Contributors to this thread:
Sidearm for bear protection
Buying a 10mm Glock for bear (Griz) protection while bowhunting elk. Which would you guys prefer the 29 or the 20? I like how compact the 29 is and figure if a charge occurs the shots will be at a range close enough that the shorter barrel won’t hurt accuracy.
I have a Glock 27 which is the .40 version of the 29 and I find it very hard to quickly grab the grip to draw. For that reason and due to the more snappy recoil I’d go with the 20. It also holds more rounds. If I go to shoot a high cap mag out of my 27 it fails to feed for some crazy reason even with the X Grip on it.
I have the 20, wish I could find a 29.
I have the Glock 20. Underwood 200 grain hard cast gives me best accuracy vice other loads. It's a hand full. I picked up a LW 40 S&W barrel to facilitate creeper range time. Also invested in a set of Trojicon Night Sights.
I have a 20. Much prefer a shotgun with slugs.
I understood the size if the 29 is more along the 19/23. Can someone confirm/deny?
Edit: I looked it up and the 29 is closer to but smaller than the 23 (call it 2/3 of the way from the 27 to the 23)
29 is more the size of the 27 just thicker then the 27.
I ditched my 20 and took up wrastlin'
Also don’t forget about the G21. 45acp with hard cast makes a bigger hole and you can even make it into a .45 Super with a new recoil spring.
Wrastlin is much more compatable with catch and release too.
Just remember to remove the sights and file down the sharp edges.....:-)
where are you hunting that you need protection from bears?
If you are going to buy one, get the one that will be easiest to carry, that way you'll be most likely to do just that.
Whatever you get, make sure you keep it ON you. Two guys were killed last year when the guide was trying to dig his pistol out of his pack when the bear charge. Good luck on your hunt.
Thanks for all the replies - I’ll be hunting Wyoming , Montana and Idaho for elk in the coming years.
I alway's get a kick when I see or hear people packing a gun for protection only to pack it in there packs. Animals/people generally do not wait for you to get ready before the are going to attack.
John - that’s one of my primary reasons for the 29 over the 20. Compact and easier to carry. But several here are carrying the 20’s and they like them just fine.
I agree with Ike, an 870 with slugs would be ideal, but difficult to carry along with your bow for daily treks through elk country.
Just trying to find what others do who hunt in similar situations.
where did that happen? i missed that article
20. It's the largest firearm you can carry that is somewhat comfortable and likely to be on your person when you need it.
I carry the 20 in a detachable holster on my pack belt. If I drop the pack it clips off fast and onto my belt. I’d like to get something like a mossberg shockwave for when I’m done hunting and just packing meat.
Something like a S&W Airlight 44 is what I think is the best balance of power and weight. No fun to shoot.
I carried a short shotgun on Kodiak one trip. Actually not bad once you get used to getting it slung right. Weather was terrible so ended up duck hunting a lot. 21" , no choke barrel with rifle sights worked surprisingly well on waterfowl.
I carry a 45LC Bisley Blackhawk on my rare chances to hunt in places with big bears. Heavy and single action but I have shot it a lot and I'm comfortable with it. It's a great big game handgun out to surprising ranges as well.
All I knew of the 10mm is that the FBI adopted it some years ago. I'm a fan of the .357 so I searched comparisons and found the following test to be interesting.
What surprised me was the comparison of entry wound tissue dammage, IMHO favoring the .357.
Initially I thought the 10mm would have more recoil, but the opposite was proved true. However, the penetration and entry wound damage demonstrated why . With only .037" difference in diameter between the caliber bullets of the same weight, there is a great difference in energy available and expended down range. Sort of like the 3:1 ratio of best broadheads for hunting.
Regardless of your choice, I would wish you never have to be in a situation to use your gun and still get an elk.
I carry the 20. Sent you a pm.
I was looking at Glocks the other day, same reason.
What do the griz country and Alaska guys think about a 45-70 lever gun for packouts? I've thought that one of those short Marlin lever guns with a red dot sight would be better than a shotgun when packing out meat. Super quick to point and 7 bullets in a row. But that's just me overthinking things. Zero experience to back that up
Ammoland did a 70 year compilation of bear vs pistol in every caliber down to .22.Bear lost every time. Study reviewed both black and brown bears. From my bear guide buddies, they say black bears die very easily. Apparently, black bears are responsible for most attacks. All that being said, I'll just pack my .40 or .45 rather than spend a bunch of money on a 10mm that isn't that much better and no ammo is available. When I go to griz country though, I'll probably take a .44 mag.
