Black bear question

yakimanoob

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Less dangerous than strapping her in a carseat and driving around. Would you be an idiot if you had a near miss with her in the car with you?

100%. Just like with a near-miss in a car: think hard on what happened and what, if anything, you can do to avoid the next one and/or stay alert enough to avoid the danger. Same goes for bears.
 

Brendynhewitt

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From personal experience: growing up my father taught me a lot of cool and useful things but there are things I wish I would’ve paid attention to more or asked my dad to show me. In my young adult life now I’m playing “catch up” trying to learn new things like archery hunting, basic mechanics, etc. I’d make the argument showing her these things now would make the risk associated with them smaller and prevent her from trying to learn everything later in life by herself with no one to help her (not saying you wouldn’t be there for your daughter, just pointing out it’s hard to have my dad help me with much anymore when he’s hours away). So show her these things now, protect her, and she’ll be better suited later on in life.
 

wllm1313

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There are a few bear threads going right now, but I didn’t want to derail the authors thread. I have a question about black bear behavior, specifically in Colorado (if that makes a difference?) Are attacks very common? Can black bears be very aggressive towards people in areas where they are heavily hunted? First, a little background to what is generating this question.
So I was able to convince my wife to bring my 3 year old and join me on an afternoon elk hunt. I have a system to load my daughter in my pack so she can just cruise with me. We get about an hour into the hike and bump a big sow and 2 of her cubs at about 20 yards. It scared the crap out of my wife. I yelled “hey bear!” at her a few times but she was slow to get running. My daughter was stoked and just kept saying “hey bear” (in a cute friendly way). I’m in a bit of trouble with the wife right now as she thinks it was reckless and dangerous to put our daughter in that situation. I had my pistol with me and I was drawn on the bear quickly and would’ve had a open clean shooting lane if she charged. I’m very comfortable in the back country, and frequently hike solo into bear and lion country. I also practice with my pistol and feel like I was prepared. I have had several bear encounters, but each time was either by myself or with the guys… never with the family, and never that close to a mama with cubs.
So… what do you guys think? Was I an idiot for bringing my daughter out there with me? I’m just trying to raise my daughter in the outdoors and away from the sheltered life in front of the screen that I see in so many kids lives.
Thanks for reading!
View attachment 195530
+5000 gnar points if you take a bear with your daughter in a pack

That pic's awesome, you and @Dsnow9 really crushing the dad's and their daughters pic game.

I don't change my camping behavior much due to bears, some place with highly habituated bears, I'd be a bit more careful about food... probably keep the kids closer. General CO bears not an issue.



Great sign from AK

1639153034469.png
 

Akcabin

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Moose in our yard all winter can be kinda dangerous. But we try to keep a look out. And let the kids, now grandkids play outside. It's just part of our lives.
The picture of the grizzly bear reminded me of the 500 pound 5 year old grizzly that I had to shoot or get mauled. On our back porch from 3-4 feet. I can still remember that. It almost made it into our house. But thats another story.
So one morning our kids come in from sleeping outside in a tent. 5-6 years old with neighbors little girl. Tell us they heard a bear outside their tent. We give them the oh boy that's scary jive. I go down to the lumber store n visiting with my neighbor. He tells me he went to feed his dog n one was missing. Only thing left was a collar n his other dog hurt. He lives a hundred yards away. Guess they did hear a bear.
My beautiful wife bought me a 45 for when I'm in the bush but I don't care for the extra weight. I do carry it sometimes. For me , I'm more concerned about the wolves, they think
 

220yotekiller

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Don't worry about it, I grew up on a ranch in CO and now live in WY and spend a lot of time out and about. If it makes her feel any better get her a gun that she can shoot and give her some confidence and independence, mebbie 270.Rose will check in and give her perspective.
 

jlong17

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'Merica
Did the Mrs. get over it yet?
Ya, I think she has gotten over it… after talking with friends and reading some of these posts hahah.
I had an amazing hunting season, which reminds me that I need to do a write up soon. But anyways, we spent a lot of time this year looking for bear sign and educating my daughter. I live near apple growing country so there is no shortage of bear activity. At 3 years old she is getting pretty good at identifying game tracks and scat. We weren’t able to locate any bears while actively looking, but found plenty of sign. I’d say the encounter we had in CO was a win and an experience we will all never forget!
 

