By Montana Grant

Posted: April 30, 2022

When a bear attacks, you need to do a quick draw! It is essential that you have practiced the skills needed to draw a pistol or your bear spray. Any hesitation or failure to get Cocked, locked, and ready to Rock, means the bear will be quicker.

Most bear attacks happen fast and without warning. A biker is traveling on a trail and gets chased or attacked. A hunter returns to a kill site and gets mauled. Hikers sneak up on a sow and cubs and gets attacked. 

Bears, and predators, normally have no interest in humans. Attacks tend to be more defensive than offensive. When cubs are involved, Mama Bear does what she needs to protect her babies. Other bears are defending a food source. But there is always a bear, or cougar, that has an injury, illness, or wound that creates a situation where a human becomes an easy meal.

Bear Spray can help protect you from a bear or from other predators, including a human. The problem is that many humans with bear spray have never used it. They take it along, but it is hanging on their back, shoved in a pocket, or not quickly accessible. 

If you have never pulled the trigger on a gun or bear spray cannister, you are at serious risk. The bear spray requires that you hit a pie plate target, that is moving, at 30 yards or closer. The nose, face, and eyes are what needs to be sprayed. You could hose down the entire bear and miss the face. A gun needs to hit a vital area on the anatomy. Semi-automatic pistols, and guns, with rarely used high powered bear loads, are seldom cycled, and can easily jam. A revolver rarely jams but you only get 6 rounds. Pump shotguns can be short chucked and not reloaded. A single shot allows just one shot.

There are several new Holsters for Bear Spray that are available. Make sure that you get a holster that allows for frontal draw. You want the holster to be on your shoulder strap, hip, or chest. Generally, many prefer an opposite draw. For example, if you are right-handed, mount the holster on your left hip, shoulder strap, or center chest. If you are more efficient elsewhere, personalize the draw to your likes. Once you are comfortable, practice. Use an old can of spray to practice the draw, safety release, and spray. 

Mounting a canister on a bike, wheeler, or… means the spray is not available when you are away from your ride. If you are knocked from a bike, answering Mother Natures’ call, all access to protection is gone. You could be caught with your pants down.

Remember to that you may encounter other predators. Mountain lions, dogs, wolves, snakes, hogs, criminals, and… All will be impacted by a directed spray of Bear Spray to the face. Any encounter will be a surprise. Adrenaline, fear, and danger will slow your reactions and common sense. Muscle memory, from practice, will save your life.

Whatever carry you choose, make sure that you practice. Aim small, miss small!

Montana Grant

New Podcast!

Riley's Meats - Butte Wild Game Processing