In all seriousness though, this is a huge camping weekend. You’re going to bang into all kinds of things out there from idiots to bigfoot (who thinks you’re the idiot). But our biggest and most likely threat most likely will come from a nest, or worse from a mama bear and her cubs.
I’ll tell you my first camping trip without my family horror story. I was 16, on a mountain top in Maine. Beautiful spot. It was a ski lodge that my friend was a caretaker of.
Although there was a lodge there for some stupid reason we wanted to sleep in the great outdoors. So, we set up, had a huge clambake, then everyone went in the lodge to sleep except for the four of us that wanted to sleep outdoors.
I passed out and a few hours later I heard rustling, I looked up and the shadow on the tent was of a huge bear. Not firelight shadowing can make things look bigger it was still scary. Apparently my friend had put the food cooler in the tent. And the smells from the clambake tempted the bears down.
We had to move the color to the front of the tent, cut out the bake and run like hell. We were young and stupid I know, but, you’ll be surprised at the numbers of bear attacks that are a result of rookie mistakes from seasoned campers. So, please be careful this holiday weekend, and summer. Here’s a few tips for those that may need it. And especially for the ones that think they don’t.
Have a safe, happy Memorial Day weekend!
- #1 Camp well away from any cover for bears
- #2 Sleep in a tent
- #3 Keep a clean camp
- #4 Store your food in a bear-resistant food container
- #5 Think in advance about how to avoid injuries and what to do if someone else is injured
- #6 Report any incidents to park rangers
- #7 Never keep your food storage close to the place where you will sleep
- #8 Avoid carcasses and do not carry smelly food
- #9 Don’t set up camp close to a trail bears might use
- #10 Never camp in places where food or garbage has been left
- #11 Don’t cook near your tent; change your clothes
- #12 Avoid burning excess food and garbage in a fire
- #13 Read well-researched articles and books about bears
- #14 Plan your camping trip in bear country