Guns for camping?


September 4, 2007, 12:06 AM
Do you take any firearms with you camping? If so, what kind and why?

I don't because I dont camp much, and see no need in the area that i would go, except maybe a .22LR rifle or pistol for squirrels.

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10 Ring Tao
September 4, 2007, 12:07 AM
Standard CCW handgun, standard carrying.

Only difference for camping is that I might throw a shotgun in the trunk.

September 4, 2007, 12:10 AM
i don't camp at camp sites, i'm on private land so i can bring i firearm.

i bring my 10/22. i'm not in an area with any dangerous or large game, so i don't really have to worry about much on that front. I just bring it for targets of opportunity like woodchucks and pigeons.

Agent Entropy
September 4, 2007, 12:11 AM
It's my understanding that ccw in most state parks (save Florida) and National Forests is verboten. Maybe open carry isn't? Or maybe you're camping on private property?

With down, where's a good place to go for this information? :confused:

Agent Entropy
September 4, 2007, 12:12 AM
edit: sorry for the double post

September 4, 2007, 12:15 AM
Actually, when I camp, I usally carry to nth degree. That's because I camp to be able to go shoot for 2 full days, sun-up to sun-down.

I WAS going to camp this summer, but well, an unexpected neurosurgery on Aug 01 really put the poop on my planned trip! Fortunately for me, I camp year round, and yes even in sub-zero temps.

You in Ten Ring Tao??? When I get that .50 BMG upper, it has to be tested.


September 4, 2007, 12:16 AM
I don't like snakes, so I usually bring my S&W Model 66 with at least a couple of rounds of snake shot. Generally though I'm more afraid of 2 legged predators than 4. Thats why the other 4 rounds have .357 loads.

Depending where and when, I might bring a .22 or something else - though it seems these days all my camping is confined to hunting season.

Zero Knives
September 4, 2007, 12:18 AM
I bring the 10/22 and that's about it. If we're headed to the badlands, I bring a .357 with an extra speedloader of shotshell...

chris in va
September 4, 2007, 12:22 AM
You're d**m straight I take my gun camping. Heard quite a few stories from actual people either needing a gun or defending themselves with one. Many 'campgrounds' I've stayed at are little more than trailer parks complete with 3am drunks looking for a good time. Just how long do you think it would take for law enforcement to get things under control way back in Sweetwater Holler Falls in lot 195?:scrutiny:

I like to keep my SP101 handy.

10 Ring Tao
September 4, 2007, 12:26 AM
When camping, you're actually more vulnerable than when at home. Both because your 'domicile' is easier to break into, and you're presumably in the middle of nowhere, with no easy way to call for help or help to get to you.

I'd rather be much more prepared than normal, than less so.

You in Ten Ring Tao??? When I get that .50 BMG upper, it has to be tested.

Heh, for sure, let me know when you're healed up. I've done plenty of winter camping, but not since scouts, so I don't know about anything after halloween. I've been meaning to go to island lake for a couple weeks, maybe wednesday.

September 4, 2007, 12:37 AM
Absolutely. About 4-5 years back, not too long after I got into firearms I went camping on a private 20 acre plot with some buddies. When we got there one, my best buddy, asked if I brought any guns. I did not -- thought they might think it was weird. His reply: "Damnit! The one time I think it actually makes SENSE for you to have a gun you don't!"

Since then, always.

September 4, 2007, 12:37 AM
.357 mag for walking around the woods.

1911 under my pillow in the tent :)

.30-30 in the truck :)

of course it can change depending on where I'm going.

September 4, 2007, 12:44 AM
Always! The absolute minimum would be a .45 or similar, for the two legged snakes, plus a shotgun or rifle if there is a possibility of bears or moose, and often a .22 for fun.

September 4, 2007, 12:51 AM
A camping trip isn't complete without shooting!!!

I carry my CCW until we get into the woods, then...

Once I'm in the woods and need something with more punch and penetration than my G26 I carry a Ruger .357 mag with 200gr hard-cast bullets in a Galco side holster.

Have my Mossberg 500 12-gauge with pistol grip and 18" barrel loaded with 3" magnum 00 buck in the tent for any unwanted mid-night visits...

