Originally Posted by gunslinger
I carried a .38 for awhile while riding in the back country.
The US Army originally used .45s. Around the time of the Spanish-American war they switched to .38s. Like you, they realized .38s had no stopping power and switched back to .45s.
One night, on the edge of the Cohutta wilderness area, near Dally gap on Tumbling Creek road, one of the biggest darn bears I've ever laid my eyes on crossed the road in front of me. That big fellow looked almost as big as a horse. |
We see bears frequently when riding in the mountains. It's always a thrill to see them, but never have I seen one as large as this fellow was.
I realized I didn't have a big enough gun.
Now I ride with .44 mag on my belt.
This reminds me of a funny "story" I heard some time back...
A big tough guy is on leave in Alaska and wants to do some hiking in the back country. Before he leaves, he stops in a gun store. He is concerned he will run across bears and wants protection. He looks at .44mag, .45, and even a .50. He asks the shop owner which would be better to stop a bear.
The shop owner informs him that they will all be about the same. However, it is very important that whichever gun is chosen, he makes sure to file down the front sight nice and smooth. Confused, the person asks "why is that?"
The shop owner replies "That's because after you shoot the bear, he will be so mad that when he rips the gun out of your hand and shoves it up your *** it won't hurt so much."
The consensus of people I know is that a handgun (while better than nothing) will not stop a bear. In addition, their sloping cranium can actually deflect most handgun caliber head shots and their body area is mostly fat/fur making vitals hard to target. I hope neither you nor I ever need to test that theory. :)