Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 >
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#93126 - 03/25/08 12:49 PM Alternatives to packing . . .
kevonionia Offline
member

Registered: 04/17/06
Posts: 1322
Loc: Dallas, TX
[/b]Purposely[/b] didn't put this in the "Lightweight sidearms . . ." topic since I didn't want to rain on a parade with a thousand views and 67 posts -- in less than two weeks.

But again, I've got to wonder . . . how many views and posts would there be on one of those gun forums with your topic entitled, "Let's go hiking!" <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" /> Ha! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />

I've always wondered about the frequent and often esoteric discussions about guns on this forum (it's not a hunting forum), since we can't legally even take a gun to many of the places we hike (i.e., national parks). Is it because some of our members (for whom I have great respect for with their ultralight hiking observations) don't feel comfortable discussing guns on those gun forums because those other folks are a bunch of (gun) nuts or something? Or they don't feel comfortable on a gun forum saying they are using their guns for protection while hiking? <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> I'm just curious.

Anyway, read this on the Dallas Morning News site dallasnews.com, airline biz blog today:

Quote:
Reports say the gun of a US Airways pilot accidentally discharged on a flight Saturday from Denver to Charlotte, N.C. No one was hurt, although I'm sure many were surprised. The airplane was taken out of service to be checked for damage.

The pilot was authorized to carry a gun under the Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) program, administered by the U.S. Transportation Security Commission.

(That comes from here.)

Thing is he probably has -- no, he surely has -- more training with that sidearm and the safety procedures required than most (99.95 per cent) of us hikers. (Yeah, yeah, okay -- you're that .05 per cent.) So if he's accidentally shooting his gun off in the cockpit of an airplane, then surely we got to be a little concerned about blowin' away someone in our tent.

Which leads me to this: Wouldn't a can of bear spray work just fine? I mean, I've done some research, and I haven't found anyone that's been killed accidentally by their bear spray discharging while hiking. It might sting a little, but not kill you or your hiking buddy.
_________________________
- kevon

(avatar: raptor, Lake Dillon)


Top
#93127 - 03/25/08 01:26 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Kevon....I read that article too. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> I'll bet what happened is that the pilot's Glock (not sure but likely) got triggered in his pilot brief case by something it caught on. Glocks don't have external, manual safety's....if you pull the trigger, it fires. No excuses, I say. If you are going to fly with something like that, it better have 100% of your attention. That makes 200% since 100% is also flying the airplane. Now, theres a market for aircraft safe firearms! You watch!


As far as gun forums go....I'm not on any but I do read from time to time. Once in a while there's a backpacking post of some kind and the poster doesn't get flamed. They do get some interesting responses though, no different than here.


Quote:
Wouldn't a can of bear spray work just fine?


Maybe. All depends on where you are hiking and what the likely threat might be.
In my case, I carry nothing, other than one trekking pole, 99.999% of the time. My wits are much lighter... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
Where I do carry is on the Tex/Mex border, where bear spray would do nothing but taste good on tacos. I took some cop training last year and learned that about 30% of humans aren't affected by chemical sprays....which is why Tasers are popular.
I also sometimes carry when doing trail work. I've carried spray but find it doesn't do anything for dogs, wind direction is important, and after a couple years doesn't come out of the can at all. Our animal control guys all carry guns now.
I've never carried, nor am likely to, in cat or black bear country. In grizzly country, one of our party was armed, a pro guide, and carried no spray. His point was....again, depends on where you are hiking and how much time you have between you and bear. We went through many patches of 'devils glove' which bears nap in. Very different than seeing a few bears out on the sand bars.

So, it's all in where you hike and what you are likely to come up against, weighted against the odds of attack and willingness to haul dead weight. Most of the time I chose to 'take my chances'....and I'm over a half century old. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93128 - 03/25/08 02:14 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
When did Barney Fife get a pilot's license? <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

Top
#93129 - 03/25/08 03:43 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Firearm safety is something alot of people lack, and as for how much "training" this pilot had I wouldn't count on it.

Not to "Cop bash" but not all cops can shoot decently, many just practice and re-qualify every 6 months or a year when the department makes them, and then the gun sits in the holster till they start practicing for a couple of weeks before next re-qualifying testing. Just like, just cause this pilot may have had a small "course" to outline some of the "rules" he should fallow if and when he ever did shoot on the plane doesn't make him a safe gun handler or a good shot. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

As Dryer said, its probably a Glock, BUT this is still a training issue, the pilot should have never had it in "condition red" which means a round in the chamber and the safety off. You only have a firearm in that condition when your going to shoot at something, condition yellow with a loaded magazine in the firearm, safety on and no round in the chamber should have been how he was carrying it. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

Bear spray doesn't always work there have been studies on this you may want to check out, so being in Ontario, where we are currently having issues with the over population of black bears thanks to the spring bear hunt canncellation, I'll trust my life to my shooting skills with a shotgun loaded with slugs before I trust it to diluted pepper spray. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" />

And yes, I do go shooting, hunting and the like, thats one of the many symptoms of being a outdoor nut. You enjoy that kind of thing.

Dimitri

Top
#93130 - 03/25/08 05:31 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Wolfeye Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 413
Loc: Seattle, WA
Here's my view: Well all come from different parts of the country, or from other countries altogether. People from different places have differing views on weapons, especially a kind as politically charged as firearms. Behavior, ethics, & attitudes regarding their use are not shared by all, and since this is not a gun-specific forum, there will be a cross-section of opinions on the issue.

You may call me "gun nut" if you wish, but I do think guns have a place in ultralight hiking forums. A handgun is as much a part of my gear as a cook set or first aid kit: it has several functions (protection, emergency food procurement) and I make a decision of what I carry based on its weight vs. the level of power it needs to provide. I weigh it and its associated items along with the rest of my gear. I carry it because that's what people do in the place that I grew up; I'm not particularly fascinated by guns, yet I'd feel irresponsible if I didn't have one with me.

Bear spray is what you should carry if it will make you feel safe. It takes a lot less training and practice to use it effectively than a gun, and it's lighter. But you do need to practice using it, and it needs to be easily accessible, not in your pack or in the tent. I read a story in Backpacker magazine (Oct. '06) of a girl who couldn't figure out how to use it while a grizzly mauled her dad. That stuff will do more than sting if it gets in your face, too; I heard about some hikers who tried to use it on a blackbear that was hanging outside their tent at night, but they sprayed themselves while in the tent & ended up barfing all over the place. Bear spray does also has the advantage that it's legal in more areas than guns.

There are no "accidental discharges", only negligent discharges and intentional discharges. If that pilot's gun went off because it caught on something in his luggage, then he's at fault for not using a proper holster that would control his weapon within; there are products designed for this. Owning a gun means having it under your control 24/7. People in positions of authority have to be every bit as responsible about their weapons as the average citizen.

Top
#93131 - 03/25/08 06:43 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
dla Offline
member

Registered: 09/06/04
Posts: 275
Loc: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
It's the male equivalent of abortion rights discussions.

Top
#93132 - 03/25/08 06:45 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: dla]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
There are many men who have opinions on abortion. As there are many women who have opinions on owning guns.

There are many female gun owning shooters out there, so do not so be so quick to discount them.

