7.62x25 Bear Defence Ammo
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Thread: 7.62x25 Bear Defence Ammo

  1. #1
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    Default 7.62x25 Bear Defence Ammo

    I will be spending several months in AK this year. I am flying up and taking my only handgun, a M57 7.62x25. I don't have a 44 mag and can not buy one now (no cash) and can't when I get up there as I am not a AK resident. I can and might buy a 12g 870 to carry as funds allow but all I have now is the M57 and a can of bear spray. Last year all I carried was bear spray but from what I have been told about the wilderness training I will be getting as part of my job, bear spray can or can not be a deterrent thus why I will carry the M57. I didn't see any bears when up there last year but will be spending more time out in the wild this year.

    With that out of the way, what would be the best brand and bullet type to carry in my M57?
    I have seen what FMJ do to don't do to a deer but penetration is what you want with a bear from what I have learned.
    I have not seen much data on penetration with JHP and haven't see any soft point in 7.62x25 other than from Reeds Ammo. I tried to reload some .308" bullets in 7.62x25 but the neck got stuck in the chamber as factory and surplus 7.62x25 is around .306" diameter bullets. Was thinking of having FMJ and HP in the mag but not sure if HP will do any good.

    There was a list here or other that showed the hottest brand of commercially made 7.62x25 that I will try and search out. I would assume getting the fastest brand would be the way to go.

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    I dont know what the best brand is but I like PPU in fmj and jhp. Good luck in making your decision!

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    I would go with the FMJ. Winchester and S&B (actually the same thing) are about the hottest commercial Tokarev I've seen. Run a few boxes through to ensure reliability.
    Always looking for interesting 7.62x25 Tokarev and 7.63 Mauser cartridges!!!
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  5. #4
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    i'd go with the shotgun, cheap offbrands can be had for around 170 bucks.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    As a non-alaskan who has made many trips to Alaska to fish and hike, here is my advice:

    A 12 gauge rapidly becomes a drag to lug around and keep at the ready if you're trying to do anything but watch out for bears. I've usually got some sort of pack on and then the sling for the shotgun is awkward with the backpack. Add a fishing rod and in one hand and it's just no fun. So maybe you leave the gun in the truck because you're not going too far from the road and it's heavy and then you don't have it when you need it.

    I know you don't have the budget for it, but I would really try to find a way to get yourself a nice .44 mag with a 4-6 inch barrel and spend enough time at the range to get comfortable and proficient with it. I carry a model 629 in Alaska and am quite comfortable with it for defence. It's relatively light and can be removed very quickly from its holster if needed urgently. Maybe you could find something used?

    The tok is a fine pistol, but not up to bear defense in Alaska, IMHO. You want a large projectile with massive energy that will break heavy bones and penetrate the thick muscle and tissues of a big creature deeply if you need it to. That's not 7.62x25.

    If I had to pick between a tok and an 870, I would go with the 12 gauge without thinking twice. No doubt about the efficacy of the 12 gauge loaded with slugs, if you can hit what you're shooting at.

    Sounds like you have a really fantastic trip planned!

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    Bears...only respond to the big stuff, this mostly written about.
    762x25 SB...very hot as written about here.
    Bear picture target practice will show up his vitals...heart, face, eyes, ear holes.

    Increased accuracy is your only BACK YOU PLAN with such a small cal.
    Accuracy will improve your chances....
    Underguned means your traveling less protected...not unprotected!....extra care looking more fishing less

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    shoot him with a tok, it may kill him, but he'll probably kill you too. tok is just too small, minimum 44.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    If that's all you got, it's better than nothing. As stated, bears are large animals and will respond better to larger projectiles...just watch out for "Mr. Chocolate"...he's a man eater.

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    IMHO. 7.62x 25 is not enough for a angry bear. Even a black bear. The report may or may not run one off. A ill placed shot may or may not change it's mind. Think of it as pepper spray. My opinion is to sell the pistol and buy a 12 gauge in 3" and carry rifled slugs, solids if available. One of my best buddies summers in AK fishing and says that he always feels "awful small" when a bear is near. They can be extremely interested in fish and entrails. Nights in the tent can be, well, terrifying. But then he has been known to spin some whoppers. He carries a shotgun. Most of all, have fun. Just be aware, bears can come out of nowhere and fast.
    Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.
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    my m57 was a pos and inaccurate,but a bear is pretty big so it might hit it if close enough

