Recently I purchased a UDAP Bear Shock® Lightweight Electric Fence for camping in Canada. The area I camp in had five black bear attacks in one year. All related to campers or tourists not keeping a clean camp or acting responsibly by not feeding the bears. My seven-year-old son and I spend several weekends a year camping and hiking on the Appalachian Trail (AT) in Pennsylvania. The state has an estimated Black Bear population in the tens of thousands and a three-day hunting season nets approximately three thousand bears. Each year several bears weight-in at over the 600 pound mark. Needless to say, you need to take bear precautions when wilderness camping in Pennsylvania.
Bear Shock® Testimonials
The UDAP Bear Shock Fence gave us the peace of mind
Photographer Michael Leese and I tried to backpack the remains of the Copper River and Northwest Railway, a 90-mile stretch of track down through the Copper River Gorge in south-central Alaska. Needless to say, brown bears were going to be an issue.
Though we were both strapped with bear spray and 12-guages loaded with slugs, there was nothing protecting us at night. The UDAP Bear Shock Fence gave us the peace of mind to rest up between long days of bushwhacking. That is more than I can say for our friend Matt, who dropped us off at the trailhead.
The very next night after Matt left us near Chitina, he was tent camping alone on the Gulkana River, trying to fish for steelhead. In the dead of night, he awoke to a ripping noise and rolled over to see the face of a young grizzly just feet from his own. The tent was too small to deploy his bear spray without injuring himself, he said, so Matt started screaming and pointing a flashlight in the bear's eyes. The animal withdrew and Matt sprinted for his truck, where he spent the rest of the night.
In the morning, Matt found his tent in ruins and his Thermarest partially eaten. He spoke to the campground manager who said the bear was just a curious two-year-old boar, which seems like little solace for such a heart-pounding situation. At the same time, we were much deeper in bear country and were never once bothered at night. The Bear Shock Fence is packable and light enough to be easily strapped to a backpack and I will never again camp in the Alaskan backcountry without one.
Sam Lungren & Michael Leese
I am a staunch believer in your fence--it definitely saved my life.
I recently went on a solo backpacking trek in the Torngat Mountains in Northern Labrador . I had been told by the park ranger who issued my permit to camp in Torrngat Mountains National Park that polar bears are especially prevalent in the Park this year, so I purchased the UDAP Electric Shock bear fence. It was so light weight (3.7 pounds, with batteries) and easy to put up that it was ideal for my solo hike.
I did have a bear encounter and I thought you might want to know how the fence worked for me. For several days, I saw polar bear tracks--some very fresh, so I knew there were bears in the area. I camped on the edge of Tetragona Lake , which is at 1000 ft. elevation above the nearby fjord, so I really was not expecting a bear encounter at that camp. However, at 5:20 AM on August 5th, 2010 , I was awakened by a loud chuffing sound just outside my tent. I opened the flap to my tent and looked out to see a mother polar bear and her yearling cub. The mother bear was just outside the fence, no more than 12-15 feet away from me, looking at me warily and looking back at her cub. Slowly, she walked away and herded her cub up a slope just outside the fence. It was clear to me that the mother bear had approached my camp and touched the fence right near the red energizer and the shock had caused her to make the loud chuff in surprise. She looked confused--I suspect that she had never encountered a human or tent before and she appeared to be concerned about protecting her yearling from the danger she perceived from the fence. After a few minutes the mother and cub walked behind a large boulder and disappeared. I remained in the camp for two days after the encounter, but there was no further sign of the bears.
By the way, my outfitter was so impressed with my story of the encounter that he bought the fence from me before he flew me back to civilization.
I am a staunch believer in your fence--it definitely saved my life. And I hope my experience will provide an important example of how well it worked with two polar bears.
Things That Go Bump in the Night
After receiving the UDAP bear fence I decided to take it on a weekend AT hike to learn the proper way to set it up. I read the instruction booklet once before leaving and put batteries in the unit. I'd never used a bear fence before so this was all new to me. We arrived late in camp and were joined by a couple of thru hikers staying at the shelter and a scout troop setting-up tents near us. Due to the numbers of campers at the shelter I decided skip setting up the electric fence for the night. While sitting around the campfire we could hear a few large animals rustling around in the leaves and assumed them to be deer. Naturally the thru hikers started to ask about the bear population in Pennsylvania and the number of increased sightings, as hikers get closer to New Jersey. I could tell this was starting to scare my seven year old and quickly changed the subject.
It was time to go to sleep and as we headed back to the tent my son told me he was glad I brought the fence and asked me set it up. It was dark, the temperature dipped into the twenties, and we were tired, so I was not thrilled about having to figure out how to set-up a bear fence in the dark, but my son insisted. I pulled out the fence kit and started to assemble it in the dark thinking it would be a challenge; to my surprise the kit was extremely well thought out. The folks at UDAP provided a well-made storage bag for everything. The poly wires wrap conveniently around a winder. The wires easily slip on the pole insulators, and don't tangle due to the winder, and the terminal end has a nifty metal clip that fits on a loop you adjust using a cord lock. This allows you to get the wires up and tightened quickly and easily even in the dark with very cold hands. Lastly you hang the energizer on the wire using the top stay-on clip and attach the ground clamp. One flip of the switch and we were set and ready for sleep.
That night was uneventful and we slept late the next morning. I slept sounder knowing the fence would discourage any nocturnal visitors. In the morning my son stated " it sure was a good idea to bring the fence". I have to say thanks to the Team at UDAP for creating a well made and thought out kit. It is greater than the sum of its parts. I will be leaving to spend several weeks on the AT hiking and plan to take the bear fence with me. The couple of extra pounds are worth a sound night sleep. Once again, Thanks for creating such a well, designed, easy to use product.
You really do sleep better when it surrounds your tent. - Greg
"...We had a barrier between us and possible unwanted visitors..."
Dear Pepper Power®,
I just wanted to drop you a line and let you know that I took your electric bear fence up to the Alaskan interior with me for a three-week float trip last month. We had to be extremely mindful of weight, since we took a bush plane in and out, and appreciated the lightweight design of the fence.
We used your Bear Shock® Electric Fence and took 1 spare set of D-size batteries. We encountered every type of weather possible, and the temperature dropped below freezing every night. We set up camp every evening on many different types of surfaces, ranging from tundra to river gravel bar.
Sincerely, Kent Rotchy