Watch this video done by a friend of mine, Dmitry, also known as UF58, in Yakutia’s Chersky Range last summer, and you’ll get an idea of what to do first, when meeting a brown bear in the Siberian wildness.
UF58 is a Yakutsk-based mountain climber and trekker, and a great photographer. His travel reports (in Russian) are usually published at adv.yktv.ru.
Dmitry prefers to hike mountains alone. In August 2010, he was in the Chersky Range. When he saw a bear, he thought it was a lonely horse. So, in the beginning, he did nothing about animal. He lay on a grass resting, watching around and taking pictures… and then he realized that a big shaggy horse turned out to be a bear.
Here what you can do, when you come across the bear, but before reading tips, enjoy UF58’s photographs of the Chersky Range. To enlarge, click on images.
This is how the so-called horse looked like:
Frankly saying, I don’t have much advices. Just a few:
1. Be as noisy and loud as possible. Any wild animal as well as a Siberian bear dislikes an unusual noise.
2. Bears love foods and its smells. So your mission is not to smell like food. It means you need to keep your meals well packed and kept far away from you and a camp. Before going to a bed, put smelling eatable stuff at distance of 10-20 m from your night stay and, preferably, on a tree.
Don’t ever leave food near a camp saying, «This is for you, bear!» Never feed bears. They become angry, when you stop doing that.
3. What if a bear came for you? As Siberian nomads, Evenks and Evens, say, try to hide from bears’ view and don’t move in advance.
4. Don’t play with curious bear cubs, as their angry moms will come and do what they need to do.
Some tips to make you cheerful (they are local jokes):
1. Run as fast as possible.
2. No need to run as bears run fast and will get you.
3. Pray about not-meeting-bears.
The latter is the best option 🙂