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  1. #111
    Duffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by G...Hawk View Post
    Have written this story before.

    While camping with my family in the Smokies (1962) a MotherBear and her 3 cubs visited the campground frequently.

    One night our family returned to the campground around ten. All was quiet and very dark.
    My father and the boys were in their tent.

    My mother, sister and I headed for the latrine, a long distance away. Halfway there we heard MotherBear, then saw her about 40' - 50' away.
    Mother decided to return to our site; tell Dad and keep my four year old brother from walking out of the tent.

    The unexpected movement of three humans turning around disturbed MotherBear.
    She made a sound that sent the cubs up a tree. Then she charged.

    We stopped. I stretched out my arms to protect my Mother and sister.
    MotherBear was charging . . . fast. Space closing. Expected to feel her claws in my flesh.

    My Mother made a loud sound : a sound she never made before or since. Perhaps it could be called a bark.
    MotherBear stopped in her tracks ! Was it 12' or 10' or 5' ? I do not know.
    She had stopped her charge, looked at us a few moments, turned, called down her cubs and walked away.

    We stood there shaking. Trying to understand what had happened.
    ( For the sixteen year old I was, it was a life defining moment : knowing I had stood to protect my family. )

    A man appeared out of the darkness, a hunter, and he explained what had happened.

    MotherBear understood our actions : defensive, not threatening. MotherBear stopped her charge because she understood
    that the loud, one note sound my Mother made was the same mother language she had used.

    hammock memory : the next day at the same campsite.
    The rest of the family went on a hike. I stayed at the site, reading and took a nap in the hammock.
    I was wakened by a fairly gentle bump, thought it was one of my brothers teasing.
    I opened my eyes as the back of a bear moved away from the hammock.
    I felt no fear; there was an overwhelming good sense of being part of wild nature.G
    What a wonderful story! Thank you for posting it.
    Something hidden. Go and find it. Go, and look behind the Ranges. Something lost behind the Ranges. Lost and waiting for you . . . Go! - Rudyard Kipling

  2. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo View Post
    Don't they recommend you drop your pack and run, hoping the bear will investigate the easy meal and not the running meal? I think this is the same principle in applicantion by tossing a diversion.
    You might not want to try that. While a bear might think the pack is curious, the running person will likely be more irresistible. They're too similar to a dog and a tennis ball in that regards. If it's running, they want to chase it.
    Make yourself larger and louder than the bear, and 99.9% of the time, they're running the other way.

  3. #113
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    Scariest Moment in the Woods?

    Never drop a pack and never run!
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  4. #114
    WalksInDark's Avatar
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    Years ago, I was took my older brother (who was slowly dying from brain cancer), my older sister, and my younger brother for a week of summer tent trailer camping. In the middle of the trip, the weather went out the window. Temps dropped 30 degrees, fog fell like a tent, and (this was before GPS) we could not find the trailer park where we had reservations.

    Around midnight we found an unattended tent/trailer park and setup our popup. While we were getting the rig setup we noted that there was lots of mist coming up from the lake right next to our campsite.

    Within minutes, all of us males decided to enjoy a quick skinny dip before turning in for the night. Boy were we surprised when we got into the lake and found it to be about the same temp as a heated bathtub. After floating around telling lies until we all got "prune y;" we finally left the lake and went to sleep in the pop up.

    Imagine our surprise, when, the next morning, we saw all of the signs floating in the lake....each warning "ABSOLUTELY No Swimming, Lake Is Cooling Source For Nuclear Power Plant!

    While I wish I could add that since the midnight skinny dip I no longer need a night light...unfortunately the experience left no lingering effects on any of us.

  5. #115
    WalksInDark's Avatar
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    Almost forgot, on the night following the "midnight skinny dip" we ended up in a commercial campground at a state park high in the mountains of North Carolina.

    No sooner than we had out popup trailer completely set up, the sky opened up and torrents of rain, high winds, and lightning continued for the next 10 hours. Luckily, we played games, drank beer, and laughed while we stayed high and dry.

