Being an Eagle Scout, I try to consider myself “prepared” for most situations, especially when it comes to my flying. I have a backpack filled with the necessities for flying (my headset, my logbook and medical certificate, a flashlight, map, batteries), but I also keep a few other things in there… just in case. Things like: a second flashlight and another set of batteries, extra pens, Swiss Army knife (of course), zip-lock bags (for airsick passengers), bottle of water, a few energy bars, and even some duct tape. Yes, duct tape. We used to find all sorts of crazy uses for duct tape when camping with the Boy Scouts, so it’s just out of habit that I like to keep it in my emergency supplies. People may have questioned me in the past why I carry duct tape on flights, but I finally found a good reason why!
Apparently there was an Alaskan bush pilot flying up in Alaska on a fishing trip and mistakenly left some bait/food in his plane. Naturally, a bear smelled it and tore his plane up majorly. Upon returning to his severely damaged plane, this pilot radioed a friend who airdropped some supplies including duct tape. Using these supplies, the pilot was able to repair his plane and fly home. Some awesome usage of duct tape, I must admit! I was hoping to read the pilot had the duct tape on him, but alas he didn’t. So, I don’t know if my one roll in my bag will be enough to ever repair a bear-damaged plane, but it would certainly be useful in the wild nonetheless. You can read the whole story on CNET.
Moral of the story: never leave food out for bears, and always BE PREPARED!