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  1. #1
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    Default bear bag question

    I will be hiking from Amicalola Falls to Marion Va starting in a week. I have all of my gear except a bear bag system... When along the trail should I hang my food? Should I hang it every night? Also, not sure what to get, Can somebody suggest a very cheap system for bear bagging?

  2. #2
    Wanna-be hiker trash
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    Do you already have a food bag? If so then you just need 30-50 feet of braided Mason's twine or para-cord and a carabiner. If you choose to bear bag, then yes, your food should be safely hung whenever it is unattended.

    To learn the best system for bagging, just search YouTube for the "PCT method" and watch the videos available that show how to bearbag correctly. In practice I would estimate that that nine out of every ten bags I see hung on the A.T. are either A) not high enough off the ground, B) not far enough away from the tree trunk, C) hung over a branch large enough for a bear to climb out to where the rope is D) all of the above.
    Last edited by Sarcasm the elf; 05-26-2013 at 19:20.
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  3. #3
    Registered User BuckeyeBill's Avatar
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    Here is the bag that I use.
    Blackheart

  4. #4
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    Default

    If you stay at or near shelters a cable system is already in place so you can just hang your food bag.

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys! I was going to use an outdoor research dry sack for my food bag. I read on here that somepeople use them for bear bags... I am going to try that hopefully it will work. I also dont want to order a real bear bag online and risk not being here for it.. Poor planning on my part

  6. #6
    Registered User BigHodag's Avatar
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    Default re: bear bag question - PCT diagram

    Might review this illustration of the PCT technique:

    http://pinterest.com/pin/3307399696324926/

    Remember, the bear only has to get lucky once. Losing your food to a bear is demoralizing for most.
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  7. #7

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    I put my food in a cuben fiber bag (super light weight and supposedly rodents don't like to chew through them) and I use Spectra Z-cord with a carabiner and use the PCT method. I hang my food every night. These items can be purchased from Z-Packs. I have had very good experiences with the purchases I have made from them. http://www.zpacks.com
    Whether you think you can, or think you can't--you're right--Henry Ford; The Journey Is The Destination

  8. #8

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    Get the zpacks blast food bag with the drawstring closure, and a lightweight spectra cord, and tiny .1 oz carabiner.
    2.2 oz for everything.
    I promise that a fold down closure (drybag) will suck, too hard to get air out of it when rolling down so that it doesnt take up xs room in pack.
    Just a hassle that becomes really annoying 5 times per day. Seriously .

    Also the blast bag is 11W x 5.5 x 12 in tall block. Fits nicely in many smallish packs.
    An 8" dia x 15" tall cylinder doesnt fit well in anything. Its an absurd stupid shape with no thought into it for backpacking.

    Joe will make you a custom blast to your dimensions also if you want to fit your pack cross section perfectly so there is no wasted space.
    Last edited by MuddyWaters; 05-26-2013 at 23:18.

  9. #9
    Registered User DavidNH's Avatar
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    If there is some kind of pully system or pole to hang food you should use it. Otherwise .. your main problem is mice not bears. Don't worry about it. What bear wants to approach a shelter with 30 people in and around it? Some folks even sleep with their food. I only hung my food in the south cause a some of the novice jerks would get all freaked out if I didn't. I'd add.. that hanging a food back six feet of the ground is as good as not hanging it at all.

  10. #10
    Registered User gollwoods's Avatar
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    most of the stuff in the bag is already sealed in my case so i don't worry about keeping it dry.

  11. #11
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    I actually just did a video blog on this topic. Below is the link. You do not need much. 50 ft. of cord and a carabiner is the only extra equipment. You should already have a bag that you put your food into and you can use rocks or water bottles to get your rope up and over the tree limb.

    http://www.backpackingengineer.com/blog.php/16

  12. #12

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    Hung my hammock and slept with food. Only had one time problem with a rodent at Rainbow springs that got into my trash bag when my pack was on the ground.

  13. #13
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    I use an Ursak Minor. I'll hang it right in the shelter from a mouse hanger, from the provided bear cables (prefered method), or from a branch via the PTC method, depending on the situation.

  14. #14

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    Carry my food in a 2L dry bag (any brand will do). This is what I use to hand up at night. 50ft of Para cord. Take rock put into small stuff sack hook up paracord throw stuff sack over cable or branch, detach small stuff sack, attach food bag and hoist up. Thats all you need.

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