Also have to keep the 10/22 around for plinking!

... oh, and we usually have an assortment of airsoft guns to blast eachother with when we can't play with the real deal.

September 4, 2007, 01:09 AM
Savage 24 in camp, 38 revolver or better under your pillow.

September 4, 2007, 02:05 AM
Depends on where I am. A pump gun with slugs and a few other loads would probably be the best all around answer.

If I need something smaller a Glock 20 with hot loads.

If I have no big game worries, any good CC will do.

September 4, 2007, 02:24 AM
For harsh enviorments I have 2 revolvers. Both Ruger SP-101's in 357 mag and 32 H&R mag otherwise one of the semi's.

September 4, 2007, 02:40 AM
Camping w/o a gun? Are you crazy? I always carry my carry weapon anyway. Camping, shopping, eating, sleeping. When I am camping I usually add weaponry not leave it behind. M-4 or shotgun or both. My usual camping trip is near water to go skiing, so when I am out on the lake I usually lock my weapons up in my father-in-laws camper. Except for my handgun which I carrry with me on the boat.

Even if I was in an camping area that was totally devoid of animals, people are still just as bad, if not worse. As it is, bears, cougars, and lynxes oh my are fairly common. Bears... I don't know if my .45 with hyroshocks would do the job, but they'd find my mauled body next to an empty pistol.

September 4, 2007, 02:46 AM
Well.. I don't go camping. Im not an outdoorsman whatsoever.. I'm a total indoorsman. BUT.. if I were to go camping, I would be conscerned about defense.. more from people than animals. I actually know people who have been robbed at their campsite at gunpoint. They were lucky that robbed is all they got. I'd bring my normal ccw gun if possible of course. If I wasn't allowed to bring a handgun for whatever reason (out of state maybe) then I think I'd bring along the Kel-Tec Sub2000 carbine in .40S&W. It's a decent defensive gun, and it's ability to fold would make it most convenient to carry along.

September 4, 2007, 03:22 AM
Yes, I carry when camping. I bring my full-size CCW (.40) loaded with 200gr woods-rounds, in a hip-pack that can also attach to my main backpack. I conceal because there's no need to alarm sheeple in the group I hike with, and sometimes my hiking route will partially enter restricted areas (National Parks land).

Firearms are outlawed from National Parks because National Parks land is completely safe, right? :rolleyes:

September 4, 2007, 04:10 AM
.45 ( standard every day carry, XD or witness( , AR-7 and/or SUB 2000 (.40) . Last camping trip was in NH and the place we camped at heda lot of bear "incidences" . they don't rocognize my maine permit , but you can open carry , so I did . When I camp by myself i bring all 3 . The 2 rifles are compact and strap up nicely on the outside of my ruck .

Never thought to bring a gun camping when I was younger, until a close friends sister was raped and killed while at a "family" campground . Woke me up pretty quick .

September 4, 2007, 04:11 AM
edit : double post

September 4, 2007, 04:29 AM
I have no gun.

September 4, 2007, 08:14 AM
It's my understanding that ccw in most state parks (save Florida) and National Forests is verboten. Maybe open carry isn't? Or maybe you're camping on private property?

Legal in all Texas State Parks as well.

September 4, 2007, 08:17 AM
I take my 12ga loaded with slugs. When I'm not in camp, I secure it in my vehicle. I also take a handgun, which is usually on me, and a .22lr for dispatching critters if needed.
If I'm camped on BLM land I often take everything, with the intention of plinking. The SKS usually has a few clips of ammo with it just in case.

September 4, 2007, 10:09 AM
My go to handgun while camping is my 6" 686, loaded with 158gr DT gold dots. My long arm depends on where I am camping at, its either a 18" 870, my AK, or my AR.

September 4, 2007, 10:10 AM
I usually park and walk in to make a basecamp 20 or so miles up the trail and then hike out from there over a couple of days. Or, I'll section hike part of the Appalachian Trail for 3 or 4 days.
It's just not feasible or comfortable to carry an arsenal. So, I take a 357 loaded with full house magnum loads and two speed loaders. 2 or 4 legs will drop or run.
If that can't handle it, I'm in pretty big trouble anyway and will probably just hit the woods for escape/evade.

