rlown wrote:OK. I think FB is completely unsafe and if there is a debate going on there, it's not coming to this site. Guess that depends on your definition of "site."
Too often, a debate on such topics as water treatment or food storage amounts to wishful thinking vs. too much fail, not enough success.
I am making my decisions in all matters of risk based on what information, anecdotal or otherwise, I can find, not other people's wishful thinking, conspiracy theories, or rage (I cannot believe the emotion invested in such things!) - and I am still waiting for someone to show me any incident where an Ursack was used in the Sierra and survived the bear encounter. "My ____ has never been bothered" doesn't count - if the bear did nothing, it means nothing. I am concerned only when the bear does something. Testing elsewhere than the Sierra where the bear played with it for anything less than two hours doesn't count. The reports I have heard of Ursack-bear conflict involve many hours of bear-on-bag action, teeth and claws fully engaged repeatedly and ongoing, with hikers throwing things and shouting at the bear, and the bear getting the food and never leaving until it does - not a few swipes and some chewing and giving up.
So far, between all the rangers and the people I hike with and the people I talk to on the trail, I haven't heard of any such occurrence of a Sierra bear not getting food from an Ursack - you'd think if anyone had, they'd be yelling about it every time the subject arises. So between the failed testing and loss of approval in Yosemite, the lack of anything resembling data, and the many accounts and pictures of torn up (not improperly used - the knots were tied so well the bear never got into the opening - he didn't need to!) Ursacks - I will stick with what I use and has successfully thwarted the efforts of bears HERE in California, not other states, and in Yosemite, not somewhere the bears are still wild. And I do so while knowing that canisters have also failed - but in far lower numbers and with many, many successful bear-on-can incidents reported. I've had the bears bother my canister a number of times and I drove them away without a quibble, because they don't taste the food through the canister. The bear incidents in which the bear obtains food in Yosemite have diminished successfully thanks to their campaign to get people using canisters and lockers. That's more meaningful than impassioned pleas to let everyone use something that weighs 10 oz less.
My first encounter with an Ursack was a store owner refusing to sell it to me when I told him where I was going. He was sick of giving refunds.