If you’re hiking or camping in bear country, there are a few things you should be prepared for on the off chance that you encounter a bear. If you’re hitting the trails, try to avoid hiking at dawn, dusk, or night when bears are most active. If it is unavoidable, try to make sure you’re not hiking alone because larger groups are less likely to be approached or attacked. Bears also don’t like noise so this can be a good deterrent. Having a can of bear spray on you can be a great tool if used as a last resort but it is best to carry it directly on you rather than in your pack and its important that you know how to use it and click off the safety. If you have the unfortunate encounter of coming across a bear, this doesn’t necessarily mean they are going to attack so if possible try to back away and leave the bear undistributed – only use bear spray as a last resort.
If you’re camping, everything above can still be applicable to bear safety. The biggest difference is that you’ll have quite a bit more supplies and most importantly, a lot more food. If you’re at a camp site with a designated bear box make sure that you put all food, trash, and toiletries in there. If you don’t have a designated bear box at your campsite, you’ll want to invest in a bear canister to store your items. A bear’s sense of smell is seven times better than a bloodhounds so anything that may have a scent should be placed in the bear box out of precaution. If you’re washing your dishes, it is good practice to strain the dishwater and throw away the larger chunks of food. Ultimately, bears are not out to attack you, they just want your food. So if you run into a bear or they get into your belongings do your best to make some noise to scare them off but do not provoke or run towards them! If you have any further questions, drop them in the comment section below!