Research has shown that a bear’s hearing is twice as sensitive as a human’s, therefore sounds that we perceive as loud, will be even louder and more startling to a bear. An air horn can be effective from distances in excess of 100 feet away from a bear. Unlike bear spray, an air horn can also be used intermittently in the wilderness as a precautionary forewarning to any bears ahead that you are coming, giving them ample opportunity to move off. Bear spray can be effective as a bear deterrent when used on a bear that is within the 25-30 foot range of the spray. The effective distance of bear spray may be even less if the bear is uphill or upwind from the person using the spray.
Photo by Janko Ferlic