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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:56 am 
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Planning to go up to a buddies hunting property late summer and doing some scouting, trail maintenance and maybe a bit of small game hunting in preparation for deer season. The area is known to have bears and given the increase of interaction between people and aggressive bears, I'd like to be carrying something for bear defense.

I'm in Canada, so pistol isn't an option, but sbs and sbr can be.

I see two base options:
Rossi Ranchhand: considered a rifle in the Canadian market, available in .357 or .44 Mag. Can carry in a belt holster or replace with a full sized stock for easier shouldering. Don't have one, but always wanted a reason to buy and this could be a good one. Though I'm partial to .357 and I don't know if that's enough for this purpose.

Short barrel 870: I currently have an 870 set up with 12" barrel and AR style stock.

Minimum OAL is 26" to be legal. I could set up an 870 with PGO and 14" barrel and reach a platform which is close to size of the ranch hand.

Open to suggestions and ideas from others who have experience with carrying a long gun in the bush when working with your hands.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:02 pm 
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870 with slugs. Leave the stock on.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:31 pm 
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870 - pull the duck plug.

Load #7, and 00 buck/slugs alternately.

The birdshot is to blind/mess up their sniffer.
The rest is to end the argument. If you really are in bear country, someone should be standing guard - paying attention and hands filled with a shotty.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:10 pm 
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Thanks for the replies. Guess I could have given more details on the Bears. Black bear country, some distance from any sizeable town, and a good distance away from the nearest garbage dump (my friend says 30 minute drive, so estimated 40km). Garbage bears almost always stay at the garbage. Black bears will probably stay away from us if we're putting in work, but I want to be prepared for those that may make themselves an issue.

12 gauge is probably the way I was leaning, but the Ranchhand would be a lighter option to lug through the bush for sure.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:59 pm 
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Chances are you won't need to use anything to defend your life. Light is nice, life is nicer. I say buy the ranch hand because you want one, but carry the shotty because it would be more effective and a little more weight carried won't be a bother to a outdoorsman and frontiers type He man. Win Win.. :clap:

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:14 pm 
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Can you purchase and carry bear spray? I'm not saying to have that instead of a firearm, but rather in addition to a firearm. Long guns have a tendency to miraculously find themselves fifteen feet away leaning against a tree despite best intentions to always have them within arms reach.
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Plus, it's nice to have options if a bear isn't actively trying to eat you but is behaving badly.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:45 pm 
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I am no expert. It sounds like you have got some good advice. I like these guys and here is an article:

http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l= ... list&c=108

I"d get the BB .357 hard cast outdoor load and the Rossie. Cuz you need it. I'd also get that 12 ga. It does not make sense to me, but if people who actually live in bear country recommend it, I'd listen. I just don't trust anything but a CNS shot and I have heard so many stories of bears with a dozen old bullets in them from different rifles still kicking around before they are finally brought down. But I have also learned here that people who live it have good advice. Usually.

Black bears should be easy to handle with a .357 mag. But I also hear not all black bears are black, and not all brown bears are brown. For what that is worth. Good luck!

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 6:50 pm 
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Throw my vote into the "Bear Spray for the belt, 12 gauge close by" category.

A ranch hand is more of a toy than a tool. They are awesome, but I feel like shooting one would make you realize they aren't as accurate/easy to shoot accuractely as you want in an emergency situation.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:19 pm 
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I support the right to keep and arm bears.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 4:10 am 
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I've hunted black bears in Ontario twice. The 12ga with slugs will be more than enough if you don't want to make a purchase. The bears will probably smell you, hear you, and be long gone before you get there.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:54 am 
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I have a Rossi Model 92 Trapper with a 16 inch barrel in .357 that I use for my woods walking firearm.

The above mentionedBuffalo Bore rounds in 180 gr hard cast lead perform very well against feral pigs. They would likely be adequate for black bear also.

That said if you go this route pick the caliber for which you have duplicated in a revolver. The .357 and .44 are great rifles but the ballistics punish the round beyond 150 yards.

IMO these are not worth having unless they are on effect an extension of a companion revolver on the same caliber.

For about the same price you can usually pickup a more useful caliber.

Never the less a couple of boxes of 12 ga with quality slugs and buckshot should be adequate and a lot cheaper than a new firearm.

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