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17

Bears don’t really hibernate, although they lower their activity during winter. Here’s one sample study of Black Bear winter behaviour in Sierra Nevada, California: Thirty-nine (62 %) bears were winter-dormant for at least 2 weeks; the remaining 24 (38 %) remained active all winter. Here in Czech Republic we don’t have many bears, most of them cross ...


12

"Better" might be the wrong question. Here are few alternatives: "Safer" - Canister, hands down. Depending on where you are, bears have been known to study brilliant bear hangs, find the critical tie point 3 trees over, and with a casual flick of a claw, order takeout. On the other hand, I have seen bear canisters take a tumble off a several hundred foot ...


11

Bear canister rules are often relaxed in the winter. However, this will depend on where you are camping. On the east coast, in the Adirondacks, the rule is: NYSDEC Regulation Requires The Use of Bear Resistant Canisters by Overnight Users in The Eastern High Peaks Wilderness Between April 1 And November 30. NYSDEC encourages campers to use bear ...


9

Bears tend to jump and swipe to get your bear bag. You want above the reach of the tallest bear in the area, I'd recommend 8-10 feet at a minimum. You also want the bag at least a bear leg's length from the trunk of a tree, probably 4-6 feet at a minimum (if possible). Some bears will also kamikaze from the bear cables. I know of some folks who swear ...


8

Some reasons for leeway: Regulations allow for it. Each park and wilderness area have their own rules and regulations. Some may allow for relaxed practices during known hibernation periods of their local bear population, though some may not. This is simply something that will require personal research into the area in question. Inclement weather The ...


7

It depends on the area. Some places (Yosemite, Glacier Bay) there are pretty much no safe bear bags and you need a bear-proof container. The bear bag should be high enough that a bear can't reach it from the ground, and far enough from the tree trunk that it cannot reach it from the trunk of the tree. A couple of things that are as important as the number ...


4

Better is often relative. I would not like having to carry a bear canister around as it is extra weight and bulk. However there are likely places where you will not have a tree suitable for hanging a bear bag, and the canister is the only way to go. It really depends on where you are going to be hiking.


4

I don't think there are any standards, but I would shoot for at least 10 feet high, and at least 4 feet away from the trunk of a tree. Make sure the bag is suspended on a branch too small to support the weight of a bear. It should also be hanging down from the branch by around a foot to prevent other smaller animals from having direct access to the bag.


2

Like already mentioned in other replies, it depends were you are and the weather changes. I'm working on a bear project in the Canadian Rockies and we know the bears can be active until January. They should be in there den until April, but there are exceptions. We always take bear spray with us during winter fieldwork.


2

I would suggest following the bear rules year round. In the Canadian Rockies, we still have areas closed due to bear activity in the middle of January. Plus ravens will make short work of anything left accessible, not to mention worrying about attracting cougars and wolves. Here's a couple links outlining safety for camping in the backcountry, and in case ...



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