Dimitri

Top
#93133 - 03/26/08 08:11 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
ShadowAngel Offline
newbie

Registered: 02/11/08
Posts: 14
You might be surprised about gun forums and backpacking. Many firearm enthusiasts are also outdoors enthusiasts, myself included. I spend a lot of time on a gun forum, and i've mentioned backpacking there a number of times and gotten extremely positive responses. I've seen a lot of other posters experience the same. I got some great advice on a revolver that I carry while hiking from that forum.

Myself, I carry even when i'm in the city, so if i'm going into the wilderness, i'll definitely carry there. I'd say the city is more dangerous as far as human predators go, but the outdoors has plenty of applications for a firearm.

Top
#93134 - 03/26/08 10:18 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Wolfeye]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Quote:
There are no "accidental discharges", only negligent discharges and intentional discharges. If that pilot's gun went off because it caught on something in his luggage, then he's at fault for not using a proper holster that would control his weapon within; there are products designed for this. Owning a gun means having it under your control 24/7. People in positions of authority have to be every bit as responsible about their weapons as the average citizen.


100% agree. That is why you either get a firearm with adequate safety controls or properly use a holster. For instance on both my Kimber and my Springfield I have to have my hand on the back of the grip to fire (my hand is pressing in on a safety device when doing that). That device alone makes it so you cannot "accidentally" have it "go off". In further, I cannot even shoot one of my husband's 45's due to the fact that my hands are not strong enough to press on that and still hold the weight of the pistol!

I do have a revolver that has NO safety built in and this means that the revolver stays in its holster at all times. It cannot go off when properly holstered. And as well it has a very heavy trigger pull so it requires quite the pull back to even shoot as well.

This case sounds like sloppy handling of an already poor design of gun.
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

Top
#93135 - 03/26/08 12:04 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
I think it is relevant to talk about guns on a hiking forum. I could compare it to tents, or hammocks. Some people think they are absolutely necessary, others think there are better alternatives. What I like about this forum is that there are many people (including yourself) who are able to intelligently, and civilly, convey their opinions one way or the other. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />

As for me, I don't carry right now. I just can't afford one, so I carry my can of bear spray. If I bring it, it is on my belt, ready to go.
_________________________
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.

Top
#93136 - 03/26/08 01:37 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Well, I guessed wrong. The pilot had an H&K USP, not a Glock, which makes things even more complicated. The Glock is 'safe' unless the WHOLE trigger is pulled. It has a little tab on the trigger that deactivates 3 safeties at the same time.
The H&K USP, on the other hand, has three possible variants. Each starts out as a double action, and there's also a safety lever. This means someone was likely dinking around with the thing OR it was not 'de-cocked' after it's last firing and the safety put on. The gun had to be in "battery" to go off....and it did!

I too feel arms (guns, spray, knives, hiking poles, etc.) are as relevant to hiking/backpacking as anything else. It's all in where you hike and what the threat level is, as to 'if' and 'what with' you arm yourself.
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93137 - 03/26/08 02:37 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dryer]
Paddy_Crow Offline
member

Registered: 11/08/04
Posts: 2285
Loc: Michigan
I don't understand why a pilot wouldn't carry an auto with the chamber empty. It doesn't add that much time to rack a round and it reduces the liklihood of accidental discharge.

Top
#93138 - 03/26/08 03:35 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Paddy_Crow]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Exactly. With 'hardened' flight decks it would seem that extra second is available. Plus, the sound of a slide being racked is about as attention getting as a pump shotgun. Who knows what what happened...my moneys on improper securing/storage of the sidearm.
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93139 - 03/26/08 03:38 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dryer]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Dryer,

My money is on improper handling caused by a lack of knowledge and training.

Dimitri

Top
#93140 - 03/27/08 06:57 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dryer]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
Quote:
Exactly. With 'hardened' flight decks it would seem that extra second is available. Plus, the sound of a slide being racked is about as attention getting as a pump shotgun. Who knows what what happened...my moneys on improper securing/storage of the sidearm.


When my sister-in-law was thinking about a gun for home protection, I recommended a small 20g pump. The number 1 reason being the sound that it makes when you pump it. It that don't scare someone, then they deserve getting shot. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" />

Oh yeah, I agree. Why did he have a round chambered? <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" />


Edited by finallyME (03/27/08 06:58 AM)
_________________________
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.

Top
#93141 - 03/27/08 08:26 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: finallyME]
Pika Offline
member

Registered: 12/08/05
Posts: 1813
Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
Quote:
The number 1 reason being the sound that it makes when you pump it. It that don't scare someone, then they deserve getting shot


Problem is, in the dark, the sound of a pistol or shotgun being racked is a perfect way to let the bad guy (Or gal: I must eschew sexist thinking <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />) know where you are. And then, if you don't know where THEY are you are in trouble.
_________________________
May I walk in beauty.

Top
#93142 - 03/27/08 08:36 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: finallyME]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Quote:
Oh yeah, I agree. Why did he have a round chambered?


Probably because that's what the 'Concealed Carry' training is telling them to do.
Now days it's "no safety's on DAO" pistols, just like on revolvers. I instinctively don't chamber rounds and use safety's because I grew up shooting 1911 style pistols. Now days days "condition 1" is the carry recommendation. That's scary to me, so I usually carry "condition 3", unless I have an immanent reason to be 'cocked and locked'. I purposely bought a DAO 9mm pistol WITH a 1911 style safety because that's where my thumb automatically goes. Many DAO (double action only) pistols have no safety at all. Glocks are way different and are strange to me because there are three safeties that all disappear when you pull the trigger...a combat pistol.

1911 "Conditions of readiness":

Condition 0 - A round is in the chamber, hammer is cocked, and the safety is off.

Condition 1 - Also known as "cocked and locked," means a round is in the chamber, the hammer is cocked, and the manual thumb safety on the side of the frame is applied.

Condition 2 - A round is in the chamber and the hammer is down.

Condition 3 - The chamber is empty and hammer is down with a charged magazine in the gun.

Condition 4 - The chamber is empty, hammer is down and no magazine is in the gun.




When push comes to shove, we're probably going to find that someone on the flight deck was messing around with the gun.

Interestingly, back to the original post.....a flight deck could carry a 'fire extinguisher' with 'chemical spray' charged with about 2000 psi and 'fire-hose' any attacker. The thing could even carry full auto BB's. So a pistol is not the only option available.
My wasp nest shooter is an old fire extinguisher, charged with 100 psi and hot soapy water. Most incredible water cannon you ever saw!! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93143 - 03/27/08 09:48 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Pika]
sarbar Offline
member

Registered: 07/15/05
Posts: 1453
Loc: WA
Lasers are ones 'at home' friend. The laser grips are a good buy to have put on ones 'at home' defense line. That and a tactical flashlight like a Surefire. The light alone will nearly blind you if shined in your eyes. That way you see the bad person(s) and they cannot see your position.
_________________________
Freezer Bag Cooking, Trail Cooking, Recipes, Gear and Beyond:
www.trailcooking.com

Top
#93144 - 03/27/08 12:34 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: sarbar]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3967
Loc: Bend, Oregon
My Walther P38 can be safely carried with a round at battery and the hammer down. There is small pin above the hammer that protrudes just enough to be felt with your thumb in the dark to say "there is a round chambered" without having to do something noisey to find out. Obviously if there are people after you and you are camped out then you need some firepower like an AR15 or M16, but under normal circumstances I think a concealed weapon that would be employed after being robbed or for escape would be preferable to a shootout with other people around to get hit.

