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NOLS Bear Essentials: Hiking and Camping in Bear Country (NOLS Library) Paperback – June 14, 2009
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About the Author
John Gookin, PhD, is a life-long educator. He currently manages curriculum and research at NOLS, where he has worked for 33 years. John has been studying backcountry lightning safety for 15 years and is a member of the Lightning Safety Team at the National Weather Service. He lives in Lander, WY.
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Top customer reviews
I don't know where the reviewers got their page counts but there are only 79 actual pages of information in this booklet that measures 4 inches by 6 inches. You might get 112 if you count the forward and the author bio but I don't consider that when I count pages because it isn't the info I bought the book for.
At most I consider this a pocket guide that I might carry for entertainment while hiking but not something I would consider as a stand alone source.
The information in this booklet is ALL readily available on-line for free if you do a little research or even from a public library... Again not enough info for the cost, but it may be somewhere to start if it was one third the cover price....
My Opinion Only---- If you just have to have this book, Look for it in the bargain bin somewhere but you will be MUCH better off looking for something else with more coverage of the subjects only brushed on in this booklet.
This book has a much broader geographic perspective, and it seems much more authoritative. Its even funny at points. The NOLS people are very, very smart and have a ton of experience with bears and the outdoors (and how people behave, too).
This is actually small enough that you could carry it in your pack while you were on the trail, and that might be a good idea.
There are extensive diagrams about different food hanging techniques. The bears in different areas are smart enough to figure out a given food hanging technique, so you have to keep changing how you hang food.
This book is based on so much experience that the author actually tells you which food hanging techniques work where, but will add, once in a while, something like "but there's a bear in the eastern Sierras that has figured out how to take this down."
This is a very slim little volume, but it is packed with excellent information. I was reading it on a trip and ended up lending it out to my mother (there are bears in the woods she likes to walk) and then to someone in my Wilderness First Responder class. Everybody who saw it was interested in it.
I hike with a dog that would probably attack a bear if he saw one (he charged a HUGE bull once). I regularly see bear prints... but no bear encounters yet. We follow the instructions in this book very carefully, especially for camp lay-out, smell-management and bear sign.