Encounters with grizzly bears in the wilds are on the rise. As a result, many rangers advise scout troops visiting remote wilderness areas to take extra precautions, keep alert for signs of bears, and to follow the new guidelines issued by the head office.
The guidelines advise that scouts venturing out on the trails wear bells on their hiking shoes, and carry walking sticks adorned with bells, which jingle loudly when they walk, so as to warn grizzlies of the scout's approach. This insures that scouts will not startle the animals with disastrous consequences. They also advise that scouts carry a can of pepper spray with them to use in self defense in the event of a grizzly encounter.
In addition, scouts need to be alert for fresh signs of bear activity. In particular, they need to learn to distinguish black bear poop from grizzly poop, particularly when they find a pile that is still warm and steaming. Black bear poop is easily recognized as good-sized piles of bear turds containing lots of berries, squirrel fur, and candy bar wrappers. By contrast, grizzly poop is easily recognized as much larger piles of bear turds that contain bells and smell like pepper.
|Southern Sierra High Adventure Team|