Originally Posted by denverguy
We go camping in bear country from time to time and are considering getting a SM canvas Penthouse top.
Our major concern is our grand kids will be sleeping on the top bed from time to time.
Has anyone out there had any issues with bears since it's only a canvas top like a tent?
There will obviously be a food smell in the camper due to cooking and food in the fridge.
None ever, and I frequent Yosemite enough that many of the rangers know me.
One thing to keep in mind is youíll never know what the bear (any bear) has been through before you encounter it so itís always best to be cautious. But there is also a big difference between a grizzly and a black bear. Iíve had more meets with black bears than I can remember and only a couple put me in a dangerous predicament. I donít like how moody a grizzly can get, but I really donít know them like the California bears Iíve had the pleasure to meet. Most of those encounters with black bears were like waking to one licking my boots, or having one lay down across my legs thinking the tent was a big rock to rest againstÖthings like that. When I was a firefighter one of them crunched my wallet and badge. Try to explain that one to the chief! That bear also ate a can of tomato sauce. Their nose can smell through most anything. There was no stopping it and its cub from raiding our camp.
Iíve been chased by a bear twice, both due to stupid moves I madeÖyes getting between a mother and cub. Once was when I attempted to snap a photograph, and the other trying to get my wallet back. But most of the time they act like a dog watching that steak cook on the grillÖturn your back and the food is gone. Iíve had to chase down a few bears with a backpack or food bag in its mouth. One thing for sure is they understand that backpacks equal food, and they seem to know every serial number of any ice chest ever made. Cover them up or keep them out of view. The Yosemite bears have become quite clever. They know that food is in the RV because they can smell it even if you donít cook in it but arenít sure how to get to it. I got stuck in court for several days there and had to leave my van parked in the parking lot at the lodge. I made up some pepper spray and misted around the van each morning and night. Although it seemed silly, I did sleep a little better while being away from the vehicle. The rangers thought it was a good idea (or were laughing behind my back
). They had a couple of vans broke into by bears in that parking lot so I took desperate measures.
When cooking outside keep a lookout and donít leave food out. After youíre done with your BBQ (if you use one) keep the lid off so the bear can see nothing is in it. So far I havenít been harassed by rangers for leaving it out but that might change some day. I keep mine in the back of my Aluminess box but wonder if bears might try to pry it open. So far no problems to date.
I think that if the rig is occupied and youíre not cooking in it, youíll never have a problem. There is really no difference between a PH RV and hard sided RV...they know there is food in there. Just use common sense and you should be OK
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