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  #26  
Old 01-10-2018, 07:35 PM
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Ain't it funny how much of a pest they can be when you don't want them around, and then you go to hunt one and they become scarce?
You got that right! Where I live now there aren't many of them thank goodness. But I have lived where there have been plenty of them, especially in the college days when I stayed and worked with my uncle in Hayesville on the edge of the southern nantahala wilderness. Trash cans raided, bears on our trucks, eating dog food, up on the porch...

Seems like if you can find fresh sign, week 1 and 2 of bow season is a gimme, but the minute bears think they are being hunted they are gone!
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Old 01-10-2018, 07:48 PM
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You know why that is don't you, Buckman? Soon as season starts and you step foot in the woods, they get word and take off runnin' cause they know danger is a comin'!
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  #28  
Old 01-10-2018, 08:06 PM
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You know why that is don't you, Buckman? Soon as season starts and you step foot in the woods, they get word and take off runnin' cause they know danger is a comin'!
Ha! Not this year! Next year, there'll be no kids playing soccer during hunting season!
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  #29  
Old 01-10-2018, 09:57 PM
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I get that it is a primal fear in some but it is irrational. In all of North America combined, there is, on average, one death from black bear attacks in a given year.

Carrying a gun makes some feel safe but your chance at a black bear killing you is one in 350 million.

Again, i get that it is a primal phobia but you are 600 times more likely to shoot your self accidentally (according to the CDC).

Now don't yell at me, lol. I have a bit of experience with these critters.
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  #30  
Old 01-11-2018, 10:04 AM
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I get that it is a primal fear in some but it is irrational. In all of North America combined, there is, on average, one death from black bear attacks in a given year.

Carrying a gun makes some feel safe but your chance at a black bear killing you is one in 350 million.

Again, i get that it is a primal phobia but you are 600 times more likely to shoot your self accidentally (according to the CDC).

Now don't yell at me, lol. I have a bit of experience with these critters.
True. But. The fact that you have a very slim chance of getting struck by lightening doesn't mean that I am going to stay waded waist-deep in a creek waving a 9-foot piece of graphite over my head during a thunderstorm. If you've ever been a couple feet away from one of these cuddly, harmless creatures while it is standing on its back legs roaring at you, slapping dogs, and biting off saplings as big as your arm while popping its teeth and trying to get to you, it will instill a bit of respect for them in you.

I don't have an irrational fear of bears by any means, but I do have a healthy respect for them. And I don't dismiss them as harmless like so many folks who have never seen what they are capable of. The lack of large numbers of fatal attacks is true, but non-fatal attacks and maulings are pretty common in the national parks. Talk to a guy who has been drug out of a tent or hammock in the middle of the night by one (happens every year here in my backyard,) and tell him he's being irrational for thinking a bear can hurt you.
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  #31  
Old 01-11-2018, 10:36 AM
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True. But. The fact that you have a very slim chance of getting struck by lightening doesn't mean that I am going to stay waded waist-deep in a creek waving a 9-foot piece of graphite over my head during a thunderstorm. If you've ever been a couple feet away from one of these cuddly, harmless creatures while it is standing on its back legs roaring at you, slapping dogs, and biting off saplings as big as your arm while popping its teeth and trying to get to you, it will instill a bit of respect for them in you.

I don't have an irrational fear of bears by any means, but I do have a healthy respect for them. And I don't dismiss them as harmless like so many folks who have never seen what they are capable of. The lack of large numbers of fatal attacks is true, but non-fatal attacks and maulings are pretty common in the national parks. Talk to a guy who has been drug out of a tent or hammock in the middle of the night by one (happens every year here in my backyard,) and tell him he's being irrational for thinking a bear can hurt you.
Exactly. A healthy dose of respect goes a long ways. Same goes for anything.
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  #32  
Old 01-11-2018, 11:11 AM
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I get that it is a primal fear in some but it is irrational. In all of North America combined, there is, on average, one death from black bear attacks in a given year.

Carrying a gun makes some feel safe **but your chance at a black bear killing you is one in 350 million.**

Again, i get that it is a primal phobia but you are 600 times more likely to shoot your self accidentally (according to the CDC).

Now don't yell at me, lol. I have a bit of experience with these critters.

No yelling here, simply making note of more confusing "statistics"! I'm supposing your 350 million number coincides with the population of the U.S.? That being figured, your comparison is way off base. Of those 350 million folks, how many never venture out of the cities in which they live? I'll guesstimate about 1/3 to 1/2 of the U.S. population live and stay in large cities (simply add up the population of the 50 most populated cities in the U.S.)

