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Old 07-21-2016, 09:51 AM   #379
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Originally Posted by Wayne&Sam View Post
Nothing is guaranteed, but spray is statistically more effective than a gun.
******

OK.... I will relay the message to the Game and Fish wardens.

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks:

"In a study in the April 2008 edition of the Journal of Wildlife Management, Tom Smith examines "The Efficacy of Bear Deterrent Spray in Alaska." The study shows that in 72 cases where people use bear spray to defend themselves from brown, black and polar bear the spray stopped brown bears 92 percent of the time and 98 percent of the people involved were uninjured."

fwp.mt.gov/recreation/safety/bears/bearSpray.html

This is a very good article concerning the use of Bear Spray. I recommend anyone on the Wyoming Adventure to read this and be prepared. The cost of a can of Bear Spray is better than having two trek poles to fight off a 400 pound Black Bear, any day!

I prefer my methods, and you choose among any others.
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Old 07-21-2016, 05:08 PM   #380
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Well you only cited half of the equation.
http://above.nasa.gov/safety/documen...vs_bullets.pdf


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Old 07-21-2016, 06:59 PM   #381
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Pepper Spray your Grizzly Bear

Bear Spray vs. Bullets
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Mountain-Prairie Region, P.O. Box 25486
Lakewood, Colorado 80225 phone 303/236-7905, fax 303/236-3815 website: www.r6.fws.gov
Which offers better protection?
At first glance, this question may seem like a no-brainer. After all, arenít guns made to kill, while pepper spray (so-called ďbear spray,Ē when it comes in big cans) does not? Unlike an attack by a human assailant, who may be able to use your own weapon against you, that safety/survival argument for using pepper spray doesnít apply to a human-bear encounter... or does it?
When it comes to self defense against grizzly bears, the answer is not as obvious as it may seem. In fact, experienced hunters are surprised to find that despite the use of firearms against a charging bear, they were attacked and badly hurt. Evidence of human-bear encounters even suggests that shooting a bear can escalate the seriousness of an attack, while encounters where firearms are not used are less likely to result in injury or death of the human or the bear. While firearms can kill a bear, can a bullet kill quickly enough -- and can the shooter be accurate enough -- to prevent a dangerous, even fatal, attack?
The question is not one of marksmanship or clear thinking in the face of a growling bear, for even a skilled marksman with steady nerves may have a slim chance of deterring a bear attack with a gun. Law enforcement agents for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have experience that supports this reality -- based on their investigations of human-bear encounters since 1992, 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 personís chance of incurring serious injury from a charging grizzly doubles when bullets are fired versus when bear spray is used.
Awareness of bear behavior is the key to mitigating potential danger. Detecting signs of a bear and avoiding interaction, or understanding defensive bear behaviors, like bluff charges, are the best ways of escaping injury. The Service supports the pepper spray policy of the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee, which states that bear spray is not a substitute for following proper bear avoidance safety techniques, and that bear spray should be used as a deterrent only in an aggressive or attacking confrontation with a bear.
Like seatbelts, bear spray saves lives. But just as seatbelts donít make driving off a bridge safe, bear spray is not a shield against deliberately seeking out or attracting a grizzly bear. No deterrent is 100% effective, but compared to all others, including firearms, proper use of bear spray has proven to be the best method for fending off threatening and attacking bears, and for preventing injury to the person and animal involved.
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Old 07-21-2016, 07:34 PM   #382
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Wyoming Forest Fires & Grizzly Bears

I am sure now that there is some concern over the Black Bear and Grizzly conversations. Wayne&Sam and myself have offered some of the most current information available.

If this was not enough to discourage anyone, there is more:
**********

Thalweg near Buffalo, WY.... Thank you Brent!

"I'm attaching a map of the Cliff Creek fire near Granite Creek. It's over 10,000 acres now, and it looks like they're only in a structure protection mode.

The Lava Mtn fire near Dubois is over 1000 acres. This fire looks like it could really blow up if the right conditions develop. Fortunately, it looks like it is primarily moving west. So Double Cabin shouldn't be threatened.

There is another one near Lander, the Shoshone Lake fire, that looks like it is about 10 miles north-west of the campsite. The Forest Service has completely closed an area of the forest because of this one. The closure area does not include Sawmill Creek area.....yet.

There is another one on the Shoshone NF. But it is up near Beartooth. It shouldn't effect you."
********

640 acres is one square mile

We will be near or in these 'general' areas in less than four weeks. You may want to access various National Forest Service websites to track and get yourself into a comfort level that suits you.

Since Wyoming has a wide variety of options for Off the Grid campsites, so are our options, if necessary. When Forest Fires burn, the fire displaces wildlife as well. Even when no longer burning, the displaced wildlife most likely will not return for a season or two.

The Cliff Creek fire, WY-BTF-001611 is 10,118 acres at the present time. It is southwest of our Base Camp along Granite Creek and the Hot Springs.

