Is sleeping in the clothes you cooked in a bad idea? | High Sierra Topix  

Is sleeping in the clothes you cooked in a bad idea?

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Is sleeping in the clothes you cooked in a bad idea?

Postby TwoFortyJeff » Mon May 21, 2007 8:38 pm

I know this is asking for it in griz country, but is it okay in the Sierra? I usually don't take two sets of clothing with me.



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Postby markskor » Mon May 21, 2007 9:03 pm

Jeff,
I wore the same shirt and shorts... (Well, rinsed out occasionally) for 30 days on the JMT. I know that I had left jellybeans smashed in one of the pockets too...never was hassled. Bears in the Sierra want easy food...not your clothes.

Trust me here, of all the things to worry about in the backcountry, this is not one of them,
(Unless of course you spilled/ bathed in a quart of honey, and forgot to wash up.)
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Postby Snow Nymph » Tue May 22, 2007 8:08 am

we took only 2 sets of hiking clothes and rinsed every night. I had a set of fleece for evenings, which included cooking and to sleep in for the 30 nights. My R4 jacket is normally worn when cooking, and its also my pillow. We also camp away from popular campsites, and never saw bears the whole time. :bear:
Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free . . . . Jim Morrison


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Postby maverick » Tue May 22, 2007 2:28 pm

Hike on trail and camp off trail at a lake with no name or just
away from groups of people or bear boxes and you'll never have
problems with bears.
It's really that easy!
I dont hike on trails any more except when starting my trip, but when
I did, I'd cook dinner at 5-5:30pm and hike another 2-3 hrs away from
high usage areas.
What your describing is the protocol for grizzly country.
Our black bears are quite shy, if still wild, but can be quite a pest due to
humans not storing there food or cleaning up after themselves
properly.
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Postby giantbrookie » Wed May 23, 2007 12:32 pm

As noted above you don't have to worry about bears disturbing you because of your clothing odors etc. given that these (Sierran) bears aren't really interested in messing directly with people (ie they're not interested in eating people)--only their unattended food. That principle was at the heart of my own method of protecting my food in the pre-bear cannister days. I would sleep on my food (I use cannisters where required now, or bear boxes where available). My rationale was that me and my clothes (b.o., the spatters of fish blood and guts on my clothes, etc.)smelled much more strongly than anything in my food bags. I figured that the only thing the bear would detect was my smell and I figured they wouldn't be interested in eating me. I never encountered a bear in my camp in the nearly 30 years I did that and that included camping in places where there was as much bear poop on the ground as cow flaps in a normal pasture. I never change my main set of clothes on long hikes and I've never had the inclination to wash them (because I haven't wanted to stand around naked waiting for them to dry and don't want to devote the space and weight for a second set), although I'll wash my socks and rotate them each day (ie I bring two sets). That is mainly so I don't kill whomever is sleeping in my tent with me.


I might add that although I never had a bear raid my camp, I have had some bad experiences with smaller critters, although I can't say they ate the clothing off of me while sleeping. On one trip in the Russian Wilderness some animal (chipmunk or porcupine, probably) chewed the boots that I was using as my pillow prop--the boots were only marginally functional after that (they barely stayed on my feet and were disposed of after the trip). Another time a chipmunk chewed on boots, leather pack grommets, and a leather walking stick strap during a night at Tower Lake.

I've never done anything different in or out of bear country (I protect my food in non bear country from smaller critters anyway). It is true that the majority of my campsites have been in rather infrequently used places, but I have camped at some very popular (with bears and people) campsites, too.
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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Alpine legend?

Postby Strider » Wed May 23, 2007 12:41 pm

So that story about the guy who was dragged off by a bear in his sleeping bag isn't true?
'Hike long and perspire'
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Postby maverick » Wed May 23, 2007 3:25 pm

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Postby markskor » Wed May 23, 2007 4:13 pm

Noticed that when wading through the above post, nary a mention of any serious encounters in our own Sierra Nevada.
Guess our bears are civilized...
Probably read HST too.
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Postby quentinc » Wed May 23, 2007 8:36 pm

Being cooked in the clothes you sleep in is a bad idea. :)

The Great R.J. Secor always slept with his food in his sleeping bag, in lieu of more conventional storage methods. I wouldn't be surprised if he still does that, although I haven't had the honor of hiking with him recently.
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Postby cmon4day » Wed May 23, 2007 9:18 pm

Remember to defend your food and rock the bears. If we all do that there will not be a bear problem.

Vic
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Postby Strider » Thu May 24, 2007 7:21 am

What music do you recommend to rock the bears?
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Postby huts » Thu May 24, 2007 7:52 am

I had heard that AC-DC was good for scaring off bears and other large mammals. Now days I might use Assemblehead. Or you could do what they did in the tunnel under the freeway in Sacramento. The powers that be found that classical music, played very loud, kept away undesireables. (the last part - I am not joking)
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