Now, how many of those folks remaining ever actually venture into typical wooded/forested areas where bears normally reside? I believe that the true type of comparison we might(?) be looking to use for true comparison's sake are not really backed by the typical comparisons thrown out there; lightning, driving, crossing the street, etc.

This is not to say that anyone should carry an inordinate fear of a bear attack every day and every hour. Instead, it might show that those relatively "few" folks afield on any given day in known bear country might be wise to simply consider some type of contingency should the "unthinkable" actually occur. Whether that means a firearm, whistle, bells, or pepper spray designed for bear protection, that's an individual's own decision.

Personally, for folks afield in known habitat to totally dismiss the idea of a possible confrontation with a bear is not being prudent IMHO. YMMV.
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  #33  
Old 01-11-2018, 11:42 AM
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No yelling here, simply making note of more confusing "statistics"! I'm supposing your 350 million number coincides with the population of the U.S.? That being figured, your comparison is way off base. Of those 350 million folks, how many never venture out of the cities in which they live? I'll guesstimate about 1/3 to 1/2 of the U.S. population live and stay in large cities (simply add up the population of the 50 most populated cities in the U.S.)

Now, how many of those folks remaining ever actually venture into typical wooded/forested areas where bears normally reside? I believe that the true type of comparison we might(?) be looking to use for true comparison's sake are not really backed by the typical comparisons thrown out there; lightning, driving, crossing the street, etc.

This is not to say that anyone should carry an inordinate fear of a bear attack every day and every hour. Instead, it might show that those relatively "few" folks afield on any given day in known bear country might be wise to simply consider some type of contingency should the "unthinkable" actually occur. Whether that means a firearm, whistle, bells, or pepper spray designed for bear protection, that's an individual's own decision.

Personally, for folks afield in known habitat to totally dismiss the idea of a possible confrontation with a bear is not being prudent IMHO. YMMV.
I was just about to comment on the error in the odds that Jerry gave. My odds are not 1 in 350 million. When I bear hunt, I'm hunting from a hammock seat on the ground, and usually sitting something like 10 yards off of a bear 's trail. My chances are extraordinarily, exponentially, astronomically higher than any average American who does not go into a bear's living room on a very, very, very frequent basis.
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  #34  
Old 01-11-2018, 02:55 PM
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I suspect the answer is somewhere between NChillbilly running them with dogs and running across one that is totally cornered and faced with death, and the average hunter who never runs across one in their travels.
The key is to be prepared mentally for what your solution is in ALL situations.
If a knife, have it readily accessible in a sheath.
Same for a gun or pepper spray...just don't shoot yourself with either trying to get at the bear in a panic.
Being situationally aware goes a long ways in life-especially hunting.
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  #35  
Old 01-11-2018, 04:05 PM
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First, let me say that I am in no way trying to diminish a primal fear in some. I learned a very long time ago that some people have phobias that cannot be overcome. I am simply putting things in a rational perspective. No insults are intended in any way.

The odds are not skewed by anyone's proximity to bears. 350 million to 1 is 350 to 1. If fact, hunters are much LESS likely to suffer a fatal black bear attack. I didn't even add in the 40 million in Canada, by the way, lol. Again, I didn't say don't be prepared if you are afraid of them. By all means do whatever you think will make you feel safe but the fact remains that if you end up dead because of a black bear attack you are 1 in 390 million and you have beat some pretty special odds. Heck, you will be famous!

I would also add that a hunted population of bears makes it DRAMATICALLY less likely that you will have a negative encounter. Bears in the Eastern US are terrified of humans. The teeth clacking is not a threat response, it is a fear response much like that of a boar hog popping its jaws. I can see where it could unnerve and be misunderstood by someone that hasn't seen the behavior before. To put things in proper perspective consider (If I remember correctly) there have been just a couple deaths attributed to bears in the Souheastern US in the last 75-100 years. More people have been killed by rabid chipmunks.

In extreme remote areas where bears are not accustomed to humans, the chance of extremely close encounters certainly goes up but it is still 1 in 390 million that you will end up being Bear lunch.

I'm no biologist but I am around a huge number of bears in a given year. I blood track 2-4 wounded bears per day in a bear camp without a weapon (by law) and I have never ever felt a threat. These bears are in extreme remote areas of Canada and I can and do walk to within 10 yards of them several times in a week. Other than an occasional side ways glare, tooth clacking or huffing to show off, there is nearly zero chance of anything more than their just posturing. To the uninformed it may look like a threat but it is not.

