Bears can be everywhere and anywhere in Alaska even at SCMC and how you deal with the situation depends on how well you are prepared and your comfort level. My best advice is: Don’t ever feed the bears! Don’t ever have food item with you while away from the Cook Shack! Don’t leave trash that smells like food anywhere except in the designated area! Don’t sleep with food in your tent! They love food! They’re looking for food all summer that will sustain them through the long cold winter! When you are going to the designated trash area always go with other prospectors and don’t surprise one – make noise! Bears don’t like surprises! They don’t like to be crowded! You are on your own prospecting adventure so if you choose to have a weapon you may do so but do not fire it unless it is a true emergency! The camp rule is – no firing of weapons for any reason – except in an emergency! Bear spray, which is available at sporting goods stores, is another alternative but be certain you don’t get it on you and that you know how to use it. Look up bear safety on the internet and visit the Alaska Bear Facts, Traveling in Bear Country, Division of Wildlife Conservation, and Alaska website at: STATE OF ALASKA: FEDERAL:    

What makes Alaska so special is the wildlife so please respect them, also.

Like the website says keep food and anything that smells like food away from them and keep a clean camp. Let them know you’re there, wave your arms and talk in a normal voice and don’t run. While prospecting always prospect with two or more other people and stop to look around every once in a while. State law allows a bear to be shot in self-defense if you did not provoke the attack and if there is no alternative but the hide and skull must be salvaged and turned over to the authorities. The best thing I can say about an encounter is that if you have studied bear safety at the above website you will be much better off.

Mosquitoes in this area can be thick beyond belief, especially in the evening so you should bring a mosquito head net. They can punch a hold through thin clothing so try to bring some thicker jeans and long-sleeve shirts and wear them after treating them with insect repellent over long-johns or other thermal under clothing. Hang up and spray the outer clothing with bug dope with a high % of DEET. If possible avoid washing the outer clothing and spray each day. Good work gloves like leather keep the bugs off your hands and a mosquito head net will keep them off your face and head. Wear a hat, also. Don’t get bug dope on your plastic items, headphones, glasses, and such as it tends to melt them. Look up Insect Bite Preventions and Mosquitoes on the internet and be prepared for them. They can be thick though sometimes there seem to be only a few so hope for a good year but be prepared and you won’t be driven back to the tents or cabins.

One of the old methods to keep them away is to drink lots of “Tang” which is a Vitamin C drink. Apparently our perspiration is high in the citric acid from Vitamin C and they don’t like it.

Other bugs such as “no-see-ums” can really bug you too.

OTHER BUGS: You will be bugged if:

You don’t have rubber boots, gloves, rain gear, plenty of warm and not so warm clothes including lots of socks so don’t forget them.

Some of the equipment you would like to use is not available so be certain to sign up early and specify what type of equipment you would like to use.

The metal detector you get doesn’t work so maybe you should bring your own – one that you know and one you know works.

You don’t bring sufficient clothing and end up washing them in the creek or a #2 tub.

You get injured because you didn’t use caution and clear thinking about every action you take in remote areas of Alaska

Porcupine Creek Alaska Adventures Bears Bears - Think About This

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