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    Ive lived here since 1971 have never had a run in with a black or brown yet and have spent alot of days in the woods. Make noise while your out, hike with a friend or group . I smoke alot too bears can smell it and I think it keeps them away , they really dont want to meet you. Dont crawl around in the alders you dont want to surprise them thats where people get into trouble, dont store your food in camp unless its sealed freeze dried. Dont set your tent or camp to close to any trails your on, they use em as highways at night that includes moose too. In the summer I sleep with my bag unzipped and a ruger 44 5.5 inch blackhawk on my chest in the tent. If im carrying a rifle its either my marlin 45-70 or ruger #3 in 45-70. Alot of guys carry short shotguns like the old winchester defenders with slugs or rem 870`s aint no way Id even think about the caliber you want to use. I keep the 44 with me if im fishing with waders on. Winter camping I dont worry so much but I have seen moose kills in the dead of winter where the bears have woken to get a snack and then I play it smart and vacate the area . Just be safe and be very aware of whats going on around you and youll be fine. Aaron ps the only thing I ever had charge me was a pissed of moose cow that had a tracking collar on it that I woke one morning while hunting for grouse in some dense spruce trees, I will tell you , you can run real fast with snow shoes on if you have too and 2 shotgun blasts above her head made her stop and think and go back into the trees.
    Last edited by aaron10; 02-14-2017 at 02:01 PM. Reason: more info

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    I also think the 7.62x25 will be "underpowered" for what you are wanting to use it for. Take the advice of others and go bigger.

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    i looked up that reeds ammo and it needs a special spring which makes me question feed problems,also the same with your statement of fastest ammo.what if your gun doesnt like it.its only a life or death situation.i agree to everyone else its a bad call,but something is better then nothing

    http://www.brennekeusa.com/hunting-a...magicr-magnum/

    12 gauges as stated are cheap enough to be had and heres some good ammo.

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    The spring for use with Reeds Ammo is for the CZ52.

    The guy I will fish with says he doesn't carry anything with him, but I think something is better than nothing.
    It didn't bother me last year when fishing in back county by me self, was a little nervous at first but got over it once I started catching grayling.
    This year I shouldn't spend too much time fishing alone.

    This year I am flying up and not driving so I can bring my M57 with me. If I were driving, all I would have is the bear spray.

    My biggest concern now is the BUGS!!! They drove me krazy last year. I will be getting a bug suit this year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by landtoy80 View Post
    The spring for use with Reeds Ammo is for the CZ52.

    The guy I will fish with says he doesn't carry anything with him, but I think something is better than nothing.
    It didn't bother me last year when fishing in back county by me self, was a little nervous at first but got over it once I started catching grayling.
    This year I shouldn't spend too much time fishing alone.

    This year I am flying up and not driving so I can bring my M57 with me. If I were driving, all I would have is the bear spray.

    My biggest concern now is the BUGS!!! They drove me krazy last year. I will be getting a bug suit this year.

    read wrong at 1st,but make sure you follow the airline rules ect...shotgun wouldn't be the best in that case but a decent revolver could be better

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    maybe a flare gun?
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    If I get attacked and survive, I will post pic's and tell my Outdoors Life "This happened to me story" here.
    IF the 7.62x25 doesn't do the job...you just wont see any more post from me and maybe someone will find the article about how I didn't survive a bear attack with a 7.62x25.

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    good luck, stay safe, and catch some fish then post pictures. I want to go up there and catch salmon so bad. landtoy, if you are near central MS, I have a ruger super redhawk 44 I can loan you.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    If it has to be a Tokarev then I'd use FMJ. Attach it to a lanyard and keep about 10 loaded mags with you at all times! If the opportunity presents itself, climb a tree and just start peppering Mr Brownie full of projectiles (with the lanyard you won't lose the pistol when you're off the ground). 80+ rounds should be able to save your bacon.

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    especially if you shoot him in the mouth or head.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    As a part of my job I can't carry a gun while I camp in the back country so carrying a M57 on my own time will be bonus.

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    I seem to recall seeing 7.62x25 go through about 8 feet of ballistic gelatin. It's a good penetrating round, so if you know where Mr Bear's vital parts are and you think you can hit them it should do the trick. Beats chucking rocks for sure. You gotta HIT those vital spots though before Mr Bear makes you a snack, and he can move fast. Definitely have extra mags on you, I wouldn't feel good with only nine shots.

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    The only way I would even begin to want to consider taking on a bear with a 7.62X25 is if I had a rock and roll PPSh with a 70 round drum magazine (two drums would be better).

