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Do I really need a bear canister in RMNP?
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By Brad6260
From Kentucky
May 13, 2013
Heading to RMNP in a week or so and it's the first time I am in "season" where the park folks say I must pack in a bear canister.
Never ever seen a bear up there and was curious if it's being closely scrutinized by park people or are most overnighting climbers blowing it off?

Thanks.

FLAG
By Alex Washburne
May 13, 2013
I eat crack for breakfast.
Do the right thing. If most overnight climbers jumped off a cliff...

In case that simple statement isn't convincing enough, think of the challenges facing RMNP managers - with the swarms of people that visit and stay in the park, how do we allow people to access the wild backcountry while still keeping it "wild"? Even if it's just a crumb or a scent that lures the bear to your camp, and even if you don't get jacked or attacked, the bears (and other animals - chipmunks, marmots, goats) will still modify their behavior and the interactions will no longer be "wild" (see: "A brief history of bear management in Yellowstone").

FLAG
By C. Marchbanks
From Golden, CO
May 13, 2013
Me climbing near the layback
Last time I was backpacking there I had two rangers check my pack for one. Luckily I had picked one up, since I am not sure what the punishment would be.

Also, there are places to rent a canister from in Estes Park for a couple dollars a day.

FLAG
By Eric Wydeven
From austin, tx
May 13, 2013
My advice is not to mess around with the rangers in RMNP. They are underfunded and looking for reasons to generate some revenue. Follow the posted regs and no trouble will come to you. Mess up and sacrifice a half day minimum in court (RMNP infractions go to federal court) when you could be climbing, fishing, drinking beer, whatever. The fine you would receive for a violation of their published policies would no doubt put a damper on whatever fun you were having too.

I got in trouble in the park years ago and it was most unpleasant financially and in terms of time.

FLAG
By Jonny d
May 13, 2013
nps.gov/romo/planyourvisit/bac...

Quote: "Bear canisters are required at all backcountry campsites below treeline."

FLAG
By Finn the Human
From The Land of Ooo
May 13, 2013
Mathematical!
Ryan N wrote:
I've always kept food in a sack away from camp and hanging in a tree.


Bears are quite adept at getting food out of trees. Just a heads up.

FLAG
By DrunkenHaymitch
From Madison, WI
May 13, 2013
no need to even risk conditioning bears to to go after your gear because you had food in it. just carry the canister and store it 100 yds downwind from your camp. inconveniencing yourself with the canister can save your life, another backpacker's life, and a bear who potentially gets into your food's life.

FLAG
By Mike Pharris
From Longmont, CO
May 13, 2013
Climbing above Black Lake
Ryan N wrote:
Yea, like Jimmy said, their not needed if camping below tree line.



Except that it's a Park rule to use them.

FLAG
 
By Brendan Blanchard
From Strafford, NH
May 13, 2013
Obi Wan Ryobi - Darth Vader Crag, Rumney NH
Ryan N wrote:
Yea, like Jimmy said, their not needed if camping below tree line.


He actually quoted that they ARE required for everything BELOW tree line.

FLAG
By Leo Paik
Administrator
From Westminster, Colorado
May 13, 2013
FWIW, the bear activity did change in the last few years. In fact, one person was bitten through a tent in RMNP not too long ago. It's best to follow the rules, it'll make your trip a more relaxed one, too. They rent them pretty darn inexpensively at the Mountain Shop in Estes Park at the NE end of the lake, 2050 Big Thompson Ave. They have really pretty darn user friendly hours 8a-9p daily and very friendly staff. (970) 586-6548 or (866) 303-6548. estesparkmountainshop.com/.

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By Greg Berry
May 13, 2013
Yes

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By Cor
May 13, 2013
black nasty
C. Marchbanks, Did you agree to a search?!

The next question would be.. Where are you camping Brad6260 ?

The link to the park (on this thread) says bear cans below treeline...

FLAG
By mountain-nut
From Denver, CO
May 13, 2013
and above treeline, there's marmots. and everywhere there are birds and smaller animals like mice, squirrels, etc. that will try to get into your food. Ravens are notorious food stealers, and they can open zippers to get inside your packs.

I always bring my ursack on ANY overnight, although i think RMNP requires hard sided containers below treeline.

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By "H"
From Manitou Springs
May 13, 2013
Axes glistening in the sun
I've never used one up there, but both times have been above treeline. Rangers never said anything about them when I was getting permit from the BC office.

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By Woodchuck ATC
May 13, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
Haven't been there in backcountry since '99. When did they start the bear cannister rules? Has it got that bad now days in backcountry for bear activity? Wow.

