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Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

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Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby dooder » Thu Sep 10, 2015 7:59 pm

Mods could you just delete thread? I was wrong in citing an article I downloaded , it mentioned the approved by national forest / gov regulations but was not from either of them directly but a third party. I feel its just gonna confuse some and upset others. sorry .
Last edited by dooder on Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.



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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby markskor » Thu Sep 10, 2015 8:17 pm

Interesting $700 question - (That's what the fine is anyway.)

Perusing the "what is considered a legal canister in the Sierra" pages, find nothing where any ammo box is listed...could be... but doubtful. Some questions though:

How much does a regular (steel?) ammo box with padlock weigh?
How many cubic inches?
As a bear canister has to be over 9 inches wide (that is how far a black bear can open its mouth and provide enough pressure to crush anything), what are the outside dimensions of the ammo box intended?

If you are wrong, you got the $700.00?

Suggest call/ ask at the trail-head wilderness office.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby markskor » Thu Sep 10, 2015 8:28 pm

Just to add...Air tight?

Black bears possess a great sense of smell. Tests have shown they can detect/find an un-opened can of tuna under water. From a hidden position camp-side, a bear can easily discern what kind of food you have, how much, where the food is, and where you are.
Ammo box, dry-sack, odor-proof, air tight...no such thing.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby AlmostThere » Thu Sep 10, 2015 8:36 pm

There are pages on the official park websites listing the approved containers. Ammo containers are not on the Yosemite page as approved, therefore, they are illegal.

http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/containers.htm

Also, no ammo containers are approved for SEKI, either.

The strength of the container is immaterial - what makes it work is that the bear cannot get its jaws on any part of the container. Bears are getting canny about wedging a can in something to pry at it, tossing it off cliffs to break it on the granite, or popping the lid off Bear Vaults by deforming the canister -- the solution for all this is to pay attention to each individual park page and follow instructions for the container you are using. Also, listen to the ranger when you pick up the permit.

You will be protecting the bear, not your food, by following the rules. And in some jurisdictions you will be avoiding a fine ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars. Please don't try to play games with this -- you aren't the first looking for something else, and you won't be the last, but the rangers know whereof they speak in these matters.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby longri » Thu Sep 10, 2015 8:58 pm

AlmostThere wrote:There are pages on the official park websites listing the approved containers. Ammo containers are not on the Yosemite page as approved, therefore, they are illegal.

http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/containers.htm


The Yosemite web page doesn't include the Bearikade Scout either. They list only the the Weekender and the Expedition, "1766 and higher", whatever that means. I couldn't figure it out.

I wouldn't assume that the webmaster at nps.gove/yose has the latest information. There's nothing on the website that I've found prohibiting dayhiking with a sleeping bag, but I've been warned by rangers not to do this as it is a ticketable offense. Where is that listed? In what set of regulations? Apparently some of the NPS rules are not public, even though they affect the public.

All that said, I would check with rangers and then check again and then check a third time before heading out with some weird non-standard bear canister like thing. The main thing is to keep food and bears separate. But you also need to mind the NPS/NFS rules.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby dooder » Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:36 pm

Well after further reading the article on canisters came from interagency grizzly bear committee. They do state that these are test are on private not public lands. That's where I made my mistake. Approved by them not by a government agency. To answer your other questions. The nicer GI ammo boxes are sealed with a rubber seal in the lid making them air tight and water proof. I sincerely doubt the military is going to store ammo or anything else in a cannister that's going to allow water, dirt, and hummidty in with ammunition that peoples lives depend on. After all it may sit sealed for years unused. In regards to weight of the unloaded box , its 4 lbs plus a two small locks not giant master locks(unless bears got bolt cutters).
Why an ammobox? Mainly its square in a pack flat on my back, secondly, I'm just partial to military gear its rugged and American built, Its not about how much money i have. Its about knowing a steel box is stronger than a plastic bucket anyday of the week. I do have 700$ dollars, but i don't buy $500.00 tents and 200$ shoes either. Even a 250$ carbon fiber container would probably be destroyed in a fall or accident. A steel box may dent, but its not going to be destroyed easily. I agree with you on the bears sense of smell, but the best bear cannisters probably shoot to be hermetic in the seal? Air tight is possible especially in the military and hospital containers I would have to believe. I'm not claiming its impossible to smell what's been around it exactly but isn't airtight the goal for not attracting animals? The boxes smallest dimensions do exceed 9 inches depending on model. Averaging 522 cubic inches of storage. I was just thinking a 400 pound bear pouncing with its front end would destroy most plastic buckets in a single blow. Jaw gape aside. I think I will get at the info center again tomorrow. I'll probably end up up getting the stupid overpriced buckets. I was thinking in regards to bears believe me a plastic bucket wouldn't be my go to idea for keeping powerful animals from eating human food. If Its the only thing they accept then I'll gladly buy the bucket.
Last edited by dooder on Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby rlown » Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:38 pm

just get an approved bear can. so much simpler, or just rent one at the park.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby dooder » Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:46 pm

rlown wrote:just get an approved bear can. so much simpler, or just rent one at the park.

I hear all you guys in fact I think I'm in danger of coming off wrong here, I was really just thinking that there has to be something better and cheaper than a glorified bucket, i'll just buy the bucket if that's the only thing parks will allow. All I'm saying is some of these buckets look like an oversized snack container.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby WarrenFork » Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:56 pm

If you're doing the trip over Piute Pass from North Lake that you describe in your other thread, there is no bear cannister requirement in force in that area. So you could use whatever food storage method you wish without worrying about a fine.

I've been going into Humphreys Basin for 40 years and I've never seen a bear there.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby dooder » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:01 pm

WarrenFork wrote:If you're doing the trip over Piute Pass from North Lake that you describe in your other thread, there is no bear cannister requirement in force in that area. So you could use whatever food storage method you wish without worrying about a fine.

I've been going into Humphreys Basin for 40 years and I've never seen a bear there.

Thank you ! Yes that would be why I was asking for the potential piute trip only. I'll be in touch with the info center tomorrow I'll run this question by them. I was assuming I did need one because inyo national forest was mentioned as needing bear cannisters. But the map of recuired areas and a few other links wouldn't load correctly. Using a mobile device to access the net makes things a little harder when your not at home often.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby WarrenFork » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:29 pm

The list of areas where they are required in Inyo NF is found on this page of the forest website. If you can't access it with your device right now, these are the general areas:

    Bishop Pass Area
    Cottonwood Lakes Basin/Cottonwood Pass Area
    Duck Pass/Purple Lakes Area
    Fish Creek Area
    Kearsarge Pass Area
    Little Lakes Valley Area
    Mammoth Lakes/Rush Creek Area
    Mount Whitney Area

There are individual maps linked to the above page that show the extent of each area with a requirement. Bishop Pass is the closest to where you are going but Piute Pass and Humphreys Basin are outside its boundaries.
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Re: Locked ammo box for bear cannister?

Postby zacjust32 » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:37 pm

dooder wrote: I was just thinking a 400 pound bear pouncing with its front end would destroy most plastic buckets in a single blow. Jaw gape aside. I think I will get at the info center again tomorrow. I'll probably end up up getting the stupid overpriced buckets.


There's actually a lot of engineering, stress analysis, and material selection that goes into something like that. Not only is a cylinder one of the strongest shapes -it's how submarines are built- but it also helps prevent the bear from picking it up. An ammo can has neither of those properties. I can see the bear crushing the side and then peeling the top off like a can of tuna. An ammo can is great for other uses -peak registers- but it's not an ideal choice for a bearproof canister in my opinion. Plus, a real canister is lighter.
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