Jason - I’ve got a .40 that I’ve carried before but when I looked at the energy from a hard cast 10mm it was significantly greater. Like over double if I remember correctly.
10 mm has about 650-670 ft/lbs of energy and you can buy hopped up .40 with a little over 580 ft/lbs of energy. Bear won't know the difference. Not to mention, even with it's superior pistol ballistics, the 10 mm still has the energy of a very weak rifle round. I have always felt the 10 mm is a product of good marketing. Either way, I'm sure I'll buy one someday because I like my guns..
“ Read more: https://www.ammoland.com/2018/02/defense-against-bears-with-pistols-97-success-rate-37-incidents-by-caliber/#ixzz6sDyJ1edq Under Creative Commons License: Attribution Follow us: @Ammoland on Twitter | Ammoland on Facebook
Roy called to report the incident, and they came out and brought a metal detector to locate spent extracted shell casings. Roy was found acting within his right to protect himself against the grizzly bear attack. But they said, they wished he would have used Counter Assault Bear Spray. Roy did not have any, so they gave him a can, plus some 12 ga cracker shells, and some other 12 ga shells will rubber bullets in them.
Roy came into town and purchased a Glock 20 10mm auto now.
I’m glad Roy is okay.”
Bake, that's a great gun to carry for that purpose and a lot of guides carry that gun in .45-70 or .454 casul. It's not a cheap gun though and it really only has one purpose: Huge holes at close range.
Bake, if someone else is along on the packout and can carry that gun, It would be a great choice, but if solo, it's a little more weight and would hinder use of trekking poles, imo.
Every time I enter my bait sites, I carry a .45-70
Mitch, don't mess around. .500 Wyoming Express.. ;-)
An Eskimo woman killed one with a .22. Read it on here.
Lou - no doubt. Go big...or go home.
And add a workout regimen for upper body. “why do you need that workout for elk season? Actually it’s not for the elk, it’s so I can handle my bear sidearm.” Lol
.45-70 when you think there’s a real chance of a face-off.
Which ever you choose. Become more than proficient with it should you ever need it. Don’t get the biggest caliber because it’s a bear. Get the biggest caliber you shoot well. A well placed shot with a 40 beats a poorly placed shot from a 500s&w or a 454 casul. I shot my uncles 454 (western grips) no way I carry that in bear country.
It’s funny how some know what to carry for Grizz when they’ve never hunted in Grizz country.
I’ll be packing a 44mag when I’m back in Alaska this fall
I would use a revolver in 44 Mag or 357 Mag. But then I already have them. Sold my 460 Mag. I have a Mossberg 930 with an 18" barrel that hold 8 slugs. I know a revolver will work every time with no jams or hang ups.
There was a thread on the Bowsite a couple of years ago. I believe the incident occurred in either Montana or Wyoming. All I remember is that the bear killed both the hunter and the guide while the guide was trying to dig out the gun from his pack. TMBB
Unless it’s a different story only the guide was killed not the hunter.
Right that was the whole point. The hunter could not operate the gun from the back while the bear got the guide. The hunter was out of the woods and back home in Florida in a days time
Whatever weapon you chose you have to practice with it, alot. When a bear gets in your face you won't have time to think about how to use it. Percy
I'm with Cnelk, I want a pistol I can grab, point, and squeeze the trigger without working a slide or fumbling with a safety. My S&W 44 Mag Mountain Gun is what I carried in AK.
My encounter with a bear was about 3 yards away, it is amazing how fast they can move (faster than in the movies), I had no chance for my sidearm (357), one of the scariest moments of my life, and evidently scary for the bear he ran another direction.
CCW instructor said the last thing he’d carry is 1911. Absolutely hated’m
Too bad they don’t make 45 GAP in hardcast that’s a nice size carry gun in Glock 19 size platform.
Hey Tank have you figured out what your next bowsite handle will be? You got to be running low on names. Who else thinks caring a .45 with a two pound trigger is crazy?
