Proper organization of food storage is of central importance in tourist journeys. This is important to prevent wild animals from feeding on your supplies. If dangerous wildlife may be in the vicinity, food should be locked up to be odorless. Some also defend themselves by packing food in several plastic containers and then hanging them from a tree.
Anyone who walks in nature must come into contact with local animals. Consequently, it is advised to protect food so wild animals are not tempted to raid your supplies while camping. Dangerous animals such as bears can also be attracted to the smell of food. Nevertheless, if everything is thoroughly stocked, you can likewise enjoy your wilderness vacation in peace.
For your safety and the protection of wildlife, you must observe two things during your journeys:
- Leave a few signs of your presence as possible.
- Avoid encounters with wild animals.
- Be careful with food, its smells, and waste.
If you are wondering how to keep food safe from bears while camping, these suggestions can be helpful.
How to Protect Food While Camping
Food to be reliably protected should be stored in solid bear-proof containers for camping during the journey overnight. If you are only staying in the tent overnight, make sure the food is not stored on the ground so that ants and other animals cannot easily reach it.
The smell of food attracts mostly wild animals. To avoid food odors, use special containers and food bags that block smells. All food can also be placed in an animal-proof container – sometimes found permanently in campgrounds in the United States – or hung from a rope between two trees. This complex procedure is imperative because it not only protects from bears: it also prevents bears and wildlife in general from getting used to our food.
Consequently, food must be stored accurately. But you should also avoid eating in the tent or on the campsite, as the crumbs smell strong enough to attract the attention of many creatures.
Options to Keep From Safe From Animals
To protect your food from wild animals in the forest, there are several reliable ways. Some of the most popular:
- Bear bag. This equipment is presented in the form of a bag, which is made of durable materials. Such materials are tough to tear and damage even the most powerful forest dwellers. And if you safely hide these items, protection will be one of the most reliable.
- Hanging a dry bag. Such a device will be the best option for storing dry food. Notwithstanding, the bear can often damage the material.
- Bear canister or bear barrel. These devices are considered to be among the most reliable.
What is this miraculous container, and how to use a bear canister that will save your food from the bear? First of all, it is a food container, which is made of very long-lasting material. Not a single bear can harm it and take food.
What is a Bear Canister
One of the famous names is bear cans. They are all presented as containers that have a tough shell. Many tourists have already become convinced of the effectiveness of such a device for storing food. Raccoons, deer, bears – none of the animals will harm your food during the backpacking.
This standard-size canister can weigh up to four feet. How heavy it will depend on the materials from which the fixture is made. Sizes are different: you can choose a model of two liters, up to eleven liters. The best advice, of course, is not to take too large a canister. It won’t be easy to carry with you when you fill it to have it chock-full with food.
Another benefit is time savings. When dinner is over, and it’s time to clean up your camping spot and go to bed, you can quickly put the small canister away and hide it from the wild animals. It will not weigh much and will save time to look for options for hiding your products.
Don’t think of a canister as one option. Why not apply it as an extra seat in a large company? It can also be installed as a table. Only fantasy is your chapel in this case.
Best Bear Resistant Canister
When choosing the suitable canister for your backpack, you can consider these popular options:
- BearVault BV500 Food Canister. This model is one of the most popular and demanded on the market. It has been tested and approved by many centers. It also has side tabs that allow you to strap the carbon fiber bear canisters around and attach them to your backpack. This option effortlessly fits inside a backpack.
- BearVault BV450 Food Canister. This prospect is not as good as the first one, but it also contrasts in quality. It is compact, so it is easy to carry with you in your backpack. Notwithstanding its miniature size, it will be enough for a large tourist group. This canister is made from the same material and tested and approved by the Grizzly (IGBC) and Black Bear (SIBBG) test centers.
Lightweight Bear Resistant Container
Bearikade Weekender container is the lightest of all. Due to its small size and lightness, it is designed for two people. This is a good option for a short weekend journey to the forest. Nevertheless, this prospect is also the most expensive one on the list. This is because it is made of a carbon fiber composite cylinder with high-strength epoxy resin.
A bear barrel is one of the options for storing your camping meal. What is it like? First of all, it looks pretty much like a bear canister. The main difference is that the top is fixed differently than in a canister. For example, a canister often has a tight screw cap. The barrel can only be opened with a key or a unique master coin.