What is my best advice? We go to where it is possible and do not go where there is any 'fire risk'. Smoke is also not pleasant when downwind from a nearby major fire and best avoided.

When members are at Beaver Divide / Rim, the current conditions will be discussed and then verified at the Forest Service office at Lander, Wyoming.

These fires are, indeed, something to consider seriously when the time arrives. I will be at Laramie and will modify the itinerary, if and when necessary. This is an Adventure, changes are a part of the experience. If you find this a bit more than expected... do not hesitate and let me know that a better option has been found for these two weeks of your vacation.
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Old 07-21-2016, 07:42 PM   #383
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I was wondering if you were trying to scare we flatlanders half to death with all the bear information.

I be not afraid of animals nor fire, as I trust...as I did in New Mexico last year... that Ray and Nancy would not knowingly lead us into danger.


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Old 07-21-2016, 08:09 PM   #384
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Our Bear Encounters while Off the Grid

The biggest threat of Bear attacks are at the National Parks. For obvious reasons, that can be part of a new Thread.

The Summer months have the most frequent incidence of forest fires. Lightning and camper caused.

We have encountered Black Bear since 2006:

-At our home, bear prints led up to our Airstream that had been outfitted to leave on a Boondocking trip on our driveway overnight. The Bear left prints on the side of the trailer while the bear looked into a window.

-Quemado, NM. We encountered a large Black Bear, one day after Bear Hunting season was over and the hunters left the area.

-Quemado, NM. We encounterd a large Black Bear in the same general area, just south of the Off the Grid campsite used this June 2016.

-Quemado, NM. Along the Gila Wilderness to the south, we encountered large footprints in the thin snow left in the shade of trees over night. The prints were fresh. I am sure we were being watched. Our prints were also fresh.

-Nez Perce National Historic Trail, Idaho. We encountered a 'very large' Black Bear the morning we were leaving our campsite in the mountains. It was drinking water from along side the road.

-Wyoming. Other than NW Wyoming at the Naitonal Parks... we have never encountered a Bear. Moose, yes. A 'horned Grizzly of sorts'.
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Old 07-21-2016, 08:52 PM   #385
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The InciWeb is probably the best source of information regarding the fires:
http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/state/52/#
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Old 07-21-2016, 09:33 PM   #386
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Bear and Fire Web Links

I thought you all might want to keep up on the bears and fires.

USGS Bear Spray Protocol: https://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2009/3018/pdf/FS09-3018.pdf Note that this is dated 2009 and references Fish and Wildlife #8. Has a decision tree for what to do based on bear proximity, bear behavior, and type of protection being carried by the human--fire arms, bear spray, no protection.

National "incident" clearing site. Select state upper right of main screen. http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/

Federal agencies usually update fire status twice a day, corresponding to shift change on fireline, typically approx 5 AM and 5 PM. Evacuations, closures, and other announcements can occur at any time.

Lava Mountain Fire. Current fire management strategy is to defend private property so this fire may burn a long time. http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4864/

Cliff Creek Fire. http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4865/

Wyoming "incidents". http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/state/52/#

More smoke in your eye.
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Old 07-21-2016, 11:33 PM   #387
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Inciweb redux

Hey Thalweg, I didn't see your post about Inciweb. Fires have become such a problem I monitor Inciweb to see what's happening. More than once we've scrapped our planned trip. In 2000 we planned to do a big loop thru Tetons, Rocky Mtn NP, south thru Leadville and Lake City and down to Mesa Verde NP. It was smoky from Estes Park south, and the day we got to Durango the NPS shut Mesa Verde. We ended up in the Alberta/BC Rockies to get away from the smoke!

Here's a pyrocumulus from Reward Pass in the Sawtooths, Sept 2012.



Fortunately the wind kept blowing the smoke away that trip!!!
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Old 07-22-2016, 12:05 AM   #388
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Recommend any boondock sites in the Missoula Mt area? We are just leaving a fabulous site after 3 days just north of Sula Mt in the Bitteroot Forest near medicine point. Highly recommend.
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Old 07-22-2016, 10:59 AM   #389
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Bury the Know it Better attitudes without understanding...

I want to 'bury' this Bear Spray and Carrying a Sidearm debate.

Both are defensive 'weapons'.

A rifle is an offensive / hunting firearm intended for hunting and killing.

I have carried a sidearm while in the forests since I was 20 years old. I am now a healthy 66 year old that find the 'old ways' still work. Same 45 semi automatic, although a new holster as the original was falling apart. I have carried a 22 caliber rifle to hunt rabbits in Montana since 7 years old.

The 'first round, maybe second' has the effect of what was called an M80, fireworks. They were used to scare off bear from cabins or camp sites. My mother used a metal pan or skillet with something to hit, like a drum, in Libby, Montana to scare off bears wanting to get into our root cellar. Considering we had NO electricity at the time in the Forest Service cabin. The noise is what sent the bear scurrying away. Day or Night.