Which brings up the point, if someone took a hostage while I was camping probably a .22LR would be the ONLY weapon I would shoot them with knowing the accuracy of putting a round in someones ear while you wife or other friend is being held closely to a person brandishing a weapon.

However I normally do not pack and thats the meaning of this post. I have scared off bears and mtn lions unarmed, coyotes run from me - you know "brave men shiver - I'm MikeFink, King of the River..." from davy crocket riverboat.... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#93145 - 03/27/08 01:18 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Jimshaw]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Code:
 .22LR would be the ONLY weapon I would shoot them with ... 



Hmmmm, Jim....you might want to dial that up to a .25. My cheapo "throw down <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />", Jennings .22 LR will go almost all the way through a Dallas phone book. That's 3 times farther than a .380 will penetrate. It's my 'dog' gun when doing trail work....never had to use it though, yet. .22's are like shooting something with an ice pick. All penetration. You make a good point though. When I'm solo and camping, cocked and locked is the readiness state, within easy grasp....if I bother at all.
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93146 - 03/27/08 01:53 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
kevonionia Offline
member

Registered: 04/17/06
Posts: 1322
Loc: Dallas, TX
kevon:

Geez, now look what you've done? You've created another gun thread! So much for the alternatives (unless they're holsters or laser grips).

But with you talking to yourself here, hopefully you've got the gun posters believing that at least one person (you!) should practice gun control -- for everyone else's sake.

That aside, I've got to point out that I'm probably not the only one living in a big city on this forum. But the thing is, where I live is turning into a really big, bad city. As the economy has turned south here, I've watched an alarming increase in theft and violent crime. An almost daily armored car robbery (to the point that they're talking about an ordinance to not pick up money in an amored car at schools when the kids are getting out.) We've had a rash of murders at Wendy's, Chili's, even a fancy steak house (unsolved), enough that I really don't care to go out to eat here anymore. They've used stolen bulldozers to knock over the ATMs at the same Bank of America branch twice -- in the last 4 months. We've had 22 burglaries in my marina in the past year, one last week four slips down. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif" alt="" /> And then you've got stuff like this.

So when I get on a plane and eventually get to a trailhead and out in the wilderness, I'm hoping to leave that all behind. Rose-colored glasses for the rest of the world -- the outdoor world -- I guess. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
- kevon

(avatar: raptor, Lake Dillon)


Top
#93147 - 03/27/08 03:03 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Kevon....big cities bring big city crime. Plus, the news media makes it seem all the bigger. I moved to DeSoto in the 60s when it was under 5,000. We're now close to 50,000 and part of Dallas. We went from small town crime to big city crime, and all the ugly stuff you describe (except that arms dealer....22 years old...wow.) ONE GUY was responsible for 300 burglaries, many in my neighborhood, over the last two years. He's been caught and the break-in rate has slowed to a crawl. We've got the "scare crow bandits' here. A ring of bank robbers that work in 5's and 6's...none caught and hitting banks all over the metroplex. So, lots of big city crime might be caused by just a few bad apples.
Guns, or lack of guns, really makes no difference. The guns aren't doing the violence. Nor are the knives or ATM bulldozers. It's people who fear no consequences for their actions, nor have the IQ to realize there are other options in life.
What stops crime is for us citizens to be vigilant and watch out for each other. That's what we did here and I've met more neighbors in 2 years than the other 20 I've lived in this neighborhood! Our 'citizens police academy' and 'citizens on patrol' classes are packed.
So, when people cause crime, other people undo crime. Our local police department is very active getting the community and HOA's involved. It works and none of us carry guns! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
Sounds like your marina needs to organize.

ps...I know you lived in these parts and if memory serves, your Mom still does??
DFW is starting to act like Chicago.


Edited by Dryer (03/27/08 03:13 PM)
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93148 - 03/27/08 03:07 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dryer]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Got a point there, its the people doing it not the guns.

I have yet to see any of my guns break out of the gun safe, break into the ammo safe, load a round into the magazine, cycle the action, and then pull the trigger on its own.

Dimitri

Top
#93149 - 03/27/08 08:52 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Wolfeye Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 413
Loc: Seattle, WA
I'm sorry to hear how bad things are getting there. I can understand wanting to leave it all behind; one of the reasons I go hiking is so I can get away from the car and cell phone. I can't imagine wanting to leave behind the place I live.

"Gun control" is a touchy issue, though. I've lived in a rural area where guns are associated with food, safety, discipline, skill, and sport; I've also lived in a large urban area where guns are associated with crime, violent movies, violent video games, and children at home playing with Daddy's loaded gun in the sock drawer. The attitudes are remarkably different, and you really have to swallow your pride to listen to arguements from both sides seriously. A city person's idea of how guns should be treated is 180 degrees different than someone who grew up practically in the woods. The same laws won't work for both.

Top
#93150 - 03/28/08 07:02 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
finallyME Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/07
Posts: 2710
Loc: Utah
Quote:

I have yet to see any of my guns break out of the gun safe, break into the ammo safe, load a round into the magazine, cycle the action, and then pull the trigger on its own.


That's strange. Mine do it all the time. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> Ok, so maybe not. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.

Top
#93151 - 03/28/08 08:38 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: finallyME]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Watch out, finally, there are support groups out there for people like you...... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93152 - 03/28/08 09:49 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
BobEFord Offline
member

Registered: 01/28/08
Posts: 72
Loc: SE AZ
kevonionia,

As an alternative to deadly force, the National Park Rangers now pack a Tazer (on the other side of there body from their handgun).

http://www.tazers.com/

They have an appropiate use in defense situations - generally when trying to stop or subdue one individual human. Weight 18 ounces.

Any stories out there to share on shocked bears? I would be interested to see a Youtube video of such an experience in the field. How about one of a bear getting sprayed?

Top
#93153 - 03/28/08 08:18 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: BobEFord]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3967
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Bob
I think if'n yer gonna use a Tazer on a bear <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" /> you should most likely file all of the sharp edges <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> off'n it first.... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" />

Seriously these animals have defensive radias and if you're inside that distance shocking it, the bear is gonna get you to stop the shock.
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#93154 - 03/28/08 08:55 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
6brnorma Offline
member

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 252
Loc: Arizona
Quote:
My money is on improper handling caused by a lack of knowledge and training.


I'm sure you're right Dimitri, as MO would say ... "keep the booger hook off the bang button" .... that'll solve the problem every time.

Top
#93155 - 03/28/08 11:57 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: BobEFord]
GreenandTan Offline
member

Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 56
I would not rely on a Taser for defense situation on any extended outdoor trip. They are battery operated after all. Tasers available to consumers do not work as well on large animals as they do on humans. I recall seeing a video where an experimental (much stronger ) Taser was used on a bull with some success, but this is nothing available for the hiker.

The Taser is designed to immobilize the subject for 5 seconds for law enforcement applications giving enough time to handcuff the suspect. The civilian model immobilizes the subject for 30 seconds giving the user time to escape. Even if that did work on a bear, I don't think 30 seconds is enough time to get far enough away from an angry bear no matter how fast you run. The range of the probes is 15 feet for civilians.

