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Q:
what do I do when I'm being chased by a bear?

Question by wlhoyt. Uploaded on April 06, 2009

Answers (40)

Top Rated
All Answers
from deadeyedave08 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

hold your breath, turn around, take your time, aim and shoot it dead, dont miss or your toast

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from BuckTheSystem wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Step one: Put your head between your legs
Step two: Kiss your a$$ goodbye

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from jfose140 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Drop your pack if you have one. This could be your best chance of distracting the bear. If you stay calm, it may get preoccupied with your pack, especially if it contains food and allow for a clean getaway. If the bear has already started chasing you and it’s you it’s after, I would revert to the previous two answers.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 1 week ago

May I add to jfose140

It’s obvious your not going to out run the bruin, drop to the ground, curl up drawing both your face and knees into your chest and place both hands behind your neck and try not to make a sound.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from MB915 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

1) Make sure if going to bear country to bring a fat friend.
2) You dont have to be the fastest to out run a bear, you just cant be the slowest, hence the reason you brought a fat friend. Just make sure you out run your friend and the bear will not get you.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from wallofsam wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Throw it a jar of honey! That one in my kids Hundred Acre Woods books sure seemed to like it! LOL

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Clay gave the best suggestions. Sort of standard operating procedure. Additionally if you have a backpack, dropping it is not a good idea as we have had a number of backpackers attacked in Wyoming and Montana and the backpack absorbed much of the scratching and biting inflicted by the bear.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 5 years 1 week ago

... unless it's a black bear, of course. Fight back unless you want to become bear dung.

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from 2Poppa wrote 5 years 1 week ago

1.) Carry bear pepper spray. Experts recommend that hikers in bear country carry with them bear pepper spray. Bear pepper spray is a highly concentrated capsaicin spray that creates a large cloud. This stuff will usually stop a bear in it’s tracks.
2.) Don’t run. When you run, the bear thinks you’re prey and will continue chasing you, so stand your ground. And don’t think you can out run a bear. Bears are fast. They can reach speeds of 30 mph.
3.) Drop to the ground in the fetal position and cover the back of your neck with your hands. If you don’t have pepper spray or the bear continues to charge even after the spray, this is your next best defense. Hit the ground immediately and curl into the fetal position.
4.) Play dead. Grizzlies will stop attacking when they feel there’s no longer a threat. If they think you’re dead, they won’t think you’re threatening. Once the bear is done tossing you around and leaves, continue to play dead. Grizzlies are known for waiting around to see if their victim will get back up.

Pepper Spray ...

http://www.udap.com/

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from idahooutdoors wrote 5 years 1 week ago

One of those situations where you need to be able to think on your feet. Having a firearm or bear spray would be a good start, if not, and it charges climb a tree, find a club, throw rocks, yell, make yourself look as big and mean as possible, just fight to survive, I am not a big fan of the play dead idea, unless it is on you and you have no other choice, then maybe give that a try.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from renegades wrote 5 years 1 week ago

shoot it!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

if its Brown,...lay down. If its black,...Fight back!

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from tourneyking734 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

if you are carrying a pistol make sure you file off the front site so that when the bear shoves it up your butt it comes out easier

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Huntandtrap09 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

agree with steve!!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 1 week ago

wlhoyt, do you believe in God? You better pray since he's got you on the run instead of the other way around.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 5 years 1 week ago

My answer was confusing - I agree with steve182, lay on stomach, hands behind neck, and play possum with a brown. Fight back a black, same with a cat.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dannyjr321 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

you dont have to out run the bear just the person you are with

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from bassgittinart@b... wrote 5 years 5 days ago

Out run your buddy!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from cardo111 wrote 5 years 17 hours ago

Don't remove your backpack if you have one, it can help protect you. If it is a grizzly, there is no reason to fight it will just make him/her kill you and eat you faster, play dead on your stomach and play dead as others have described. While this is a good method it is not guaranteed an encounter with the wrong grizzly/brown bear will still sometimes result in being killed and eaten alive. Regarding a black bear attack experts now agree; fight for your life unlike grizzlies when these bears attack(though not as often as grizzlies do as a percentage of their total population)it is usually to hunt you and eat you not to size up a threat.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jordy wrote 4 years 51 weeks ago