    At day break, I was awoken by loud knocking on the door of my popup. When I looked out the door I was surprised to see a very agitated park ranger. Without any preamble, the ranger asked how many people had checked in yesterday....and if all of us were still present? Flippantly I said, "Yeah four of us checked in and all four of us are still here. Why do you ask?"

    The park ranger said in a breaking voice: "During the storm last night a number of campers were washed away in their tents....and we are trying to figure out how many bodies we may have to recover."

    Ultimately, a number of tents with multiple campers were found to have been washed off of the mountain and into a raging stream below. All of the people who were in the tents unfortunately perished.

  6. #116
    Senior Member Slo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NWOHanger View Post
    You might not want to try that. While a bear might think the pack is curious, the running person will likely be more irresistible. They're too similar to a dog and a tennis ball in that regards. If it's running, they want to chase it.
    Make yourself larger and louder than the bear, and 99.9% of the time, they're running the other way.
    I'd NEVER drop my pack. I love this thing. The bear would have to fight me for it. But if I can toss some fish to keep a bear from coming over to visit, it's absolutely going to happen
    "I ain't here for a long time, I'm here for a good time"

    - George Strait

  7. #117
    mbiraman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NWOHanger View Post
    You might not want to try that. While a bear might think the pack is curious, the running person will likely be more irresistible. They're too similar to a dog and a tennis ball in that regards. If it's running, they want to chase it.
    Make yourself larger and louder than the bear, and 99.9% of the time, they're running the other way.
    Altho "larger and louder" are good techniques for black bears they almost never respond to flight. They have been attracted by the smell of food or possibility of food and the cat /mouse scenario is not part of bears wiring. They will always stay and check out the pack. They don't want to risk their life by a confrontation with humans, for food. This doesn't preclude bears in park that hang around going from site to site trying to scavenge food from people .Grizzlies on the other hand will chase you . Their being motivated by territorial instincts and wish to subdue the threat by stopping you which is why you don't fight a grizzly , instead you lay down and don't move. If your fortunate they'll leave it at that, but pepper spray is a better choice. Those are interior grizzlies. Coastal grizzlies of BC can be very different tho.


    bill
    " The mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it."

    “The measure of your life will not be in what you accumulate, but in what you give away.” ~Wayne Dyer

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  8. #118
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    Scariest Moment in the Woods?

    We have a saying here in bc. "Do you know how to tell black bear poo from brown bear poo? Black bear poo as berries in it, while brown bear poo smells like pepper stray and has bells in it." Don't mess with any bear! Respect black and FEAR brown. We often find black bears in our garbage and even in the pool once because they are lazy and just want easy food and to sleep. Browns are 1200 pound killing machines that fear nothing. Stand up and yell at a black bear and it will always run away, try that with a brown and your lunch. Luckily brown bears rearly wonder into towns or camp sites.
    Carpe noctem!!

  9. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbiraman View Post
    Altho "larger and louder" are good techniques for black bears they almost never respond to flight.bill
    I've never been willing to become an exception. The blacks here at least, prefer to chase down moose calves for the first month of spring. They're pretty close to human size and just a clumsy in the bush. With the bear numbers skyrocketing thanks to the spring hunt cancellation, they've become bolder and more aggressive. I'm most comfortable around bears when I'm looking them in the eye, not over my shoulder.

  10. #120
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    After reading all of these scary moments, I have to add my story. About two years ago my brother-in-law and I were camping in the primitive section of a commercial campground. We had arrived in the middle of the week so we didn't have anyone else with us. We were set up directly next to the Elkhorn Creek in KY. After getting the fire going and tents set up, I noticed something walk into the camp area from the corner of my eye. I turned just in time to see a large raccoon walking straight at me. I jump up and kind of turn my camp chair at him. He ignores me and walks to the fire sniffs around for a bit. By this time my brother in law has a large stick he slaps the ground with. All the coon does is walks off a little ways and then head back. We then started tossing some firewood at him. He ran off for about 30 mins and then suddenly he walks between my legs and straight at the fire again. This went on all night until we climbed in the tents. The next morning there were tracks all over my bro in laws truck and canoe. Next night he didn't mess with us but really left us looking all around that first night out.

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