The problem with hearing matters word of mouth is that you don't hear all the facts. Here are a few things to clear up about that bear incident out at Ft. Greely a few days ago:
The guy was carrying a .30-06. He stumbled upon a moose carcass, and his dog shortly thereafter ran off. Just then, he heard crashing through the woods nearby, and saw the bear charging at him. He managed to get five shots off. The fifth shot, which finally killed the bear, was at point blank. The bear still had enough strength left in it to give the guy's arm a swipe.
Whatever the case, it proves again the prudence of going armed when in the lesser-civilized parts of AK. And there's a lot of it.
Someone, I think Ranger Nick, asked me if a .44 was a good tool against bear. One of my neighbors, who does firefighting this time of year, can personally attest to the potency of the .44 against bears. One season, fire had driven several bears to his camp. He shot seven, killed six. He tells me that two shots from a .44 will usually take down your average bear.
But, some believe the bigger, the better. Another neighbor of mine, who does a lot of guide work, recently bought a S&W .500. He invited me to come over and shoot with him some time.
Will I turn that offer down? Heh, you can answer that one yourself.