    Even then, I figure it would be a pretty iffy proposition.

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    Just reading through my 'bear notes' from a symposium in BC a few years ago, and can therefore offer this advice -

    Make sure you have a companion, then, if needed, you can shoot them in the foot/leg with your squeekpip calibre handgun, and that way you'll be able to outrun him or her, leaving him or her behind to catch the interests of Ol' Fuzzy and all them teeths and claws.

    We got shown a clip taken by a guy with a 16mm movie camera sometime in the 70s - Mr Fuzzy was fast catching up on a ranger and was about to make a giant leap for bearkind on his fleeing body when the ranger took off over a ten-foot firebreak ditch. Not that Mr Ranger was particularly athletic, just that the galloping horse he was riding on didn't want to become Mr Fuzzy's next meal. The lecturer informed us that at the very moment of pre-leap, that mangy-looking old bear was doing just over 28mph.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tacfoley2 View Post
    Make sure you have a companion, then, if needed, you can shoot them in the foot/leg with your squeekpip calibre handgun, and that way you'll be able to outrun him or her, leaving him or her behind to catch the interests of Ol' Fuzzy and all them teeths and claws.
    Good advice.

    Not sure if it was covered in the symposium you attended, but I was instructed to file the front and rear sites off any handgun I was planning to carry in areas with brown bears. It saves some weight when you're hiking and supposedly reduces the discomfort when the bear shoves the pistol up your rear end.

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    Quote Originally Posted by globug View Post
    Good advice.

    Not sure if it was covered in the symposium you attended, but I was instructed to file the front and rear sites off any handgun I was planning to carry in areas with brown bears. It saves some weight when you're hiking and supposedly reduces the discomfort when the bear shoves the pistol up your rear end.

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    When at a fire in GA, we went down to check out all the gators in the pond.
    The one in the third and fourth pic smiling, came out of the water and tried to eat me. Lucky there were two of us and we ran different directions.
    I had no idea I could run that fast and was even more amazed that the fat guy I was with could even run at all.
    The gator gave up after about 20 yards and slowly walked back into the water. I had time enough to snap a pic of my prospective demise.
    It was a spooky feeling, even before the attack, to be standing on the pier with tons of gators swimming around.
    There was no time to use a firearm of any type with this attack, even if I had one, which I did not.
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    FWIW,
    The biggest grizzly shot in here in Alberta was killed by an Indian lady with a .22 single shot.
    Met on a trail while they were both berry picking.
    I should go back and find the details.

    The Tok would work if you could put a round or two up his nose into his brains. no good heart shooting him. he'd have you all chewed up before he fell over.
    A bloke just west of us here was killed/eaten by a grizzly when he was fishing a year or two back. Think it was same bear that killed another man. ( I think it was the year before.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pukka Bundook View Post
    FWIW,
    The biggest grizzly shot in here in Alberta was killed by an Indian lady with a .22 single shot.
    Met on a trail while they were both berry picking.
    I think that would be the 1953 Bella Twin story. Picture is supposedly the bears skull. Note that Bella saw the bear well in advance, hid and waited for the bear to get close enough to shoot with a .22 long. She didn't shoot the bear as it was attacking her, she essentially hunted it. Interesting story, though.

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    Bears are serious shit. A friend from HS was surprised while squirrel hunting once. He had a .44 or 357 on him, cant remember, all six shots to the bears face, none got in. Bear took his legs off, but he lived. He's got the skull of it, got hunted down later on. Wish I had a picture of it. I think he was in AK at the time too.


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    There was a story a while back (like a year or so maybe) about a guy in AK who had to defend himself against a grizzly with an AK74 and a 30 rd mag full of ammo. Don't know the details but the guy won. We have to keep in mind that 30 rds rapid fire from a 5.45x39 is not 9 rounds from a 7.62x25. Just thought I'd pass that story along. Think I read it on AK Files.

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    Can you guys use the Sap 6 from Dagger or is it too short. Im in Alberta. I keep mine with me riding sxs 1 mag with slugs and other with double buck. I have 12g flares for when its cooking time.
    total length colapsed stock

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    I like the 12ga idea. 7.62x25 is just too light for bear unless you are close enough to make brain shots. like I said before, some cheap pumps can be bought from major vendors for 169 bucks, i'd trust one of those cheapies over a tok.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    In my research of using pistol grip shotguns, for some reason the consensus is not to go that route. Many have removed the stock and installed a pistol grip and them go back to butt stock for what ever reason. I searched Alaska hunting and fishing forums and kept finding the same answer to the question of carrying a pistol grip shotgun.

