Contributors to this thread:
No round in the Chamber/ WY Griz attack
As many speculated:
Wyoming Bear Attack: Glock had No Round in Chamber, Magazine & Pistol Separated
On Friday afternoon, the 14th of September, Mark Uptain, a hunting guide, and Corey Chubon, a bow hunter, were attacked by grizzly bears as they processed an elk carcass. Chubon had mortally wounded the elk with an arrow, the day before, but they had not recovered it before nightfall.
They came back the next day and followed a good blood trail to the dead elk.
They had nearly finished processing it when they were attacked by the grizzly bears. The attack started with a full out charge. Uptain was hit by the bear first, then Chubon, then the bear went back to Uptain. Chubon fled and survived, getting help.
The investigations have nearly finished, and some questions have been answered. It was known that Mark Uptain's Glock 20 10 mm semi-automatic pistol was with the hunters' packs. People have wondered why the pistol was in a pack, where it did little good for defense from bears. The Glock 20 was the only firearm at the scene of the attack.
The pistol was not in a pack. Mark Uptain was wearing the Glock in a chest holster. He deliberately took off the pistol, took off his shirt, and placed both the pistol and his shirt near the two packs. Processing big game tends to be a bit messy. From wyofile.com:
Before the two began field dressing the elk, “the guide removed an automatic pistol that he carried in a chest holster as well as his shirt and left them with the two men’s packs a short distance up the hill from the carcass…” OSHA wrote in its fatal alert.
It seems unlikely that Chubon received any training about the Glock 20. When Uptain was attacked, Chubon was able to reach the Glock while the bear was engaged with Uptain. He was able to extract the pistol from the holster. He had time to shoot. He could not make the pistol fire. From wyofile.com:
The bear hit Uptain as Chubon went for the pistol. “He said he had [the Glock],” Hovinga told WyoFile. “He had a hard time trying to find a clear shot.”
Chubon tried to shoot the bear, Hovinga said. “He grabbed [the pistol], was unable to make it fire,” Hovinga said. “There was not a round in the chamber, so the gun was empty. He couldn’t make the gun work.”
After hitting Uptain, the grizzly quickly turned and bit Chubon in the ankle.
“He swung me around in the air,” Chubon told WKMG Television in Orlando, Florida, near where he lives. That’s when Chubon threw the pistol toward Uptain.
It was “a matter of seconds” during which the bear attacked Uptain, turned on Chubon and then returned to further maul Uptain, Hovinga said.
But the Glock, “it didn’t make to Mark [Uptain],” Hovinga said. “The hunter fled.”
The report confirms speculation I made on September 24th, that there was no round in the chamber.
The Glock pistol and the magazine were found in different places. It may be that Chubon activated the magazine release in an attempt to get the pistol to work.
It is not unknown for someone unfamiliar with a pistol, trying desperately to get it to fire, to press the magazine release while attempting to deactivate a safety.
In a case twelve years ago, a client had great difficulty removing a pistol from his guide's holster. Similar to this case, the pistol had been hung in a tree a bit away from the carcass, in that case, a moose, the client and guide were processing. The client was finally able to do extract the pistol from the holster. The grizzly bear stopped hunting the guide and came at him. He killed it with the pistol. The bear dropped only three feet from him.
In the Wyoming case, after the bear left Uptain it attacked Chubon. Chubon, unable to make the pistol work, attempted to throw it to Uptain while Chubon was being mauled. It is unknown if Uptain was ever able to reach it. He had not reached it by the time Chubon fled to get help.
With no round in the chamber and no magazine in the pistol, the Glock was rendered useless, if Mark Uptain ever got to it.
Uptain had bear spray holstered on his hip. Chubon did not recall Uptain using the bear spray to the point where Chubon fled to get help. Uptain emptied the bear spray at some point during the fight. The 250-pound grizzly sow had evidence of bear spray on her. Mark Uptain was killed in spite of the bear spray.
Carrying a semi-automatic pistol with an empty chamber is known as carrying in condition three, terminology used by the renowned gun writer, instructor, and competitor Col. Jeff Cooper. It is also known as “Israeli Carry”, because it is how Israeli soldiers are trained to carry semi-automatic pistols.
