Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The Ultimate Bear Thread

As you all know, "bear threads""What sort of gun should I carry in bear country?" — are a staple on the various shooting forums (although I believe I'm the only person answering those threads who has addressed the bear piss all over the place issue). This report, from last Sunday's Boulder Peaks Triathlon here in the People's Republic, is, however, the bear thread to end all bear threads. This from the morning's Denver Post:
Triathlete survives bear crash

A Denver woman is recovering from injuries she received after colliding with a bear during a triathalon in Boulder on Sunday.

Sabrina B. Oei received a bad case of road rash, but wasn't seriously injured and was able to complete the triathalon.

The bear also survived the crash, and scampered back into the woods.

Oei was racing downhill at nearly 40 miles per hour when the collision occurred.

Okay, let's do a little quick math...say a 135 pound traithlete...a 16 pound bicycle...so the total weight of the "projectile" impacting the bear is 151 pounds, not counting water bottle and two packs of GU.

151 pounds = 2416 ounces = 1,057,000 grains

Let's say she throttled her brakes, but was still moving at 20 miles per hour when she smacked the bear. I've done that descent in Left Hand Canyon a zillion times, including twice as a competitor in the Boulder Peaks Triathlon...she'd be lucky if she got the bike down to 20 mph! Sooooooo...

20 mph = 29.4 feet per second

To figure power factor, we multiple the projectile weight in grains (1,057,000) times the velocity of the projectile in feet per seconds (29.5). This yields a power factor of in the vicinity of 31 million, versus an average 225,000 for 230-grain .45 ACP ball ammo.

Still, I think I'd rather be hit with a sweaty athletic blonde 1,057,000-grain projectile from a bicycle than a 230-grain one from a 1911.

No word from the bear...he's probably on the way to piss on my porch...


Anonymous said...


You forgot to look at the sectional density. This is important to the penetration aspect of the projectile. Of course, we know the 45 would have better penetration anyway.

Guy N

Anonymous said...

Guy N I know some women that are pretty dense. (some guys to of course)