It depends what kind of bear it is.
-If it's a griz or brown bear, I would reccommend to climb a tree. Make sure that it's a tree that the bear won't be able to push over, and make sure you're at least 12 or more feet up.
-If it's a black bear, lay belly-down on the ground, with your arms over the back of your neck. If it rolls you over, keep rolling until you are on your belly again. If the attack lasts more than 30 to 45 seconds, fight back with whatever you can get your hands on.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntfishVA wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

you cannot outrun a bear, most bear attacks end when the person stops fighting. You should curl up into a fetal position, protecting your face, and be as still as possible. The odds are the bear is attacking you because you were near its fresh kill, or you were near its cubs. It doesnt want to eat you. When in bear country, occasionally holler out, or wear bells.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from joe123456 wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

you could do one of 2 things you could use pepper spray, or if you don't have pepper spray at your disposal grab a big stick and start swinging

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from ltmssbb wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

dpends what kind of bear. if its a brown bear drop and play dead if its a black bear run away or turn around and shoot.thats what i was told by aold wise hunter.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from sskeanderson wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Run faster than your hunting partner....just kidding.
Always wear UDAP Pepper Spray. Pepper spray is very effective and teaches the bears a life lesson. Just like getting sprayed by a skunk when a cub. Many of the rangers and workers in National Parks like Glacier and Yellowstone feel bear quality pepper spray does a great job and conditions the bears to avoid humans.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Well, 2Poppa, and cardo111- Kudos boys-
They covered most all you can do if encountered by a bear-1st step DON'T PANIC(Easier said then done)-AS A RULE, the drop fetal position for Grizz is recommended..while with Blackies--It's FIGHT with what you have or can grab as a weapon! What I have read from experts(ie people who have been charged by bears) is to NOT RUN,face the bear, not looking directly at it since eye contact is considered a threat, but back away slowly while lifting your arms above your head telling the bear to get otta here! MOST bears will avoid human contact but there are always excepts to the rule!
Prevention is key to avoid contact all together, such as talking loudly or wearing bells on your backpack, let the bears know you are there!
It has been documented in Grizz attacks to climb a tree when charged people have survived...but make sure to not climb a small one(for fear of the bear breaking it!) but also one with low hanging branches cause Grizz WILL climb it,just like a human can-like a ladder!
Statistically speaking, regardless of bear species you have about a 50/50 chance of surviving a bear attack whether fighting back or playing dead; this is a fact based on those who survived bear attacks.
Personally, I would make sure I have a BEAR GUN WHILE IN BEAR COUNTRY!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntcamp wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

Grizzlies can climb trees if they chose to. But good option anyway, it will stop all but the most determined bear. They do not necessarily need branches either.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from debins33 wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

It depends on which kind of bear but if its a black bear you make a lot of noise and undo your jacket puff yourself up and try and make yourself look bigger but black bears wont usually attack you unless you surprise them or get near their cubs.If its a grizzly bear the same rules do not apply they are bigger and more aggressive if one charges you get on the ground in the fetal position and stay still and quiet so it thinks your dead and it will eventually leave.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from klug3 wrote 4 years 40 weeks ago

Out run your hunting partner.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from NYhunter wrote 4 years 40 weeks ago

shoot it right between the eyes,and any thing worth shooting once is worth shooting twice.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from uwurst wrote 4 years 40 weeks ago

You don't have to out run the bear, you just have to outrun your friend!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jsobrien wrote 4 years 38 weeks ago

Run up the closest tree

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kevin Paproski wrote 4 years 29 weeks ago

Drop your bag to keep the bear occupied. But if you aren't running then keep it on to armor you from the blows. NEVER CLIMB A TREE.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from hunterboy wrote 4 years 27 weeks ago

Grizzlie- play dead
black bear- shoot it
kodia- sorry your dead

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jordjohn44 wrote 4 years 24 weeks ago

There are several things to do.
1.Try to act bigger to intimidate the bear while yelling and making as much noise as possible.
2.Play dead and cover your neck and face.
3.Unload on it.
4.If a Grizzly, climb a large tree.
5.Outrun your buddy.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

A 12Ga with SLUGS!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from tretex123 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

keep running haha

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from DR angler wrote 4 years 6 weeks ago

Get behind a tree and setup to shoot it!!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from rudyglove27 wrote 3 years 48 weeks ago

Agreed with 2Poppa answer above and A + 1 for you sir!!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from GunNut wrote 3 years 37 weeks ago

Never run, if you do the bear will see you as a nice meal and chew your face off. If you do see a bear don't stand straight up, get into a non-threatining position. Make a lot of noise. If it's a black bear coming for you, fight back because he's looking for a nice meal. If it's a grizzly bear play dead, the bear probabally thought you were threatening it . Once it notices you are no harm it will probabally go away.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from afyffe8600 wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

shoot everything you got and some

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from MB915 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

