Homemade Bear Repellent

Homemade Bear Repellent

Explore America's Campgrounds

An encounter with a wild bear can be terrifying for hikers or campers. If you plan on going to areas populated by bears, you should bring a bear repellent spray. You can purchase bear repellent sprays at any sporting goods store, but they can be expensive. Fortunately, you can make your own bear repellent using a few ingredients you can purchase at your local supermarket; the main ingredient is pepper. Homemade bear repellent spray offers a simple and affordable method of warding off bears during an encounter.

Items you will need

  • 2 dozen large cayenne peppers

  • Knife

  • Mortar and pestle

  • Saucepan

  • 2 cups clean water

  • Mesh strainer

  • Plastic gloves

  • Spray bottle or water gun

Slice two dozen large cayenne or habanero peppers into small pieces, discarding the stems. Grind them using a mortar and pestle.

Transfer the ground peppers into a saucepan. Pour in two cups of clean water and boil for 20 minutes.

Pour the pepper solution through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl or container. Wearing plastic gloves, squeeze out any excess pepper solution with your hands.

Transfer the pepper solution into a spray bottle with a jet setting or a water gun. These types of spray containers will shoot out the solution several feet or more, keeping you a safe distance from the bear.


  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Avoid touching your eyes or mouth after making the bear pepper spray.


  • Do not blend peppers in a blender; you don't want paste.
Gone Outdoors