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Old 02-09-2013, 17:33   #1
CJStudent
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Random Question: LE-grade OC and bears

Random question for those of you who live/work/vacation in bear country. I'm taking a vacation to the smokies in the middle of next month, and thought of something regarding bears and "bear spray". Is there really much of a difference in "bear spray" and regular OC spray? I have a MK-4 can that was thinking of taking along for the trip; just curious if it would be effective at all in the rare instance I would have to deal with a highly irritated bruin.
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Old 02-09-2013, 19:51   #2
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Sabre Red used to be one of the hottest on the market, but was also known for taking a little too much time to take effect. I would do some research, and also check on some of the outdoors threads, and make sure you're getting the best there is, rather than using what you have on hand. I would also want something that worked from as far a distance as possible..... like a 590A1...
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Old 02-09-2013, 20:53   #3
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I've wondered about that myself, CJ. We use Fox and I can't imagine any creature would find a good dose to be too pleasant.


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Old 02-09-2013, 20:58   #4
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From what I hear, Fox is one of the fastest acting, but not quite as strong as Sabre Red.

There used to be a comparison chart of the various products online. Even so, I would also check with some of the outdoors/hiking threads. And buy a 590A1.
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Old 02-09-2013, 21:01   #5
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I have def-tec and def-tec X2 (or whatever it's called now since Safariland bought them out), and I think a smaller Mk3 that's kinda old of Sabre Red.

Oh, and Vigilant, I do have an 870 and a Mossberg 500A, but I don't know how the NPS' LE Rangers would feel about me toting that in a National Park, lol. The most powerful handgun I own is a .357 Ruger Security Six, and it will most definitely be along for the trip, though.
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Old 02-10-2013, 18:26   #6
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I guess nobody has anything on it, lol.
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Old 02-10-2013, 18:32   #7
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This is what we issue to our officers:

http://counterassault.com

Regular OC that we use in LE will only spray out a few feet. You DO NOT want to be close enough to a bear to use LE OC. The bear spray is still OC but it will spray out to 30 feet. Remember the 20 foot rule for someone attacking you with a knife? Bears are quicker.

You can pick up bear spray at Cabelas, Bass Pro, REI, Eastern Mountain Sports and it's not that expensive. If you want to cheap out and depend on what you carry on duty make sure your will is up to date if you are going into grizzly country.
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Old 02-10-2013, 18:50   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheepdog689 View Post
This is what we issue to our officers:

http://counterassault.com

Regular OC that we use in LE will only spray out a few feet. You DO NOT want to be close enough to a bear to use LE OC. The bear spray is still OC but it will spray out to 30 feet. Remember the 20 foot rule for someone attacking you with a knife? Bears are quicker.

You can pick up bear spray at Cabelas, Bass Pro, REI, Eastern Mountain Sports and it's not that expensive. If you want to cheap out and depend on what you carry on duty make sure your will is up to date if you are going into grizzly country.
I didn't know those had extended range.

As to grizzlies; I'm not going anywhere near them, lol. Where I'm going is on the Eastern side of the country, and black bear country. I'll definitely look into finding some of that locally, then.
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Old 02-10-2013, 18:57   #9
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after a quick chat with a DNR officer last summer when the family and I spent three days in bear country, he suggested to use the bear spray with the longest range possible due to the speed of bears. the he promptly said something to the effect of " If you're in that situation you are better off just shooting it, all they do is get into the dumpsters anyways."
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Old 02-10-2013, 19:00   #10
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I didn't know those had extended range.

As to grizzlies; I'm not going anywhere near them, lol. Where I'm going is on the Eastern side of the country, and black bear country. I'll definitely look into finding some of that locally, then.
We use it on black bears all the time. I'm a Game Warden so I spend a lot of time up close and personal with black bears.

If you encounter a bear and you're not sure if it's a black bear or a grizzly the best thing to do is climb a tree. If the bear climbs the tree after you and eats you it's a black bear. If the bear knocks the tree down and eats you it's a grizzly.
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Old 02-10-2013, 19:05   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheepdog689 View Post
We use it on black bears all the time. I'm a Game Warden so I spend a lot of time up close and personal with black bears.

If you encounter a bear and you're not sure if it's a black bear or a grizzly the best thing to do is climb a tree. If the bear climbs the tree after you and eats you it's a black bear. If the bear knocks the tree down and eats you it's a grizzly.


Well, it looks like regular MK-9 cans have similar range (and I've trained on them), so I think I'll just get one of them. Same price, and I can dual-purpose it!
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Old 02-11-2013, 00:53   #12
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NPS Rangers are advising hikers in Glacier National Park and other Rocky Mountain parks to be alert for bears and take extra precautions to avoid an encounter.

