So you’ve finally escaped to the great outdoors. Good for you. But watch out for bears, or you may need to escape from the great outdoors.
Step 1: Reverse direction If you’ve already had your head ripped off during a bear encounter, we probably can’t help you. However, if the bear has not yet ripped off your head because you saw him first, off in the distance, you should slowly and quietly begin walking in the opposite direction until he’s out of sight. Then calmly stay put for about a half hour.
TIP: While you’re waiting, sing, talk, or make some noise. Also, now is not the time for a smelly, bear-enticing snack!
Step 2: Walk noisily With the coast clear, resume your walk. But make noise so the bear knows you’re around. The truth is, that bear doesn’t want to run into you, either.
Step 3: Avoid eye contact Uh, oh. Despite your best efforts, Smokey The Bear’s evil twin is suddenly standing in front of you, calmly considering his options. First off, do not make eye contact. The bear will take it as a direct challenge to his authority, and he will rip your head off.
Step 4: Slowly back away Back away slowly while speaking in a soft voice.
TIP: Right about now would be a good time to make a deal with God.
Step 5: Don’t flee Holy crap, the bear is charging. Do not run! He will chase you down and rip your head off.
Instead, stand perfectly still. If he stops his charge, slowly back away again, speaking softly.
Step 6: Play dead If the bear attacks, protect your head with your arms, curl up in a fetal position, and pretend you’re dead. Or try hitting him directly in the nose. Some experts think a quick punch works better than submissiveness.
Step 7: Have pepper spray next time Next time, don’t go into the woods without bear repellent pepper spray. Just be sure to familiarize yourself with its proper use.
FACT: You are more likely to be struck by lightning than mauled by a bear.