20 May 2006

Bear Attack at Ft. Greely

Heard this one yesterday from one of our guys who works on one of our construction contracts there. Someone from the base garrison was out walking his dog on the base premises when he was jumped by a bear.

Fortunately, he was carrying a pistol. We don't know if it was his service pistol or not, but in the end, he shot off the bear's jaw and inflicted other injuries on it. The bear died near the spot.

The man, however, suffered some serious slashing injuries to his chest. He had to be medevacked to Fairbanks.

We've had a lot of brave beasts roaming around these parts lately. There's a bear sow and two cubs that have been boldly wandering around our property, moose have been a more common sight than normal, so it's a good idea to have something to protect yourself with while hiking.

That's why I carried my .44 while exploring an island on the Tanana today. Didn't really expect to encounter bear or moose, but you never know. Saw several moose tracks, though, and plenty of evidence that the beavers have been busy.


BobG said...

I always carry a 44 in bear country, a Redhawk or Blackhawk. So far I haven't had to shoot anything, but I have had to scare off a couple of cow moose that thought I wanted to eat their calves and got belligerent.

ranger nick said...

You said you carry a .44 in bear country. What load do you use? Hard cast or hollow-point? Living in the mid-west, we don't have bears. It would be a good thing to know if one decides to visit Alaska. Are you under gunned with a .44 Mag. Bigger the better! Does your DE work well in cold weather? That fellow was lucky to escape with his life.

The Mad Hatter said...

The Deagle's barrel has polygonal rifling, so hard-cast bullets are a no-no. I use 240gr hollow points in my .44.

Does it like the cold weather? No, it does not. I took a Canadian friend of mine shooting this past winter during what is typically the coldest time of the year. The DE failed to extract several times. I think that the -30 temperatures made the extractor claw very stiff.

Of course, you take your chances dealing with steel and high pressures at those temperatures. Metal can get very brittle around there.

My USP, on the other hand, shot very reliably, as to be expected. But then again, it was tested at temperatures out to -40.

BobG said...

We don't have brown bear in my area (Utah), but we do have a lot of black bear in some areas. I usually like a 240 grain or 300 grain semi-wadcutter; I am more concerned with penetration with a bear than expansion. The semi-wadcutter cuts a good channel, and with the diameter of the bullet I don't think further expansion is needed. I would be even more concerned about penetration if we had browns, since they can be larger and have thicker fat, muscle, and cartilege to penetrate.
Just my opinion.

ranger nick said...

Does anyone you know in Akaska carry that Ruger Alaskan revolver? Is it the perfect bear gun? Would heavy hard cast bullets and heavy powder charges be better? I have a DE, but big revolvers are my first choice. I have shot the big S&W 500. it is very formidable. Not for everyone. So if i carried a big revolver in Alaska, I would be okay? Double-action preferred? What makes you feel comfortable. Alaska is also formidable too. Is a 41 Mag too little for bear country? I find these question very intriguing. Sorry to have bored you. Your blog is very good=).