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Old 23-01-2018, 11:49   #91
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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A .308 is about 10% less powerful than a 30-06, although that can vary. There's a lot of variation possible in each.

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As noted, if Greenland requires a *rifle*, a shotgun will not be acceptable. In theory you can get a shotgun with a rifled choke and make it comply with "rifle" definitions, but it will be cheaper to find a WW2 surplus 30-06 from a number of sources in good working order. As you're not going to be in regular practice, a highly accurate weapon is of limited use, accuracy usually requiring practice and a certain calmness that local polar bears tend to dispell.

If you keep the rifle in a "sock" when you are not out and about with it, those are sold inexpensively with rust-repellant impregnating them, basically they are oiled cloth like you would wrap any iron tools with to discourage rust. Cheap and effective. There are also vinyl "bags" used as waterproof gun cases for that purpose, very good to keep moisture off on a boat.

Instead of dropping it overboard when you are done, consider donating it to one of the rental programs, your cost is the same and it is less pollution in the sea.

The suggestion to contact a gun club is a very good one. No matter how simple the gun is, no matter how sharp you are, nothing will replace spending a couple of boring hours on a range (do take good hearing protection) getting familiar with the exact rifle you will be using. There are "bigger game" rounds, and something like a polar bear is literally so big that unless you take out the brain stem, the body can move for a surprising distance after it was supposed to be dead. You don't want to shoot it, you want to shoot it repeatedly until you are real damned sure it stops moving.

The authorities are serious about this (not just in Greenland) because folks just don't realize that something like a polar bear really redefines "terminal predator".
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Old 23-01-2018, 11:52   #92
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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[/I]"Ursus arctos horribilus" (what a great name ) is a grizzley, not smaller than a polar bear (ursus maritimus) and presumably not less aggressive.
Polar Bears are way more aggressive than Grizzlies. They actively hunt humans for food, while Grizzlies very rarely do that (most of the time they attack because they feel they or their cubs are threatened)

Being in an area with polar bears is the only time I'd ever carry a firearm, ever.
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Old 23-01-2018, 12:03   #93
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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But is a rifle designed for use by a sniper that has a big round suitable for a team of mixed ability when caught out at close range? and will they be able to use it in a panic situation? or could they even hit the target? most people can't hit a moving target on a firing range.

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I recommend the 308, iron sights and a large load.........with practice, the only bolt action I own is the 338, my 308 is a single shot, not recommended......
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Old 23-01-2018, 12:13   #94
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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Tidbit from up north. Many Canadian black bear guides will hand you a 12 gauge with slugs when you get to camp. Some won't even take you out with a rifle. Close range, they have the knock down one may need (but it is truly rare to happen)
On the flip-side to this ... in Canadian National Parks, visitors are not permitted to carry firearms (even in parks with polar bear populations, only licensed guides may carry guns).

Parks Canada recommends Pepper Spray and noise.
https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/nu/auy...A946DD4BB.ashx

There have only been nine recorded fatalities by polar bears in North America, and four of them were in zoos.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o..._North_America

But even non-fatal attacks are rare: Between 1986 and 2000 (so the study is a little bit dated) there were "52 perceived aggressive interactions and one interaction that resulted in human injury" between people and polar-bears in Canadian National Parks.
https://www.bearbiology.com/fileadmi...uglas_14_1.pdf

Of course, none of this includes Greenland ...
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Old 23-01-2018, 12:19   #95
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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Can't stress enough to practice, figure out the best caliber for your use, then try different types of cartridge manufacturers and grain. You'll be surprised how differently they group. Obviously, some better than others. Let common sense prevail!
Its not going to happen is it? they are going to pick up a couple of guns in Greenland and some ammo with another couple of boxes for practise. Sail out to sea and each have a go at shooting some drums. Then, on with the trip.

Telescopic sights work for you because they are zero'd in. Now what are you going to do with a group of inexperienced sailors? so iron sights, bore scoped if there is time, if not some target shoots and then, on with the trip.

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Old 23-01-2018, 12:28   #96
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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If it helps any I know a few climate researchers who work in the Artic. They are all unskilled with firearms and were issued shotguns with big game slugs due to the Polar bear threat. Simple manual of arms ( working the gun) reliable and tolerant of unskilled maintenance. Less expensive to buy than adequate rifle as well. You can get a Remington 870 for a bit over $300 US. A common and well regarded gun. I am somewhat skilled in firearms but by no means an instructor. I was able to train these guys to shoulder a weapon and hit the target in an afternoon. Don't forget to learn how to clear a jam quickly.

FYI, from what i understand running away from an aggressive polar bear is just making it more fun for the bear. You will have no chance of outrunning it.

Hope this helps
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:06   #97
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

If you are preparing to meet not only the official requirements but also the polar bear, I recommend taking also a flare gun and bear spray with you. Based on my extensive TV and youtube experience you can use these to negotiate with the polar bear already before it decides to attack. And you might both leave the scene reasonably happy and alive. The polar bear is likely to approach you from below the wind, so it can smell your pepper spray well in advance.
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:08   #98
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

I can see the need to have a large caliber round to be effective. But after thinking about a shooter with not much experience, the panic and so on. Probably would miss most shots over 25 yards.

If you can get by with a rifled choke shot gun, your best bet may be 12 ga Remington Copper Solid Sabot ammo.

Goggle it and watch some of the videos, pretty damaging round.
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:10   #99
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

Sorry, I didn't read them all.