It can work well if the user trains to always load a round from the magazine when the pistol is drawn from the holster. As a safety feature, if an untrained person accesses the pistol and tries to fire it, they may not know how to load a round into the chamber and can be stymied in their effort to fire the pistol.
This is positive if the person accessing the pistol is an assailant. It does not work if the person accessing the pistol is trying to save your life.
The bears had not found the elk before the hunters did. The attack was an aggressive charge without warning. People who witness an attack are often able to shoot the bear off of the person being attacked or to kill a bear that is mauling them. Pistols have been surprisingly effective at stopping attacks.
Bear spray has also been credited with stopping attacks, but the research has been muddied by different criteria being used in bear spray and firearm research papers. Different criteria were used to select incidents in the bear spray and firearm studies. Comparing the studies is inappropriate. The study authors refuse to release their data.
One problem with bear spray is it does not kill the bear. Most bears that attack humans are eventually killed. Killing them at the scene of their attack prevents further attacks. Bears that have been sprayed have been known to repeatedly come back.
In the recent Wyoming case where Mark Uptain was killed, both bears were killed by investigators at the scene.
Link to the original thread:
So sad... Explains a lot about the gun now...
I have more anxiety reliving that thread than I did with my last close encounter with a grizz.
That explains a lot of questions that were brought up from the original posting. Not everyone is familiar with using a sidearm. I've used and have been around guns since I was very young but haven't owned a pistol yet.
Fortunate there were not two fatalities. Tragic there was one.
I hope this thread doesn’t turn into another debate where people choose sides in judging the two people involved.
That is my only comment.
Anybody who was not there but still "judges" either guy is a fool. That's a true nightmare scenario, and my greatest fear when I hunted Wyoming grizzly country.
Loss of life is tragic, and the survivor will live with this for the rest of his life.
Anybody who was not there but still "judges" either guy is a fool. That's a true nightmare scenario, and my greatest fear when I hunted Wyoming grizzly country.
Loss of life is tragic, and the survivor will live with this for the rest of his life.
If only 1 thing is taken from all this, it should be to keep a damn round in the chamber. If you have a good holster it’s not going to just go off.
I don't believe it's the guide's job to provide the hunter with pistol training, especially if the hunter is not a person already familiar with handguns. An untrained shooter in a panicked state could have killed the guide just as easily as he could have killed the bear, or made other mistakes as he apparently did in that attack. I do think the hunter should have had had a can of bear spray on him though, at minimum. A very sad situation for the Uptain family, especially going into the holidays without their husband and father...
I'm glad comments on this thread are in line with what one would have expected on the first thread. Tragic situation. I wish we could carry pistols in Canada, because the more actual research I do, the more it becomes obvious to me that I'd rather be carrying lead than spray.
Very tragic for Mr. Uptain, Mr. Chubon, and their families. Having been in a bear shooting incident, I concur that seconds count and familiarity with the bear defense of choice is essential. Another take away from this article, is that the (unchambered) Glock weapon in question was not on either man's person during the attack, and had been placed a short distance away making it impossible to reach in time to be useful. Before my first Kodiak bowhunt while considering options, I was told by Bob Ameen that he carries a .44 magnum revolver for bear defense, primarily since the wind is so strong on Kodiak he felt bear spray may be ineffective when needed. I concur with that belief, and on my most recent trip, we experienced winds at nearly 100 mph. It is difficult to imagine bear spray being effective during those conditions. I also asked Bob what kind of holster he used and if I should mount the holster to my pack. He was most emphatic that it be a chest-mounted model and that it "NOT" be attached to my pack...so it would always be on my person in the field...even if my pack was removed and placed nearby. I followed his advice exactly, and it may have saved my life. During my 2016 bear shooting experience, I used three of the six rounds in my Redhawk revolver and had no additional "spare" ammunition with me in the field. When a second bear came in a few seconds later, I wasn't sure we could kill it with the ammo we had left...so we fled the scene and gave up all our gear, and the deer carcass and meat to the second bear. Disappointing, but we were still alive. For my most recent Kodiak trip (earlier this month), I had added a JOX kydex speedloader pouch to my pack so I had an additional six rounds with me in the field...and my hunting partner was also carrying a .44 magnum revolver with extra ammo...so we could share ammo usable in either revolver if need be. As it turned out, we never needed our handguns or the extra ammo, but it was comforting to know we had a fighting chance to defend ourselves should the situation arise. I am thankful for the advice given to me by Bob Ameen, and I hope others reading this that are planning to hunt brown/grizzly bear areas prepare themselves beforehand, become proficient with the weapon they will be using, keep the weapon on them at all times while afield, carry extra ammo that is readily available for reload...so that when seconds begin to count for you and your loved ones back at home...the odds are stacked in your favor and not the bear's. Kevin
Sounds like neither was prepared for the environment or the situation they found themselves in.....hmmmmm. This should of been reviewed in detail the night before setting out the next morning to recover the Elk in Grizz country.