Why do I tend to think there are opinionators here who have never shared ground with a grizzly or actually pointed a defensive weapon at one at close range?
Years ago I heard this old joke........
If you are packing a sidearm for protection in bear country, and it is a caliber of which the first number is less than a "4", then make sure it isn't a revolver.
That way it won't hurt as bad when the bear shoves it in your....you know... ;-)
When I was considering griz country a stat I had found was that more grizzlies have died to 9mm than any other caliber, but they did not include the stat of how many people carrying a 9mm became a snack.
I use to carry the .454 but it took both hands to shoot accurately that I change to a smaller 9mm and it's one hand shooting accurate and 10 shots vs 4 shots.
To me, being able to shoot quick and accurate is way more important than having a bigger Boom and missing------->
Good luck, Robb
I’ve always thought I’d like to know the average number of rounds fired in handgun-against-bear encounters before things ended. I’d also like to know how many shots connected effectively ....the caliber ....and type handgun. You know, just in case anyone has all those numbers in their wallet.
"I want a pistol I can grab, point, and squeeze the trigger without working a slide or fumbling with a safety." Yep. Amazes me when I see guys packing single action revolvers. (Unless they can fan it like Clint did in the old spaghetti westerns!)
I heard a story about a guy who showed up in Alaska with a .357 to keep bears away. The guide looked at him. They guy said "What, you think a .357 won't stop a bear?" The guide said " Sure it will,......eventually." TMBB
People often think of themselves as brain-shooting a charging bear at close range. If that were the usual case, a snub-nosed .38 would do the job. The reality is that very few gunners can hit a moving apple (bear brain) at anything beyond point blank range...last second shot. Shots before this are typically dissuaders, hoping to turn the bear. That’s probably the best argument in favor of handguns with rapid-fire capabilities. But only one thing really puts devastation into a juiced-up bear, and that is ft/lb of energy per single round. Heavy and hard projectiles with good velocity will penetrate further and break bones. They’ll deliver more impact shock to the body and disorient the attacker. Give me ONE good round into center mass, and a follow-up shot if needed.
I don’t tell people what gun or caliber to pick. I suggest the biggest they can manage, and choose a load which delivers max ft/lb with controlled expansion.
For the revolver guys, what are your thoughts on the .41 Mag?
I don’t have any Grizzly experience here in MA BUT I did shoot my first Black bear on the ground 3 years ago at approximately 30 yards away with a 35 REM lever gun and I can tell you it dropped at the shot got up and ran straight at me I got just one shot and missed cuz I had a scope on I then took another shot as it veered away from me and missed that shot as well. I found the bear approximately 80 yards away dead after a great blood trail. A few things to note are they are fast as hell and your lucky at best to get two shots off. The other thing is the bear was alive for probably 30 seconds from a rifle but that is plenty of time to do damage to you. You can think all you want of using a handgun in defense but after that occurred I think quickness of draw and accuracy in the first shot is priority cuz after that the bear is on you and ready to kill you.
When I worked a few summers in AK (copper river and afognak), I carried 44 mag ruger red hawk. It’s a big piece of steel, but I do love how that gun levels out and holds steady.
If I felt like I was truly walking into a bear, I had my 300 wby with 200 grain partitions. While I know it’s a lot lighter than some carry, I felt a lot better about life carrying a rifle.
All the bears I ever ran into were more scared of me than I was of them, or didn’t care much about me.
Next time I go to AK, I’ll probably buy a smaller 44 or 10mm Glock for ease of carry. The 7.5” red hawk is a beast.
If you're into the big stuff...:-) I seen this in a gun store when I was down in Florida the other day. I never seen a 30-30 pistol before.
There was an outfit making a .45/70 revolver; don’t know if they still do. It was called the BFR - F for “fine”, they said.
If they say so....
I do own a .45/70, but it sure as hell ain’t a pistola! If I’m going to carry anything too big to be handy, I don’t see any reason to take the accuracy penalty of a handgun.
QUESTION: I know that in the Old West, it was SOP to carry a revolver with the hammer over an empty chamber, because Blow Your Leg Off.
I also know that the “proper” way to carry a 1911 is locked & cocked, because Single Action.
So the question - in the age of transfer bars.... Do people carry those big, SA revolvers cocked?
