Hey fellow backpackers,
I was sitting by the river, and I felt myself going into bliss because it was my third day and I was starting to get my mountain legs and knew I had not lost them. I heard crunching leaves behind me. At some level, as I've heard bears twice before, I knew it was one, but instead I waited for the hikers to appear behind me. When they didn't, I looked behind me and saw a large black bear approaching fast on the downhill. I stood up quickly, and the bear grabbed a tree as if to climb it. I skipped across the river and began walking fast along the trail as if I didn't care about the bear or the place any more. After a while I looked behind me and saw that it was following in the almost out of sight around the bend position. I kept going and redoubled my efforts. I looked around again and saw the same thing. This time I thought I might be close to the campsite where it would be loathe to go in the morning, and I could put my food in the locker. I dropped my water bottle for a delay. Fortunately this seemed to do the trick. It was my favorite water bottle and the bear must have loved it, but alas frustration. I didn't have a bear vault. I was carrying an empty dry gas container. Maybe it liked this. I was carrying dried fruit and chickpea flour and oats, all in a polypropylene bag with a thin layer of pvc. Maybe it was this. I had turned back instead of going straight out like other hikers. Thus I was in a spot which might not have been frequented in the morning. Bear might have expected to be alone. So many mistakes, and now I've got it for hiking the applaichian trail again. What should I do? I think I'd be better fit and bring a weapon next time.