This conversation comes up a few time per year and I only respond for the benefit of the new bear hunter. By reading this negative information, it would seem likely that he is going to have a negative encounter with a bear when the likelihood is astronomically against it.
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  #36  
Old 01-11-2018, 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by jerry russell View Post
I get that it is a primal fear in some but it is irrational. In all of North America combined, there is, on average, one death from black bear attacks in a given year.

Carrying a gun makes some feel safe but your chance at a black bear killing you is one in 350 million.

Again, i get that it is a primal phobia but you are 600 times more likely to shoot your self accidentally (according to the CDC).

Now don't yell at me, lol. I have a bit of experience with these critters.
I get your point, but the 1 in 350million chance is flawed, 350 million Americans are not in the woods with bears, but still, the risk is low, I will agree. And I have been struck by lightening, I don't live by statistics anymore.
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  #37  
Old 01-11-2018, 08:06 PM
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There is a low risk of death/ harm from most things nowdays compared to history. Dont mean im gonna leave my gun at home. Bear woods or walmart
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:08 PM
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A wounded bear is something you don't want to mess with. The last bear I shot this year was a eye opener. First shot he piled up and rolls and wallers down the hill. He makes it to about 30 yards and locks eyes on me when I moved. I decided to shoot again even though first shot broke his shoulder and punched a lung. Second shot was center chest while on his back. When the gun cracked the bear jumped up like nothing ever happened charges straight towards me. He hit the creek and run out of steam. His last breath was a growl and he never took his eyes off me since the second shot. I was 5 yards away when he crashed.
Some time ago, a friend of mine and myself were hunting a high mountain bench loaded with acorns. He was about 500 yds. south of me and I hear a shot so I stand up so I can see around a little better. After about ten minutes I hear something coming at a fast walk. A big fat bear came around the ridge above me at about 50 yds. He stops when he saw me standing there, I take aim and squeeze my muzzle loader trigger. At the shot the bear starts flopping and biting his self, all of sudden he barrels off down the hill wide open at me, I pull my side arm and fire 13 shots in him from about 20 yds. till he was two feet from me. He splashed blood all over my pants when he went between me and a big white oak that was only 4-5 feet away. When it was all over, I was shaking like a leaf, he was looking directly at me when I shot him with the muzzle loader and I truly believe he was on a mission to get me. Best I could tell 9 out of eleven hit him. Took me 10 minutes to clean my britches out!! Lol..
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  #39  
Old 01-12-2018, 10:13 AM
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First, let me say that I am in no way trying to diminish a primal fear in some. I learned a very long time ago that some people have phobias that cannot be overcome. I am simply putting things in a rational perspective. No insults are intended in any way.

The odds are not skewed by anyone's proximity to bears. 350 million to 1 is 350 to 1. If fact, hunters are much LESS likely to suffer a fatal black bear attack. I didn't even add in the 40 million in Canada, by the way, lol. Again, I didn't say don't be prepared if you are afraid of them. By all means do whatever you think will make you feel safe but the fact remains that if you end up dead because of a black bear attack you are 1 in 390 million and you have beat some pretty special odds. Heck, you will be famous!

I would also add that a hunted population of bears makes it DRAMATICALLY less likely that you will have a negative encounter. Bears in the Eastern US are terrified of humans. The teeth clacking is not a threat response, it is a fear response much like that of a boar hog popping its jaws. I can see where it could unnerve and be misunderstood by someone that hasn't seen the behavior before. To put things in proper perspective consider (If I remember correctly) there have been just a couple deaths attributed to bears in the Souheastern US in the last 75-100 years. More people have been killed by rabid chipmunks.

In extreme remote areas where bears are not accustomed to humans, the chance of extremely close encounters certainly goes up but it is still 1 in 390 million that you will end up being Bear lunch.

I'm no biologist but I am around a huge number of bears in a given year. I blood track 2-4 wounded bears per day in a bear camp without a weapon (by law) and I have never ever felt a threat. These bears are in extreme remote areas of Canada and I can and do walk to within 10 yards of them several times in a week. Other than an occasional side ways glare, tooth clacking or huffing to show off, there is nearly zero chance of anything more than their just posturing. To the uninformed it may look like a threat but it is not.

