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Axe as self defense

Discussion in 'Axe, Tomahawk, & Hatchet Forum' started by David Martin, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. 300Six


    Aug 29, 2013
    You are infinitely more likely to get hit by lightning than you are to ever come across a killer bear. So do you suppose outdoorsy folks wander around with lightning rods on their heads and ground straps dragging along behind them?
  2. Sosa


    Feb 6, 2014
    Take a stroll across Kodiak island and call me in the morning.
  3. sideways


    Feb 19, 2013
  4. Sosa


    Feb 6, 2014
    Poor Tim wasn't struck by lightening haha.
  5. sideways


    Feb 19, 2013
    But Martha Stewart was... Three times. :D
  6. HeavyHanded


    Jun 4, 2010
    As a backup you would be much better served with a potent bear spray. Realistically any hand weapon is just something else to drop so you can run faster.

    Next up I'd take a hatchet over a larger knife. The hatchet carries far far more energy when it hits - capable of not just cutting, but breaking bone as well, whether it cuts or not. It would take some practice to use something like a boy's axe or felling axe effectively for self protection, but would carry even more energy. In the late middle ages when plate became increasingly common, swords all but disappeared from the battlefield to be replaced by pole arms, hammers, maces. Axes never went out of style.
    noviomagus likes this.
  7. David Martin

    David Martin Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    Thanks gents for much thought in this subject matter. DM
  8. cyc79


    Feb 5, 2005
    I know a guy that was in a firefighting camp (fighting forest fires). A black bear came to the camp and repeatedly kept harassing one of the female firefighters (her time of the month maybe?). Since firearms aren't allowed in these camps, he ended up having to kill it with a pulaski.
    While not a charging or viciously attacking bear, it still took guts. Not something I'd want to attempt unless I was fighting for my life.
    noviomagus likes this.
  9. upnorth


    Nov 25, 2006
    I only came across one old account of a fur trader\black bear attack in the region were I lived before. The bear died and the trader died about a week later. My traffic accident numbers to driving time reveals that I am rarely in an accident. But I still wear a seat belt and obey the laws. Which of course enhances my safety record. I wish to minimize any accidental encounters with bears to zero. And I agree that 99.9% of the time that a bear hears\smells us only to disappear as quickly as possible. When I was in the Boreal I found it hard to sight a bear unintentionally. Most times they just shot through the trees like ghosts, to disappear in seconds.
  10. upnorth


    Nov 25, 2006
    My father killed a grizzly with a 30-06 in a mining camp as a young man. The bear kept coming to him with only its front paws until finished. He said that he was so terrified that he dropped the gun, grabbed a tree, and yacked his guts out.
  11. Alberta Ed

    Alberta Ed

    Jun 29, 1999
    There was an incident in British Columbia a few years ago where a timber cruiser killed a small black bear with a single hit with his ax, probably a light 3/4 bit. He saw it coming and it attacked straight on. I'd prefer a 12 gauge loaded with slugs, myself.
    noviomagus likes this.
  12. Liberatus1


    Dec 17, 2013
    Grizzly bears kill people in the city limits in Anchorage all the time. There was a woman snatched off a bike in a park riding for MS when I was up there visiting friends. In Oregon you don't have a chance in hell of getting killed by a bear though, a cougar is another story but for that you'd be better off wearing a motorcycle helmet and a leather collar. The big cat you see isn't the one that kills you. I'd go with bear spray though. Even avid shooters carry it up in AK, with their 44 mag of course.
  13. parasloth


    Dec 16, 2014
    Major Roger's Standing Order # 19 (modified for this conversation):

    Let the bear come till he's almost close enough to touch, then let him have it and jump out and finish him up with your hatchet.
  14. B34NS


    Dec 30, 2013
    Growing up in bear and lion country, especially in some national lands where firearms are prohibited, a simple road flare is all you need.

    I've been through alaska as well, yet that was one of the few times I brought a side arm.

    Just understanding the biology of the animals is enough, knowing what triggers behaviors, etc. This can help you prevent an encounter, or in a surprise interaction, know how to respond so not to trigger prey response.


    Jul 2, 2014
  16. Big Sarge

    Big Sarge

    Jan 7, 2015
    Definitely a knife over a hatchet. BTW, Gen Wade Hampton hunted bears with his knife. I believe he killed around 80 before the Civil War.
  17. LEGION 12

    LEGION 12 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 8, 2009
    Yes I am sure. :rolleyes:
  18. Charlie_K


    Jul 16, 2012
    Considering the hatchets I have available to me, I'd go with a knife too. You can't really stab with an axe. And you're not likely to find yourself in a position where winding up for a brutal chap will be available.
  19. Big Sarge

    Big Sarge

    Jan 7, 2015
    Hey what do I know?? I was only basing it on Theodore Roosevelt's "The Wilderness Hunter". Maybe Teddy made it all up?
  20. David Martin

    David Martin Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 7, 2008
    This is so informative. Thanks guys for taking the time to post your thoughts. DM

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