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Open Roads Forum  >  Around the Campfire  >  General Topics

 > Scary Incidents in Life, Part 1

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mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/28/20 09:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've had a few scary things happen in my life, but I'll mention one here:

Years ago, I used to bring my RV to Kaspers Wilderness Park, a rural dry camping area just east Of San Juan Capistrano, CA. Since I liked hiking and exploring, I would be off exploring the woods and fields in that area whenever I visited. The only weapon I carried was a large knife. On one of these "expeditions" I was walking through a large open field covered in tall grass. Dotted throughout the field were many "islands" consisting of tall brush and other vegetation.

As I approached one of these "islands" I detected a faint growling sound. Approaching closer, the growling became more apparent. It was surely an animal sound. So, when I was about 10 yards away I stopped, not wanting to investigate any longer. I knew there were bobcats in the area, but wasn't sure about mountain lions. So I backed up rapidly, still keeping an eye on that brushy spot. I eventually turned around and made a rapid exit back to my campsite. I never hiked that area again. It just spooked me too much. In future travels, in other wilderness area in the country. I started carrying a revolver, just in case. Never needed to use it, but it provided peace of mind.[emoticon]


Mr. Ed (fulltiming since 1987)
Life is fragile. Handle with prayer.

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Lightning55

Pleasanton, CA

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Posted: 12/28/20 09:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My son tells a story about when he was deer hunting several years ago. He was on a sloping hill side and was overlooking a small gulch. Looking through the rifle scope, he was scanning the landscape across the gulch which might have been less than 100 yds away. It was covered with small shrubs and as he scanned the scope, there sat a large mountain lion staring at him. It seemed to be in a frozen glare and was clearly focused on my son. Just watching this lion stare at him sent chills down his back and then slowly the lion slipped down under the dense shrubs, glaring at him the whole time. The first thing that came over my son was fear that he could no longer see him or know where he was. Slowly and quietly, he retreated back up the hill to his ATV, looking back every few steps to see if he could see the mountain lion. He said even though he was armed, he was definitely scared that the lion might have been stalking him. He says he'll never forget that day.

Geo*Boy

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Posted: 12/28/20 11:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Carry bear spray whenever your out in unfamiliar areas with wildlife.

mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/28/20 11:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Geo*Boy wrote:

Carry bear spray whenever your out in unfamiliar areas with wildlife.


That’s a good idea. I’m handicapped at this time but if I can hike in the future, I’ll certainly consider it. It may also be a good deterrent for any of the Homo sapiens species who may have bad intentions towards me. [emoticon]

* This post was edited 12/28/20 05:26pm by mr. ed *

mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/28/20 11:36am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lightning55 wrote:

My son tells a story about when he was deer hunting several years ago. He was on a sloping hill side and was overlooking a small gulch. Looking through the rifle scope, he was scanning the landscape across the gulch which might have been less than 100 yds away. It was covered with small shrubs and as he scanned the scope, there sat a large mountain lion staring at him. It seemed to be in a frozen glare and was clearly focused on my son. Just watching this lion stare at him sent chills down his back and then slowly the lion slipped down under the dense shrubs, glaring at him the whole time. The first thing that came over my son was fear that he could no longer see him or know where he was. Slowly and quietly, he retreated back up the hill to his ATV, looking back every few steps to see if he could see the mountain lion. He said even though he was armed, he was definitely scared that the lion might have been stalking him. He says he'll never forget that day.


Being curious, I would have loved to see whatever fearsome creature was growling at me. But “curiosity killed the cat.” In my case, the “cat” might have killed me! [emoticon]

JIMNLIN

Oklahoma

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Posted: 12/28/20 01:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My experience with a mountain lion was in the mid '50s in central Oklahoma in scrub oak/erosion washed gullies. I'm a 13 year old and pond hopping/duck hunting by myself. I've slipped that pond for several years during duck season. I was almost to the pond standing on a higher point where two draws became one. I stood still for maybe 5 min figuring the best way to come up behind the pond dam. I happened to look to my right which was down the the main draw and saw what looked like a bob cat slipping through brush to get to that draw.