Sad deal for sure . The guide had probably been there done that hundreds of times and with the Glock with him figured he had it under control , the hunter has probably shot or owned guns and thought no big deal if I need it I’ll just grab it and fire it after all Marks done this stuff for a long time. It surprised them and became a very bad situation just like me and my wife had happen several years ago. We were riding up in the wilderness on horseback , been up there hundreds of times she’s been riding since a kid. At about 3pm we decided to head home. Riding down a very easy trail deep in the wilderness her horse stumbled, she was holding a Pepsi in one hand reins in the other she came off the horse and landed on a rock breaking her leg, 6 ribs and ruptured her spleen. After laying there with no cell service in and out of consciousness for over an hour while I went for a cell signal she was air lifted to the hospital 2 surgeries and 5 weeks in the hospital lucky to be alive........Anything can happen at any time !!!! if she had know that horse was going to stumble she would have been hanging on with both hands waiting for it. If the guide and hunter knew what was going to happen the would have done it different.
Tragic. I sometimes carry condition 3. For some physical activities and environments, thats my choice. I practice drawing and chambering a round two handed, one handed, strong and weak side. It is slower than having one in the chamber and that comes with a higher risk of not engaging fast enough. Never in grizzly country as I carry a revolver.
When the first reports came out this was the likely guess many had. A Glock with a round chambered goes bang when you pull the trigger. A uninformed user in a panic could easily drop the mag while attempting to disengage a nonexistent side or thumb safety.
Tragedy all the way around. I cast no judgement on either of them. My own training has my daily carry with one always chambered however in a case like this or pretty much any other it's no guarantee of a different out come.
I have Springfield Armory guns. The safety is "built in to the grip". Hold a pull the trigger. Quick question: does the Glock have any type of safety?? Thanks.
Pointingdogs, it has 3 “safeties” but none external, unless you count the split trigger. Basically point and shoot.
Also, it sounds like the guide was prepared to an extent.
He had a Glock 20, excellent choice, in a chest rig, excellent choice. He obviously knew what he was doing but made a poor decision. We’ve all done stupid things, but luckily it didn’t cost us our lives. Bad luck and I just hope he didn’t fight his way to that gun to find it was without the magazine. I can only imagine the despair that he would have felt.
You have got to be kidding me Franklin.
It seems in today's world that we feel the need to lay blame on someone or something for any negative experience. Sometimes, $hit just happens. Sure it would have been ideal if the guide had taken 30 minutes to train his client on proper Glock usage, then had his customer stand guard with gun drawn while he worked on the elk. As many people have stated, bears have come at them so fast they didn't even have time to draw a weapon, so if you really want to be "prepared" you need to be standing there with gun drawn. So you're screwed if you are a solo hunter. So that's the ideal situation, but let's face it things aren't ideal 95% of the time.
Sometimes bad things happen and even to good people. Doesn't mean that someone wasn't prepared, doesn't mean that someone made a mistake, an unpredictable wild animal entered the equation in the worst possible way.
Easy Adam. Let’s not start down the same path we did last time please. To each his own brother.
Come on.....for a guide and a hunter to not have a gameplan for recovering a wounded elk in grizzly country is just plan malpractice. The outcome PROVES just that. "Shit happens" is such a childish excuse for a f-up. Mistakes were made and somebody died....get over it. Hopefully this will help others for what NOT to do.....that`s all you can glean from this tragedy.
