bear spray

“This was no bluff. The bear was comin’ on!”

Howdy, I’m a nature photographer living at Duck Lake, I was up on St. Mary ridge, outside the Park, when a larger bull elk, antlers still in the velvet, crossed the trail in front of me. I mounted the big lens and monopod and followed him into the wind seeking images and not making noise. Lost in the moment as it were…In less than a quarter mile I’m jolted back to reality by the jaw popping of a grizzly. Next timber is breaking and a dark blur appears. My camera gear is dropped, the can of UDAP retrieved from the right leg pocket of my Carhartt’s, safety popped and trigger pressed. When I sprayed the dark grizzly was close enough to touch with my out-stretched boot. The bear is huffing, growling, retching and shaking its head. This goes on for about tens seconds and the bear spins and crashes off. It happened so fast and yet seemed to be in slow motion from my perspective…I’ve faced two other bluff charges before and they were just that…bluff. This was no bluff. The bear was comin’ on! I was fine until the bear left and then the adrenalin took over and I began to shake. I was very “alive” for the rest of the day. Thanks for a product that potentially saved my life or at least a severe mauling…I have carried some form of peeper spray for the 12 years in and around the Park. I had occasion last year to use your competitors spray on a large black bear and found it didn’t work very well. I then switched to UDAP. Had occasion to use it on an aggressive moose that put me behind a tree and came in striking with front feet. This moose was pretty serious…UDAP at about three feet does wonders on an aggressive moose! As to the grizzly encounter I was doing some things wrong, into the wind, no noise and seeing images of bull elk, lost in the moment. I never saw or heard cubs, don’t know if the bear was on a carcass or if I just kicked him out of his day-bed…In any event, you have gained a loyal customer. I normally have two cans around. One for back up but on this day just the single can in my pocket. The heavy loaded S&W .44 was left back with the bike and in retrospect had that been my defensive weapon rather than the UDAP I think I would have been in bad shape. No doubt I would have gotten the revolver out and got one or two shots off but they would have had to have been very “lucky”. The UDAP resulted in not having a dead or wounded bear and hopefully this bear has had a large dose of “aversion therapy”. Thanks again! Good health and safe travels…
Ross Buckingham – Buckingham Wilderness Images

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