I think the only alternative to carrying a firearm, if you feel you need the protection, is a can of bear spray. You should train on deploying the spray quickly and with confidence.

Most important, more so than any equipment or weapons you can carry, is knowing your area, knowing the signs of predators in the area, knowing their behavior, having a plan, taking preventative measures (like proper food storage) and staying aware of your surroundings at all times.

Top
#93156 - 03/29/08 10:45 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
300winmag Offline
member

Registered: 02/28/06
Posts: 1342
Loc: Nevada, USA
I live in Henderson, NV, a quiet(er) southern suburb of Las Vegas which has a VERY high crime rate. I've had a Henderson police neighbor and an FBI hiking buddy both tell me to carry a concealed weapon (W/permit) in 'Vegas. Probably soon I'll do that.

So far I don't carry in the back country but I AM considering getting a titanium Tarus .44 magnum pistol for backpacking. My big canister of bear spray gives me litttle confidence, even when I've had it in hand & ready in Yosemite on two "bear meetings". I'd rather have the .44 as a backup in bear country and my Glock 17 in "Indian territory" in 'Vegas.

What's that saying? "I'd rather be tried by 12 than carried by 6."...pallbearers,that is.

Call me an old curmudgeon but call me a LIVE curmudgeon.

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

Top
#93157 - 03/29/08 10:52 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
Hector Offline
member

Registered: 12/20/04
Posts: 325
Loc: LA/ARK/TX corner
Guns don't "accidentally discharge." He put his finger on the trigger and squeezed, end of story. You don't need much training not to put your finger on the trigger unless you're about to shoot something. You just need to not be stupid. Sorry, but it's really that simple.

Top
#93158 - 03/29/08 01:29 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: 300winmag]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3967
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Winni
I wonder if you ever shot a Ruger Redhawk.44 <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" /> While the blackhawk jumps in your hand and converts a lot of energy to angular momentum, a redhawk .44 is similar to holding your hand open and having someone hit it with a baseball bat. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> A titanium .44 would not be controlable. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" /> You would flinch before the bullet left the barrel and you would never get a good second shot. Also I bet its a short barrel. Come on dude, you know better. Better to have a smaller load on target, than a big load that misses the barn door.

OR
You have hands like Superman and don't really need a gun at all, you just hold the bullet and thunk it with your fingernail... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" />
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#93159 - 04/30/08 06:54 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Hector]
lv2fsh Offline
member

Registered: 04/27/08
Posts: 111
Loc: socal
Quote:
Guns don't "accidentally discharge." He put his finger on the trigger and squeezed, end of story. You don't need much training not to put your finger on the trigger unless you're about to shoot something. You just need to not be stupid. Sorry, but it's really that simple.

As a Deputy Sheriff I agree with Hector. That gun fired when someone's finger pulled the trigger. At the range, my department trains and stresses over and over "MASTERGRIP". That is your trigger finger never goes on the trigger untill you are going to fire. Most modern handguns have safety transfer bars that make it so the firing pin cannot contact the primer unless the trigger is held all the way back. This virtually eliminates the "accidental" discharge.

I also have no problem with any honest law abiding citizen carrying a gun. The "BAD GUYS" don't sit around discussing this. While my experience with wild animals has always been for them to try to get away from human contact, it is somewhat reassuring to be able to defend myself if Yogi decides that I look tastier than grubs and berries. If it makes you more comfortable to think it couldn't happen or probably won't then don't carry but I will.

Top
#93160 - 05/01/08 10:19 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: lv2fsh]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
Partial reasons not to take your gun:

Cougars in attack mode use ambush method. Ordinarily this would leave no time for self defense with a firearm.

In Alaska, if you kill a bear, you are responsible for removing the carcass.

You don't indulge in logical fallacies of any kind.
http://onegoodmove.org/fallacy/toc.htm

---------------

The number of animal attacks on hikers annually, divided by the number of hikers, equals what?

There is lots of similar, reliable information available, but I find this from Lee County (Fla.) Sherriff's Office):

"A firearm is more than forty times as likely to hurt or kill a family member as to stop a crime."

-----------

Reason to take your gun: If you think the effort is worth whatever satisfaction you may get.

Top
#93161 - 05/01/08 10:26 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Hector Offline
member

Registered: 12/20/04
Posts: 325
Loc: LA/ARK/TX corner
> Partial reasons not to take your gun

Let us know when you come up with a whole one. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" />

Top
#93162 - 05/01/08 10:56 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Excellent website you reference!

However, the Lee County Sheriff's Office, making the statement:
"A firearm is more than forty times as likely to hurt or kill a family member as to stop a crime."...
apparently has never visited that website. I suspect their officers also don't carry firearms, tasers, or pepper spray, in support of the '4000%' statistic. "Do as we say, not as we do." I suggest if one of their officers pointed a firearm at an attacker in progress, the situation would quickly change, and likely without violence. (i think they know that....they just want it to be a secret.... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />)

A "firearm" is 100% unlikely to do anything but sit there. It's the operator controlling that firearm that might fall into that statistic, however nebulous, depending upon training and circumstances. Anyone can be stupid with anything...and sadly, stupid can kill.

True what you say about cougars and bears, but I don't bother with a weapon for them anyway....heck, that's exactly what I want to see!!! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93163 - 05/01/08 12:19 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
lv2fsh Offline
member

Registered: 04/27/08
Posts: 111
Loc: socal
I have read about cougar attacks and it would appear that a weapon can definately increase your chances of survival. My daughter's friend, Anne Hjelle, was attacked by a mountain lion while mountain biking. She is alive because she and her companion fought back. The friend fought off the lion with a stick. Mountain lions are like all cats and are frightened by loud noises. A gun of any kind would have been way better than a stick. For a summary try reading
www.cougarinfo.org/attacks3.htm
As for bears, while they are usually after your food and can be driven off, sometimes they decide to eat you. In that case , you had better be ready to fight anyway you can. Playing dead when a black bear is trying to eat you is going to result in you being eaten. In nature(not the movies) animals do not kill everything before they eat it. When the critter is trying to eat me. I want to be able to fight back in the most effective way. I don't pin all of my hopes on a firearm. I also carry pepperspray and am almost never without my knife(which is either a fixed blade or one hand opening). I plan on keeping my spot at the top of the food chain. Below is a recomendation of what to do if threatened by a cougar. It can be added that you should never run from a cougar or a bear. With bears. you should speak calmly and back slowly away but if it comes for you, get ready to fight.

If a cougar behaves aggressively:

· Arm yourself with a large stick, throw rocks, speak loudly and firmly. Convince the cougar that you are a threat not prey.

· If a cougar attacks, fight back! Many people have survived cougar attacks by fighting back with anything, including rocks, sticks, bare fists, and fishing poles.

Finally, gun ownership and use is a personal choice that brings with it a huge responsibility. I would not give my seven year old grandson a chainsaw but I did give him a .22 rifle and have taught him gun safety and how to shoot. The bottom line is a gun is machine without a mind of it's own. Much like a car and to use the logic that guns can be used carelessly and cause injury, then I guess we shouldn't have cars either. Our safety is like every other aspect of the sport of backpacking. We all make personal decisions on what we need or want to take.

