child as the child goes from the outhouse to the family tent. The authorities will easily look upon this as justified. There is an nationwide manhunt for a couple of escaped cons who have already murdered while on the run. They are now believed to be in the Yellowstone area. Would it not be better to shoot them and later be judged by a jury of 12 than to be carried by 6?

Now for the flip side. I do carry. I carry most every day and I carry most anywhere and that includes the backcountry. For me carrying is just another step of being prepared, just like a first aid kit. Just because I have not opened the first aid kit in a few years does not mean it is not needed or not necessary. I hope I never have to use either but I am skilled and prepared to do so if needed.

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#137460 - 08/09/10 06:48 PM Re: Handguns [Re: lonewolf]
Heather-ak Offline
member

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 597
Loc: Fairbanks, AK
I second what lonewolf wrote.

Heather

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#137720 - 08/16/10 07:23 PM Re: Handguns [Re: Heather-ak]
sabre11004 Offline
member

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 513
Loc: Tennessee
I second it too !!! There is no way that I am going into the back country without some way to protect myself. Like he said, just because you have not had it out in a year, doesn't mean that you won't have to. Better to be safe than sorry... goodjob
_________________________
The first step that you take will be one of those that get you there 1!!!!!

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#137724 - 08/16/10 08:04 PM Re: Handguns [Re: sabre11004]
Spock Offline
member

Registered: 01/10/06
Posts: 679
Loc: Central Texas
Lonewolf sums it up accurately, but I would like to emphasize his last point, #7: Packing is no excuse to be sloppy. Getting into a situation where a confrontation is probable is just stupid, and a firearm is not likely to get you out of it unscathed. They really are a last resort and a desperate one at that. To succeed, you need total situational awareness. If you have that, you are less likely to get into a shooting scrape to begin with.

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#138558 - 09/09/10 02:20 PM Re: Handguns [Re: aimless]
Ken the Bear Offline
member

Registered: 02/09/10
Posts: 45
Loc: St Louis
I carry a sig p229 in 40SW. Not exactly lightweight, but it's my favorite.

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#138562 - 09/09/10 03:55 PM Re: Handguns [Re: Mike1239]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Quote:
From what I have heard, Big Bend National Park ENCOURAGES people to have guns.


No, they don't. I go there a couple times a year since the 70's. The staff didn't want handguns and still doesn't, however, folks carried in that park since before it was a park, legal or not.

Quote:
3) If you can not find a way to get the gun out and in a ready position in under 3 seconds... re read #2.


Ah, the "21 foot rule"! grin
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

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#138604 - 09/10/10 12:41 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
Heather-ak Offline
member

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 597
Loc: Fairbanks, AK
I carry a Ruger GP100 (357 pistol - 6 /1/2 inch barrel.) The joke is that if you run out of bullets you can always hit them with it. Yes it is that heavy. _but_ other than a long gun, I'm more accurate with it (with bear rounds) than the 9 or 40.

The one time I didn't carry it and just carried my pepper spray I saw a ton of fresh bear sign. I think what woke me up in the middle of the night was possibly a bear... or a porcupine - they make about the same amount of noise. I would feel awful if I put myself (and the bear/moose) in a situation where I had to kill a bear (or a moose) - so I do my utmost to avoid it.

Additionally, Alaska has a high number of crimes against women... and I often hike alone. I _feel_ more comfortable carrying it on my hip.

However, I have taken several gun classes and have been shooting since about 12. I hope to take another class in tactical shooting one of these days.

Now if they would just come up with a gun that cleaned its self =( or if I could talk my husband into doing it (and of course with final inspection by me.)

Heather

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#138837 - 09/15/10 03:07 PM Re: Handguns [Re: aimless]
keedos Offline
newbie

Registered: 09/12/10
Posts: 3
I was on a dayhike in the North Cascades yesterday and I had my S&W 642 .38 snubbie with me in my front pocket. It was in a nice thinly padded Uncle Mike’s pocket holster. Now I can carry this rig around all day on the streets, but by mile 4 yesterday in the mountains it was rubbing my thigh annoyingly. Into my pack it went. I won’t be bringing any guns hiking with me anymore as I find them to be a PITA to carry.

I’m still bringing my bear spray though. “Look out you hoodlum bears!”

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#138866 - 09/16/10 08:12 AM Re: Handguns [Re: keedos]
Ken the Bear Offline
member

Registered: 02/09/10
Posts: 45
Loc: St Louis
I use a shoulder harness by bianchi. It tends to be the most comftorable for me.

