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Video: Bear Pepper Spray

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Video provided by Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks and used with their permission.

Video Transcript

Winston Greely: Encountering an aggressive bear is rare, but to do it five times and survive makes Chuck Bartlebaugh an authority on bear pepper spray.

Chuck Bartlebaugh: When buying bear pepper spray, you want to make sure you're buying actually bear spray, not personal defense spray.

Bear spray always has the word "bear" in the label. It also clearly shows the proper ingredients of capsaicin and related capsaicinoids, and the spray duration and the distance of the spray, so you can make an informed consumer purchase.

Winston Greely: Carrying bear pepper spray while out hiking or hunting in bear country is wise, but avoidance is still the best prevention to a bear encounter. Learn to recognize bear sign and always aware of your surroundings.

If you do happen to encounter a bear and it is not aware you, quietly exit the area. If the bear is aware of you, use a firm voice along with a non-threatening gesture, while slowly backing away, keeping your attention on the bear.

[CALMLY] whoa bear, whoa bear

Chuck Bartlebaugh:In the unlikely event the bear charges, you'll want to get your spray out and give a warning blast towards the bear, with a slight left-to-right movement. And if the bear doesn't defer its charge, then you're ready to do a second or third spray. The other scenario is if the bear is like, boom, it's coming towards you. You want to aim directly at it and try to keep aimed at it and continuing spraying until it diverts its charge.

[YELLING] No, Stop!

Winston Greely: It's been shown that bear pepper spray is more effective then a gun, but it needs to be accessible and it's recommended to carry two.

Wiston Greely, out among Montana's wildlife, fish, and parks.

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