Best Bear Resistant Barrel
Bear Proof Container is one of the best options for backpacking enthusiasts. Two screws are used to secure the cover. They are located at the top of the fixture. You can open and close the lid with a key or a coin. Grizzly (IGBC) and Black Bear (SIBBG) have also approved this option.
Cons of Bear Resistant Containers
Overall, this is not a faulty variant. Nevertheless, there are such disadvantages of this equipment:
- An enormous and not compact container. This is a good option for a very extended journey, but not for a short outing.
- Additional severity.
- It is difficult to carry in a small backpack due to its weight.
- Most often, they are not airtight. Wild animals will most likely be able to smell your food inside the barrel.
Many may wonder what is a bear bag and why everyone likes it. Many studies have proven that a heavy-duty bag is the best option for preserving food from bears. They keep them from getting to the groceries. Why choose this option? This is a beneficial model if you need to save on weight and money. This is the best option for a multi-day journey as it is very comfortable and has padded walls that fold down comfortably and doesn’t even take up much space.
Ursack produces the best models of this type. They have a crush-resistant aluminum liner. Numerous users have remarked that this is a highly convenient feature as it supplements convenience and additional protection to the pack.
This sturdy bear proof bag and liner can protect the food inside. Even if a wild animal finds it, the creature will not damage the bag or get something out of it. It will likewise fail to crush the contents.
Cons of Bear Resistant Bags
So after numerous advantages, are there any downsides? They are, and they should be taken into account at the time when choosing the appropriate option for yourself:
- It can be prohibited in some national parks.
- Wild animals won’t be able to crush the bag, but they can take it away.
- You will need more strength to hang the bag.
- Such a bag is also not airtight or waterproof.
Best Bear Resistant Bag
The Ursack Major Black Bear Bag is one of the best models in this segment. It is made of bulletproof fabric. This bag is also extremely lightweight. If you use a bag that hides the smell of food, such a bag will become an invaluable treasure during the journey. Notwithstanding, these benefits are sold separately from the pack.
It should be borne in mind that you need to look for an option with an aluminum lining. Otherwise, the food inside the bag may be damaged after being attacked by a wild animal.
How to Hang Your Camping Food
If you want to know how to hang a bear bag, you can follow these suggestions. They were used by numerous travelers who decided it was very effective. So how do you properly hang your food? To get it right, you can follow some simple steps:
- First, you need to find a tall tree near the camp. It should be about a hundred feet from the parking area.
- Next, you need to fill a small bag with stones and tie it with rope.
- After that, it is worth attaching the lace and throwing it over the tree branch. You can also attach the other end of the cord additionally for security.
- You can then remove the stone bag from the cord and then attach the rope to the carabiner on the food bag before lifting the load. Make sure the grocery bag is securely closed and does not emit any odors.
In the end, it’s worth picking up the bag. It should be at least six feet from the tree trunk and at least 12 feet above the ground. After making sure the bag is positioned correctly, you can tie the other end of the cord to another tree or stone nearby.
Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) Bear Bag Method
The PCT method is another interesting technique for fixing food. To do this, you need to thread the cord through the carabiner on the food bag. After that, you need to pull the bag up to the desired branch of the tree, where your food will be stored. Attach a small stick to the cord.
Once you’ve secured the stick, slowly let the food bag slide down until the stick touches the carabiner. This will prevent the package from descending even lower at night.
Food Storage at a Campground
The storage options for food during the day and at night are different. During the day, food can be stored in a unique bear proof cooler or icebox. It will not only keep food safe but also keep it fresh and tasty. It is also worth putting a lock on this chest. Furthermore, it will save food from unwanted guests.
Not only that, but it is best to store food in safe bear proof coolers at night. When choosing it, pay attention to the materials and purpose of use. It all depends on your requirements. You can also hang your food bags or hide the container securely by placing it at a distance from the tent site and your camp.
How to Keep Food Safe While Backpacking
Preparing for a hike is a serious process. The question of how to store food while camping is the most critical moment when traveling to places where wild animals are found. They can covet your food and put you in danger.
When you go camping, learn a lot about all the food storage options. It is worth considering your wishes in the weight and material of suitable containers and the requirements of the place where you will camp. Some parks prohibit the use of canisters, and some do not allow food to be hung overnight. All of these must be taken into account before your trip.