Don Fischer

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There are a few bear threads going right now, but I didn’t want to derail the authors thread. I have a question about black bear behavior, specifically in Colorado (if that makes a difference?) Are attacks very common? Can black bears be very aggressive towards people in areas where they are heavily hunted? First, a little background to what is generating this question.
So I was able to convince my wife to bring my 3 year old and join me on an afternoon elk hunt. I have a system to load my daughter in my pack so she can just cruise with me. We get about an hour into the hike and bump a big sow and 2 of her cubs at about 20 yards. It scared the crap out of my wife. I yelled “hey bear!” at her a few times but she was slow to get running. My daughter was stoked and just kept saying “hey bear” (in a cute friendly way). I’m in a bit of trouble with the wife right now as she thinks it was reckless and dangerous to put our daughter in that situation. I had my pistol with me and I was drawn on the bear quickly and would’ve had a open clean shooting lane if she charged. I’m very comfortable in the back country, and frequently hike solo into bear and lion country. I also practice with my pistol and feel like I was prepared. I have had several bear encounters, but each time was either by myself or with the guys… never with the family, and never that close to a mama with cubs.
So… what do you guys think? Was I an idiot for bringing my daughter out there with me? I’m just trying to raise my daughter in the outdoors and away from the sheltered life in front of the screen that I see in so many kids lives.
Thanks for reading!
View attachment 195530
You were hunting with a boe when thsat happened? Black bear attacks are not common but they do happen. Usually a bear attack is set off by the human surprising the bear, especially one with cubs. I would not take a three year old hunting in country where I might run into a bear especially with a bow if I bow hunted. Rare as a black attack is, they do happen! With just that bow and attacked from 20 yds how you gonna protect yourself much less the three year old on your back? As I said pretty rare to have a black bear attack but it's the rare attack you should consoider. black bears have killed people. I'd suggest a book to you; "Alaska Bear Tales" by Larry Kaniut. Only one or two black attacks in it but a black though less likely to attack can kill you as dead as a grizzly. Wild animals are wild animals and a three years old needs to learn to give then all space. I chringe when I see photo's of people kids playing with them like pet's. Wild animals are wild animals, treat them as such!
 

Don Fischer

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I’d say you’re doing a good job. With as few bears as I see when I’m up there out hunting, set against all the stories I hear of the dumpster diving bears, the ones breaking into cabins, the never ending calls to the wardens about “problem bears” etc. I’d figure your chances of a bear encounter are about as good in the middle of any rural Colorado neighborhood as they are off when you’re off the beaten path.

Most people just need to change their perspective. A few quick stats I just looked up out of curiosity: “In 2019, 608 child passengers age 12 and younger died in motor vehicle crashes, and more than 91,000 were injured.”
“More children ages 1–4 die from drowning than any other cause of death except birth defects.” “For children ages 1–14, drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death after motor vehicle crashes.” Across the U.S. more kids drown in backyard swimming pools and are killed in car wrecks daily than were ever harmed while doing a healthy activity like hiking and hunting. And I don’t see riding in the backseat or summertime pool fun being canceled anytime soon. My wife hates it when I pull out such logic on her though, good luck!
I think that relating to auto accident's just doesn't cut it. Consider the number of kids exposed to auto's every year as opposed to encounter with wild animals! Most wild animals given the chance will avoid humans of any size. Key word here is MOST!
 
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Don Fischer

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Thanks! You always find the best articles haha
"Wide Open Spaces" is absolutely super. Black attacks are indeed rare but not unheard of. A mauling by a bear is a mauling by a bear no matter the type bear! Wild animals, they are wild animals and you should never forget that regardless of how cute they seem! 25 attacks in the last 20 years doesn't seem like much unless, your one of the 25! Wild animals!
 

KipCarson

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@Don Fischer You’re correct about the exposure levels being different so yes the facts could be spun either way to support either side of an argument. You’re also correct in saying “MOST” because there are few absolutes in this world and there are usually outliers. I still say the odds are so greatly in his favor he should take his 3 year old everywhere to to everything and educate her hands on as much as possible as I personally do with my 3 year old.

My question to you is when do you think it’s ok to take off the bubble wrap?
You state “I would not take a three year old hunting in country where I might run into a bear especially with a bow if I bow hunted.” When they’re old enough to make adult decisions on their own? When they’re old enough to be packing heat and protect themselves?

And if it’s just the lack of firearms protection that’s your concern, just know that firearms are in the top 3 of the causes of childhood death, so by running around with guns to be safe, instead of bows, you’ve increased exposure to that cause cause of childhood death. So if risk aversion is the number one job of a parent then @jlong17 and myself are doing terrible jobs…
 

Don Fischer

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@Don Fischer You’re correct about the exposure levels being different so yes the facts could be spun either way to support either side of an argument. You’re also correct in saying “MOST” because there are few absolutes in this world and there are usually outliers. I still say the odds are so greatly in his favor he should take his 3 year old everywhere to to everything and educate her hands on as much as possible as I personally do with my 3 year old.

My question to you is when do you think it’s ok to take off the bubble wrap?
You state “I would not take a three year old hunting in country where I might run into a bear especially with a bow if I bow hunted.” When they’re old enough to make adult decisions on their own? When they’re old enough to be packing heat and protect themselves?

And if it’s just the lack of firearms protection that’s your concern, just know that firearms are in the top 3 of the causes of childhood death, so by running around with guns to be safe, instead of bows, you’ve increased exposure to that cause cause of childhood death. So if risk aversion is the number one job of a parent then @jlong17 and myself are doing terrible jobs…
I think we tend to get kids out to early to follow in our steps. To take a three year old out in a pretty safe enviorment is fine. Kid that's interested will find it fun spotting a rabbit, never heard of a rabbit mauling anyone! Also take a kid out that can make the walk on shorter bird hunt's introduce's hunting. Not necessary to take a kid into wilderness to expose it to hunting. But if you really want to expose them, avoid all those computer games, my experience with them is they overwhelm a kids mind and they become all important. It is certainly possible to get kids out and interested in hunting without going into wilderness where dangerous attacks could happen. Now could happen means maybe and maybe not, that's the risk you take choosing that country to go into. How much risk you willing to risk with a kid? My son started going along on bird hunt's pretty young but he had to be able to walk along. Then the bird hunt became second to me to getting the son out and about. He used to hunt for things he called fox holes, he saw a hole it was a fox hole! Going into country that is potentionally dangerous is not to teach the kid anything but rather to sooth yourself.

