Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The 10 Lb handgun?

Wow, I wonder where this fellow found his 10 Lb handgun?

Dawson Wheeler, owner of Rock/Creek Outfitters in Chattanooga, has hiked the entire Appalachian Trail and said he understands hikers’ fears, because there were many moments during his trip when he wished he had a gun.

But carrying a loaded gun on a trail is not practical, he said.

Handguns weighing five to 10 pounds are comparatively heavy, and if they are buried in a backpack out of sight it could take a hiker too long to reach one in an emergency, he said.

As for where to carry your handgun, it's always best to carry on your person. Not buried somewhere in your hiking backpack.

Dawson Wheeler also provided safety tips for ways to stay safe in the woods without carrying a weapon. I've corrected them below:
Corrected Safety tips:

1. Never hike alone: hike with a slow runner - that way if you're attacked you don't have to outrun your assailant, just your hiking buddy.

2. Don’t leave your street sense (or your gun) at home.

3. Be careful in parking lots, roads, & on lonely hiking trails in the middle of nowhere.

4. Hike during the day, sleep at night (with your gun).

5. Pick trails with a lot of traffic.

6. Do homework before you go. Ask a park ranger or an outdoors store employee about your hiking or camping destinations, then be sure to carry your gun regardless. If you knew you were hiking into trouble, you obviously would not hike there. Better to be safe than sorry.


West, By God said...

As a backpacker, I can tell you that on a long/mountainous hike, even an airweight snubby would feel like 10lbs. For extended time out on the trail, when you have to carry everything you need, every ounce is counted. I know people who would drill holes in their spoons to shave another ounce off their pack weight.

Even though I carry a gun when I'm in the city, I don't out on the trail. Believe me, when you are hiking up a mountain at 2000ft elevation/mile or steeper, with 50lbs on your back... having a bear-stopper holstered on your side just isn't going to be much comfort.

There are circumstances when I'd want a firearm, but mostly those would be hunting/survival related: when I can't carry enough food to get from point A to point B, or when I'd be staying in the same place for an extended time.

Dustin said...

I can understand that viewpoint. I know I wouldn't want to force anyone to carry a gun while hiking who did not want to for any reason, whether that be because they don't like guns, or just to cut back on weight. I simply advocate restoring freedom & allowing each hiker to decide for him or herself if they wish to be armed for defense of themselves & their family, or not.

Johnmcv said...

AYah,when you add the radio and the portable tv to your trail kit,the addition of a short arm does begin to slow you down on that ol Appalachian Trl...or what ever

Anonymous said...

...but my 5-10 lb. .78 caliber Ultra Magnum is so comforting to have buried in my ruck sack. It's great to know that I can defend myself, even if it's only after I've been attacked.


I'm not discounting the commentary by "west, by god" at all. I freely admit I'm not a backpacker. I'm a mountain biker. But riding thru bad neighborhoods, where people raise mean dogs and let them run free, or in mountain lion territory, I'm never without my gun.

And Dustin's right, once again, about it belonging on your hip. Just like the frame pack; let it ride where your body has structural support. Some of my friends like to hike, but don't own firearms. Wonder if that's why they always call the guy with a 1911 and a CCW...?

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