Top
#93164 - 05/01/08 03:23 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
I know I'm not going to change your mind, but the number of accidental firearms deaths in the USA in 1996 (just a random year the statistics are pretty much the same every year anyways comparing each other anyways) was 1,134 ... which by the way include more hunting accidents, police accidents, and the like not just your "inside the family home" accidents.

Cars that same year killed "accidently" over 43,500 people in the USA. While almost 3,000 people died cause of complications from medical procedures. So its almost 3 times more likely you'll die from your doctor cause of his actions then a gun accidentally.

As well according to economist Steven D. Levitt, yearly in the U.S. "there is 1 child killed by a gun for every 1 million-plus guns." Levitt also observes that yearly there is one drowning of a child for every 11,000 residential swimming pools.

Something to think about next time you walk into your doctors office or take a drive in your car or think about your pool or think putting in a new one.

Myself I'll be legally carrying a rifle with me when I'm out hiking and camping in the middle of no where, in areas I know there are plenty of black bears, and other animals that wish me harm.

By the way here is my source who copied the US Census report to get the numbers.
http://www.anesi.com/accdeath.htm

Dimitri


Edited by Dimitri (05/01/08 03:25 PM)

Top
#93165 - 05/01/08 05:25 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
12Step Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/08
Posts: 89
Loc: Southwest Ohio
This topic veers in that area of gun control and is about as comfortable talking about as bringing up topics of abortion, religion, and politics.

If you carrying a firearm it is your responsibility to be responsible. If your gun goes off accidentally, either you carrying a cheap gun, have little to no experience with it, or you are doing something irresponsible. The police department I work for I see MANY gunshot victims. Many were on the receiving end from drug deals gone bad and some of the "victims" have at one time put others on the same bed they are now lying in.

That aside.

The ones that have gunshot wounds from accidents were ALWAYS doing something stupid, like cleaning a loaded gun, screwing around with it, not checking or caring that it was loaded, or using a gun that is either poor in quality or not properly taken care of.

Law enforcement and conceal and carry classes, stress over and over and over the extreme importance of safety. Treat every gun like it's loaded, NEVER point a gun at someone unless you plan on using it, always point the gun down range, clean your weapon every time you use it, take the weapon to a armorer if it isn't working correctly, LOCK YOUR WEAPONS UP AT HOME, etc, etc, etc.

This is all common sense knowledge.

If I am carrying my off duty weapon, whether hiking, or out and about, my firearm is in a quality holster, concealed. More importantly, I don't broadcast I am armed for obvious reasons. I also maintain constant responsibility when armed because that what is required for the privilege of carrying.

As far as my opinion on gun control. If you outlaw guns for everyone, you might as well outlaw driving. People driving cars kill way more people than guns ever will.

Tom
_________________________
"Let's not miss the beauty of the forest by the ugliness of some of its trees." Bill W.

Top
#93166 - 05/03/08 04:35 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: 12Step]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
"......The ones that have gunshot wounds from accidents were ALWAYS doing something stupid ...".......And typically, "I never do anything stupid-- not me... nope never..."

It's not an argument about gun control. I own two guns and sometimes go camping with one, if I want to do a little hunting.....I'm not interested in gun control, and think the issue is extremely overblown by many gun owners.

It's only my opinion, but I think guns engender fantasies of omnipotence that have little bearing on reality. So can hitting a golf ball, I gather... That can be a fine fantasy, but it's a good idea not to get too carried away with it.

I've lived for ten years in one of the highest-crime cities in the nation, Jersey City, and have yet to directly witness a crime, unless you count a couple of bar brawls where nobody, thank goodness, used a gun for "self defense."

In the back country, I was the victim of a trailhead car break-in once, and also once, a victim of car vandalism. I'm supposed to shoot some hillbilly teenager because he keyed my car or stole $50 worth of luggage?

The only time a cougar ever showed an interest in me, I was unaware of his presence until an instant after he decided against trying to bite my head off. That's their modus operandi for hunting and it works well for them.

Yeah, if a cougar is trying to bite your head off, it's an excellent idea to fight back. But good luck finding your gun at that point and not shooting some bystander or yourself in the process. I think it would be much more efficient to just try peeling the thing off your head before his fangs hit your brain tissue.

I've had black bears trip over my tent guylines. Apparently, yelling obscenities is an effective, ultra-lite defense.

Grizzlies? Human fatalities are quite rare in areas where they are found. It's like a couple every year, divided by the total numbers of hikers in western Canada, Alaska, etc....Even if you push things, the probabilities of being attacked are low.. I've been in their territory not a lot, but a number of times. I do understand that they are a concern and in certain specific and particular circumstances, a firearm might be a reasonable precaution

Top
#93167 - 05/03/08 05:49 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3967
Loc: Bend, Oregon
JD
quote
"I've had black bears trip over my tent guylines. Apparently, yelling obscenities is an effective, ultra-lite defense."

giggle <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> Yep I've found that shouting obsenities and telling them what yer gonna do to them seems to be an adequate UL defense from javelina AND mtn lions AND bear, not to mention those teenagers you mentioned. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" />
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#93168 - 05/03/08 05:59 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Jimshaw]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
Shocking but true!!!!

Wild animals are usually afraid of people. What an insight!!! That goes even for habituated camp bears....

Bringing a gun due to fear of black bears orcougars is.... dunno what to say... yeah it's true...

Petty criminals also tend to run away. The chances of meeting a true psychotic killer in Jersey City are like a half-million to one....and drastically lower in the back country....Getting murdered is just not high on the list of potential problems.

Fear is most times a very irrational emotion and even when warranted, it's often unhelpful and dangerous, and will mess you up more than anything.
.....

Top
#93169 - 05/03/08 08:09 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
crazyone Offline
member

Registered: 04/24/06
Posts: 111
Loc: Northern Panhandle Of West Vir...
I do believe in people,who has any guns in their homes or on the trails are truly responsible in their actions. I feel that all people needs to be trained/practiced in using their guns so they know how to handle the guns properly. I do not carry a gun,while on the trails for I cannot afford a handgun but,I will not condemmed you if you do. The only thing I asked You better know how to treat that gun with respect and don't act stupid with it. Cause I will first tell you to quit it and if you don't don't. I will leave your butt there or If I feel threatin I will do anything to protect myself and leave you for the wild life. As a Emt I have seen too many injuries and death from people,who were being stupid and not thinking and I have lost several friends for this reason.

Top
#93170 - 05/04/08 07:08 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: crazyone]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
KelTec's handguns have had some good reviews and they can be had for under 400$

But yes your right training/common sense is the key. My opinion is, If your not about to use it keep the dang chamber clear, no need to rack the bolt till you need it, thats a 110% better safety then any firearm safety can be. As no matter how much you force the safety/trigger, by accident it will not fire no matter what.

Dimitri

Top
#93171 - 05/04/08 08:13 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3967
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Dimitri
I have to agree with you about an empty chamber. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> How long does it take to chamber a round? <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" /> Just long enough to see that the wolf jumping you is actually your buddies dog, <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" /> or your buddy. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />

Since I carry a single action, I have to cock the hammer first - the time it takes to do that is enough. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> In most animal defense encounters they won't really ambush you. The two lions I met up with were very cautious in their approach - I knew they were there long enough to have reacted in a very offensive screaming manner as I bared my teeth and waved my arms. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> For a lion, just being seen is a bad thing as far as they're concerned. Obsenities work as well on them as they do on house cats. Another thing you can do is sniff really loudly a few times to make the animal think you are sizing up its smell, this scares them, and cats can hear this sound through a door on a noisey afternoon. Act like a hunter and animals will avoid you.
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#93172 - 05/04/08 08:36 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Jimshaw]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Single action pistols that are not cocked are pretty safe to have in the bush even with a loaded chamber. As having the hammer cocked takes alot more force then tripping the trigger or the safety in most firearms (from my experience anyways)

Myself I don't own any handguns and even if I did it would be illegal to take them in the bush with me as thy are restricted firearms and I do not have a that special permit to carry which they seem to only issue to a very select few professions which I am not one of (prospectors, armored car people and the like).

