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Product Availability: Bear Canister

Dear REI,

I'm looking for a Bear Canister for my trip next year.  I've used bear bags in the past, but Shenandoah National Park requires them for backcountry adventures.

Any idea why the shortage?  Any idea when REI will get them in stock?


Thanks in advance,


4 Replies

just to clarify, the way I read the SNP back country regs is that canisters are the 'preferred' method, but hanging is the alternative.


(there is supposed to be a screen shot of the SNP rule where that triangle is )

here's what SNP says:

5. Use a bear-resistant canister.

If no food storage options are provided in your campsite or picnic area, using a bear-resistant food canister is the preferred alternative. Store your canister on level ground at least 70-100 yards from your campsite. Do not place it near a cliff or water source, as bears may knock the canister around. Bears may also be able to carry canisters away if there are ropes are strings attached to them.

6. Hang a bear bag.

If no other food storage option is available, you'll need to hang a bear bag before leaving the area or tucking in for the night. You'll need 50-100 feet of rope and a waterproof bag big enough to hold all of your food and scented items. Bear bags need to be suspended at least 10 feet above the ground and 4 feet away from the trunk and branches of the tree. Shenandoah’s forest consists primarily of tall trees with very few low branches, which can make properly hanging a bear bag difficult. This gets even more challenging after sunset, so prioritize this activity when you first arrive in your chosen campsite!

REI Member Since 1979

@Philreedshikes Phil,

Big fan of the canister vs the bag.  I have major scar tissue in my shoulder that doesn't bode well for throwing a caribiner (sp) into a tree.  I'll wait until REI has them back in stock.




@CajunHiker Thanks for reaching out!

We checked with our buying team and they let us know that our vendor partners are playing catch up from a very busy summer. We have more ordered and we are hopeful that we are back in stock by the end of August, beginning of September. Your best bet is to keep checking back in on

Hopefully this helps, thanks!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.


I'll keep checking the website ... Look forward to getting one soon.