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    I agree, I like the standard Mossberg mariner, short barrel no pistol grip.
    " Dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machinegun"... Bo Diddley

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    People love regurgitating the same old stuff when you talk bear defense. anything less then a .50 machine gun is apparently asking to be killed, or the bear will shove the gun up your a#$.

    but the truth is that you want a deep penetrating round to hit the bears vitals. 7.62x25 is a deep penetrating round. Aim for the skull and use FMJ.
    And remember that bear spray is statistically more likely to stop a bear attack then a firearm, at least from one study.

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    I have no doubt you could kill an attacking bear with a 7.62x25, but I am certain he would die with a full belly!
    "Saigon Tea, 60 P, you no buy you di di DI!"

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    deleted
    Always looking for interesting 7.62x25 Tokarev and 7.63 Mauser cartridges!!!
    Member: International Ammunition Assoc. (IAA), European Cartridge Research Assoc. (ECRA). Ask me about membership!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    People love regurgitating the same old stuff when you talk bear defense.
    I think there has been much more pragmatic, experienced advice given in this thread than regurgitated internet garbage. OP has heard from a number of persons who do or have carried a firearm for bear defense in Alaska.

    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    anything less then a .50 machine gun is apparently asking to be killed, or the bear will shove the gun up your a#$.
    There has been some good natured kidding here about bear protection options, but I think that's ok. .44 is fine, nobody has even mentioned you need a .454 or .500 pistol. A 45-70 rifle was mentioned and I think that's a tried and true option too. OP is going with 7.62x25. It's a free country and that's his decision. He also seems like the sort of person who will be cautious and smart in bear avoidance, hopefully he will take bear spray too. I think he will not be eaten and have a good time.

    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    but the truth is that you want a deep penetrating round to hit the bears vitals. 7.62x25 is a deep penetrating round. Aim for the skull and use FMJ.
    Regarding, "a deep penetrating round to hit the bears vitals", this is not hunting for whitetails. For bear defense I want to damage the bear's CNS immediately to prevent or stop a mauling/horrible death. Head/spine shot (as you suggest) with a heavy .44 round may do that. If I miss, I want to break a leg, smash some big bones, do something to mechanically impede the bear and give me time, like maybe another second or two, to aim and shoot again. I want to break critical systems on that creature and stop it from hurting me in the next seconds, not wound it so it will bleed out minutes or hours later (after turning me into a mangled carcass.)

    If you see the bear first or at some distance, great. You probably don't even need pepper spray then, avoidance is easy. It's when you and the bear come face to face unexpectedly that things get interesting, decisions and preparation made well beforehand may make a difference in the outcome of an event that is only seconds in length.

    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    And remember that bear spray is statistically more likely to stop a bear attack then a firearm, at least from one study.
    Regarding bear spray, here is a link to a study on bear spray efficacy:

    http://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/bear_coug...prayAlaska.pdf

    Seems like a pretty serious problem with the study that more than half of the encounters seem to involve spraying bears that were curious, not attacking. Heck, I have seen several bears up close that looked curious and I didn't feel the need to shoot or pepper spray them. Still, pepper spray does have some efficacy.

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    "Still, pepper spray does have some efficacy."

    Especially as a seasoning!
    Always looking for interesting 7.62x25 Tokarev and 7.63 Mauser cartridges!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by globug View Post
    I think there has been much more pragmatic, experienced advice given in this thread than regurgitated internet garbage. OP has heard from a number of persons who do or have carried a firearm for bear defense in Alaska.



    There has been some good natured kidding here about bear protection options, but I think that's ok. .44 is fine, nobody has even mentioned you need a .454 or .500 pistol. A 45-70 rifle was mentioned and I think that's a tried and true option too. OP is going with 7.62x25. It's a free country and that's his decision. He also seems like the sort of person who will be cautious and smart in bear avoidance, hopefully he will take bear spray too. I think he will not be eaten and have a good time.



    Regarding, "a deep penetrating round to hit the bears vitals", this is not hunting for whitetails. For bear defense I want to damage the bear's CNS immediately to prevent or stop a mauling/horrible death. Head/spine shot (as you suggest) with a heavy .44 round may do that. If I miss, I want to break a leg, smash some big bones, do something to mechanically impede the bear and give me time, like maybe another second or two, to aim and shoot again. I want to break critical systems on that creature and stop it from hurting me in the next seconds, not wound it so it will bleed out minutes or hours later (after turning me into a mangled carcass.)
    Most people immediately suggested carrying a shotgun around everywhere you go.