So I carry a rifle, semi-automatic, for small game hunting you see. "Yes thats right, I carry a medium bore rifle for hunting small game, here is my license Mr. Conservation Officer" <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />

Anyways back to my original point, it takes very little more time if any to cock your firearm then it would to flick off the safety. So I think empty chamber and no safety is better then a loaded chamber and a safety.

Dimitri

Top
#93173 - 05/04/08 08:49 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Jimshaw]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
Mt lions, like house cats, and unlike many other predators, rely on suprise attacks for hunting. No surprise, then probably no attack.

See
http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&lr=&q="stalk+and+ambush"+puma


etc.

Top
#93174 - 05/04/08 10:39 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
lv2fsh Offline
member

Registered: 04/27/08
Posts: 111
Loc: socal
Alright, I think we've gotten way off the original topic of this thread. The topic was "alternatives to packing. I am asked this question at work all the time. Usually by crime victims. Domestic violence victims and women in general that are in fear for their or their families safety want and need protection, even if for just peace of mind. I always suggest pepper spray or tasers for people who don't want or have the training for firearms. If a person wants a firearm for home protection, I recomend a shotgun. (something about the sound of an 870 racking <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />) But this is a backpacking forum. The same recomendation goes here. If you are comfortable and competant with a gun and want to pack the weight then that is your decision. If you are a gambler and like the odds (admittedly long) that you wont be a victim, then go for it. In Law enforcement, we have a use of force continuum. That is that you use the force necessary to acomplish your goal (ie;threat,arrest ect.) The continuum starts at uniform presence and goes up to strong voice commands,then firm grip or gesture,then on up through chemical weapons(pepper spray) to electronic weapons(taser) to impact weapons (baton) to finally deadly force,which can be guns,knives, vehicles or any other deadly weapon. The point is firearms are only a last resort. This doesn't mean that you can't or wont have to skip a step or two if the situation requires.

I carry a gun while packing or hiking because it is a tool that enhances my comfort level. I have used a handgun to start a fire one time when I lost my matches so It can be used for survival too. I also carry a heavier gas stove because that's what I prefer. What level of weight you carry or what you take is a personal choice that everyone of us makes. My wife carries a heavy slr camera because she is a photographer. If a person wants to hike into the wilderness with no tent and a beach towel then he made that choice and has to live with it. Some people carry cell phones,sat phones,gps, compasses,extra topo maps plb's ect. I don't but usually always have a firearm. My decision, my hike. Just pick the level of comfort you want and carry it.

Top
#93175 - 05/04/08 12:36 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: lv2fsh]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
I understand what your saying with your force continuum, but my thoughts are, if your going to use pepper spray or any other alternatives on a bear, its because its attacking you, and a bear or any other wild animal going to attack you in my opinion requires a quick and immediate end hence the use of a firearm including your 870 Remington shotgun being a good home and wilderness defense firearm. Unless ofcourse your dumb enough to try and stop a bear from eating your lunch with pepper spray, then well there are Awards for people like that.

I don't think you can compare a animal attack in the woods to a attack being done by another human. Simple fact of the matter is, no matter how hard you try, taking a baton to a bear and trying to "win" the confrontation wont happen. So how I see it its best to get to the highest level of force without wasting time that will end up costing you your life in a animal attack.

Dimitri

Top
#93176 - 05/04/08 01:54 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3967
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Dimitri
quote
"I don't think you can compare a animal attack in the woods to a attack being done by another human. Simple fact of the matter is, no matter how hard you try, taking a baton to a bear and trying to "win" the confrontation wont happen. So how I see it its best to get to the highest level of force without wasting time that will end up costing you your life in a animal attack"
___________________________________________-

1) Do you have any statistics about animal attacks on campers. You make it sound like "pack or die at the hands of bigfoot". <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" /> The fact is - animals are afraid of you to begin with. They are cautious of humans. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" />

2) Mtn lions that cause problems (according to California fish and wildlife) are generally young males in the 60 to 80 pound range <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" /> - yearlings who haven't yet learned to avoid humans. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" />They are curious, but except in extreme rare instances they avoid contact with humans. When they do, they may growl a threat <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" /> or otherwise challenge you rather than ambush you. At the point of challenge you must go psycho on it, and it will run.

3) Bears. I have little experience with grizzlies except for camping 3 months in Alaska. I have spent hundreds of nights over way too many years camped in black bear country and I have not yet seen one that wouldn't run away when hit with a rock or when I chase them.

3) As far as the fight back idea - sure you should fight back, but if you are going into the woods"with a round chambered" then maybe you should stay home instead. Your probability of having to defend yourself from a serious attack by dangerous animal is far smaller than being struck with lightning.

4) Human problems - we said camp in the wilderness, not the jungle. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" /> You would have to be struck by lightning twice to equal the scarsity of trail side killings. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />

5) After the recent gun stuff in this forum, I'm beginning to fear some of the gun toting scared members worried about defending themselves, more than I worry about actually being assalted by an animal or a criminal in the woods. I am beginning to fear "honest law abiding people". <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" />

Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

Top
#93177 - 05/04/08 02:24 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Jimshaw]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Jim,

I'm also not talking about shooting everything you come across in the bush.

Fact of the matter is in Ontario black bears DO NOT fear you anymore and will come right into your camp site, and heck they are going into towns in broad day light now without any fear of humans. So I really rather not try to scare a black bear away and home for the best if its coming at me. Just me, but my survival is more important to me then trying to make the bear happy and giving it its next lunch.

In the last 8 years, 26 people have died from bear attacks in North America, as well as 62 attacks on humans by Mtn Lions/Cougars between 1994 and 2003 occurred, so yes I do believe being prepared is a good thing.

As for "human problems" on the trails, I never had a problem with anyone. I was referring to the use of a police officers force continuum not really working for a animal thats attacking you.

Dimitri

Top
#93178 - 05/04/08 07:51 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Jimshaw]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Quote:
5) After the recent gun stuff in this forum, I'm beginning to fear some of the gun toting scared members worried about defending themselves, more than I worry about actually being assalted by an animal or a criminal in the woods. I am beginning to fear "honest law abiding people".


Hey..wait a minute.....yer the one hauling around that giant Ruger, over-pressured hog leg! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" />

By the way, I don't carry firearms most of the time but do carry pepper/CS spray, especially when doing trail work. Do a search on Youtube for 'pepper spray' and watch some of the videos. Holy Mole'!!!

I do agree with Dimitri about going straight to the highest level of force and not wasting time with 'steps'. Where you hike dictates what level of force you bring, if any at all.
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93179 - 05/04/08 09:08 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
dla Offline
member

Registered: 09/06/04
Posts: 275
Loc: Hillsboro, Oregon, USA
Quote:
Mt lions, like house cats, and unlike many other predators, rely on suprise attacks for hunting. No surprise, then probably no attack.