I carry a S&W .44 magnum revolver with bear loads. I load all cylinders as soon as I get out of the vehicle. In fact, it is always loaded here in my house too.
Unfortunately, most people don't really plan adequately for what might happen. You need to be able to imagine the worst case scenario. When hunting in bear country, whatever self defense equipment you decide to use, should be carried by everyone that will be present and able to deploy it. A very real scenario involves having to shoot/spray a bear off of someone else. Having one weapon between 2 or more people is not much better than going completely unarmed. Not keeping that weapon close to hand at all times, especially when in a gut pile, is also not very smart. Most "accidents" happen as a chain of events. At least three mistakes were made in this case. Any one of which, if corrected, might have resulted in an exciting story instead of a tragedy.
As I’ve said before, I don’t hunt in bear country, but I carry every day everywhere. Shit happens in town, traveling, and everywhere else you least expect it. The news is full of it.
I do hunt in hog country, and I know two guys that have been hurt by hogs. Walking into my stand in the dark I’ve had a few encounters with them, mostly just grunts and growls in the brush, but last year I had a standoff with one that did not want to give me the road. He finally ceded but it was a little tense for a few minutes. Since then I’ve taken to carrying my G20 with laser/light attached in my hand for the walk in the dark. It makes me feel better at least.
As to the bear attack in question. I agree with Ziek. Bad situation all around but mistakes were made.
Franklin your opinion is duly noted. I hope that makes you happy. Have a nice day.
Thanks....I am happy.....happy that both people involved didn`t die.
Could extra precautions been taken? Sure. Would that have made a difference? We will never know.
Just because you conceal carry does not mean you will be able to react in enough time to neutralize the threat. Is anyone really that vigilant when they leave the house? I carry but don't know if I would have time to react, draw and hit an oncoming threat that was really close.
Plus, it is pretty easy to miss with a pistol even at close range. Military and law enforcement train for this more than us regular civilians. But I have seen several police dash cam videos (one I recall was a traffic stop in Ohio) where the police and perps are firing at each other at very close range and no one gets hit.
Having a weapon handy is only the first step. Being proficient with it under extreme and immediate duress is the next and that takes a lot of dedicated training.
Leave the Glock at home and get a revolver for protection. No training, just pull the trigger.
Going back and reading the original thread and many of the comments and speculation just reinforces that no one should judge before the facts are revealed. A number of key points that some “... just can’t believe...” appear to be true.
“ ..I can’t believe there was no round in the chamber..”
“...so the moron dumps the clip, throws the gun and runs...”
It is hard to fathom why the guide left the gun where and how he did. But he did.
It’s hard to understand why they even went back with just the two of them to retrieve an elk left overnight in grizzly country. But they did.
Like many tragic accidents, it may well have been prevented. But it wasn’t.
The rest of us can only learn and perhaps benefit.
Hindsight is better than 20/20 right?
Experience is something you get, just after you needed it.
Terrible incident...and we have beat this up already.
I think guys carrying Semi autos on an empty chamber is a residual of guys packing revolvers on an empty cylinder. It makes sense with a revolver due to hammer hangups, a good strategy........not so with a striker fired semi auto.
There have been many cases where CC folks packing on a dead cylinder assumed they would have use of both hands to rack the slide....they were wrong....and in some cases it cost them their life. [examples; active self protection on youtube ]
I said it on another forum but worth mentioning again, Carry your Glock loaded. Most accidents with these are when reholstering. A slow deliberate reholster; visual check, sweep of clothing, confirm your finger is off the trigger, proper technique. There is no reason to reholster quickly.
Get a real gun, stay alive.
Initially I thought ill of the hunter - I have changed my tune. Terrifying. Also a loaded semiautomatic pistol, IMO, will cause more injuries then bears every will. When I got my first pistol after years of hunting with shotguns and a .22 (rifles are not legal to hunt with in Ohio), I was terrified and surprised to find no safety. Hunting elk in the WY with a loaded pistol is a recipe for disaster. I have brush/branches do many things after ten miles. Open bolts on rifles over my shoulder is one example.
The hunter should have received some brief training. He should also have received cpr training, info on how to recognize hypothermia, any allergies the guide had, what to do about lighting strikes and lots of basic first aid, how to handle seizures etc. Many of these are 10x as likely as a griz attack. The odds of a griz attack are so remote I have no fault with not learning how to use a hand gun. I wish it had been discussed but it likely was not.