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By Brad6260
From Kentucky
May 13, 2013
Points well taken.

My site reservations are for the Boulderfield at Longs Peak(been there many times) and certainly what I would think they would classify as being above timberline yet my confirmation indicates canisters required.

FLAG
 
By George Perkins
From Los Alamos, NM
May 13, 2013
I'm not a crusher; I just spray a lot.
Last summer (2012) one of the rangers (or official volunteers, I forget) at Longs Peak station asked if I had a bear can, when picking up a permit for a bivi at Chasm Lake/Mills Glacier (which is above tree line).

[Considering the posts & links above, I'm not sure if that's the rule, or if that person was confused.]

In previous trips (2008-2010), no one asked about that.

FLAG
By David Appelhans
From Lafayette
May 13, 2013
Imaginate
Bear canister for the Boulderfield or Chasm Lake? That is ridiculous. The park management is continuing to lose touch with reality.

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By Tom Halicki
From Boulder, CO
May 13, 2013
You'll wish you had a canister for the marmots and pine martens at the Boulderfield.

FLAG
By Benjamin Chapman
From Small Town, USA
May 13, 2013
old 1/4" bolt.
Brad6260.......Do IT FOR THE BEARS!! Stop trying to rationalize breaking the rules for your convenience. Do it because it may save a bear from being habituated and later destroyed, because you we're thoughtless and lazy.

FLAG
By Brad6260
From Kentucky
May 13, 2013

Mr. Chapman did you read guideline # 1?
don't be a jerk- whoops I guess not.

If I were simply looking to avoid the regs I would not have asked the question to begin with.

FLAG
By ABB
May 13, 2013
Cor wrote:
Did you agree to a search?!


Rangers are not going to humor anyone with silly search, hide 'n seek games. Produce a bear-proof container on demand, if required by permit, or get an escort to the trailhead and, likely, a citation. Same with the bivy permit; produce or walk out.

Brad, talk to Barry Sweet, Mngr, RMNP BC Office (970-586-1242). Barry told me last summer there is no requirement for containers at many standard climber-bivy sites above treeline.

And while you have Barry's ear, ask him if there's been any progress on the Frequent Bivy/Camper Program. The Program, once enrolled, was/is to allow people to obtain BC permits by email, snail mail or fax rather than the mandatory and burdensome walk-in during biz hours. Currently, as has been the practice for years, the ONLY way to obtain a BC permit is to show-up during biz hours at the BC Office, which can be a logistical problem and put a crimp in the day's schedule, e.g. no alpine start or perhaps arrive at BC Office by 5pm the night before. Either way, a wrench in the equation. RMNP BC permit info, rules and regs here

RMNP has had a bear-proof container requirement since May '09.

FLAG
By Brad6260
From Kentucky
May 13, 2013
ABB,
Thanks for the good info and insight.

FLAG
By jmeizis
From Colorado Springs, CO
May 13, 2013
The Beginning of Mr. Clean (5.8) at the Barkeater ...
ABB wrote:
Rangers are not going to humor anyone with silly search, hide 'n seek games. Produce a bear-proof container on demand, if required by permit, or get an escort to the trailhead and, likely, a citation. Same with the bivy permit; produce or walk out.


Does the 4th amendment not apply in National Parks?

FLAG
 
By Benjamin Chapman
From Small Town, USA
May 13, 2013
old 1/4" bolt.
Brad6260.......sorry, I wasn't making an attempt to be a jerk. The function of the bear can is to stop the bears from gaining access to food packed in by climbers and hikers. Unfortunately, the cans are large, bulky, and inconvenient, but help save the lives of bears, by reducing their reliance on human food (negligence). My point was NOT to be a prick, but to impress upon you the need to not try to avoid the bear can, because you think you don't need it, and think UNSELFISHLY about saving some bears.

FLAG
By SDY
May 13, 2013
Benjamin Chapman wrote:
Brad6260.......sorry, I wasn't making an attempt to be a jerk. The function of the bear can is to stop the bears from gaining access to food packed in by climbers and hikers. Unfortunately, the cans are large, bulky, and inconvenient, but help save the lives of bears, by reducing their reliance on human food (negligence). My point was NOT to be a prick, but to impress upon you the need to not try to avoid the bear can, because you think you don't need it, and think UNSELFISHLY about saving some bears.




The point is he is camping well above treeline, in the Boulderfield. There are no bears there. So you're attempted self-righteousness is irrelevant.

FLAG


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