You do not use a sidearm to shoot the Bear. It is the noise that is the deterrent.

Most City Slickers believe anyone carrying a sidearm in the Forest is killing everything that looks at you. That is pure myth. I have used the same ammunition purchased in the 1970's and have to check the ammunition in the sidearm to make sure there is no corrosion. I have since bought new rounds of ammunition in the event that prices become too high, or ammunition is outlawed some day.

Bear Spray is effective. The manufacturers love that you find it a great, one time, one chance, deterrent for a ground squirrel, bear or a wandering hiker intending to ask directions to the nearest water pump... Then purchase another, and another if necessary. I doubt if very many on this forum have needed their Bear Spray attached to their belt. Although, it makes them feel safer than just swinging a stick at a 400 pound Black Bear with two cubs.

I find the sidearm as the same as a can of Bear Spray for protection.

Same goes with campfires. Nancy and I do not. We do not discourage others from building a campfire. We will watch those with a campfire to maintain some sensibility in the size of fire.

There are many sources of fires. Sometimes a train crossing the western Nebraska grasslands will set off a spark from the rails and start a grass fire.

Lightning is most common. We were coming into Kalispell, Montana and saw a lightning bolt strike the top ridge and set a fire. Seeing is believing!

Numb nuts who know it all start many at a campsite. Then leave the area so not to be caught.

Meteorites... are those started on a clear day/night and the source has not been discovered. Most likely a cigarette, muffler spark from an ATV, numb nut campfire or other human related sources.

Some how the person who does not understand, visualizes how they imagine how the world has operated in the forests of the world. It is better to ask more questions than paint your own, incorrect, images.
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Old 07-22-2016, 11:01 AM   #390
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Quote:
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Recommend any boondock sites in the Missoula Mt area? We are just leaving a fabulous site after 3 days just north of Sula Mt in the Bitteroot Forest near medicine point. Highly recommend.
******

Start a Missoula, MT thread.

Head to Southwestern Montana to the high country. Less brush, cooler days and cooler evenings. You are now in Missoula at the hottest time of the season. Head towards Yellowstone Park, but avoid the crowds by camping in the forest.

The areas outside the Tetons and Yellowstone of Montana and Idaho are wonderful. If you are a tourist and do not Camp off the Grid... there are campgrounds to be found, although we have not and cannot help in that option.

Bring Bear Spray. Even Bear know to stay in the High Country to avoid the heat.
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Old 07-24-2016, 10:16 AM   #391
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Thalweg's SIX Map Folio to be offered at Laramie...

I received a 'carton' of what I thought were horseshoes from Buffalo, WY and Thalweg. It was a complete set of maps of each campsite, contours, forest, county roads and everything you want to know on 12" x 17" sheets. You cannot get lost following these maps, much taken off of US Geological Survey maps... and you know geologists do not get lost... often. The Up and Overs with multiple routes!

The amount of ink and time to put this set together was expensive. My printer does not print anything larger than 'legal paper' and the ink would not cover many pages.

I am going to offer a set to anyone interested at Laramie, WY, after you get to look, for a flat price. I find $15 for a set of six, covering each campsite, is an investment for anyone attending this time, and future trips into these areas.

These maps can also be used to mark GPS information AND mark future Base Camp sites while driving. This is to reimburse Brent for time and cost of INK. This map set could actually be sold on the Trailer sites some day for future groups wanting to Base Camp and Off the Grid camping, using this information.

These are beyond anything most laymen could ever do. Brent obviously spent some of his youth putting these together.

Tom spent much time putting his together that could FIT on a computer screen. When you print these out, you will understand how much INK is used. Tom and I understood!

We on the Airforums are privileged to have people wanting to help make this Adventure easier to navigate from site to site.

I hope everyone received some photographs of what to expect.

I want to thank Mcguffy and Thalweg for providing their time to help make this Adventure as predictable as possible.
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Old 07-24-2016, 11:10 AM   #392
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Thalweg's 'other maps' for daily preparation

I also have of each campsite area, THREE heavily inked maps, that will be available for everyone to view before departing the previous campsite.

These are:

1- Contour Map (most sites are between 6,000 to 9,000 feet elevation)
2- Contour Map with topographic features
3- Aerial Photo of actual surface areas

I am confident that Thalweg can give a better description of the kinds of maps I am describing in simple terms, that my vocabulary can tolerate... and your patience.

Future, potential Adventures, will be structured much differently in the future to avoid the large number of cancellations. As a group, we will have plenty of time to discuss various options. It will be a learning process for all. When traveling Solo... discovering new campsites is worth every moment of the blind exploring we do, exploring the Rocky Mountain States.

Sharing these remote campsites with others is OUR most rewarding aspect of camping. This Adventure will be special. Not just the campsites this time, but to get feedback from those involved, as we move from site to site. Those that complete this Adventure may understand what 'taking a chance' means for future opportunities.
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