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#138903 - 09/16/10 10:48 PM Re: Handguns [Re: Ken the Bear]
GDeadphans Offline
member

Registered: 12/26/08
Posts: 382
Loc: Maine/New Jersey
I dont know a thing about guns....but I would really like a snub nose. I figure even if it is a bear, he/she will hate the feeling of solid hot metal in there skin.
_________________________
"To me, hammocking is relaxing, laying, swaying. A steady slow morphine drip without the risk of renal failure." - Dale Gribbel

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#138932 - 09/17/10 12:20 PM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
NorthTxHillbilly Offline
member

Registered: 09/15/10
Posts: 67
Loc: North Central Texas
Snub nose pistols may be a bit lighter, but are far less accurate. More than about 10 yards, good luck, especially a moving target.
_________________________
Proud to be an American. Lucky to be a Texan.

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#138959 - 09/18/10 01:18 AM Re: Handguns [Re: GDeadphans]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
well perhaps the accuracy lacks from snub noses because they don't trAvel far enough down a barrel to pick up the spin of the rifling. Its the angular momentum from the rotation of the round lead bullet that carries a huge amount of the muzzle energy and though a bullet slows down with distance, its angular energy stays about the same especially after 100 yards. The spinning improves accuracy and it takes 4 inches or more, mine's 7.5 inch bull barrel, which I thick is best from a purely ballist standpoint. Its long enough to accelerate the bullet to 1,000+ feet per second. Velocity = acceleration x time. The acceleration is from the explosive impulse and the pressure on the back of the bullet pushing it down the barrel and into the rifling spinning the deformed lead and heating it to a point where it is nearly molten as it travels down a barrel. "Time" in the equation refers to the length of time the slug is in the barrel, thus the longer the barrel, the faster the slug.

The problem with a snubbie is the bullet goes too slow to rupture. I know, I have a hole in my thigh from a .38 snubbie going off in a holster and passing through my leg without rupturing. The bullet went through my leg and dropped onto the floor. At first I didn't believe I shot my self.

So I have bullet holes and scars from a shattered knee and sixteen bolts and wires went through my leg to graphite rings up and down my lower leg AND large surgical incision scars ( I had pit bull bight marks on my calf too). So the story goes like this: "A mountain lion jumped me while backpacking. I jumped aside but he got me by the calf of my leg He sunk his claws into my leg then grabbed the front of my leg with his teeth. It was then I grabbed my revolver and aimed and fired the gun still in the holster, through my leg, and through the beasts heart." smile

NO ACTUAL LIVE MTN LIONS WERE HARMED FOR THIS FANTASY
Jim
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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#138966 - 09/18/10 10:56 AM Re: Handguns [Re: Jimshaw]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3569
Loc: Texas
Quote:
NO ACTUAL LIVE MTN LIONS WERE HARMED FOR THIS FANTASY


Meaning you shot a dead mountain lion. What museum did this happen? Were you arrested?
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

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#138990 - 09/18/10 08:21 PM Re: Handguns [Re: longhair29]
BradMT Offline
member

Registered: 08/23/04
Posts: 148
Originally Posted By longhair29
Titanium revolvers are best for small less powerful calibers like .38 Special, 32 Magnums, etc.



Agreed.

At the end of the day, a 44 Mag (or whatever) is not necessary for stopping a bear. What's needed is excellent, or lucky, shooting (CNS shots are the only way to stop a bear) and super-penetrating bullets like the hard-cast LBT design. I use 180 LBT's in a Ruger 357 4" Security Six, or the same in a friend's Ti S&W.

I typically don't carry a pistol in Grizz Country while backpacking, carrying "only" bear spray. However, I do pack a pistol when packing out bloody elk meat in the fall.
_________________________
There Is No Bad Weather, Just Bad Clothing...

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#139001 - 09/19/10 10:04 AM Re: Handguns [Re: PapaSam]
POPsJr. Offline
newbie

Registered: 08/17/10
Posts: 5
I have always taken a hand gun into the woods,from a 357 colt to a small stub nose 44 mag. Never worried about bears it was more worry about humans, there are some nuts out there. Now I am older, the childern are growen, I worry about how much weight I have in my pack - this last trip to sequoia kings 50 mile loop, we stayed out 7 days, the gun stayed home, my pack weight was at 35 lbs and with 7000 feet of gain and loss on elevation, the extra weight I carried was advil.

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#139004 - 09/19/10 10:28 AM Re: Handguns [Re: POPsJr.]
Howie Offline
member

Registered: 06/02/03
Posts: 481
Loc: Canora, SK, Canada
I guess I am blessed. I know we have many nut cases in Canada too but on the trails where I go I hardly meet anyone. When I do meet another hiker they seem like the nicest of people. Some of them are even Americans. Can you believe it? smile

I have a friend from Ventura California. We knew each other for years but only on the Net. One year we actually got together and hiked here in BC. He told me how he usually hikes carrying a handgun, which of course he could not do here. I asked him if he ever used it. Sure, he said. I shot at a rattle snake once, but then I kept missing and so I had to kill it with a rock. LOL!

Howie

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