Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Alaskans Stop Grizzly Charge with Glock 10mm On Elmendorf-Richardson


Grizzly Bear that charged, brought down at 10 feet with a 10mm in Alaska

On 19 September, 2018, Jimmy Cox used his Glock model 20 10mm to stop the charging grizzly boar pictured, at 10 feet. The incident leading to the dramatic events occurred the previous evening.


On the evening of  18 September, 2018, Anthony Reyna was happy and excited. He and his friend, Gary, were hunting moose on Joint Base Elmendort-Richardson north of and sharing a boundary with Anchorage, Alaska.  Tony had drawn a moose tag for a bow hunt. He was using a 60 lb PSE® ThunderBoltTM compound bow. He has owned the bow since he was a teenager. They set up and started moose calling about 6 p.m. After 40 minutes, they heard a bull moving in.

Tony was able to take a shot as the bull moved 20 yards out. The bull turned at the last moment; the arrow glanced off a rib. It did not spook the bull, but the bull moved off 200 yards. Tony stalked it to 24 yards, and put an arrow through both lungs. This time the bull ran. As they tracked the bull, the blood trail ran out with the daylight. It wasn't safe to search in the dark. They decided to come back the next morning.


arrow used on moose


At 08:30 the next morning, Tony was back with his friends Jimmy Cox and Ron Sheldon. It was cool, cloudy, and calm. They found the end of the blood trail.  Jimmy Cox had the lead with a Glock 20 10mm in a Blackhawk Serpa holster on his right hip. Jimmy is right handed. The three friends are experienced combat veterans.  They decided to do a grid search in the direction the blood trail was leading. Ron went up a hill to help guide the search from an elevated perspective.

The area is heavily wooded in black spruce and birch, some aspen, with plenty of undergrowth and downed trees.

Tony and Jimmy head out. They hear crows about 50 yards away. Jimmy says: "That's where your moose is".

As they approached the area where they heard the crows, the birds kick up. Less than a second later, they hear the roar, directly ahead. From 10 yards away, a large grizzly is charging them full out.

Jimmy is in the lead, about five feet ahead of Tony. He has time for a startled "F*ck Bear!" as he draws the Glock from the Serpa. He has trained and practiced. The draw is smooth and fast from a retention holster. As the bear bounds over the downed spruce, Jimmy double taps, two shots, one to the chest, one to the head.  The bear crashes down, 10 feet from Jimmy, dead right there (drt). It is over in a couple of seconds.

The bear is a big boar. The friends call Fish and Game on base to report the self defense killing. Mark, with Fish and Game, shows up. He has no issues with the shooting. He estimates the bear at 800-850 lbs. It squares at 7 1/2 feet.


Close-up of Grizzly Boar

They are instructed to go to Anchorage the next day to fill out the required paperwork, the Defense of Life and Property (DLP) report. They are already busy on the hard work of skinning the bear and dressing out the moose. The moose had been buried by the bear, and had its ear and genitals ripped off.

The meat was judged salvageable.  Fortunately, a co-worker was able to get his truck within 100 yards of the scene, minimizing pack out time. Tony is able to get back home, get the meat through initial processing and stored by 9:30 p.m. It has been a long 30 hours.


Ron Sheldon, Anthony Reyna, Jimmy Cox

Jimmy's Glock was loaded with 200 grain HSN bear loads. The first shot took the bear in the chest. It penetrated the right lung, through the chest cavity, and broke the spine. As the bear dropped, the second round caught it in the head. Neither round exited the bears body. The friends could not follow the second round wound channel, because the head, skin, and paws had to be turned in. Because the bear dropped nearly instantaneously, Tony believes the second bullet hit the brain or top of the spinal column.



Image from Brownell's

Tony credits training and practice drawing to developing the muscle memory to make the needed shots. He says they give you the confidence you need when you need it.  He says Jimmy was the right man in the right place. Tony says the 10mm Glock is getting hard to find in Alaska, as they are sought after as bear defense guns.

Another poster, LJ Miller, on facebook, suggested it was the same bear he had problems with one year before, in the same area, September of 2017. He and his partner went to some trouble to avoid shooting the grizzly, which harassed them while they were packing out a quartered moose. It is fortunate Jimmy was there, was well practiced with his Glock, and in the lead.  It could easily have been a tragedy.

This use of a pistol to defend against bear attack was not reported in the news. Without diligent searching, no one but the participants would know about it. If you know of a defensive pistol use against bears, please contact us. We include every use where a pistol can be reasonably documented as being fired in defense against a bear, in our database. An email sent to Ammoland will be forwarded to me.
©2019 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

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