Thread: 9mm v. grizzly
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Old January 25, 2020, 11:36 AM   #89
big al hunter
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Join Date: March 12, 2011
Location: Washington state
Posts: 1,354
I have only spent 1 day in the remote wilderness of Alaska. We were 70 miles from the nearest town, by float plane. It was more of a business trip than a fishing trip. But we spent the afternoon fishing. The guide had been in business there for several years, and knew the area and wildlife fairly well. We discussed bears as we were preparing the boat. He took us out, unarmed. We saw 1 set of bear tracks. I never felt unsafe, but I was very aware of the possibility of an encounter with a bear.

If that trip had been a bear hunt, I wouldn't have stepped out of the cabin without seeing a large revolver or a rifle in the guides possession. Hunting a bear means that you are intentionally getting close to bears with intent to harm. Therefore the bear will have reason to defend itself. For the most part a fishing trip is very unlikely to be a bad bear encounter. As was previously mentioned, drop the fish, that is most likely the reason for the bear moving toward you.

It is my personal opinion, and you may take it however you want to, that the effective difference between 9mm and 44 mag against big bears is very small with hard cast bullets. Bullet construction is the difference between good bear defense in any handgun caliber. Light hollow point bullets would not be effective for bear in either caliber. Bullet placement is the critical part of the equation. Any bullet in the foot is less fatal than one in the head or chest. Penetration, at the proper location will be required to be effective. Diameter of the bullet is less important than having made a hole through vital parts. Be it a .355 diameter hole or a .429 diameter hole the end result is the same.

To answer another question posted....If the guide is confident in his choice of 9mm, and it is hard cast, not hollow points. I would be comfortable going with him, with my friends and family. Fishing, not hunting.
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