RV Boondocking and Bears

by charlotte
(sacramento,ca.)

Hello there! I am wanting to do RVing indefinitely until I either find a place I want to live or just get bored. I plan on traveling all over the United States, possibly Canada, Mexico and so forth. I plan to visit all the national and state parks,lakes. I am scared though of running into bears and mountain lions. I don't take kindly to being eaten, it's not my destiny! I know there is pepper spray for bears and hopefully mountain lions, but I am terrified of them getting that close to me in the first place to use the pepper spray.

People say to stand still and wave your arms, don't run, don't look the bear in the eye etc.. I don't know if I have the courage to stand still while a bear is charging me. Can you give me any ideas on how to get over this fear? I think if I had a gun that would give me all the courage I need, I don't want my fear to ruin my trip to these places. I am not going to populated camps, but boondocking off the beaten track to save money, so what do you think?


Good Question
by: Susan

Hi Charlotte,

Here are a couple of tips:

Don't leave anything outside your rig that smells: no coolers (bears know what a cooler is), no makeup, toothpaste, etc.

If possible, avoid camping totally alone. Try to find a place where there are a few other folks camping, too.

If you're walking alone, sing or whistle; keep your eyes open - the noise you make will most likely keep bears away. I'm not sure about mountain lions. I carry a British police whistle (extremely loud!) with me when hiking. My mom gave it to me years ago and I figure it might scare an animal off. Haven't tested that theory yet.

I don't carry a gun. If you decide to do so, bear in mind that gun laws in every state vary; make sure you don't run afoul of the laws.

If you get attacked, fight back with everything you've got!

I don't know if any of the above will help, but hope you won't let your fears stop you from adventuring!

Comments for RV Boondocking and Bears

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Nov 05, 2016
can bears get in rv's through the windows
by: Anonymous

can bears get in rv's through the windows or doors?

Dear Anonymous: Well, it you leave doors or windows open, they sure can. Don't forget, they are really strong - if the window is too small, they'll just tear it bigger if they smell something good. Susan

Jun 28, 2015
Native of Grizzly Country
by: Scott

Most attacks occur to people in groups of 2 or less. Very few actual attacks in US but many campgrounds and RVs get raided. They hate the sound of banging pots and pans, also rangers carry either sports horns (signalling the end of quarters) or boat horns. The very loud noise stops them. Also very bright lights will do the trick. MY father just hit the horn on the car and held it. He also threw a large rock and hit it-all that did was infuriate the bear. The horn and lights worked.

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