Bear Canisters

Bear canisters are required in some areas. Check with the National Park Service or U.S. Forest Service to see which model(s) of bear canisters are approved for use in the area you'll be visiting. Regulations vary and change.

Read "Hiking and Camping Safely in Bear Country" for more information on bear safety.

Brands

Counter Assault
Garcia
Bare Boxer
BearVault
UDAP
Wild Ideas

Price

less than $25
$25 - $49.99
$50 - $99.99
$200 and above

Recent Bear Canister Reviews

BearVault BV450 Solo

rated 3.5 of 5 stars The Bear Vault Solo is a quality product that satisfies its functional requirements well. The BV450 serves its purpose well. I have heard of only one sow in the Adirondaks that has figured out to open it. I have been using this product for the past 5 years when I am in bear country. Although untested by bears it has kept my food supply safe and dry. The convenience of not hanging a bear bag and having a good camp stool compensates for the 2 # added to my pack. Full review

BearVault BV450 Solo

rated 4 of 5 stars Best bear canister solution available — at least of those that I know of. All bear canisters are a nuisance, but the BearVault design addresses the critical problems with the designs that require a coin to open. Large opening and transparent sides make it easy to load and retrieve the contents. We picked up two BV450 BearVaults three years ago and have used them several times on trips to the Wind River range in Wyoming. We use two instead of a single large one. This allows for redundancy in case… Full review

Garcia Backpackers' Cache

rated 2 of 5 stars Better than nothing. I've used the Garcia product a few times. While it may serve the need, it is difficult to load, due to the small opening. Who in the world carries a coin while backpacking. The screw-like closure is a pain to open. Is it effective? If it is hard for me to open and get stuff out, it will certainly be so for a bear. Full review

Garcia Backpackers' Cache

rated 4.5 of 5 stars This moulded ABS plastic bear-proof container is perfect for preventing a confrontation between your food, yourself, and a curious bear. Great for use as an additional storage container, and tough enough to be used as a food cache Absolutely essential for all overnight trips in the back country where bears or large wild animals reside. Recommended by many Park Rangers - so don't leave home without it!! This is the **ONLY** canister that is allowed in the Adirondacks. If a ranger stops and wants… Full review

Wild Ideas Bearikade Expedition MKII

rated 4 of 5 stars This is a review of the Bearikade Expedition MKII model by Wild Ideas. As bear cans go (especially for one of this capacity) it's lightweight. As a result it is the canister of choice for long-distance through-hikers on trails like the PCT and JMT. I borrowed one and used it for a 30-day John Muir Trail through-hike in 2012. This is a review of the Bearikade Expedition MKII by Wild Ideas.  As bear cans go (especially for one of this capacity) it's lightweight.  As a result it is the canister of… Full review

Garcia Backpackers' Cache

rated 5 of 5 stars Convenience and security in a stout package. After you accept the bulk and weight of it as a given, the bear can is worth it for the piece of mind, especially now that some bears have figured out how to get to bagged food! I've used the Cache on two trips in the Ouachita Mountains, one with two other hikers and one by myself and the piece of mind it offers has greatly out-weighed its own bulk and, well, weight! It takes up quite a bit of pack space if placed in the main pack compartment, but I have… Full review

Garcia Backpackers' Cache

rated 3.5 of 5 stars Simple to use but, very large. This is everything you need in bear country. It has a lot of space, simple to use, and works great. However, you need a knife or coin to open the lid, it did not fit our our packs so we had to keep it on the outside and it is heavy. This is what to be expected from a bear can. Great for a long trip in bear country.  Full review

BearVault BV500

rated 4 of 5 stars If a bear can is required or deemed necessary, this is a good choice. While this can is harder to open than some of its counterparts, the benefits outweigh the one con. And with some practice, opening it becomes less of a hassle. I've tried a couple different techniques that take some of the frustration out of the process. Because this can is straight sided, food packs very neatly and compactly inside. I managed to stow nine days' worth of food in my canister as well as my hiking partner's. The… Full review

Bare Boxer Contender

rated 5 of 5 stars The Bare Boxer Contender is a budget bear canister that is light and more importantly, approved by IGBC and SIBBG for use in both Grizzly and black bear country. Earlier this year, I decided to shop around for a bear canister to use on my weekend trips. I needed something that fit my budget as well something that is approved to be used in any National or State Forests. I had a few choices to select from, ranging from size, weight, and price. The choices I had were: BearVault 450 - Good size but… Full review