1) Make sure if going to bear country to bring a fat friend.
2) You dont have to be the fastest to out run a bear, you just cant be the slowest, hence the reason you brought a fat friend. Just make sure you out run your friend and the bear will not get you.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from BuckTheSystem wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Step one: Put your head between your legs
Step two: Kiss your a$$ goodbye

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 1 week ago

May I add to jfose140

It’s obvious your not going to out run the bruin, drop to the ground, curl up drawing both your face and knees into your chest and place both hands behind your neck and try not to make a sound.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Poppa wrote 5 years 1 week ago

1.) Carry bear pepper spray. Experts recommend that hikers in bear country carry with them bear pepper spray. Bear pepper spray is a highly concentrated capsaicin spray that creates a large cloud. This stuff will usually stop a bear in it’s tracks.
2.) Don’t run. When you run, the bear thinks you’re prey and will continue chasing you, so stand your ground. And don’t think you can out run a bear. Bears are fast. They can reach speeds of 30 mph.
3.) Drop to the ground in the fetal position and cover the back of your neck with your hands. If you don’t have pepper spray or the bear continues to charge even after the spray, this is your next best defense. Hit the ground immediately and curl into the fetal position.
4.) Play dead. Grizzlies will stop attacking when they feel there’s no longer a threat. If they think you’re dead, they won’t think you’re threatening. Once the bear is done tossing you around and leaves, continue to play dead. Grizzlies are known for waiting around to see if their victim will get back up.

Pepper Spray ...

http://www.udap.com/

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

if its Brown,...lay down. If its black,...Fight back!

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from deadeyedave08 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

hold your breath, turn around, take your time, aim and shoot it dead, dont miss or your toast

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from jfose140 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Drop your pack if you have one. This could be your best chance of distracting the bear. If you stay calm, it may get preoccupied with your pack, especially if it contains food and allow for a clean getaway. If the bear has already started chasing you and it’s you it’s after, I would revert to the previous two answers.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 5 years 1 week ago

My answer was confusing - I agree with steve182, lay on stomach, hands behind neck, and play possum with a brown. Fight back a black, same with a cat.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from bassgittinart@b... wrote 5 years 5 days ago

Out run your buddy!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from cardo111 wrote 5 years 17 hours ago

Don't remove your backpack if you have one, it can help protect you. If it is a grizzly, there is no reason to fight it will just make him/her kill you and eat you faster, play dead on your stomach and play dead as others have described. While this is a good method it is not guaranteed an encounter with the wrong grizzly/brown bear will still sometimes result in being killed and eaten alive. Regarding a black bear attack experts now agree; fight for your life unlike grizzlies when these bears attack(though not as often as grizzlies do as a percentage of their total population)it is usually to hunt you and eat you not to size up a threat.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jordy wrote 4 years 51 weeks ago

It depends what kind of bear it is.
-If it's a griz or brown bear, I would reccommend to climb a tree. Make sure that it's a tree that the bear won't be able to push over, and make sure you're at least 12 or more feet up.
-If it's a black bear, lay belly-down on the ground, with your arms over the back of your neck. If it rolls you over, keep rolling until you are on your belly again. If the attack lasts more than 30 to 45 seconds, fight back with whatever you can get your hands on.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from ltmssbb wrote 4 years 48 weeks ago

dpends what kind of bear. if its a brown bear drop and play dead if its a black bear run away or turn around and shoot.thats what i was told by aold wise hunter.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from klug3 wrote 4 years 40 weeks ago

Out run your hunting partner.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kevin Paproski wrote 4 years 29 weeks ago

Drop your bag to keep the bear occupied. But if you aren't running then keep it on to armor you from the blows. NEVER CLIMB A TREE.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from jordjohn44 wrote 4 years 24 weeks ago

There are several things to do.
1.Try to act bigger to intimidate the bear while yelling and making as much noise as possible.
2.Play dead and cover your neck and face.
3.Unload on it.
4.If a Grizzly, climb a large tree.
5.Outrun your buddy.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from wallofsam wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Throw it a jar of honey! That one in my kids Hundred Acre Woods books sure seemed to like it! LOL

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 5 years 1 week ago

Clay gave the best suggestions. Sort of standard operating procedure. Additionally if you have a backpack, dropping it is not a good idea as we have had a number of backpackers attacked in Wyoming and Montana and the backpack absorbed much of the scratching and biting inflicted by the bear.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from idahooutdoors wrote 5 years 1 week ago

