For lack of a gun

Some interesting new details have come to light regarding a grizzly attack in Wyoming this fall in which an experienced guide was killed. Turns out that although he was carrying a pistol he had set it aside while engaged in field dressing an elk. When the bear charged, the gun was  30 feet away and might as well have been on another planet.

In researching the Apache Wars I’ve often been surprised by the number of accounts of prospectors, ranchers and travelers who were  unarmed when attacked.  Wondering why a prudent man would leave himself defenseless in Indian country, I experimented  by carrying a replica Colt Navy in a belt holster or toting around a rifle on my expeditions into the back country. I discovered either one an irritating nuisance around the camp or on the trail. I can understand why the temptation to set it aside would be irresistible. Nothing is more difficult that constant vigilance.

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