See
http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&lr=&q="stalk+and+ambush"+puma


etc.


Ummmm - no. Most Cougar attacks are juveniles - less than 3 years old and weighing around 100lbs. They aren't very good hunters. They hang around too close and watch you. They want to kill you but they don't know how.

When you see a cat, and that cat isn't running away, you've got a dangerous situation. You need to be shooting, or attacking with sticks and rocks, or blasting with pepper spray. But since most people don't speak Cougar, most folks misinterpet the Cat's behavior as being "friendly".

Top
#93180 - 05/05/08 02:31 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dryer]
lv2fsh Offline
member

Registered: 04/27/08
Posts: 111
Loc: socal
My point is, a person should carry the amount of personal protection that one is comfortable carrying. And yes, animals and humans have been repelled by batons or other impact weapons. I don't advocated a baton for backpacking. If you are comfortable with nothing then that's what you should have. The decision to take a life be it an animal or human is a very serious undertaking and should not be taken lightly. There are consequences to it that go far beyond the immediate moment. You can be charged with a crime or sued for "protecting yourself". Then there is also the mental and emotional aftermath of the use of force. I have friends who have had to take a life (human) in self defense and ended up not able to get over it and retiring. I know that if I use deadly force, I am in all likelihood going to be sued. And if you shoot an animal and it’s not hunting season and you don’t have a proper license, you will find yourself defending your actions to the authorities.

As for the use of force continuum, what I meant was you don't and should not resort to deadly force at the first sign of a threat. And you don't have to use all of the levels either. Obviously if you are about to be eaten you act. But just because a bear woofs or growls at your presence doesn't mean he's going to attack. Sometimes they are just warning you that you are too close. ( I have had this happen)

The original question was again “alternatives to packing”. There is pepper spray and electric fences ect. I think the best thing is whatever makes you happy and comfortable AND if we all practice safe food handling, awareness of our surroundings and just plain common sense we can enjoy the wilderness we all value. I for one would hate it if it was completely safe, read that sterile.
Now let's go fishing!

Top
#93181 - 05/05/08 04:22 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: lv2fsh]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
How I figure it a bear growling at me as long as it keeps its distance is just fine, I don't know about anyone else but I feel no need to use any actions unless it comes towards me, hence why I feel you go from no force to deadly force on a animal, as its ether attacking you or it isn't.

As for getting charged for killing a bear, cougar or anything else, if its coming towards you, and you shoot it when its looking at you (ie front to back) and you report it in, I doubt anyone will be able to charge you. Just remember some places have "spoiled meat" laws, so if you shoot it and leave it in the bush you may get charged for letting it rot. Ontario for example has those rules.

Dimitri

Top
#93182 - 05/05/08 05:08 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: dla]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
Quote:
Most Cougar attacks are juveniles - less than 3 years old and weighing around 100lbs. They aren't very good hunters.


I know Big Bend Ntl. Pk. better than anywhere and the cougar attacks there were all either sick animals or surprised ones. There have been no cougar caused human deaths in that park...even when one had a child's head in it's mouth for an instant. Minor injuries were all that were reported. All were fought off with bare hands or sticks/rocks. The sick cats were destroyed. The surprised one's moved on. There are regular reports of cats stalking the park services's pack burros and horses....again chased off by waving arms and rocks. I've been trying to see a cat in the wild for years...only to get barely a glimpse of one ghosting through the trees trying to get away from ME. I've had something like 5 black bear encounters....two while bicycling. In all cases, they were completely absorbed in what they were doing and paid me no attention.....even when I tried to get theirs! (they were blocking the trail/road)
It's ferel dogs that have caused me the most problems. I've fought off two. One with a trekking pole until it's owner could throttle it, and the other with pruning loppers. Both cases could have gone very badly had just a couple components of the scenario been different. We're talking pits and rottweilerss here, and more and more are being reported loose (listen to your police scanner! "mom and kids pinned in car")...it's fashionable now for young folk to sport an attack dog. I've dialed up the defense just a tad for the dogs.... <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" /> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pit_Bull_Te..._when_attacking
Our animal control officers carry sidearms and a spray of some kind, and have used both, depending on the threat. They tell me to 'not mess around'....it's not worth the risk.
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93183 - 05/05/08 10:31 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
lv2fsh Offline
member

Registered: 04/27/08
Posts: 111
Loc: socal
Forget bears and lions, better watch out for them giant feral chickens!! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

Top
#93184 - 05/05/08 11:43 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dryer]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
Regarding alternatives to firearms for defense against cougar attack, it's tough to shoot something you can't see

Montana Fish, WIldife & Parks biologist Gary Olson quote regarding cougars: "Luckily, if you can see them, you'll probably be okay. It's when you can't see them and the animal means business that you're really in trouble."

(Olson makes this observation due to cougars' stalk & ambush killing method.)

Also, regarding effectiveness of firearms as self defense against bears, here's a relevant quote from US Fish & Wildlife service:

"[Investigations by ] Law enforcement agents for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service of human-bear encounters since 1992 [show that] persons encountering grizzlies and defending themselves with firearms suffer injury about 50% of the time.

During the same period, persons defending themselves with pepper spray escaped injury most of the time, and those that were injured experienced shorter duration attacks and less severe injuries.

Canadian bear biologist Dr. Stephen Herrero reached similar conclusions based on his own research -- a person’s chance of incurring serious injury from a charging grizzly doubles when bullets are fired versus when bear spray is used."


For source of Olson quote see
http://books.google.com/books?id=TE83Qfs...k+surprise#PPA9,M1
Ask Olson questions at
http://fwp.mt.gov/contact/direct.aspx?id=581035

For source of FWS quote, find PDF at www.r6.fws.gov

Top
#93185 - 05/05/08 11:58 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Dryer Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/05/02
Posts: 3591
Loc: Texas
I don't argue any of that. As I've said several times...I don't go armed AT ALL for bears or cats, or even humans, unless it's on my southern border. Grizzlies are very rare in Texas. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" /> Our guide in Alaska did carry a rifle, and good for him!
"When bullets are fired..." What the heck does that mean? 50 cal.? .22lr? And to say "pepper spray", are we talking about fogging, fire hose bear spray or a little squirt from a personal defense thingy (mental image is like trying to stop a speeding car with an aerosol can.). Carry what ever makes you feel safe and are trained to use, sized for the threat.

And, I have to wonder, how many times have I been stalked by a cat over the last 40 years? I must not be appatizing. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
paul, texas KD5IVP

Top
#93186 - 05/05/08 02:14 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Quote:
persons encountering grizzlies and defending themselves with firearms suffer injury about 50% of the time.


Ok, so about 50% of the time means that it may be 51% or even 52% of the time people do not suffer injuries when protecting themselves with firearms. So really "most people may not suffer injuries" may also work in this statement. They give vague numbers.

Quote:
persons defending themselves with pepper spray escaped injury most of the time,


Agian, that may be only 50.1% of the time, and they are just trying to get the reader into thinking "ok I guess pepper spray will work better so I'll just carry that" after reading this.