I just wanted to say, in my opinion I wouldn't take a shotgun to a polar bear fight. The slug is to slow and too big in diameter to get meaningful penetration unless a very good shot front on, in a panic, at a charging animal or the animal is side on. It also doesn't make as big a noise as a powerful rifle.

You need an effective worst case scenario weapon.

I would have a semi-auto 30/06 with a good high capacity magazine, good for rapid fire warning shots. Followed by rapid fire lethal shots with heavy soft tip projectiles made for big game.

I would also have a 1 to 2 power scope, good for short and close range.

People tend to fire a single warning shot, I believe you fire 3-5 rapid fire shots towards it (not up in the air) you will soon know if it is determined to attack or not.
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:17   #100
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

I tell everyone that goes into the back country with me, that I will be carrying a .22 caliber revolver in case we come across something large like a bear. After some strange looks I usually get questions and statements that a 22 will only piss off a bear. At that point I explain that I only have to run faster than the slowest person and the 22 ensures that I can
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:25   #101
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I don't know.. my father used to make his own cartridges from two LG's.. open them and melt the shot to make the ball then top up one of the empty cartridges with enough powder to leave room for the ball.. could stop a 350lb charging wild boar well enough.. and they are thick skinned with a good layer of fat beneath.. but you need the nerve to see the whites of their eyes..
Carry a double barrel with two heavy gauge slugs... hit him twice, and fast.
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:41   #102
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

I have seen quite a few programs about the arctic where people where carrying and using 12 gauge shotguns for polar bear defense. If it was me, and the law allowed, I would take a Remington 870 12 gauge. It is cheap, rugged, powerful and reliable.

However, two would be better than one.

The problem with an 870 and similar shot guns, is that there is a trigger safety, slide release and slide/pump/forearm oh, yeah, a trigger. The manual of arms, i.e., how to use a pump shot gun is more difficult than a bolt action rifle or double barrel shot gun. It takes a bit of practice to use. I have seen people, who should know better, rack the shot gun and eject a live round by accident. This would be badness if one did that when a bear was charging.

I have used an 870 with a shock absorbing stock which was pretty amazing. It took the recoil and I felt very little force. Learning the manual of arms is important but one also must learn how to properly hold the shot gun. If not done right the recoil can bang you up. It is not difficult to do and it has nothing to do with being strong, it is just technique. I once saw a guy who could not listen, and/or do, as he was instructed, and he failed a shotgun course as a result. He fired so many rounds that his shoulder ended up black and blue, he had bruises on his face, and he could not move his arm by the time the instructors gave up on him. It is not rocket science but this guy literally beat himself up because he could not do as he was instructed.

Hopefully the class will teach one how to recognize when a bear is dangerous vs curious. I was watching one program on the arctic where the people where within an electric fence perimeter and they had dogs to alert when the bears got close. The fence was there to slow/stop the bear from getting into the perimeter but you had to wonder if the bear would figure out how to avoid the live wire given enough time. If I remember right, the guides eventually chased off the bear with non lethal rounds after noisemakers failed. It took quite some time and active action on the part of the guides to get the bear to move on. The guides had shot guns.

Later,
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:45   #103
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

This is just LOL - a mod starting a gun thread

If it were me and I was trying to comply with the regulation, I would just organize to get in greenland the easiest and least expensive thing available that meets the regulation, and get rid of it (one way or the other) as you leave.

If you are 'serious' about this, I would get the stainless rem 700 30-06 with a red dot sight, sighted in at perhaps 30m, with a locked steel gun safe installed under your bunk. That has been the consensus solution for the couple superyachts I have been involved with doing greenland/NPW with a gun. These boats all had someone in the crew who knew what they were doing with a long gun (as it sounds like dock may).

I really doubt anyone in greenland is going to check on this, and I really doubt you will ever need it; so quite honestly I think I personally would skip the whole thing and if some official is having a bad day and wants you to have the gun you just go buy one.

Regarding ice - Dock, do you know when those east coast harbors typically open (enough for a fiberglass yacht)? I do not know . . . . but I know the NPW choke point opens typically late august (3rd week in august), and I know when we were in Iceland and getting ready to head toward Uruguay at the 'end of the season' there were several yachts sitting around Reykjavík still waiting for the east coast to open. It is an exciting plan, but it would be worth knowing the typical ice timing because I suspect it will be later than you are thinking for the return timing. Does not mean it is not doable, but does mean much higher chance of hard weather on the return (I seem to remember the gale frequency doubles something like about every 3 weeks from the end of august).
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:49   #104
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

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Tidbit from up north. Many Canadian black bear guides will hand you a 12 gauge with slugs when you get to camp. Some won't even take you out with a rifle. Close range, they have the knock down one may need (but it is truly rare to happen)
Black bear and polar bear are two different beasts. Yelling and screaming may run a black bear off and only provoke a polar bear. Penetrating the fir let alone the polar bears fat takes a bit of a round. Double 0 buck is probably pissing up wind since each of the 9 or so shot have no mass JMHO I'll stick with rent from the locals. They won't rent you a Ruger .22.
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Old 23-01-2018, 13:54   #105
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Re: I Can't Believe I'm Starting a Gun Thread

btw dock, I probably have a bunch of files on ice/greenland/iceland - if you are interested, want me to send, just pm me an e-mail address. Some of them are big - the rcc arctic document is like 13mb.
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