    I agree you need to damage the bear quickly. however, try shooting 6 rounds of .44 mag quickly AND accurately. The recoil is strong enough that this makes it very difficult, even with a secure two handed grip like you would use at the range. A 7.62x25 tok will get the rounds off quicker and more accurately. I'd rather have 9 rounds of 7.62x25 buried in and around the skull, then the one round of .44 mag that actually hit the bear somewhere.

    And the 7.62x25 tok is known to be extremely good penetrating. It would easily bust through bone and skull.

    I'm not saying the 7.62x25 is ideal. I am saying it could be effective.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jonny c. View Post
    "Still, pepper spray does have some efficacy."

    Especially as a seasoning!

    Yum, pepper spray.......I was wrong! I was horribly, horribly wrong!
    Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.
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    As in any self defense situation, anything is better than nothing. The chances of being confronted by an angry bear are probably fairly low. The best advice would be to give them a lot of room and exit the area as carefully and smoothly as possible. Let the bear have the fish, game, prime location or whatever it may want. I only have black bears around here. And some mighty big ones at that. Unless it is a sow with cubs they are very timid creatures that want to get away as much or more than you do. Never had a problem with one except for them wrecking my stuff, and boy can they wreck some stuff! Carry what you have, just be aware of your surroundings and be proficient with your firearm. Enjoy yourself and "Tight Lines!"
    Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.
    Patrick Henry

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    I am sure politics has something to do with pepper spray vs firearms depending on who (which administration is on office) is doing the study, just like 'some' say you have "No Advantages to Using a Firearm in Self-Defense Situations". If someone is in my house and I have access to a firearm, I think the odds increase on my behalf.

    When I take the firefighter wilderness training class this year, I will find out what their view is. From what I was told from people that took the class have told me, its not very effective, but I will save my judgement when I take the class.

    As for where I spent most of my time in AK, it was in very thick cover. Having time to sling a shotgun or rifle from my back with a backpack on my back while wearing waders could be time consuming. Having a compact size M57 or short barrel revolver in the pouch in the chest waders or on my hip with hip waders will give me more time to defend my self. In more open areas like when I fished a river with lots of shoreline, a long gun would work.

    From what I have seen in the Fairbanks area, trees grow everywhere and they grow into very dense cover. Hiking on trails was more like walking through tunnels compared to trails in Colorado. All I had at that time was a stick I found at the beginning of the trail.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    Most people immediately suggested carrying a shotgun around everywhere you go.
    If a 12 gauge is what you are comfortable carrying and proficient with, perfect choice. If it's all you got or can afford, easy decision. Better than clenched fists. Lots of things will work.


    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    I agree you need to damage the bear quickly. however, try shooting 6 rounds of .44 mag quickly AND accurately.
    If a person is not comfortable and proficient shooting what they are carrying, the pistol is no better than a rabbits foot. I usually practice with 6-8" steel targets and one of those orange balls that rolls around when you hit it. Or if you shoot it with 7.62x25 the ball twitches when the bullet passes through it. I usually practice at a range of probably 25-50'. Not sure how big a bears head is, but those are the targets I use. Like I said before, I think the first shot is going to be super important because of how fast things go. I agree it's not easy to get a decent second-sixth shot off with a .44 quickly, and double action is a drag. Practice is key. I have a friend who juggles, it seems like an impossible task to me, he claims it's all about practice.

    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    I'd rather have 9 rounds of 7.62x25 buried in and around the skull, then the one round of .44 mag that actually hit the bear somewhere
    Well, then I guess we know what you'll be packing if you go fishing in Alaska.

    I have a Romanian Tokarev that I shoot just about as much as any pistol I own and I absolutely love it, I think its a 1955. As a matter of fact, its what I carry if I take a walk through the woods in the evening around here (no grizzly bears.) It always gets a workout when I do any pistol shooting. Just want to be clear that I have no issue with Tokarevs or 7.62x25, I love the aesthetics of them and they are sweet shooters.

    Quote Originally Posted by bch7773 View Post
    I'd rather have 9 rounds of 7.62x25 buried in and around the skull, then the one round of .44 mag that actually hit the bear somewhere.

    And the 7.62x25 tok is known to be extremely good penetrating. It would easily bust through bone and skull.

    I'm not saying the 7.62x25 is ideal. I am saying it could be effective.
    It might be. Everyone can do their own risk assessment and determine the best course of action.

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