On the surface of it, it sounds like complete insanity, but I dunno.... maybe not? Because if the transfer bar addresses the safety concern adequately, wouldn’t it be better to have that step out of the way and go with the lighter trigger pull?
The only reason a 1911 is carried in the customary cocked fashion is because there are two other safety's that must be disengaged before firing. Carrying a single action revolver cocked would be completely unsafe and stupid.
I'm not sure if this is what you are asking, but carrying a loaded and cocked single action revolver would be stupid, IMO. That's why I prefer a double action revolver. I had the trigger on my 44 Mag pictured above reworked to provide a smoother double action pull. I can shoot it almost as accurately using the double action as I can manually cocking it.
As mentioned earlier, I suspect most bear attacks happen in just a few seconds under extreme duress. There's no way I'd want to fumble with a slide, hammer, or safety under those circumstances. I'd want to grab, point, and shoot. That's why I think a double action revolver is the way for me.
Double-action revolver: The guy who chooses this gun for bear defense needs the vast majority of his practice to be shooting double-action for accuracy and speed. If you can't unholster the gun and put the first round accurately downrange in about 3 seconds then you need to work on things. In my experience of shooting d-a guns, my first shot accuracy was maybe half that of shooting deliberate s-a.....and it stayed that way until I practiced a lot. Another thing I noticed shooting d-a (S&W 329PD .44 Mag) was that I always hit lower vs a deliberate aimed shot.
Fortunately if a bear really wants you it probably doesn't matter what you carry. Its mostly feel good sleep better thing. If you have warning you should be ready with whatever you choose.
Rut Nut's Link
Also you may have to shoot one handed and with my smaller sized hands it’s almost impossible with a revolver in 44 mag or higher. I watched a YouTube video with a narcotics detective in Chicago that was in 14 gunfights and he said they happened so fast most shooting was with one hand and he also said it was point and shoot front sight seen only. Food for thought
This will give you an idea of what it's like to get charged. Good thing this guy had his gun out and ready! I would just like to know if he fired into the water in front of the bear by accident or on purpose! ;-)
Yup that’s a crap your pants moment ha
My feeling is I would rather have the opportunity to use that pistol and at least have somewhat of a fighting chance than nothing at all. If that bear has you down and there is the chance of having that pistol in hand, damn right that thing is going to be pumping lead!!!
Kevin posted some really good stuff. A couple years ago, my buddy had to shoot a griz. He and his wife spooked a cub at close range. As soon as he saw the cub, he started to draw and barely got a shot off as the sow charged. He just pointed and shot as soon as the gun cleared the holster. She was about 6-7 yards away by then and the one shot rocked and turned her. Glock 20 10mm. He does not believe he'd have gotten a shot off if he was using a chest holster. It happens quickly, so practice and muscle memory are very important.
Kevin Dill. It's all there in the ammoland compilation of bear vs pistol. Lots of interesting encounters thwarted by many calibers including 9mm
Several of the bear attack/pistol defense accounts I have read the pistol was used "after contact" and laying on the ground. Kind of a stuff the gun into the bear while it's chewing on you and shoot situation. Also many many accounts of missing the animal on the charge but the noise and blast from the gun stopped or deflected the charge. Guess that part would be up to the individual bear.
When I die I certainly hope it's not in the fetal position....... maybe screaming like a girl, but not fetal.....
The guy in the video is Fred Eichler - Full Draw Outfitters
Any handgun meant for close-combat with a bear....should be attached to the shooter with a suitable lanyard or tether.
Someone was just killed in MT by a grizz.
The guy actually survived the mauling and surgery, but died of a massive stroke in the hospital.
I'm sure getting chewed on didn't help.
I’m shocked they stated the distance it was killed. Most talk I’ve seen here the wardens want the animal dang near on top of you before lethal force is used.
I see some handgun ignorance on this thread. An attempt to address it:
Nobody in his right mind carries a SA revolver cocked, whether it has a transfer bar or not. The old SAs without the transfer bar need to be carried with an empty chamber under the hammer, the ones with a transfer bar do not.
Most auto loading pistols of the “trigger safety” design, ala Gaston Glock, have no manual safety. They are striker fired meaning they are “half cocked” , for want of a better term, when you rack the slide to chamber a round and each time you fire thereafter. The trigger pull completes the action when you fire. Thus, it’s just like a DA revolver except the trigger pull is generally in the 4-6 lb. range instead of the 8-10 lb. range of a DA revolver. Definitely easier to be more accurate with a Glock than any DA revolver for most folks.
