Backpacking Gun Owners

Grab your bear can or camp chair, kick your feet up and chew the fat about anything Sierra Nevada related that doesn't quite fit in any of the other forums. Within reason, (and the HST rules and guidelines) this is also an anything goes forum. Tell stories, discuss wilderness issues, music, or whatever else the High Sierra stirs up in your mind.
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maverick
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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by maverick » Fri May 04, 2018 8:14 am

Let's stay on topic please, this thread is a about guns. Thanks


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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by SNOOOOW » Fri May 04, 2018 12:09 pm

rlown wrote:NPS carry is illegal. Other parts Sierra are legal, even when not hunting season, unless specific restrictions are put in place. Pretty soon, they will phase out lead bullets everywhere.
https://www.nps.gov/grca/learn/manageme ... 2-2010.pdf

NPS carry is not illegal, those signs we all run into at passes when we enter NP's are old. Just to keep this short and sweet there are quite a few law abiding citizens carrying guns on their person daily and while out hiking/backpacking/fishing or whatever they are doing. :drinkers:
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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by dave54 » Fri May 04, 2018 7:07 pm

About 40 years ago when I first started paying attention to people in the woods, bow hunters were the more serious hunters -- a bit more ethical, conservation oriented, true sportsmen. The rifle hunters were the drunken yahoos. Over time, the roles reversed. As the rifle hunters saw the bow hunters being more successful, they switched to bows. The old-time bow hunters got tired of the new breed of bow men -- still drunken yahoos now with a bow instead of rifle. So the old time bow hunters switched back to rifles and started hunting later in the season.

Opening weekend I always hated doing deer hunter patrol. We would see camp after camp of weekend warriors, up for their one trip a year with their buddies, and always had more alcohol than ammunition. Huge bonfires blazing away, broken whiskey bottles all over, music blasting at jet aircraft noise levels, and complain to us in a drunken slur they couldn't spot any deer, while shooting up every road sign and survey marker. The worst were city cops. Always ready to flash their badge like we were somehow obligated to give them a pass on every hunting/fire/vandalism violation. (We made a lot of phone calls to police department internal affairs divisions after we issued the citations -- making sure their supervisors knew they were cited for hunting and firearm violations.)
Small town police and rural county sheriffs were never a problem, only big city PDs.

You could always tell the serious hunters -- clean camp and no alcohol. When you want to be in your blind at sunup you best not stay up until midnight drinking.
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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by k9mark » Sat May 05, 2018 1:27 am

I carry every time I go into the wilderness. There are areas I like to fish where the chance of running across nefarious two legged animals who could be up to no good. It never ceases to amaze me how I’m a magnet for running across people breaking the law in the woods. I deal enough with it at work and don’t want to have to deal with it when I’m trying to relax.
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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by Jimr » Sat May 05, 2018 10:00 am

Situational awareness.
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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by John Harper » Sun May 06, 2018 3:54 pm

Twice. First time a very lovely lady and her son came down the trail from the Cottonwood Lakes, followed soon by her presumed husband, who I spied with a revolver (.357 likely) on his hip. My buddies never saw it, but maybe because I was raised with firearms, It just caught my eye. She was definitely worth protecting.

Next time, a member of our fishing group brought his dog, but showed me his little S&W Airweight snubbie he had packed along. Not sure the reason, it was a big enough dog to scare a bear or a human.

No, thanks, too much weight and trouble to pack a firearm while backpacking. Leave the firearms for hunting and shooting.

John

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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by gary c. » Mon May 07, 2018 2:19 am

I don't but I have thought about it some. I have a couple friends that always have one with them. But in 10yrs of backpacking with them I've never seen one except when they are putting it in their packs at the trailhead. I think that if I ever pack up the San Gabriel again or someplace like it I might.
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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by richlong8 » Tue May 08, 2018 9:13 am

Like a lot of folks, I don't carry, because of the weight, not because I am against firearms, or people's right to defend themselves. Exceptions might be National Forest land where there is a higher probability of problems from marijuana growers, poachers, etc; But no one would know I was carrying, and my gun would stay concealed unless it was a life or death situation. But I rarely go into those areas, anyway, so it is not that relevant for me. I think we are a bit "spoiled" here in California. Our wilderness areas tend to be "safe", and over regulated, free of threats from grizzly bears, etc; But If I was backpacking in states like Wyoming or Idaho, you bet I would carry, and just about everyone is packing in those wilderness areas located in the Rocky Mountain states.

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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by creekfeet » Tue May 08, 2018 5:15 pm

The only people I ever saw packing were a couple of young dudes in Jennie Lakes Wilderness. To me personally, the notion of carrying a gun for protection in the high sierra is odd, as mountain lions are the only animal you'd theoretically need protection from, and by the time they have their sights on you, it's already too late. As for the greater threat of humans, while I've run into some odd ducks in the deep, I've never met someone that made me fear for my safety.

Now the foothills and mid-elevations are a different story. I've stumbled across evidence of grow ops, but never come across a man with a gun thank god. However, I knew a female interp ranger in her early 20s that had a pretty frightening experience. She was romping around on some obscure section of the North Fork Kaweah when she saw dudes decked out in camo carrying rifles coming the other way. Although she was off the clock, she was wearing an NPS ballcap that she preceded to throw in the bushes. When the men approached, she simply asked if they were hunting, although she knew what they were really up to. Apparently she had a long conversation with them in broken English, and everyone went on their marry way.

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Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by fishmonger » Fri May 11, 2018 2:08 pm

I've seen one guy open-carry a gun near VVR, on the way up to Silver Pass. Looked to me somewhat gung-ho ridiculous. Maybe he needed the extra exercise, hauling that lump of steel up the pass.

I don't own a gun, am not even a US Citizen (not that that would stop me from owning one). I've had enough of my gun carrying in the 1980s when I was drafted into the German military during the era of nuclear overkill. Guns, even military guns, felt like butter knifes in an artillery fight, so I never really saw them as a useful thing.

Have I ever felt I could have used one in the mountains? Once maybe, when I ran into a pair of sketchy camo-wearing survival-type rednecks at Grassy Lake, busy with their huge and illegal camp fire. Both had big knifes on their belts and you could sense they immediately knew I picked up on fact tha their fire was well above the then legal elevation. I just avoided contact and didn't say what I wanted to say, then moved on quickly. I'm not the ranger and am not gonna do anything silly just because some jerks felt the rules don't apply to them. Nothing that would have helped there and a visible gun could have complicated the situation. Guns always change the context, though, possibly escalate things before they need to escalate.

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