You are here

What Would Wildlife Say About Concealed Carry in National Parks?


Much of the debate over the rule change that allows national park visitors to arm themselves has been filled with vitriol. But no one, it seems, has considered the wildlife's point of view.

Instead the debate has been waged over 2nd Amendment rights, fear of drug runners, smugglers, and fellow hikers, fear of dangerous wildlife, and even fear of gun owners.

As the accompanying photo shows, perhaps we should also fear bears that come upon handguns in the parks.


" The right to arm Bears! "

Well, I can forget about a caption contest. I don't think anyone can surpass the genius of RAH.

Kurt, I believe you've come to the same place I have with this issue. By & large this debate is almost irrelevant as it would appear from the comments left over the last 6 months by those in favor of concealed carry in the parks, that these people will and do carry their concealed & loaded weapons into the National Parks regardless of what the law actually is. It seems to me at this point to be a really frivolous point as to whether it's legal or not. At least that's what I gather reading a large majority of the posts by those in support of the rules change.

Now, I would like to thank those who do support the rules change, but don't currently break the law against carrying loaded weapons in the parks for their integrity & respect for the rules as they stand.

As for arming the Bears, I would much rather see them supplied with unicycles, juggling pins, & russian vodka! Drunk Bears with handguns, now that's something to worry about!

If that ain't a great caption, I don't know what is... :-D

i don't know as long as they pass the back ground check it seems ok to me but again old Yogi bear being smarter then the average bear (addicted to picnic baskets) could turn to armed robbery to feed his habit. Freedom is always a too edged sword!

I bet if someone was getting their butt chewed on by a wild animal . They would not Complain if someone who happened by had a concealed carry permit , I bet they would be more than happy then.

If the bear shoots alot you could really be in trouble, unless he runs out or rounds

Concealed weapons in parks don't bother me, as long as the guns stay concealed. If some idiot gets caught brandishing it, or poaches an animal, throw the book at him! It should be difficult to prove that some animal was a real bodily threat. Also, if they are making noise by shooting cans at dusk, they should be easy to find, and fined.

While weapons might provide a level of comfort to some, I think most hikers would get tired of carrying a heavy hunk of metal in their otherwise lightweight pack.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide