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Best Bear Gun Caliber

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by Zeus, Apr 13, 2010.

Best Bear Gun Caliber for outdoor protection

  1. .44 Mag

    23 vote(s)
  2. .357 Mag

    0 vote(s)
  3. .500 S&W

    17 vote(s)
  4. .45 ACP/LC/SP

    1 vote(s)
  5. .44 SP

    1 vote(s)
  1. Zeus

    Zeus G&G Newbie

    What is the best (practical) bear gun Caliber in your opinion?

    More a backpacking pistol than a hunting pistol.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010
  2. SilverRun

    SilverRun G&G Enthusiast

    You left off several good calibers such as .454 and .480 from your poll. Also, putting .45acp and 45 Colt in the same option is not a good idea. 45 Colt can be loaded to slightly exclipse the .44 mag in Ruger revolvers. The hot 45 Colt or maybe the .454 would get my vote if either of those were poll options. For a backpack gun, a lightweight .44 mag would also be handy... THe S&W X frames are too big and heavy for me.
  3. BaserRonin

    BaserRonin G&G Evangelist

    The absolute biggest thing you can haul around with you. .45 acp will do it, but I would prefer larger.

    When I backpack and camp in predator areas I bring a rifle and a .44 Mag. If I had a .500 I would take it instead.
  4. Draken

    Draken G&G Regular

    the biggest you can carry and use.

    I don't think I would want any less then the .44 mag with some pretty hot loads.
  5. stalebiscuit

    stalebiscuit G&G Newbie

    .44 mag or .41 mag
  6. nathangdad

    nathangdad G&G Newbie


    of your choices I checked the .44 mag due to availability of guns in this caliber.

    However, in all honesty I do not believe any of the choices constitute
    "practical" bear defense.

    If it comes down to a charging bear closing in on you a .458 Win Mag rifle
    is not at all out of place. This cartridge is more practical than a handgun cartridge.

    GUNZABLAZIN G&G Evangelist

    The biggest thing that you can shoot accurately!!! No smaller then a .44 mag.
  8. don5544

    don5544 G&G Addict

    You had to put the word practical in there.

    I put 500 S & W because it was the largest choice.

    Actually the best choice for backpacking where weight is evrything I would go with the 454. Packs the most power for weight and you can down load for pleasure shooting.

    If I was camping out of a vehicle I would have a semi auto 308. 20 rnds of ball will put the hurt on any bear. O course a 458 mag is just short of a cannon.

    If you are smart the bear threat can be minimized when camping. Walking up on a bear is where I would be scared.
  9. grizcty

    grizcty God, Guns, Glory

    I think you missed, posting a good caliber. (The .41 mag)

    And should clarify, WHAT kind of bear.
    As there is a huge difference, between them.
    A 250 lb. black bear, or 1100 lb grizzly!

    I personally use both, the .41 & .44.
    My little wife, carries a .41.
  10. Levergun4570

    Levergun4570 G&G Newbie

    Just go big, 44 mag and up.
  11. Double-D

    Double-D G&G Newbie

    wow, bear you say. I'd want something w/ a LOT of punch so I'm voting 44 Magnum. Although I might feel more secure w/ a 12 gauge
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2010
  12. stinkybriches

    stinkybriches G&G Enthusiast

    well i didnt vote because what i would choos wasnt on there. in an auto i would choose a 10mm over .45 acp for the added penatraition, and would still only choose it if we are talking black bears. if brown bear, i would want a .454 or .460 or .480.
  13. Tack Driver

    Tack Driver G&G Evangelist

  14. Zeus

    Zeus G&G Newbie

    Ok - Sorry guys for leaving off so many good options.

    Question: (I'm kind of a noob on this stuff)

    Is a magnum round going to trump a regular round?

    Example: 44Mag > 500?

    Right now I'm looking at ............

    Bear Attack Survival Kit Survival Digest
  15. ChaZam

    ChaZam G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    John Linebaugh is the name that comes to mind, but none of his little pet rounds were among the choices. Of the choices in the survey I would select the 44 Mag.
  16. BaserRonin

    BaserRonin G&G Evangelist

    Only of the same type. 357 mag vs .357, 44 mag vs 44. There are some example of magnums trumping other rounds, but generally speaking it is not something you can count on. A magnum in just a max pressure load for that particular cartridge.

    To be real fair though, if I were honestly worried about a bear attack, I would probably look into bear mace. Carrying a bigger hand cannon if you are hiking is a good idea, but mace is a pretty effective tool.
  17. Zeus

    Zeus G&G Newbie

    I'll look into it.

    And here are a couple deals which are likely going to be useful....

    A. This would be used as a side arm while remote fly fishing in New England...

    B. Because its New England, its likely going to be a BLACK bear NOT Grizzly.

    Thats good and bad... Good because I don't need a Canon to bring it down. Bad because Black Bears rarely confront people unless they plan on eating them.
  18. BaserRonin

    BaserRonin G&G Evangelist

    UDAP Bear Deterrent Pepper Spray

    Anyway, I don't know what to tell you. I can tell you from personal experience that I carry a .45acp or a .357 when I hike in to fish. My fishing backpack is not as comfortable as my camping backpack while carrying, so my handgun choice tends to be decided by what wears best with that pack.
  19. MosinRuger

    MosinRuger G&G Evangelist

    I would want the biggest pistol caliber that i could reasonably get my hands on and carry. but if i had a choice i might choose a 12g with slugs.
  20. Dryfli

    Dryfli G&G Newbie

    .454 so I cant vote
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