I use one or two 8L Sea-to-Summit waterproof sil-nylon bags to store my food on the trail. This was fine on NE sections of the AT where bear-boxes were (thankfully) rather common. I really dislike the idea that my food is hanging in my vicinity (another reason to use Kelty Triptease cord- to find it again!) tempting critters of the night. What I dislike even more, is if a critter were to get in it and steal all my food!
There’s part of the Sierra where use of a bear canister is required. I will carry a bear canister from kennedy meadows to south lake tahoe.
For other times and general hiking I’m considering a Ursack because of this review I read. But the hefty price tag deters me. The Ursack is bear resistant and 8oz, the Ursack Minor is not bear resistant, but critter resistant and 2.7 oz. Ursack also makes the Opsack, a 3-pack for $12. I just realized its the same maker as the little LokSack bags I used for a first aid kit and seasoning/vitamin bag! I liked them, but the closure ripped after 2 weeks. Maybe I need to me more gentle!
…This 12 X 20 sealable plastic bag is made from special film that is 17,000 times more odor resistant than HDPE. When used properly, the OPSak is 100% water and air tight. Each bag in the 3 pack weighs about 1 ounce. Use with Ursack to keep bears and other critters from smelling your food.
Here’s Section Hiker’s review. In higher Bear/cougar areas I cook a hot meal for lunch not dinner and don’t cook and avoid even eating at my campsite. One day on the AT I had hiked 21 miles and arrived at the Wildcat Shelter right at dark, starved. I hate cooking at night, and this is bear country too. But all I’ve got is this terrible rice-a-roni I picked up at a gas station, I had to cook it, try to eat fast, then shove everything in the bear box down the hill. While I was too tired or hungry to care, I was beating off a group of bobcats the entire time. In the wee spectrum of my tiny photon LED I cursed at those “raccoons”!
For me – peace of mind and more hiking time (not trying to find a tree to hang my food) will be great in SoCal with the Ursack – I decided on the Ursack Minor and OPsack. I also checked out the RatSack- which would be a good choice for other hikes like shorter ones not in bear country- seems like a good product.