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Thread: Are Bear Barrels worth the Pack Space?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    179

    Default Are Bear Barrels worth the Pack Space?

    Just wondering if a Bear barrel is worth the cubic volume in a pack if going out with mixed food supply or is the good old fashion way of hanging up in a tree? supplies will be mixed dehydrated food and fresh food. pros and cons appreciated thanks
    Absorb what is useful, Discard what is not, Add what is uniquely your own. Bruce Lee

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Pinedale, WY
    Posts
    43

    Default

    The only place I could see one being useful would be high country where the trees are shrubs. I usually hang my food about 100 yards or more from my sleeping area.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Kathleen GA
    Posts
    2,756

    Default Re: Are Bear Barrels worth the Pack Space?

    Quote Originally Posted by 1morehill View Post
    Just wondering if a Bear barrel is worth the cubic volume in a pack if going out with mixed food supply or is the good old fashion way of hanging up in a tree? supplies will be mixed dehydrated food and fresh food. pros and cons appreciated thanks
    Will you have trees? Maybe you'll have trees without suitable limbs. I use a silnylon food bag, hung PCT-style. I bought a tiny "rock bag" and 725# test spectra cord with a small carabiner attatched that stays in the bag. DO NOT attempt this the first time at dusk, it WILL NOT go well for you. Practice at home, a lot.

    Having said that, I'm looking pretty hard at getting a carbon fiber food cannister.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    179

    Default Re: Are Bear Barrels worth the Pack Space?

    Right now i'm using the rope and bag thing the only reason why I was asking was because I came across the carbon fibre barrel. I don't get any opportunity to be above the tree line. My thought was it can be a bit of hassle if your coming into camp late or breaking camp early morning. Just wanting to see what other peoples preferences are
    Absorb what is useful, Discard what is not, Add what is uniquely your own. Bruce Lee

  5. #5

    Default

    The weight has alway steered me away from these. And the fact that it is stuck at one size. I don't always bring the same amount of food. And I like using a pullout type bag for my food because it compresses down. A big bear barrel always takes up the same amount of space. This becomes an issue for me once you get an animal down.
    Last edited by beastmode; 01-19-2014 at 02:23 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Broomfield, CO
    Posts
    478

    Default Re: Are Bear Barrels worth the Pack Space?

    Quote Originally Posted by beastmode View Post
    The weight has alway steered me away from these. And the fact that it is stuck at one size. I don't always bring the same amount of food. And I like using a pullout type bag for my food because it compresses down. A big bear barrel always takes up the same amount of space. This becomes an issue for me once you get an animal down.
    Agreed. It doesn't matter if you stuff in 10 Mountain Houses or 1 Snickers bar, a lot of space in your pack is taken up.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    112

    Default Re: Are Bear Barrels worth the Pack Space?

    I am not a fan of the barrels, as they weigh so much. I have a BV500 They or similar are required in many areas, and if above tree line you have limited options. I like to hang my food bag over a cliff or from the top of car sized boulder piles which are plentiful in moraines of glaciers. Look at Ursacks as an alternative http://www.ursack.com/ursack-faq.htm I have not used them, but seem to be an interesting concept. Bear can still smell, but can't supposedly tear bag open. You just might end up with mush or powdered everything. The canisters do also dictate the shape of the food. Example: Hard to put six apples in and anything else..... So pack dense things that efficiently fill up the space.

    Time wise I hate slinging stuff at night, or getting it down in the morning. It just seems to be one of those things that never comes at a good time. So I give the bear vaults a little credit there. I stash it 100 yards away tied to a rope and my camp cup. Studies show bears don't run off with your canisters like Yogi does with a picnic basket in the movies. Just don't put it at the top of a big cliff or next to a river.....

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