Just thinking, you want to get a kid interested in fishing? Go after fish it can catch a lot of, not steelhead or even bass! Work your way up as the kid gains interest! Avoid dangerous areas till the kid is much more experienced.
 
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wllm1313

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You were hunting with a boe when thsat happened? Black bear attacks are not common but they do happen. Usually a bear attack is set off by the human surprising the bear, especially one with cubs. I would not take a three year old hunting in country where I might run into a bear especially with a bow if I bow hunted.
:rolleyes: there have been TOTAL 25 fatal black bear mauling's in the last 25 years, US + Canada. CO alone has millions of user visits a year.

There is no where in CO I would hesitate taking a kid hiking because of bears.
 

Don Fischer

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:rolleyes: there have been TOTAL 25 fatal black bear mauling's in the last 25 years, US + Canada. CO alone has millions of user visits a year.

There is no where in CO I would hesitate taking a kid hiking because of bears.
And you live in Boston. I have lived in Colorado, Montana, Alaska and now in a very civilized Oregon.
 
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wllm1313

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And you live in Boston. I have lived in Colorado, Montana, /alaska and not is very civilized Oregon.
I put my current location of residence in my profile that is correct.

I was born in CO, lived there 20ish years, moved to MT for 3 and some change, and been to AK a bit... 4 weeks this summer visiting the in-laws.

On the AK front... heck of a lot of kids and families running around bicentennial park when I was there in Sept... saw a bunch of moms running with little ones in jogging strollers. I'm under the impression that park gets a grizzly or 2 from time to time.

We got bears out here too...
1639422167194.png

But continue with the ad hom attacks as opposed to anything factual.
 
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gouch

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I've lived my whole life in an area that, I am told, has the highest concentration of black bears in the country. I started taking all four of my daughters out into the forest before they could even walk and never once gave a thought to bears or cougars being a threat to them. There are some very real risks to taking small children into the forest. The drive out there being by far the most dangerous. Any body of water is a real threat, as is the forest itself because a child can easily wander off and get lost. As far as animals go, the only ones I ever worry about are yellow jackets, ticks and of course those two legged critters that seem to be everywhere you go these days.
 

Don Fischer

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Quite obvious that many of you have never run into trouble with bears, neither have I. But that does not mean I don't understand the possibilities. Living in a dense bear area as gouch does it appears to me he has become pretty appathetic about the danger's and choose's to ignore them. Seems a lot of guys do. That is the real danger of the black bear, people just don't get concerned about them. Maybe if we could talk to the 25 mauled by them in the past 20 years we could get some better answers! I don't chringe when I go into bear country but I don't force the issue either. If I took one of my grand kids in with me I'd also have a rifle along sufficient to stop a problem.
 

gouch

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Quite obvious that many of you have never run into trouble with bears, neither have I. But that does not mean I don't understand the possibilities. Living in a dense bear area as gouch does it appears to me he has become pretty appathetic about the danger's and choose's to ignore them. Seems a lot of guys do. That is the real danger of the black bear, people just don't get concerned about them. Maybe if we could talk to the 25 mauled by them in the past 20 years we could get some better answers! I don't chringe when I go into bear country but I don't force the issue either. If I took one of my grand kids in with me I'd also have a rifle along sufficient to stop a problem.
No I am not apathetic about any danger nor do I ignore any danger when it comes to my family. The danger of black bears is so minimal that it isn't a concern. Our kids and grand kids are in danger all the time and we all have to decide how much risk is worth taking. You can look up the statistics on how kids get killed and "killed by wild animals is so far down the list that it is of no statistical relevance. If you do find a case of a kid being killed by a black bear it probably happened in his back yard. Cars are the main killer of kids but we all take our kids out in cars. Swimming and boating kill lot of kids each year but we let them recreate in and on the water. No worries. Many kids killed by guns each year but I have never seen anyone on any hunting forum ask the question " Is it worth the risk to have guns around kids?" The chance of your kid being killed by a bullet is ridiculously small yet still thousands of times greater than the chances of your kid being killed by a bear even if he or she spends every day out in bear country. Realistically your kid is more apt to die by your own hand than by a bear. Sorry to rant but it drives me crazy that people choose to fear a non danger while knowing that life is full of real danger that they just live with because it's just part of everyday life. Having said all that, I did know a guy who proudly showed, anyone who wanted to see, the scars he wore from a black bear attack when he was 15. But even he admitted that maybe shooting a bear with a .22 then trying to run it down wasn't the brightest thing to do. Even he didn't worry about bears after that and his kids grew up running around, mostly unsupervised, in the forest full of bears just because that is where they lived.
 

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