This conversation comes up a few time per year and I only respond for the benefit of the new bear hunter. By reading this negative information, it would seem likely that he is going to have a negative encounter with a bear when the likelihood is astronomically against it.
Agreed, none of us know the first thing about bears, don't come from generations of well-known bear hunters, have never been around any, never spend decades having close encounters with them, haven't spent half our lives hunting them, haven't crawled into laurel thickets on our bellies up to bear fights, don't know people who have been injured by them, and bears are fluffy and completely harmless, much less dangerous than chipmunks. We are all clueless indoorsmen who are terrified of bears and have delusional phobias of bears because we don't know anything about them. All bears are exactly like your Canadian bears, including our protected human/food associated/habituated national park bears here in the Smokies. Having respect for a bear's capabilities is an irrational phobia fueled by ignorance. I have been enlightened. I will begin to go up and pet them when I see them from now on.
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Old 01-12-2018, 10:30 AM
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I will begin to go up and pet them when I see them from now on.
Heck, I bet you could saddle one up. Can I film it?
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Old 01-12-2018, 10:41 AM
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Heck, I bet you could saddle one up. Can I film it?
Got to put salt on its tail first!
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  #42  
Old 01-12-2018, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by jerry russell View Post
First, let me say that I am in no way trying to diminish a primal fear in some. I learned a very long time ago that some people have phobias that cannot be overcome. I am simply putting things in a rational perspective. No insults are intended in any way.

The odds are not skewed by anyone's proximity to bears. 350 million to 1 is 350 to 1. If fact, hunters are much LESS likely to suffer a fatal black bear attack. I didn't even add in the 40 million in Canada, by the way, lol. Again, I didn't say don't be prepared if you are afraid of them. By all means do whatever you think will make you feel safe but the fact remains that if you end up dead because of a black bear attack you are 1 in 390 million and you have beat some pretty special odds. Heck, you will be famous!

I would also add that a hunted population of bears makes it DRAMATICALLY less likely that you will have a negative encounter. Bears in the Eastern US are terrified of humans. The teeth clacking is not a threat response, it is a fear response much like that of a boar hog popping its jaws. I can see where it could unnerve and be misunderstood by someone that hasn't seen the behavior before. To put things in proper perspective consider (If I remember correctly) there have been just a couple deaths attributed to bears in the Souheastern US in the last 75-100 years. More people have been killed by rabid chipmunks.

In extreme remote areas where bears are not accustomed to humans, the chance of extremely close encounters certainly goes up but it is still 1 in 390 million that you will end up being Bear lunch.

I'm no biologist but I am around a huge number of bears in a given year. I blood track 2-4 wounded bears per day in a bear camp without a weapon (by law) and I have never ever felt a threat. These bears are in extreme remote areas of Canada and I can and do walk to within 10 yards of them several times in a week. Other than an occasional side ways glare, tooth clacking or huffing to show off, there is nearly zero chance of anything more than their just posturing. To the uninformed it may look like a threat but it is not.

This conversation comes up a few time per year and I only respond for the benefit of the new bear hunter. By reading this negative information, it would seem likely that he is going to have a negative encounter with a bear when the likelihood is astronomically against it.
For what it's worth I was not insulted by your post. I am still a newbie when it comes to hunting in bear country, and I shared many of the already expressed concerns regarding bears. The first night I spent in my hammock solo a couple of years ago a few miles in on NF during a turkey hunt I heard bears around my camp all night long and didn't sleep a wink. Of course there were no bears in my camp that night, but due to my inexperience my over active imagination was running wild. As I have become more educated and experienced in the mountains I no longer fear bears, but I always have a healthy respect for their speed and power. I have found a good pair of earplugs and my glock go a long way to helping me get a good nights sleep.
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  #43  
Old 01-12-2018, 12:19 PM
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For what it's worth I was not insulted by your post. I am still a newbie when it comes to hunting in bear country, and I shared many of the already expressed concerns regarding bears. The first night I spent in my hammock solo a couple of years ago a few miles in on NF during a turkey hunt I heard bears around my camp all night long and didn't sleep a wink. Of course there were no bears in my camp that night, but due to my inexperience my over active imagination was running wild. As I have become more educated and experienced in the mountains I no longer fear bears, but I always have a healthy respect for their speed and power. I have found a good pair of earplugs and my glock go a long way to helping me get a good nights sleep.
There you go. Don't be afraid of bears- but respect them, and know what they can be capable of, even if they usually don't use it. A bear attack is a very rare thing, but they do happen. Usually in places where they are protected, are used to humans, or have been fed. And it can be some serious stuff in the rare instance when one does decide to cop an attitude with you.
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Old 01-12-2018, 12:21 PM
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Heck, I bet you could saddle one up. Can I film it?
If I can split the viral video profits with you.
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Old 01-12-2018, 12:52 PM
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If I can split the viral video profits with you.
You fellers are crazier than I was that dry summer
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Old 01-12-2018, 02:14 PM
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I wonder what that feller that got snatched out of his hammock in the middle of the night and half ate up on Hazel Creek last year thinks about cuddly bears now?
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Old 01-12-2018, 02:55 PM
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If I can split the viral video profits with you.
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I wonder what that feller that got snatched out of his hammock in the middle of the night and half ate up on Hazel Creek last year thinks about cuddly bears now?
Well, fortunately for him he lived so he's not 1/350,000,000
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Old 01-12-2018, 03:49 PM
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Well, fortunately for him he lived so he's not 1/350,000,000
He might have been if his dad hadn't been in the tent nearby and ran out to help.