Terrible tragedy and hopefully in 2019 they get hunted - placing fear of man in them should help prevent some future attacks.
Also if I am reading correct it is "safe" to carry a semi auto pistol with a round in the chamber? I also have a revolver and would never carry either one with a round in the chamber - but it sounds like I might need to rethink this.
I'm not carrying a round in the chamber of ANY FIREARM until I'm ready to fire it. Period. If a bear kills me because of it then he kills me, but at least I know I won't accidentally kill someone else. So you guys think the Glock 20 is a good choice? I have a chance to get a steal on a 10mm today.
If your not going to keep one in the chamber, I wouldn't worry about buying it.
If you’re not going to carry it correctly then no, it’s not a good choice. Elkman, sounds like a can of bear spray is a better option for you. If Glock only knew...they could give elkman a few bucks and it would be the best, most safe, most awesome pistol in the history of the world!
For those who aren’t know it alls, a good holster, I repeat, a good holster, will not allow the gun to go off. Glocks go bang under one circumstance, when the trigger is pulled. If the trigger isn’t pulled you’re safe. Get a holster with a thumb release, index is ok, but thumb is safer. It stays in the holster 100% of the time. The most danger time for a loaded gun is outside the holster. LEAVE IT IN THE HOLSTER!
Trying to rack the slide while being charged at 40mph is a recipe for disaster.
Okay good to know. Glock is a bad option if I wont carry one in the tube. Good info. Thanks
Ucsdryder said it very well.
Well, one thing is obvious. Many on here have not had any professional training in gun handling or gun fighting. Before you give advice, maybe you should you first state your qualifications.
WOW, thousands of police carry Glocks daily, always with a round in the chamber. They were designed to be carried that way. The safety is built into the trigger. Racking the slide just as you need it may look exciting on TV or Movies but it is not a real life practice. Mine never went off in nearly 30 years of carry unless I pulled the trigger.
Your buddy is being mauled or a grizzly is circling your camp or you have been bluff charged once already.
What option is better:
A. No firearm available
B. Firearm available with rounds in the mag but not chambered
C. Firearm available with a round chambered
Obviously C. But, not every grizzly attack happens in a split second. Option B can become option C in under 1 second. Carrying chambered is faster and how I carry in grizzly country but option B (unchambered) is better than Option A (no firearm) In my opinion.
In the incident, option B and bear spray didn't work. That doesn't mean they are both useless.
I have several handguns. My every day carry gun is a Ruger LC9. I looked into their LCP because it’s smaller. But it’s too small. But the absolute main reason I went with the LC9 is in addition to having the trigger safety it has an actual safety. I cannot believe they ever produced a firearm of any type without one! I keep a round chambered at all times.... because I can. I would much rather have to simply thumb the safety switch down than give up even 1 full second to use two hands to pull the action back to chamber a round.
Admittedly I’m no marksman with a handgun. Realistically not many people are. But I’m at least very familiar with how it functions and comfortable with the ones I own. I figure that’s the most important thing since I have 9-16 chances to hit my target.
It's like folks who carry a concealed weapon and keep the chamber empty. They think they'll be able to load the gun when confronted with a self defense situation, NOT. If your afraid to carry a loaded firearm then you shouldn't be carrying it, period. Practice,practice,practice. If you are going to be with some ken who is not familiar with your gun, then make damn sure you take some time to make them familiar with it, you know the basics, loading, firing etc...when in griz country hacking up a juicy carcass best to keep your gun on you to get to it fast
When I took my concealed carry course the instructor was adamant that we always keep one in the chamber.
I’ve carried Glocks for sixteen years. I’ve never had one send a round down the tube unless I pulled the trigger.
Everybody whining about a Glock being unsafe is simply displaying their ignorance regarding the weapon.
It’s literally ridiculous to carry Condition 3. An assailant will not be a step away from locked&loaded. A bear has no “3rd Condition.”
The military and law enforcement all over the world disagrees with those suggesting a non-chambered round is a viable choice.