The Ministry of Natural Resources says pretty much the same thing here in Ontario "use bear spray it works better, carrying a rifle for bear defense is illegal" and yet they carry rifles and shotguns specifically for this reason, and the Federal goverment seems to think prospectors and Bush pilots are the only people who should carry firearms to protect themselves from animals, I guess their lives are more important then everyone else's. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif" alt="" />

The Wildlife/Forestry/Conservation Officers should practice what they preach and leave the firearms at the office or don't preach at all about how much "better" pepper spray is then a firearm.

Dimitri

Top
#93187 - 05/05/08 05:43 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
I think it's very reasonable to assume good faith on the part of the authors of the FWS statement regarding bears, as well as on the part of Canadians to whom you refer.

Scenarios that assume bad faith seem to lean toward conspiracy theories, government plots, or extreme ignorance on the part of highly trained and experienced field biologists...

But I agree that it's impossible to know the facts at first hand, and since the conclusions are drawn from numerous incidents involving many people, nobody can know the relevant facts at first hand.

Similarly along the lines of assuming good faith, one might well imagine that the vast majority of people who have actually used a firearm for defense against a charging grizzly bear had thought the issue through in advance, with reasonable knowledge and care with regard to specific firepower.

Since I've never shot a grizzly with a .22.....ought I to be skeptical?


Edited by johndavid (05/05/08 06:13 PM)

Top
#93188 - 05/05/08 06:22 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
Not trying to say anything "conspiracy" like. Every time I dealt with them it was top notch I got no problem with them at all. Just saying you can't say one thing and do the opposite and still think people will listen to your vague "facts".

A guy in Alberta last summer got attacked by a grizzly, ended up using his hunting knife to fatally wound it.

Quote:
McLellan said the bear had been partially concealed by a knoll in the field and he didn’t see her until she stood up in front of him 60 yards away.

“I had a camouflage mask on so I took that off so that she could see that I was a human, thinking that would scare her away. I started waving my arms and screaming and it never fazed her. She just dropped down to all fours and charged.”

The grizzly rammed into his stomach and then grabbed his left arm with her jaws. As the two went down, McLellan plunged the knife into her back between the shoulder and neck.


http://www.edmontonsun.com/News/Alberta/2007/08/24/4444297.html

As for your 22LR comment, the Alberta record for Grizzly bear was set in 1953, by a 63 year old Native women named Bella Twin who defended herself with the single shot 22LR she was carrying when the bear went to attack her as she picked barries.

Dimitri

Top
#93189 - 05/05/08 07:21 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: Dimitri]
johndavid Offline
member

Registered: 04/23/08
Posts: 260
Loc: jersey city NJ
Dimitri:

You say

"They give vague numbers"

US FWS statement:

"a person’s chance of incurring serious injury from a charging grizzly doubles when bullets are fired versus when bear spray is used."

Actually that's not vague. Accuracy can be questioned, though the statement offers nothing other than FWS authority for debate.

You also say " I got no problem with them at all" but then you add that "the Federal goverment seems to think prospectors and Bush pilots are the only people who should carry firearms to protect themselves from animals, I guess their lives are more important then everyone else's."

My personal view is, given choice of a 12-gauge slug or pepper spray at the instant of a grizzly attack, I'd definitely take the gun....

But given same choice while packing for a 2-week expedition, and I'd probably take the spray....Apparently, statistically, according to FWS, it wouldn't make much difference.

I'd be interested in a similar analysis of the effectiveness of firearms as a defense against criminals. I bet the data is more compelling.

Top
#93190 - 05/05/08 07:49 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: johndavid]
Dimitri Offline
member

Registered: 09/03/07
Posts: 85
When I say vague, "doubles" or "triples" or "most" or "several" and other comparison/not exact words that do not have a specific number backing them up I consider vague.

They are great to deal with personally from experience when in the bush, and are helpful too. So as I said Conservation officers are great to deal with just like every Police officer I ever dealt with.

However I cannot see how 2 people, different reasons to be in the bush (prospector verses hiker or camper), makes any difference on their chance of getting attacked and why one is "alright" to protect themselves and the other isn't. Hence my comment on the government's policy.

Dimitri

Top
#93191 - 05/07/08 04:03 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: kevonionia]
12Step Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/08
Posts: 89
Loc: Southwest Ohio
I went day hiking at a Gorge I like to hike in and was chatting with a ranger. I told the ranger what department I worked for, and asked him about car break-in's and vandalism. He asked me if I was armed and I told him yes.

Then he asked me if I had handcuffs or anything else as far as police gear. I said no, and he said that I should carry plastic disposable "flexicuffs", OC spray, and a small collapsible baton (ASP). He said that because if I ever caught anyone breaking into or damaging anything I can hold and detain them until they arrive.


Uh, ok. I mean if I was put in that kind of situation I would do something. But then I thought to myself, geeze, are you gonna put me on the payroll to???

I go there to hike. The last thing I want to do is where is carry a bunch of crap I carry at work. Regardless it was interesting that he said that. I guess if something did happen I know that the rangers aren't gonna think much if they ever had to respond because I had to draw down on anyone aka something really bad happening.

I really don't want to think of something like that happening, being that I go hiking to enhance my serenity, and not think about work.


Tom
_________________________
"Let's not miss the beauty of the forest by the ugliness of some of its trees." Bill W.

Top
#93192 - 05/08/08 09:29 PM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: 12Step]
oldranger Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
I think you were talking to a very poorly informed ranger. Did he have any law enforcement training?

Top
#93193 - 05/09/08 05:55 AM Re: Alternatives to packing . . . [Re: oldranger]
12Step Offline
member

Registered: 03/04/08
Posts: 89
Loc: Southwest Ohio
The whole reason I was talking to a ranger was because I called him because someone hit my truck at a trail head, (they left their information thank God.) He showed up and advised me that he couldn't do accident reports and that the state police or county sheriff had to take it. No units were available, so I had to go to the sheriffs office and fill out a citizen police report. He said he was new to the area and ended up giving me the wrong directions to the sheriffs office. He was a nice guy, but not to bright.

He was the real deal because he had a fully marked Dept. of Forestry SUV. and uniformed in the standard light brown and green uniform.

I don't mean to criticize a fellow brother in arms, but yeah I found it quite odd when he made that statement.

I go hiking to get away from my job. The absolute last thing I want to do is anything remotely close to law enforcement unless I absolutely have to.


Tom
_________________________
"Let's not miss the beauty of the forest by the ugliness of some of its trees." Bill W.

Top
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 >

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
All the Quechua and Decathlon Hiking Gear we Love
by walkingnatur
10/10/20 02:49 PM
What’s in our Backpack 2020 Edition- New gear
by walkingnatur
09/26/20 04:03 PM
Sleeping Bag Compressed Volume
by Louie
09/23/20 03:00 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
The Scariest Encounters Women Have on the....
by BZH
10/16/20 11:06 AM
Philmont 2014 trip preparation advice
by Dave H
03/25/13 10:33 AM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 91 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Mark_rider, waddellj, Tayyeb, John Russel, Jerry Korkos
12918 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
Backpacking.net
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 

Affiliate Disclaimer: This forum is an affiliate of BackcountryGear.com, Amazon.com, R.E.I. and others. The product links herein are linked to their sites. If you follow these links to make a purchase, we may get a small commission. This is our only source of support for these forums. Thanks.!
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum