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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by TNhiker View Post
    along with not using the cables----but also bad food habits such as having crumbs and all that get on the ground.........
    The number of bear boxes Maine to Vermont has exploded.


    Started seeing them in Georgia a couple years ago but they just keep spreading.
    I am expecting just about every shelter on the trail to have one in two years.

  2. #42
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    I hate my Bear Vault 500. Ugh.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by HooKooDooKu View Post
    Generally speaking, bears are attracted to food, but avoid people.

    Bears are a problem at shelters because they've learned people sleep there WITH FOOD every night. When you have more dispersed camping where the same spot isn't used night after night, then it takes longer for the bear to ever associate that spot with food. Otherwise, a commonly used camping spot is just as much a problem as a shelter.
    HooKooDooKu makes a good point regarding regarding bears being attracted to "food" and their tendency to avoid people. Many hikers sleep with food in their tents (not something I would ever advocate) and get by with it for this reason.

    However, the notion that bears target certain spots is not entirely true in my opinion. This summer I camped south of Damascus and knew I was in trouble when shortly before dark a wide-eyed hiker said he packed up and was moving on because a bear tried to get his food and would not leave. Sure enough, the bear then showed up at my campsite at 8:30 PM trying to get my food and I used rocks and bear spray to chase it off 8 times until 3:00 AM. The next morning I passed food strewn all over the trail at least a mile from where I camped. I feel certain it was "my" bear. This bear was clearly on the prowl and not targeting a specific spot. It is possible that this bear was an exception ... I suspect not. These were all isolated campsites along the trail.

    -Slumgum

  4. #44
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    However, the notion that bears target certain spots is not entirely true in my opinion.



    well.........

    don't ever leave a pack unattended at Russell Field or Cosby Knob........

    ask Patman.........

  5. #45
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    I will qualify my statement: If a bear finds a place that results in a "sure thing" they will certainly return for seconds, and thirds, etc. But the idea that remote camping away from shelters or heavy use campgrounds will make your food hang safer ...? That has not been my experience.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slumgum View Post
    I will qualify my statement: If a bear finds a place that results in a "sure thing" they will certainly return for seconds, and thirds, etc. But the idea that remote camping away from shelters or heavy use campgrounds will make your food hang safer ...? That has not been my experience.
    Completely agree
    You can walk in another person's shoes, but only with your feet

  7. #47
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    This is unfortunate because a bearvault makes a crappy pillow. My food bag on the other hand works quite well. This was bound to happen after seeing some pathetic hangs over the years.
    enemy of unnecessary but innovative trail invention gadgetry

  8. #48
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CalebJ View Post
    Bear boxes are a good idea in high traffic locations, but they don't make sense -at all- as a direct substitution for a bear canister requirement. The two should go hand in hand. It's not about hitting 'the easy button', it's about solving the complete problem.
    There’s a level of personal responsibility that comes with supplying your own solution, i.e. a bear canister compared to relying on someone else to solve your problem by hauling in a box, which as noted, becomes a trash box PDQ.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malto View Post
    This is unfortunate because a bearvault makes a crappy pillow. My food bag on the other hand works quite well. This was bound to happen after seeing some pathetic hangs over the years.
    Lol, but it makes a fantastic seat, table, and food prep area.
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  10. #50

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    I had 4 hikers decide to cook and eat IN Morgan Stewart Shelter, that's when I decided to set up tent after a long hard day with no regards for animals.
    This site has no bear box, and they hung their food real low

  11. #51
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    Gov't knows best
    Be Prepared

  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackCloud View Post
    Gov't knows best
    RO011670.jpg

    Vermont; September 2019. This was not staged. These are actual food bags from a group of hikers.
    Hikers espouse HYOH and will not police themselves. I would prefer the gov't not have to step in either. However, when hikers get mauled by bears guess where fingers will point ... the gov't. At this point they have no choice. BTW, without "the gov't" there would be no A.T.

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mouser999 View Post
    I had 4 hikers decide to cook and eat IN Morgan Stewart Shelter, that's when I decided to set up tent after a long hard day with no regards for animals.
    That's nothing. I spent the night at Eagles Nest Shelter a couple of years ago. There were two hikers there already both of whom were sitting and eating in the shelter. I was tired and didn't want to tent. After they were finished, they prepared to leave to setup their hammocks. when they informed me that they were going to hang their food in the shelter. I swear - true story. I told them no they weren't. They were very unhappy with me. So, they went about 50 yards away and tied their food to the trunk of a tree. I wish I had taken a picture of it. If someone told me this story, I probably wouldn't believe it.
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  14. #54
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    Our ancestors didn't have these problems. They would have been thrilled with a bear which entered their camp--easy to collect high-fat food wrapped in a valuable, warm skin.

  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portie View Post
    Our ancestors didn't have these problems. They would have been thrilled with a bear which entered their camp--easy to collect high-fat food wrapped in a valuable, warm skin.
    And that's why you would always carry a high powered rifle when hiking the AT.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

  16. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portie View Post
    Our ancestors didn't have these problems. They would have been thrilled with a bear which entered their camp--easy to collect high-fat food wrapped in a valuable, warm skin.
    Easy to collect?

  17. #57

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    Gave up hanging two years ago. Don't miss it and the extra bulk/weight of my small can more than pays for itself in time saved looking for suitable hang spots, etc. I had one try to get into my can in Ocala National forest late last year. The same bear went into multiple tents over the next few weeks looking for food but never came back to my camp areas. Cans work if everybody is using them.

  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by nsherry61 View Post
    And that's why you would always carry a high powered rifle when hiking the AT.
    Same, I never hike without my Garand strapped to the ice axe loops of my ULA Circuit.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackCloud View Post
    Gov't knows best

    If men were angels, no government would be necessary.
    - JMads, F#51

  20. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by martinb View Post
    Gave up hanging two years ago. Don't miss it and the extra bulk/weight of my small can more than pays for itself in time saved looking for suitable hang spots, etc. I had one try to get into my can in Ocala National forest late last year. The same bear went into multiple tents over the next few weeks looking for food but never came back to my camp areas. Cans work if everybody is using them.
    I wouldn't argue with a word of that, but would also point out that LOTS of things work if everyone does it right. When I learned about backpacking back in the old days, I learned to hang between two trees, not from a single tree limb. This is much simpler and I think inherently more effective than the PCT method that folks seem to regard as some sort of gold standard for hanging, and I've never spent more than five minutes selecting trees and another five setting the line. Odor-proof sacks inside another sack that are well-hidden far from camp work well (plenty of BWCA trippers do this.) Bear boxes work well (trails in parts of Colorado used to have 2-3 ammo cans attached to a tree.) IMO, the container is not the real issue.

    I continue to contend that the real issue is that our ranks as backpackers are somewhat contaminated with a small but persistent group of slackers and slobs, and my experience is that we don't do much in the way of self-policing. The stories some have told above are probably more common than we'd like to believe, and it is those morons who are backing the land managers into a corner. They can't institute IQ tests as part of the permitting process, so they end up settling on something than "can" work and that they can get some consensus on, then mandate it across the board. I don't really blame them, but I sure hate the thought of carrying an extra 2-plus pounds to solve a problem that will probably persist regardless of the measures put in place.

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