View Full Version : Bears

02-23-2003, 00:34
Went to Amicalola today and hiked with "snap" and "crackle" from the visitor center to Frosty where they decided to camp. Spoke with 5 other thru-hikers heading north. "Snap" does not carry a tent other than a tube tent. She has hiked about 700 miles of the A.T. this way, using the shelters and very rarely using the tube tent. She had a 0 degree bag and a fleece bag.

Met 1 thru-hiker that had been to Black Gap and saw plenty of bear scat and tracks and him and his ex-partner saw a bear going thru the camping area just west of the shelter on Springer and that is why his partner is an ex-partner. He came back with his ex-partner to Amicalola and was heading back on his own. DNR said seems like more than ever starting than they remember in the past. The weather was windy and farely warm up until around 5 pm.

02-23-2003, 12:38
People can't help the way you feel, but quitting the AT because of bears is simply irrational.

How many folks have been killed by bears while hiking the AT in history? Anybody know?? Few or none.

How many folks have been killed by PEOPLE while hiking on the AT? Several. How many people quit because they spotted another person on the AT?

How many folks have been killed by hypothermia while hiking on Mt. Washington alone? Dozens!

Use your head, and beyond a reasonable doubt you'll have a safe hike.

Lone Wolf
02-23-2003, 12:44
I think it's pretty funny, Colter. Quitting cuz of bears IS whacked. I enjoy watching folks spend an hour trying to hang food from the ferocious bears all the while sipping scotch and eating out of my food bag while in my tent.

02-24-2003, 11:19
That person was obviously an un educated hiker, because chances are your gonna see a bear. You should expect to see them and if they didn't even consider seeing one then they were doomed for a big surprise

02-24-2003, 11:27

I can understand not fearing bears, but leaving your food bag in your tent is just asking for problems. Especially from other vermin.

Twice I have had mice/chipmunks chew their way into my food bag that was inside my pack. True, it wasn't in my tent, but it was on the ground just outside my tent.

02-24-2003, 12:09
LOL! :p :rolleyes:

Black Bears are just giant Hamsters.

They always snoop around, but run-off when you stand up and make noise. We have alot of black bears here in the Berkshires, but, all you do is yell and wave at them, and they'll leave. Even if you suprise them they'll generally take-off. The only exceptions are when you come upon momma bear and the cubs, and some camp-loungers. The camp loungers you just pack up and walk away from. Pack up your food and take it too. If he/she is already in it, don't try and take it back (duh). I've been near 5 or 6 blacks in my lifetime, and never have I seen one persistantly scrounge in a camp. When yelled at and when you make noise, they usually run off at mach2.

Now Brown Grizzlies out west are a whole 'nother ball of wax...

Lone Wolf
02-24-2003, 12:25
tlbj6142, in 17 years of hiking I've never hung my food. I always keep it in my tent, Never had a problem with mice or bears. On the extremely rare occasion that I stay in a shelter I'll hang it on the string thingy.

02-24-2003, 12:46
Interesting. The critters must not be willing to enter the "cave", but they seem more than willing to dig through your pack if you leave it in the open.

While not an issue along the AT, I wonder if Grizzly bears will stop at the tent if they smell food inside? I've read in several places that African Lions will not enter a tent, but if you leave the doors open they will enter.

02-24-2003, 19:14
Another theory may be that Lone Wolf body odor after a day on the trail serves as a highly efficient critter repellant and food odor masker. :D

02-24-2003, 20:31
I have heard stories of hikers being "charged" by bears on the trail. They stood their ground and sometimes yelled. The bear stopped in its tracks, turned around and walked away.

02-24-2003, 20:36
Last spring in the smokies a bear had to be killed near spence field shelter...reading back thru the shelter register this bear had been hanging around...and I suspect some hikers had been feeding it ... being like a huge cuddly hamster and all...I can even relate to how much 'fun' it could be to feed the bear and keep it around to make pictures of it..what an Adventure!!!

but as time passed the bear became more agressive in it's cute begging and had to be killed...

02-25-2003, 14:41
Yeah it's too bad morons feed the bears...

When a bear does become reliant upon people, It should be made to fear humans again. Many programs now exist that involve rubber bullets, loud noises, scents, in otherwords a total sensory attack, which the bear then takes to heart (usually), and it has a high percentage of success (like 6 or 7 times that of re-location).

However, sometimes even this doesn't work, and the bears need/should be killed. No bear is worth a human life, even a stupid one.

02-25-2003, 15:04
Raging Hampster -

I heard of similar stories of boiling pots of broth at a campsite. Then they let bears burn themselves when they try to get the good smelling hiker food.