They advise park visitors to wear little bells on their clothes so they make noise when hiking. The bell noise allows bears to hear them coming from a distance and not be startled by a hiker accidentally sneaking up on them. This might cause a bear to charge.

Visitors should also carry pepper spray can just in case a bear is encountered. Spraying the pepper spray in the bear's face will irritate the bear's sensitive nose and it will run away.

It is also a good idea to keep an eye out for fresh bear scat so you have an idea if bears are in the area. People should be able to recognize the difference between black bear and grizzly bear scat.

Black bear droppings are smaller and often contain berries, leaves, and possibly bits of fur.

Grizzly bear droppings tend to be larger, and contain small bells and smell like pepper spray.
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Old 02-11-2013, 01:33   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlisteringSilence View Post
NPS Rangers are advising hikers in Glacier National Park and other Rocky Mountain parks to be alert for bears and take extra precautions to avoid an encounter.

They advise park visitors to wear little bells on their clothes so they make noise when hiking. The bell noise allows bears to hear them coming from a distance and not be startled by a hiker accidentally sneaking up on them. This might cause a bear to charge.

Visitors should also carry pepper spray can just in case a bear is encountered. Spraying the pepper spray in the bear's face will irritate the bear's sensitive nose and it will run away.

It is also a good idea to keep an eye out for fresh bear scat so you have an idea if bears are in the area. People should be able to recognize the difference between black bear and grizzly bear scat.

Black bear droppings are smaller and often contain berries, leaves, and possibly bits of fur.

Grizzly bear droppings tend to be larger, and contain small bells and smell like pepper spray.
Big difference in the appalachians and the rockies, man, lol. I'm going here:

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:28   #14
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Originally Posted by CJStudent View Post
Big difference in the appalachians and the rockies, man, lol. I'm going here:

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/index.htm
Which is definitely black bear country and not grizzly bear country.

I'm looking at getting some bear spray too for my upcoming hike.
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:59   #15
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Sorry, that was an old joke. I remember it from my boy scout days.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:24   #16
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I've heard that pepper spray is more effective than a handgun against bears, because they have sensitive noses.

I have no idea, because my bear knowledge is zilch. I've just decided to stay away from any place there might be bears. I figure that's the best way to put my knowledge to use.

If I ever find myself face to face with a bear, for whatever ungodly reason, I figure that I'll just pepper spray it while I'm shooting it.... Just to be safe.


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Old 02-11-2013, 17:21   #17
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I have used issued CS spray on dogs as well as black bear and never had it fail. I have never used it on a grizzly. My son works for the U.S. Forest Service in the Bridger Teton of western Wyoming and he has had to use it on griz. He said it worked flawlessly. When he worked in Alaska, he was issued a .338 when they were out in the bush and he told me he will take the bear spray over the .338. The stuff he is issued is the commercial bear spray and I believe is much stronger than the LE spray. It is very effective.
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Old 02-11-2013, 17:33   #18
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Originally Posted by huron bay View Post
I have used issued CS spray on dogs as well as black bear and never had it fail...

Have you ever pepper sprayed a pit bull? I've never had it work on a pit. In my experience it just makes them mad.


*** Edited to add***

My mistake. I just read your post again, and saw "CS" not "OC".

CS is hell on pit bulls. For as much as OC doesn't seem to bother them in the least, CS more than makes up for it.
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Old 02-11-2013, 17:59   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlisteringSilence View Post
NPS Rangers are advising hikers in Glacier National Park and other Rocky Mountain parks to be alert for bears and take extra precautions to avoid an encounter.

They advise park visitors to wear little bells on their clothes so they make noise when hiking. The bell noise allows bears to hear them coming from a distance and not be startled by a hiker accidentally sneaking up on them. This might cause a bear to charge.

Visitors should also carry pepper spray can just in case a bear is encountered. Spraying the pepper spray in the bear's face will irritate the bear's sensitive nose and it will run away.

It is also a good idea to keep an eye out for fresh bear scat so you have an idea if bears are in the area. People should be able to recognize the difference between black bear and grizzly bear scat.

Black bear droppings are smaller and often contain berries, leaves, and possibly bits of fur, with little bells mixed in.

Grizzly bear droppings tend to be larger, and contain small bells and smell like pepper spray, with little bells mixed in.
Fixed it fer ya.
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Old 02-11-2013, 18:02   #20
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Random question for those of you who live/work/vacation in bear country. I'm taking a vacation to the smokies in the middle of next month, and thought of something regarding bears and "bear spray". Is there really much of a difference in "bear spray" and regular OC spray? I have a MK-4 can that was thinking of taking along for the trip; just curious if it would be effective at all in the rare instance I would have to deal with a highly irritated bruin.
I makes their meal more spicy.
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