It’s a sad thing for Uptain’s family and friends, and the hunter/witness. Mistakes were made, and it’s easy to call them out now. We learn from it, at the victims’ expense, unfortunately. God speed to all those affected by this tragedy.
Ive carried a glock every day for work and I also carry one off duty. Safe, reliable, and very shootable in my opinion. I have an elk hunt booked in grizzly country in 2021 and plan on carrying a model 20 in a chest holster with a round in the chamber. Had the pistol been loaded and on the guides person I think we'd have had a different outcome. Unfortunately that wasn't the case and two families will have to live with the aftermath. A very sad situation all around.
Hunting in grizzly country can condition a guy to expect NO bear problems, because that's usually exactly what happens. Years of hunting... a few bear sightings... bears running away... everything going as it should... and it becomes easy to relax and feel safe out there. I'm guilty of that. Try as I may, it's difficult to hunt bear-aware every minute of a 2 week hunt. It's difficult to do everything while wearing a big handgun on your chest or hip. Pretty soon you're splitting wood or fetching water with no defense. And you don't see a bear....and you repeat. Carrying with an empty chamber is probably like riding without a helmet. No consequences until the unexpected IMMEDIATE need strikes, and then it's too late. Hopefully you survive. If not....you died living up to your principles.
I've had some great lessons on a multitude of wilderness hunts in grizzly country. Just last September I saw 4 grizzlies on day one of my AK moose hunt. 3 of them were comprised of a big blonde sow and her nearly-grown cubs. It was a sobering experience to see how fast they rounded the creek bend and pulled up in front of my camp.
They were all on hind legs evaluating their next move....which thankfully was to head across the valley into the opposing hills. I was watching all this happen from my hillside glassing point 1/4 mile away. I was reminded of how fast 'it' can all change, and how little time I'd have to react to a sudden encounter. And then there was the time I left my handgun a long ways away and......
There are some people that shouldn’t carry a handgun. If you buy one, for everyone else’s sake, get trained on how to use it. There seems to be several on this site that are inexperienced with handguns which is understandable. Unfortunately that is the exact scenario that this entire thread is about. A lack of training, a panicked situation and a terrified man is what kicked the magazine out of that pistol and rendered it useless.
Like the hunter (Chubon) I too would have been defenseless with the guide's Glock. I've hunted for 30+ years with bows and guns. I'm very good with my revolver but wouldn't have any idea where the safety was on a Glock. When I've shot a friend's Glock I always had trouble remembering to "rack" it. Whether it's a handgun or even bear spray you have to train in order to be proficient with it if you hope to live through a dangerous situation.
I've followed this situation with a great deal of interest since it hit the news. Up until earlier this month I'd never even SEEN a grizzly of any type though I live in an area with high black bear density and see and interact with them often. No comparison, just an aside. The analysis posted makes sense and I'll leave it at that. A couple weeks ago I was on Kodiak Island and saw my first grizzly, a young male brown bear of maybe 300 to 400 pounds. When he came in sight he was at a fast lope and moving through a mountain pass my hunting partner had just walked through while stalking a bedded blacktail. I was on a side ridge about 100 yards from the pass with a quartered deer in my pack, a short barreled double barrel 12 gauge loaded with slugs as my bear "protection" as well as a can of bear spray. My partner was about 50 yards the other side of the bear. My pack, the gun, and the spray were about 3 long steps away from me on the ground. I started waving to alert my partner who hadn't seen the bear (he was carrying a bow and a holstered striker-fired semi-auto 10mm handgun) after he saw the bear, which continued at a run downslope toward the beach, I stopped waving and sat back to watch. A few things: 1) the bear apparently was "moseying" through the pass, smelled where my partner had walked and was having no part of us. He was leaving the area. 2) There was no threat from the bear to us. This is I believe a "normal" bear interaction. 3) Had the bear scented the gut pile (which I was near) or the meat in my pack things may or may not have gotten interesting fast. 4) At the running speed I saw, my partner would've had to "channel Wyatt Earp" like crazy to get a handgun in action in time if the bear had been in an aggressive charge. 5) At no point did it even cross my mind to retrieve my shotgun. I don't think I even "remembered" that the shotgun was there. I was caught up in the experience. Had the bear turned aggressive, would I have gone for the gun? Maybe. Probably. I hope so. I just don't know. 6) My point: It's easy to say what you'd do, say what someone should have done. When you're there, things are different.
