Contributors to this thread:
Looks like we are going to Montana next year for my first elk hunt. I know it's grizz country. I have a 1911 i plan on carrying (don't want to buy another gun, spending enough money as it is). Do you have a suggestion for holsters and how to carry? Either on my belt or pack hip belt. Open to any thoughts. Thanks!
I had this same question earlier this year...lots of good info at my link! I ended up going with a holster on my pack belt and rigged up my bear spray to ride on my bino harness. I'll be packing both options this fall.
Make sure you get a fabric or leather holster how ever you decide to carry. When your release touches a kydex or plastic one, any elk within 300 yards will be gone!
After having a young grizzly come to 19 yards of us last year opening day of the Montana elk hunt, I went straight out an bought a 10mm and some buffalo bore hard cast. I was carrying without one in the pipe and jacking one in had him slam on the brakes right in our face. Had no idea we were there and luckily we heard him coming.
Next thing is to practice with a bow in your hand and your pack on. It's more difficult than you think to draw, turn and take aim quickly to squeeze one off. Practice makes perfect when you or your buddies life is on the line.
I bet it does take a lot of practice to rack that slide one handed.....
That's why I always have one in the chamber!
You running into a lot of grizzlies in the Poconos Rut? More likely to encounter junkies.
Inexpensive option - Ready Holster for 1911's
No "Griz", but as you know..................we got some pretty big "blackies" in the Poconos! ;-)
"10mm and Buffalo bore hard cast"....sounds really familiar Pete! (Glock 40 here.)
Advice I received on carrying a .45 in Alaska for griz protection....file off the front sight
That way it doesn't hurt as much when the griz shoves it up your azz!
I use a Uncle Mikes sidekick hip holster on my SG pack. I just cross draw.
No point in carrying any handgun without it being locked and loaded.
I have always believed that if you feel compelled to carry without one in the chamber that it means you are not thoroughly comfortable with that firearm.
Handle it (a lot), practice with it (a lot), get totally comfortable with it and you'll understand why they were designed to be carried locked and cocked.
Whichever holster you decide on, make sure it is functional and secure enough to give you the piece of mind to carry with one in the chamber. That's why I prefer pistols like Glock with no manual safety to worry about. The less to worry about in the heat of the moment the better.
What I'll be using, chest holster. https://www.diamonddcustomleather.com/collections/holsters/products/guides-choice-chest-holster
I am no expert,, but was a tactical trainer in my career for some serious units. As far as the 1911,,,,, those who do not carry one in the chamber, need to know and train more with that weapon. Why would you not have one in the chamber? Unless you train everyday, and even with that, when pucker time comes, I doubt you will get that weapon into any action.......
Recently in a Field and Stream there was an excellent article, by 2 Alaskan guides, on the use of the semi auto, or the revolver. both have their followers.....
No matter what here is my advice, " You will Perform as You Train", so know your weapon, train, and get the right ammo, good luck
Would agree that anyone who doesn't feel safe with a weapon in condition 1 should probably not be carrying.
I have a holster that attaches to the pals on my Kifaru. In black bear country I’m happy with that. In grizzly country I’d want something that attaches to my body so when the pack comes off I still have it on. You might also consider shotgun to pack in when going after the meat and butchering the elk.
A couple of humble thoughts......
When you get the new holster, get it broken in with the pistol so the pistol doesn't hang up when drawn. I got a spendy leather one and stretched it by hand and left the gun in there to help with the fit memory. I read the leather can be corrosive or affect the finish of the gun if left in too long.
X2 on the Buffalo Bores. I use the LFN's (Lead Flat Nose) in 180gr for my .357. They pack a wallop. If you don't have them locally, you can go to sites like Ammo Seek and find out who does have them and the price. You can then order the ammo from whatever vendor you choose.
You may want to consider something like this as well. This is how I rigged my Bino harness. I can discharge the spray without having to remove the canister in a SHTF situation such as surprising a bear in thick cover where you may not have time to reach your sidearm. I feel like all of the precautions are probably a moot point, a bear could still chew you up in the wrong situation...but at least we are trying to control the things we can.
"but at least we are trying to control the things we can."
That's all you can ever do.
I use to use a holster with a belt loop. It was a PITA when I had to switch it from belt to pack. I had to remove the buckle from the strap(of the pack), feed the strap thru the belt loop on holster and then feed it back thru the buckle(and remember exactly how it feeds thru the buckle). Invariably I would forget and have to re-do it.
This year I got a holster with the spring-steel clip that just clips on and off your belt or the waist strap on your pack. Just takes a few seconds to switch if from your belt to your backpack or daypack. Easy on and off.
Do some research on ballistics if you have an option on any other caliber, if not the .45 ACP certainly beats nothing. If you're not well trained with this weapon, buy 500 rounds and go to the range and shot it all...repeat weekly, until you can handle that weapon as easily and comfortably as scratching your nose. Then get VERY good ammo for the trip and shoot some of it also.
You may also want a lanyard, so if you drop the gun, you can still retrieve it. That's worst case scenario but you may have to shoot with a bear on you.