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Thread: 9mm VS a Bear
04-29-2009, 11:59 AM #1
9mm VS a Bear
So I was out drinking last night with a few friends. The topic of our next camping trip came up and we began discussing bear attacks. But only bears indigenous to the northeast so mainly black bears.
I said that you could kill a bear with a 9mm pistol. My argument was if you could put 3-5 rounds in a 5 inch grouping from 25 yards you could hit the bear either in his eye/face, throat or heart and the bear would either leave or be dead.
The scenario then changed to a charging bear. Everyone said even if you had a 15 round mag and put all 15 into the bear it wouldn't stop it. I couldn't swallow that.
I would assume a 357. would be able to penetrate the bears skull and get his attention. Aside from the S&W Mag 500. which would be ideal. I would only have a 9mm on my person. Because when i go camping next time that's what I will be carrying.
so do you think any certain type of ammo would help, maybe +p+ teflon coated rounds? or would you be better off with bear mace.
Last edited by thebusinessend; 08-18-2009 at 01:40 PM."I've learned to trust my dogs' instincts. When they're calm, I'm calm. And when they get nervous, I get my crossbow." - Hinrik of House Cecani
04-29-2009, 12:03 PM #2
I've got $500 for the person that wants to test this theory live... I just want full rights to the YouTube video...
04-29-2009, 12:04 PM #3
My gut tells me you'd be better off with bear spray. You have to keep in mind that, compared to a human, a bear has much more dense muscle and connective tissue, much thicker layers of the same over vital organs, a significantly heavier bone structure, and a pretty robust layer of skin and fur. If you can be extremely accurate, like "shoot the gun out of his hands" accurate, you might be able to score a vital shot, but you can't bet your life on that. A bear carries a lot of crap over it's vital organs, and a 9mm is going to have a tough time getting through all that.Originally Posted by U.S. Constitution, Art. IV Sec. 4
04-29-2009, 12:06 PM #4
Yeah, just be careful of ricochet when thos .357 rounds bounce off of the bruins skull!
04-29-2009, 12:09 PM #5
- Join Date
- Apr 2008
- Ayer, MA
It's all about shot placement. If you shot a bear in the head/brain with a 9mm he will not bother you anymore. 15 shots fired in panic mode as a big black meanie tries to make you his dinner might stop him, might not. There have been lots of documented cases of people absorbing multiple pistol shots before stopping, let alone a bear. Again it all depends on shot placement and your ability under life threatening stress.
Last edited by RickG; 04-29-2009 at 12:12 PM.
04-29-2009, 12:10 PM #6
The general consensus in bear attacks is that if you have 6 rounds available. fire 5, leave the last one for yourself
04-29-2009, 12:13 PM #7
Read the MA hunting regulations on minimum caliber allowed to hunt bear in the abtract available at www.mass.gov/masswildlife. This will confirm ochmude's point. They don't want you trying to take these big guys down with sub .40 ammo. You really don't want one of these roaming around pissed off with 9mm frags in his chest. Sure think about yourself first but think about the community a close second when the thing goes ape (bear) shit on a neighboring camp.
04-29-2009, 12:14 PM #8
- Join Date
- Oct 2008
- Just outside of Boston
I'd rather have a 12ga filled with slugs.
04-29-2009, 12:18 PM #9
I would have to second the slugs. If you are worried about bears and only wana carry a side arm then my vote would be with the 44 mag or bigger."Let nature take its natural course and thereby improve the quality of thinking of society instead of lowering the intelligence level to the lowest common denominator at the cost of the liberties of reasonable thinking people." -Finalygotabeltfed
"You never need a gun until you need it badly" -W.E.B. Griffin
04-29-2009, 12:20 PM #10
- Join Date
- Mar 2009
First, black bears are not very aggressive, unless 1) you're near their cub or 2) they are conditioned to be around humans (like bears in northern Maine that like to hang around landfills eating trash)
"Bear bagging" and cooking away from your sleeping area will be much more effective than a 9mm. The most likely scenario for a black bear bothering you would be most likely at night, while you're in your sleeping bag, and Mr. or Mrs. Bear decides to check out all the yummy human trash around your site or your tent. At that point lights and loud noises will most likely scare it away.
However, if you insist on wanting to be able to shoot a bear with a handgun, I would FIRST worry about accessibility of the weapon. If it's in your pack, it does no good, if you need it, you're going to need it immediately.
As for caliber, sure, a 9mm could penetrate a bear's skull, if you're lucky enough to get off a head shot! Personally, if the conversation is simply about CALIBER, I would want something much bigger than a 9mm. A .41 Magnum would be the minimum I'd consider. The bigger, the better! A 9mm hitting a charging bear center mass would just piss it off. (though it might bleed out later, a few hours after it pooped you out!)