Dealing With Bears

Bear Resistant Canisters

This Is Now A Manditory Rule In The Eastern High Peaks Region.

Bear resistant canisters are a highly effective means of protecting food. Bears can defeat most other food storage techniques. Bears in the High Peaks Wilderness of the Adirondacks have routinely obtain and access even properly hung food bags.

  • Canisters are small, durable, and contain odors.
  • The lids are specially designed so bears cannot open or break them.
  • Canisters weigh only 3 to 5 lbs., can fit in a backpack or be strapped to the outside.
  • A canister can hold up to 6 days of food for one person.
  • Store food in a sealed plastic bag and place inside the canister.
  • Also store toiletries and trash in separate sealed plastic bags and place inside the canister as well.
  • Store the canister on the ground away from your tent.
  • Place reflective tape on the canister for easier retrieval in the dark.
  • Canisters have been proven to resist grizzly bears and are required in many National Parks.
  • Bear resistant canisters are available for purchase or rent from many local, national and web-based outdoor recreation stores.

Bear Encounters

Never Approach or Surround a Bear – Bears aggressively defend themselves when they feel threatened. Be especially cautious around cubs as mother bears are very protective.

Avoid Walking Trails at Night – Stay in your campsite to avoid chance encounters.

Use Noise to Scare Bears from Campsite – Yell, clap or bang pots immediately upon sighting a bear near your campsite.

Never Run From a Bear – If you feel threatened, back away slowly.

Do Not Throw Your Backpack or Food Bag at an Approaching Bear – This practice will only encourage bears to approach and “bully” people to get food.

Know Where Bears are Active – Contact the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation about the area you plan to visit. In the eastern Adirondacks: 518/897-1200. In the western Adirondacks: 315/785-2261.

Prevent Bear/Human Conflicts – Plan, handle, prepare and store food properly. Bears will keep to themselves and you will keep all your food for yourself.


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