September 4, 2007, 10:13 AM
Normal camping - I'd pick a Glock 22. Respectable fire power, great reliability, and ugly enough that it can experience 'rough use' w/o worrying that you are marring your safe queen. If you are in Bear Country - then Ruger Alaskan.

Oh wait - you asked what do I carry ... Usually a Glock 35.

As ChrisinVA said - I've had a few scary situations in camp grounds - the worst was in Michigan with some people that pulled in at 2:00 AM - won't relate that story but it's as scared as I've ever been in the outdoors.

September 4, 2007, 10:31 AM
As far as situations while camping....
I've never been in a scary situation while camping, except being cornered by some sheepdogs. Not just any sheepdogs, these are those big, wild white ones, Pyrannees dogs I think.
However, I've seen some very questionable people inhabiting the same campgrounds as me. Even saw a suspected meth lab once, promptly packed up and left. Notified a park ranger on the way out.

September 4, 2007, 10:42 AM
A model 36 S&W on my hip, depending on the activity a shotgun or sks in the truck, or maybe a takedown .22 semi in my pack.

Creeping Incrementalism
September 4, 2007, 11:16 AM
Due to a dry conditions in California, the black bears have been extremely aggressive this summer. There have been a high number of bear "burglaries" and even "home invasions" in mountain houses. This one, not-always-occupied single-group campground I like has a number of bears in the area, and in normal years they always tear through the trash the night after the group clears out, unless another group immediately re-occupies the camp. So this summer they might be hungry enough to try taking food/trash even while the camp is occupied. If I went out there, I'd personally arm myself with my dog, my 45 w/ FMJs, and maybe an auto-loading rifle/shotgun.

September 4, 2007, 11:20 AM
Do you take any firearms with you camping?
If so, what kind and why?
S&W 686+, S&W 629 & 642 goes everywhere, Marlin 1894
Varmints, 2 & 4 legged.

When Hunting I also take my Remington 700 CDL 30-06 and teh 10/22 for fun.

September 4, 2007, 11:32 AM
Are you asking about camping (drive to a place, open door, pitch tent) or backpacking (carry tent, food, etc. several miles into the forest)?

For backpacking I carry my Ruger Redhawk Alaskan in .44 magnum.

I don’t consider squirrels to be reactive targets so I wouldn’t shoot it unless I planned on eating it.

September 4, 2007, 11:38 AM
Just got back from a weekend in the White Mountains, Arizona. Went to the Alpine area and caught quite a few nice trout.

I always carry when camping. Mostly CCW and hardly ever open carry. The XD-45 went with me this weekend.

I stopped by the boat house on Big Lake to clean fish and a guy to my left was wearing a Ruger semi auto handgun open carry. The guy to my right was carrying a S&W revolver on his hip as well.

September 4, 2007, 12:54 PM
National parks are generally off limits to complete/loaded firearms not locked in cases, but national forests are just fine, your state's laws apply.

And yep, I always have a gun when I'm in the woods, generally a rifle (mauser) and often a back up handgun, a derringer or revolver depending on the circumstances. There are some crazy and dangerous people you can run into in the wilderness, not to mention animals, and it doesn't take a large bear to hurt you, a rabid small animal could hurt you too...

September 4, 2007, 02:22 PM
My glock 20 10mm with home loaded 180xtp's and 45rnd's ready to go makes me feel comfortable.I do not like taking my bushmaster though,too much money invested for some of the places I go,I do however take my ak with folding stock.It's alittle on the heavy side but you have compact reliable firepower.I coated it with brownell's od green so she's good to go for nasty weather also.

September 4, 2007, 05:21 PM
Where I camp there are bears, cougars, snakes, and tweakers. Only an idiot wouldn't bring a gun.

September 4, 2007, 07:40 PM
I just spent the weekend at Crater Lake.

Crater Lake National Park has "No Weapons allowed in the park" posted.

I'm guessing this is the same for all national parks now. I wonder how long it'll be before hatchets and hotdog skewers are forbidden... What's next, pointy sticks?

To answer the question:
Where legal, I take a pistol and my wife takes a pistol.