One of those situations where you need to be able to think on your feet. Having a firearm or bear spray would be a good start, if not, and it charges climb a tree, find a club, throw rocks, yell, make yourself look as big and mean as possible, just fight to survive, I am not a big fan of the play dead idea, unless it is on you and you have no other choice, then maybe give that a try.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from renegades wrote 5 years 1 week ago

shoot it!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Huntandtrap09 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

agree with steve!!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dannyjr321 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

you dont have to out run the bear just the person you are with

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntfishVA wrote 4 years 50 weeks ago

you cannot outrun a bear, most bear attacks end when the person stops fighting. You should curl up into a fetal position, protecting your face, and be as still as possible. The odds are the bear is attacking you because you were near its fresh kill, or you were near its cubs. It doesnt want to eat you. When in bear country, occasionally holler out, or wear bells.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from sskeanderson wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Run faster than your hunting partner....just kidding.
Always wear UDAP Pepper Spray. Pepper spray is very effective and teaches the bears a life lesson. Just like getting sprayed by a skunk when a cub. Many of the rangers and workers in National Parks like Glacier and Yellowstone feel bear quality pepper spray does a great job and conditions the bears to avoid humans.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ralph the Rifleman wrote 4 years 45 weeks ago

Well, 2Poppa, and cardo111- Kudos boys-
They covered most all you can do if encountered by a bear-1st step DON'T PANIC(Easier said then done)-AS A RULE, the drop fetal position for Grizz is recommended..while with Blackies--It's FIGHT with what you have or can grab as a weapon! What I have read from experts(ie people who have been charged by bears) is to NOT RUN,face the bear, not looking directly at it since eye contact is considered a threat, but back away slowly while lifting your arms above your head telling the bear to get otta here! MOST bears will avoid human contact but there are always excepts to the rule!
Prevention is key to avoid contact all together, such as talking loudly or wearing bells on your backpack, let the bears know you are there!
It has been documented in Grizz attacks to climb a tree when charged people have survived...but make sure to not climb a small one(for fear of the bear breaking it!) but also one with low hanging branches cause Grizz WILL climb it,just like a human can-like a ladder!
Statistically speaking, regardless of bear species you have about a 50/50 chance of surviving a bear attack whether fighting back or playing dead; this is a fact based on those who survived bear attacks.
Personally, I would make sure I have a BEAR GUN WHILE IN BEAR COUNTRY!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntcamp wrote 4 years 44 weeks ago

Grizzlies can climb trees if they chose to. But good option anyway, it will stop all but the most determined bear. They do not necessarily need branches either.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from debins33 wrote 4 years 42 weeks ago

It depends on which kind of bear but if its a black bear you make a lot of noise and undo your jacket puff yourself up and try and make yourself look bigger but black bears wont usually attack you unless you surprise them or get near their cubs.If its a grizzly bear the same rules do not apply they are bigger and more aggressive if one charges you get on the ground in the fetal position and stay still and quiet so it thinks your dead and it will eventually leave.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from hunterboy wrote 4 years 27 weeks ago

Grizzlie- play dead
black bear- shoot it
kodia- sorry your dead

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from tretex123 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

keep running haha

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 5 years 1 week ago

... unless it's a black bear, of course. Fight back unless you want to become bear dung.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from tourneyking734 wrote 5 years 1 week ago

if you are carrying a pistol make sure you file off the front site so that when the bear shoves it up your butt it comes out easier

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jim in Mo wrote 5 years 1 week ago

wlhoyt, do you believe in God? You better pray since he's got you on the run instead of the other way around.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from joe123456 wrote 4 years 49 weeks ago

you could do one of 2 things you could use pepper spray, or if you don't have pepper spray at your disposal grab a big stick and start swinging

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from NYhunter wrote 4 years 40 weeks ago

shoot it right between the eyes,and any thing worth shooting once is worth shooting twice.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from uwurst wrote 4 years 40 weeks ago

You don't have to out run the bear, you just have to outrun your friend!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jsobrien wrote 4 years 38 weeks ago

Run up the closest tree

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

A 12Ga with SLUGS!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from DR angler wrote 4 years 6 weeks ago

Get behind a tree and setup to shoot it!!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from rudyglove27 wrote 3 years 48 weeks ago

Agreed with 2Poppa answer above and A + 1 for you sir!!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from GunNut wrote 3 years 37 weeks ago

Never run, if you do the bear will see you as a nice meal and chew your face off. If you do see a bear don't stand straight up, get into a non-threatining position. Make a lot of noise. If it's a black bear coming for you, fight back because he's looking for a nice meal. If it's a grizzly bear play dead, the bear probabally thought you were threatening it . Once it notices you are no harm it will probabally go away.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from afyffe8600 wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

shoot everything you got and some

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