There is possible nothing more terrifying than being out in the woods when you suddenly come across a bear. Bears are huge, ferocious creatures that make them one of the most dangerous predators on land.
They are clearly not the kind of animal you want to encounter while you are out on a hike or while camping, and so it makes sense to have a product that can help protect you against these ferocious animals. Something that would incapacitate the animal long enough to allow you to get away, without requiring you to learn any special skills to be able to use it. This is where the use of bear spray could be the perfect choice.
What does bear spray do?
Bear spray is a great product to help incapacitate a bear for several minutes. It’s one of those products that every person who is heading to the outdoors should carry with them, as it will cause a bear to stop in its tracks, giving you plenty of time to be able to escape.
That sounds like a miracle product, but the truth is that bear spray works on the same basic principle is that a pepper spray. If you have ever seen the effects of pepper spray, you can see how quickly they work on a would be assailant. They cause the guys to start watering, make it difficult to see, make it difficult to breathe, and force the person to stop to try to regain their faculties.
The truth is that bear spray works on a bear very much like pepper spray works on a person. Bear spray contains 1% to 2% of a product known as capsaicin. This is the active ingredient in their spray.
When sprayed and coming in contact with the bear, it will cause the bear to have an extreme adverse reaction. The eyes will immediately begin to water and become irritated. Nasal passages become constricted and the bear find it difficult to breathe. This should be enough to stop the bear from continuing, as it takes several minutes for the effects of the spray to cease, maybe as long as an hour.
The good thing about the sprays is that a person does not need to point it directly at the bear’s face. Many of the products that you will find disperse a fog that creates a shield anywhere from 10 to 20 feet away from you. Then, when the bear comes in contact with the fog, the chemical inside the bear spray begins to react with the bear, causing it to stop.
How effective is bear spray?
This sounds like a truly great product. If you are a person who has stumbled upon a bear or finds one entering into your camp you surely want a product that you know will keep you safe. So, how effective is bear spray at protecting you?
Several studies have been conducted to answer that very question. To answer this question, it is important to understand that the range is a key factor. If the bear is 25 feet or more away from you, even the most potent bear sprays will not be very effective.
This is why it is important that you use the bear spray according to the instructions provided by the manufacturer. You will find that many give a maximum effective range of no more than 25 feet, with some being as few as 10 feet. If you are attempting to spray a bear that is 30 feet away from you with a product that has an effective range of 15 feet, you might as well be spring the bear with water. It is simply not going to work.