Many hunters have talked about what to carry for bear defense while out in the woods. Here are some of that conversation on 1911forum for a handgun.
BPHORSEGUY: There have been increasing small bear sightings in my and my dogs hiking area. I am considering carry a .45ACP instead of my 9mm and solids instead of HP.
magazineman: I’d guess .44 mag or better. + running shoes. But for your purposes I’d see what handgun bear hunters use. I’d be surprised if 9mm or .45 were on the menu for that job. Big revolvers are probably the preferred item.
EvolutionArmory: At the minimum, you want a 10mm if you are carrying an autoloader. I would feel under gunned with one though. You are probably best off with a .44 magnum or .454 Casull wheel gun. Think magnum for bear.
Kosh75287: I’m guessing that buying a .40+ caliber revolver is not on your financial horizon. If you reload, I’d consider using a 250 grain RNFP over a maximum load of Herco or Blue Dot. You might also look into a conversion kit for your .45 Auto to enable it to shoot .45 Super, and work up a load that drives a 230 gr. FMJRN as fast as possible.
Here’s the sentiment from Reddit audience if you’re toting an AR or other firearms:
In_Vitam_Sola: An M203 would be a handy attachment.
the5thpixel: Burrs do not go down easily. Aim for the head.
Malrak: GL trying to get a 5.56 through a Bear’s skull, all while its moving and most likely charging you at 30 mph
NaggerGuy: Bear spray
84xcab: And a rape whistle
Malrak: 30 rounds of 5.56 would probably kill a bear…the question being would you be able to stop him before he had a chance to rush you and maim you.
If it were my choice I’d rather have an AR-15 in 458 SOCOM or 50 Beowulf.
AR-15 aside, I’d prefer something like a Benelli M4 with Magnum Slugs, AR-10, M1A, SCAR-H or other 308 Semi Auto.
Best option would be M107 or a M2 50 BMG Conversion both with supporting crew.
Wadsworth34: Maybe an AR10. Depends on the size of the bear. .556/.223 wouldn’t do jack shit to a big ass bear. Bear spray or a shotgun with hollow point slugs.
SirEDCaLot: A heavy penetrating round like the M855 is IMHO the most effective. It will be better able to punch through the layers of bear and hit vital organs on the inside.
AtheistInfantry: As a life long Alaskan that has seen these animals up close on numerous occasions I would rather have bear spray or a Mossberg 500 with Brenneke Black Magic Magnums.
Unless you get lucky and make a CNS hit it’s going to run off or eat you(or both) before it bleeds out. Oh, and there’s a whole bunch of hide, muscle and fat between your bullet and the spine.
Tarnsman4Life: I would say depends on the type of bear. 357 Mag or 10MM should be fine for black bear. Anything larger than a black bear I would not go smaller than 44 magnum.
In a perfect world I would have a Semi-Auto shotgun loaded with slugs too.
What are your thoughts on this?, leave us a comment below.
Source: 1911Forum, Reddit AR-15