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Important Bear-aware Tools

Bear-proof Containers

A bear trying to get into a bear-proof garbage can.

Garbage Containers

Garbage should be stored in bear-proof containers, or indoors in a secure shed or garage. Many sizes and styles of bear proof garbage containers are available on the Internet. For assistance in picking the one that is right for you, contact your regional FWP office and ask for a bear biologist. Information about bear-proof containers can be found on the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee website.


The Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee has identified a couple of bear-resistant coolers that will eliminate the need to suspend food out of bears' reach. These rugged ice-boxes have air-tight seals, special fittings, and stainless steel latches or padlocks. The IGBC publishes an online list of products approved for use where food storage orders are in effect.

Bear Pepper Spray

Sprayed in the face of a charging bear, bear pepper spray is effective in repelling a bear.

Please be certain that the bear pepper spray you use is intended for bears and is NOT a personal defense spray. Personal defense sprays contain ingredients that are not intended for use on bears.

The Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee, a group of state and federal agencies, makes recommendations on what features to look for when purchasing bear pepper spray as well as how to use it. Learn more