That said, some folks would be adequately defended with a large bore SA revolver, others better with a large bore DA revolver, and some with a semi-auto in a medium power with many more chances to miss or shoot your toe off. :-)
My personal opinion would be if you have little to no experience with a revolver I’d go semi auto. When quickly pulling a DA trigger on a revolver you will easily pull low left if your a righty. Much better off with a 5-6 pound trigger then a 11-12.
Good post, Drycreek.
My only disagreement is I don't consider my Glock "half cocked" when I chamber a round. To me, that's a fully cocked weapon ready to fire with a light pull on the trigger. I could never get used to carrying my Glock with a chambered round, nor would I want to.
I guess it's all speculation until you've actually been charged by a bear, but I'm guessing the muzzle blast is usually what ends the charge, regardless if the shot hits or misses. If so, I'd still prefer the simplicity of a large bore DA over carrying my Glock hot.
I don't think there's a definitive answer.
I've walked hundreds of miles and fallen down multiple times with a round in the chamber of my Glock. And I've ever only shot my penis off once. Just kidding, no incidents.
How many times have you had to quickly draw your Glock and shoot it under extreme duress? Don't cops have a nickname for Glocks because of accidental discharges?
I'll bet honest, my healthy fear of carrying my Glock hot is due to an accidental discharge. Fortunately nobody was hurt, but it scared the living crap out of me. That was the last time I carried it hot. It was a freak accident, but it wouldn't have happened with a DA.
Look atchu Ike! If my gun went off my manhood wouldn’t even get a powder burn!
I’ve not heard of all these accidental discharges of glocks.. other than thinking they’re a taser. Sounds like your trigger needs to be unworked back up to 5#. A personal defense weapon shouldn’t have a hair trigger... imo trigger needs to be deliberately pulled not unintentionally tapped. My keltec 380 has a long hard pull.. gives you time (moment.. split second) to consider your decision.
Matt, how did the AD happen? Just curious because I just got comfortable carrying my P80 hot. I won’t use any holster besides a kydex for a gun with no safety.
Many of the Glock ADs were holster issues and guys putting their trigger finger down along side the holster and then in the guard as the pistol comes out of the holster. That brand got a bad rap for poorly trained people using it.
The best training available now is from top tier one, ops guys that went into more dark rooms and shot more bad guys in a night than most LE or Swat teams do in a 30 yr career.
Not intended to be a slam on LE. Just a fortunate fact that it’s not needed in this country yet.
in the last 20 yrs, basic grunts have kicked more doors in, drawn their weapons, and actually engaged a real person with a lot of combat experience shooting back than even a swat officer.
So get trained. But pay the right guy.
If you can get picky, the Green Berets are normally very good instructors. That’s their thing.
And by extension if you can find a Delta guy that came through the green berets. Usually they are good real life pistol instructors.
I’ve taken a lot of training
I took a pistol course with John “Shrek” McFee. It is worth looking into if you want to hone your skills.
Matt, once. But I practice pulling it out while loaded frequently while I'm hunting. My holster makes it impossible for me to discharge it when I grab it or fall.
And I don't really care about how a gun looks, but CZ does make quality guns. I have a couple CZ shotguns. They're affordable and reliable.
Just looked them up. CZ doesn't make a 10mm.
The good thing about ignorance is that it is 100% curable of the Afflicted is willing to learn.
“ Nobody in his right mind carries a SA revolver cocked, whether it has a transfer bar or not. The old SAs without the transfer bar need to be carried with an empty chamber under the hammer, the ones with a transfer bar do not.”
All of that, I already knew... or suspected. I figure the 1911 has the grip safety for good reason, but just wondered if I had missed something and the transfer bar might actually be considered safety enough. Didn’t expect so.
Maybe I grew up with too many old Westerns, but thumbing back the hammer on the draw doesn’t seem to take any appreciable amount of time. On the first shot. I guess I just think (when I’ve seen video of bears charging) that the odds of a second or third aimed shot are mighty slim. Not saying a DA doesn’t make sense... if it fits your hand.