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Bear Safety Information

Bear Safety

A Real Encounter by Zack Knaebel (Owner/Pilot)

In a split second the enormous grizzly bear had dropped to all fours and like a nightmare freight train in broad daylight was racing at me with sharp teeth and huge claws. The .44 mag Smith and Wesson Revolver felt very small shaking violently in my hands as my loud, deep voice said "Whoa bear, whoa bear." I kept telling myself, "Hold your fire, hold your fire." The big hand gun felt so small; it took all I had to hold my fire until the bear got closer. I wanted to stop the bear, killing it if necessary. I did not want to start shooting and run out of ammo, just pissing the bear off, and not stopping it.

Hannah with the 44 bear deterrent

Just as I was about to pull the trigger on this huge interior grizzly bear, charging towards me and my sister. It stopped!

5 yards away the bear stood up again like a giant that it was, it smelled my human scented wind, dropped to all fours and was gone! Charging up the steep tundra covered mountainside, muscles rippling, at close to 40 mph. What a powerful and impressive animal. A sure sign of being in the Alaska Wilderness. Adrenaline still scourging through my body, my hands still shaking the gun violently, I looked at my sister, whose beautiful brown eyes were now the size of saucers, and asked, "Do you mind if we keep walking down this awesome game trail?" Obviously, it is a bear trail.

You see, I knew the bear was gone, gone, way gone, over into the next river system gone. The way the grizzly bear charged up the mountain, and knowing that bears do not like human scent, I was not afraid to continue down the bear trail.

My sister on the other hand. No way in hell was she going to keep walking on that specific game trail. I was bummed. After having spent the last hour charging, swearing, falling and crawling through brush, and walking on skinny little caribou trails that petered out. I had finally tripped into a nice, big, firm and wide game trail. I didn't want to give it up, especially after I had scared the bear off of it.

My sister and I had spent the last two days hiking into a wild and remote mountainous valley to scratch out a Super Cub landing strip. After getting charged by the bear we were thankful to be alive and unhurt and were very well aware of how terrible it could have turned out.

I had startled a huge grizzly bear. It charged. Thankfully we had been making noise, talking and swearing at each other, we did not allow each other to get separated in the thick brush, and my bear safety firearm was very handy. Also, I was comfortable shooting it, having practiced, and I had it loaded with special Alaska Made Bear Ammunition. In this section of the website you will find very important bear safety information. Please review this bear safety information carefully. Whether you choose to use bear spray or a firearm for bear protection, please use common sense.

Read This Before Going Out
Bear Facts

Bear Safety Checklist

  • 1) Bring bear protection. Either bear spray or a firearm
  • 2) Be familiar with your bear protection
  • 3) If using a firearm, use a big one! A shotgun or rifle are best. A hand gun smaller than a .44 will feel real small shaking in your hands, as you aim it at a charging grizzly bear.
  • 4) Don't pitch a tent or camp on a bear trail
  • 5) Keep food tied up in a tree away from your camp or in approved bear resistant containers.
  • 6) Make noise when walking through thick brush
  • 7) Keep your head up and your eyes and ears alert