"There seems to be several on this site that are inexperienced with handguns..."
And even fewer that have much experience with brown/grizzly bears. And for those that have, it likely makes matters worse. Most bears want NOTHING to do with people and that's very evident in the vast majority of encounters. What IS important is the overall situation...an area where bears have little fear of people (Greater Yellowstone area), up to your elbows in a gut pile, etc.
Since we have been spending a lot more time up north, we have had MANY encounters with coastal browns and inland grizzlies, along the highways, and while fishing, hunting, or hiking. We stay alert, give them some space, and usually have an escape plan in mind in preference to a defensive plan, whenever possible. We've NEVER been afraid for our lives. It takes a great deal of discipline to not become complacent when the vast number of encounters provide great photo ops instead of terror.
The first photo was from a small boat while we were fishing. Typically in these situation they're only concerned with fish and fishing and pretty much ignore people. Just give them the river bank. In the second photo, we were caught out in the open, not much more than 30 yards from the bear. We were returning to the campground after a hike when we heard shots from the camp. Evidently, they were hazing the bear out of camp. Both my wife and I were only carrying spray since we were in the Yukon. But after a brief examination of the bear's disposition, (just before the photo he stopped to appraise us also), we both reached for our cameras instead of the spray.
It also helps to know and ACCEPT what a real attack, no matter how unlikely, will probably look like. Your best defense is at least two armed people. Before it's over, one or more of the people will be injured. If you imagine an attack where the bear is turned or killed before inflicting any injury, you will NOT be prepared for the real deal. That pretty much goes for any real gunfight.
As the Army teaches, take the Lesson's Learned from the unfortunate instance.
-Always carry your bear protection on you. That is why I went with the G20, a lot easier to carry than a big heavy revolver everywhere. I also have it in a chest holster- kenai gunfighter full trigger protection, so you aren't tempted to set it down, and both hands are free.. The G20 carries 15 rounds, that I can shoot faster and more accurately than a revolver. I also have a cord attached to the grip and back to my chest strap in the event the pistol is knocked out of my hand, and the bear is chewing my leg...
-carry with one in the chamber
- practice with your protection and familiarize others with it, including Fail to Fire scenarios, loading etc
-all parties should have bear protection since its as likely to help others as yourself.
The safety on a Glock is initial pressure on the trigger, the firearm fires beyond that slight pressure...I carried the weapon on the job, taught the trigger finger stayed out on the frame until ready to do business...I was charged by a sow black bear, had a cub bust out of the brush and cry, run up an aspen snag...mom raised up on her hind legs, popping jaws, and I was able to retreat while chambering the .40 Glock, all the time talking to her, "I don't want to shoot you, just let me back outta here"...she dropped back on all fours when she got to where the cub was still up in the snag, and I continued backing out....I was intimate with the Glock since I carried it as a patrol sergeant in Metro Nashville...so chambering a round in that instance turned out ok...
I have typed about 3 responses and deleted them because most people seem to be set in their beliefs and probably lack real experience running a weapon under stress. The only thing I can contribute is that all parties need to be prepared and expierenced with their kit and be able to perform under stress.
Also, if anyone on this site wants "training" but doesn't want to invest $250-$1000 on in-person training. John Lovell on youtube has great training videos, as well as some of the most affordable (and best) in-person training. He's booked up as soon as he posts a class though, great guy in general.
I was moose hunting in NWT with a well known outfit. This is grizzly country. My guide did not have a side arm, rifle or even bear spray. I was not allowed to have a round in the chamber of my rifle and of course was not allowed a side arm. I was advised to carry my rifle on my pack. This was not a comfortable situation and IMO irresponsible. If we had stumbled onto a sow with cubs in the middle of an alder patch it may not have ended well.
Another tragic bear killing
Wow wildwilderness, that is tragic... Please post with a new thread... Thanks
I also suggest John “Shrek” McFee. “ The Sheriff of Baghdad. His training classes are top notch. He travels the country to local gun clubs. He also does gunfighter university. You video a draw, shoot, reload sequence and he uses a golf program to correct your form. Very affordable and produces great results.