Just as the he came in the clear he stopped frozen and looked straight at me. I thought it funny a bob cat had a 6' long tail till he jumped down into the draw which came out under me. I realized it was a mountain lion. I can still see those yellow eyes.
I had a 16 ga auto with #4 lead shot. As I started backing the other direction towards a open field I shucked the 4s and put two 00 buck shot loads in...and beat it home. I wasn't interested in killing him but would have pulled the trigger if he attacked...I hoped.

I told my dad and a uncle who was visiting. The next morning we all three were going to run the pond. Nothing was on it so we went to the spot the big cat dropped into the gully. WE found his tracks that lead right up to the point where I was at.

WE have lots of bob cats but the big cats usually are roaming young toms according to the state game rangers....and very rare. It was three years before I got enough nerve to run that pond again.


"good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment" ............ Will Rogers

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JaxDad

Greater Toronto Area

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Posted: 12/28/20 04:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Geo*Boy wrote:

Carry bear spray whenever your out in unfamiliar areas with wildlife.


Many, many years back I did a survival seminar as part of a mountain / remote area flying course. One of the subjects covered was wild predators, especially if injured or hiking out after a forced landing. One of the other participants stated he’d been a hiker in remote areas for decades, he advocated putting bells on your pack and carrying bear spray.

One of the other participants asked the instructor if there was an easy way to tell the difference between animals like bear species to differentiate between (mostly) harmless black bears and say a grizzly based on their scat.

I can still hear the instructors answer.

“Grizzly scat has bits of clothing and bells in it and it smells like bear spray.”


Bear spray has maybe a 30’ range.

A bear can charge at 40 mph, that’s about 59’ per second.

A mountain lion can charge at 50 mph, that’s about 73’ per second

Let me repeat, bear spray has maybe a 30’ range. I’d be surprised if you could reach, activate, point, and shoot bear spray in the right direction in lass than 1/2 a second.... let alone having it reach its target and take effect.

mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/28/20 04:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

“Grizzly scat has bits of clothing and bells in it and it smells like bear spray.”

LOL. Good one.

Geo*Boy

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Posted: 12/28/20 05:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JaxDad wrote:

Geo*Boy wrote:

Carry bear spray whenever your out in unfamiliar areas with wildlife.


Many, many years back I did a survival seminar as part of a mountain / remote area flying course. One of the subjects covered was wild predators, especially if injured or hiking out after a forced landing. One of the other participants stated he’d been a hiker in remote areas for decades, he advocated putting bells on your pack and carrying bear spray.

One of the other participants asked the instructor if there was an easy way to tell the difference between animals like bear species to differentiate between (mostly) harmless black bears and say a grizzly based on their scat.

I can still hear the instructors answer.

“Grizzly scat has bits of clothing and bells in it and it smells like bear spray.”


Bear spray has maybe a 30’ range.

A bear can charge at 40 mph, that’s about 59’ per second.

A mountain lion can charge at 50 mph, that’s about 73’ per second

Let me repeat, bear spray has maybe a 30’ range. I’d be surprised if you could reach, activate, point, and shoot bear spray in the right direction in lass than 1/2 a second.... let alone having it reach its target and take effect.

Carrying bear spray, is better than a gun and way better than nothing at all.

MEXICOWANDERER

las peñas, michoacan, mexico

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Posted: 12/28/20 05:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When I was 15 I told my uncle in Montana that the only way a grizzly would outrun me would be on 4 broken legs.

On horseback we chased a boar into a stand of Quaking Aspen. I was armed with a piddly 30/30. They chased the bear and it came through the Aspen like a locomotive. It passed 20-30 feet in front of me so fast I couldn't react.

This was the bear that kept me and Smoky up most of the night before in the line shack. The animal then headed west into the Gravelly range. Spooked the hell out of me. It had ripped huge strips off the lodgepole pine logs of the line shack the night before.

I had less than pleasant dreams about it for years.

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