Bazooka Joe71
September 4, 2007, 07:51 PM
A bit OT, as it is a question and not an answer...But every now and again I go camping at Jackson Falls in Ill...What is legal for me to take there(Ill)?

Redneck with a 40
September 4, 2007, 08:00 PM
I carry my taurus tracker 357 with 2 speedloaders, plus a loaded cylinder. I carry my handloads, 125 grain remington sjhp with blue dot, pushes 1600 fps.:D I also carry a speedloader with my remington 158 grain soft points, with winchester 296, these push 1300 fps.:D The 357 is my outdoors, camping, hiking gun.

September 4, 2007, 08:20 PM
I honestly prefer a 22 handgun for camping. A Smith Model 18 or a Colt Diamondback is just about perfect. Truck camping and I bring half the house and that includes guns except in National Parks, of course.

September 4, 2007, 08:26 PM
Whenever I camp where it's legal, I bring along a S&W M60 .38Spl +P. I'm proficient with it, have used it enough to be confident that it will work, and stainless steel is best for camping.

Where ever I go, I always have one or two decent knives with me.

Elm Creek Smith
September 4, 2007, 08:33 PM
1. My S&W 3 inch M13 with two to four speedloaders.

2. It's hardly worth mentioning since I always carry it, but my KelTec P32 with 1 spare magazine.

3. A single shot Marlin 15Y in .22 with a Weaver K2.5 scope and a brick of Remington Thunderbolt ammo. (It likes it, alot!)

4. A Ruger Bisley Vaquero 4 5/8 in .45 Colt with either my 777 handloads or 300 grain "Bear Loads."

5. Rossi M62 (Model 92 clone) in .45 Colt with the same ammo as the Ruger.

6. Stoeger Coachgun in 12 gauge with 777 handloads in MagTech all-brass shells with 7 1/2 shot and some 00 loads.

1, 2, and 3 always. 4, 5, and 6 if OUT THERE.


September 4, 2007, 08:51 PM
I've been camping in Colorado for most of my life, and have never seen a bear, Mntn lion, or anything that could take me down. Also, my brother who usually camps in Arizona has never shot a gun, and probably never will, but has had encounters with wild boars and wild horses.

Years ago while camping in Park Cnty. CO, I was driving over Mosquito Pass when I encountered a guy who rolled his Subaru off the side of the mountain, and claimed he had been there for a week. The guy seemed desparate, and made me nervous. I was glad to have a gun with me that trip. The local Forest Service office told me they don't do vehicle recovery, and would recover his body if it came to that.

A few months ago, a kid was taken from his tent while sleeping and killed in Utah by a black bear. Apparently the same bear tried to get into another tent a couple nights before. In that case, the campers shot a "warning" shot which scared the bear away. It was the first time a bear had killed someone in Utah since they have been keeping records.

I usually feel safe just having my CCW gun (XD-9). It's pretty rare to hear about someone being attacked by wild animals, but it does happen, especially to children/smaller adults. You are probably safer in the woods than in the city.

It's good to have a weapon, but you probably don't need (hopefully) the whole arsenal.

September 4, 2007, 10:05 PM
When I'm in the woods, I like to camp/hike isolated, away from all unnatural noises or sights.

I carry either a Glock 29 in 10mm or a Ruger Redhawk in .44 Mag.

I like the versatility either platform provides with different ammo. I have 240gr, 300gr .44 Mag ammo plus a couple of boxes of Buffalo Bore's 340gr blockbusters that exhibit around 1480 fl-lb of energy at the muzzle of the Redhawk.

Parts of Kali, the Dakotas, etc. the G29 is good. Places like eastern Arizona, the Sierras, northern Montana, northern Idaho, I carry the Redhawk in a leather shoulder holster.

September 5, 2007, 10:16 AM
It's my understanding that ccw in most state parks (save Florida) and National Forests is verboten. Maybe open carry isn't? Or maybe you're camping on private property?
Carry in National Forests depends on state law.

Here in NC, it's legal to have a gun while camping on National Forest land (not when stargazing or hiking, though). I'd have a 9mm on my person and a carbine in the tent or trunk, personally.

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