He looks paranoid, irrational, and phobic laying there with his face half ripped off.
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Old 01-12-2018, 07:48 PM
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Agreed, none of us know the first thing about bears, don't come from generations of well-known bear hunters, have never been around any, never spend decades having close encounters with them, haven't spent half our lives hunting them, haven't crawled into laurel thickets on our bellies up to bear fights, don't know people who have been injured by them, and bears are fluffy and completely harmless, much less dangerous than chipmunks. We are all clueless indoorsmen who are terrified of bears and have delusional phobias of bears because we don't know anything about them. All bears are exactly like your Canadian bears, including our protected human/food associated/habituated national park bears here in the Smokies. Having respect for a bear's capabilities is an irrational phobia fueled by ignorance. I have been enlightened. I will begin to go up and pet them when I see them from now on.
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Originally Posted by NCHillbilly View Post
Agreed, none of us know the first thing about bears, don't come from generations of well-known bear hunters, have never been around any, never spend decades having close encounters with them, haven't spent half our lives hunting them, haven't crawled into laurel thickets on our bellies up to bear fights, don't know people who have been injured by them, and bears are fluffy and completely harmless, much less dangerous than chipmunks. We are all clueless indoorsmen who are terrified of bears and have delusional phobias of bears because we don't know anything about them. All bears are exactly like your Canadian bears, including our protected human/food associated/habituated national park bears here in the Smokies. Having respect for a bear's capabilities is an irrational phobia fueled by ignorance. I have been enlightened. I will begin to go up and pet them when I see them from now on.
I never for a moment insinuated that anyone was ignorant nor did I say anything derogatory. I simply stated a fairly educated opinion based on my experiences. That's what a forum is for by definition.

I never once told anyone to not respect a bear but I did try and put the new bear hunter at ease- as he should be.

If you took it personally I am terribly sorry.

None of us are experts We simply state our opinions on a subject on here to answer questions based on experience. In my case it is 40+ years of hunting and exposure to black, brown and grizzly bears in the lower 48, Canada and Alaska. I live in the heart of Georgia bear country and guide professionally for bears. I probably track more wounded bears in a given year than the average joe.

Not trying to impress here just trying to quantify my experience. That doesn't mean I am trying to disregard the experiences of others be they a very experienced or just a guy that has shot a few bears. EVERYONE has an opinion and a forum let's everyone voice it - even if they are one of those guys that seems to know everything from three legged painted turtle behavior to stem cell research in brown bat fetus (South of the equator). You know the type, right?

Unfortunately, some actually get a bit pouty when others simply post an opinion that they disagree with. In the case of this thread, you seemed to get out of sorts without cause. You may disagree but perhaps a bit of self reflection is in order?

I really don't mean this disrespectful but you're often at odds with others that don't agree with your opinions on a staggering array of topics. You literally have 37,500+ post on this forum and are often times adversarial when you simply shouldn't be. If you are going to go to the trouble of educating other with 7,000+ post per year, (your average) be nice and respectful to others.

Now, let's drop it. You had your shot and I had mine, lol.

I am done with the topic and I'm hopeful that all the bear hunters, be they the average joes or the few suffering from bear induced PTSD, can just get along.
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Old 01-12-2018, 09:41 PM
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Dang. I wasnít worried till I read this. Now Iíll be packing for sure cause we are covered up with rabid chipmunks. Hope they canít bite through my snake boots!
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