Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Bear Necessities: Don’t Panic, Don’t Run, Don’t Climb – Dave Brown

Rating: ****

The Bear Necessities:  Don’t Panic, Don’t Run, Don’t Climb is a short, very informative and comical read about the dos and don’ts when it comes to encountering a black bear.

The article is mostly factual and explains what you should and should not do when you have an encounter with a bear.  It is informative because it gives reasons for the do’s and don’ts.  It also explains what to do to try to avoid a bear encounter in the first place.  It explains that one of the things that you should do when you encounter a bear is to not panic and just stand there.  Sounds easier than I’m sure it really is.  You should not turn and run because it will run after you and the bear will win the race.   Black bears can run up to 50 kilometres per hour.  You also should not climb a tree because they will win that battle too.  The article tells the reader what to do such as facing the bear and speaking loud and firmly so it will know you are a human, and not prey.    You should also walk backward, giving the bear an escape route.  To try to look bigger and strong, you should wave your hands over your head.  If you are in a group, you should stay together, yell and bang pots or make noise.  If you have food, throw it in another direction so you can move away and divert its attention.  It really only wants the food.

I have learned a lot of useful information from this article.  I have never really thought about what I would do if I encountered a bear and hope I never do.  When at a friend’s cottage a few years ago, we saw a young bear but it was a far distance away and it didn’t see us.  We also had the protection of the cottage if it came close to us.   Since reading this article, I now have a general idea of what I would do and would not do. 

     Brown, Dave.  “The Bear Necessities:  Don’t Panic, Don’t Run, Don’t Climb”.  Ottawa Outdoors, (Ottawa) March, 2014.  Print.

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