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.
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
Posts: 10484
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by maverick » Wed May 02, 2018 6:47 pm

Those of you who carry while backpacking, have you ever had to pull a gun in self defense against another human or animal? Has anyone here had a gun pulled on them while backpacking? Has anyone had a close call during hunting season from either end of a gun?


Professional Sierra Landscape Photographer

I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org






User avatar
rlown
Topix Docent
Posts: 7097
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 5:00 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Petaluma, CA

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by rlown » Wed May 02, 2018 6:52 pm

I never carry unless it is hunting season and that is my intended purpose. Did run into two women, which one was carrying a 9mm. I didn't see it or I would have turned her in. My friends saw it. That was when the ranger was checking permits on the lyell fork. They were on their way to Whitney. They didn't remember to bring their permit. :)

User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
Posts: 10484
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by maverick » Wed May 02, 2018 7:02 pm

What year was that Russ, on your last trip?
Professional Sierra Landscape Photographer

I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org

User avatar
rlown
Topix Docent
Posts: 7097
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 5:00 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Petaluma, CA

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by rlown » Wed May 02, 2018 7:17 pm

Last September 25th. In Yosemite none the less. I think she was carrying for personal protection against men and not animals (draw your own conclusion with that last part of the statement.)

User avatar
Tom_H
Topix Expert
Posts: 789
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 1:11 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Camas, WA

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by Tom_H » Wed May 02, 2018 7:29 pm

The backcountry is where I feel more safe than anywhere else. A gun would be nothing more than unnecessary weight to haul around. I've run into some rednecks at trailheads, but never met anyone in the backcountry who was anything but nice. I've dealt with bears, boars, rattlesnakes, alligators, and bobcats and never needed a weapon.

I will say that I never go into mountain lion or grizzly country unless in at least a small group and only with lots of bear spray. Whomever is running drag has a responsibility always to be looking over his/her shoulder in those territories.

User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Docent
Posts: 4363
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:19 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Contact:

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by Wandering Daisy » Wed May 02, 2018 7:53 pm

Years ago when I backpacked from Bear Valley Ski Area down to the Mokolumne River to spend the night,during hunting season. I was wearing hunter orange vest and hat, thank goodness, because as I returned I ran into a hunter's camp where they were totally drunk and shooting at beer cans. I stopped to talk with them; at least I figured they would not accidently shoot me then. They asked me if I lost my gun, then complained about no deer. I ran into all the deer down on the river, 3000 feet below. Have honestly never seen a backpacker in the Sierra toting a gun.

Run into quite a few backpackers with guns in the Wind Rivers. The backpackers mainly carry hand guns. There are grizzlies there, but a hand gun probably would not do a lot of good. Everyone carries bear spray. Just about anyone on a horse has a rifle. Quite a few wolves, so I think they are trying to protect their horses. Not much different than in town. Lots of gun racks in the back window of trucks. It is just very much a gun culture there. Also, hunting season starts really early (mid-August for some game and bow hunting) and overlaps with prime backpack season.

User avatar
apeman45
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 86
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2010 1:08 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Folsom ca

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by apeman45 » Wed May 02, 2018 8:17 pm

40 years ago I used to throw firecrackers at aggressive bears. I've never once ever had a need for a gun anywhere, especially in the backcountry. I once had a gun pointed at me by a miner that claimed I was fishing on his claim. He was placated by the fish I gave him. There used to be a lot of squatter "miners" living in the remote sections of the American River. A retired ranger wrote a book about the crazy stuff that used to happen down there when they were planning on building the Auburn dam. It's called Nature Noir.

User avatar
rightstar76
Topix Expert
Posts: 715
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 3:22 pm
Experience: N/A

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by rightstar76 » Thu May 03, 2018 2:01 am

What happened to apeman45 reminds me of these two passages in the Tahoe Sierra by Schaffer, 1987, page 57:
The few in active use today are sometimes guarded by gun-toting miners. Therefore, avoid active claims…
Page 111:
…and the gun-toting owners mean it. Hundreds of small mining claims dot the lower Tahoe Sierra, and the prospectors that work them…

User avatar
balzaccom
Topix Fanatic
Posts: 1818
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 9:22 pm
Experience: N/A

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by balzaccom » Thu May 03, 2018 7:34 am

Last year we met a hiker in Emigrant Wilderness--single male, mid-twenties, with a military style rifle strapped to the outside of his pack.

We don't carry firearms, because we don't want the weight, and have never seen a need in 50 years on the trail.
Balzaccom

check out our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Docent
Posts: 4363
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:19 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Contact:

Re: Backpacking Gun Owners

Post by Wandering Daisy » Thu May 03, 2018 9:25 am

That reminds me that when I climbed Tower Peak, while returning, I ran into the Marines in training. They have a mountain warfare training base up at Levitt Meadows. They were fully loaded with rifles, ammo and huge packs and fighting their way through the brush. Are you sure your guy with rifle was not part of that base?

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: freestone and 2 guests