Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

10 Ways to Attract Bears to Your Campsite

Camp Near a Carcass
A bear dining on a deer carcass in Yellowstone National Park.
A bear dining on a deer carcass in Yellowstone National Park.
Jeff Foott/Getty Images

From the outset, camping near a carcass won't seem like a very appealing prospect. After all, depending on how long the creature's been dead, it could cloud your campsite with a terrible stench. But camping near a carcass isn't merely unappealing -- it also greatly increases the likelihood that a hungry bear will plod into your camp.

Bears are just lazy enough to relish the opportunity of eating an animal that's already died. The odor of a decomposing carcass definitely will attract any bears in the area. In fact, a black bear in California is reported to have traveled in a straight line more than 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) to reach a dead deer's carcass [source: American Bear Association].

If you spot a dead animal on the trail, report it to the nearest ranger station. And don't even think about approaching the animal, no matter how curious you are. A bear may be lurking just out of your sight, guarding its find. And it won't be pleased that you're moving in on its lunch.

Your lunch, however, is fair game.

More to Explore