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Old 04-18-2013, 12:33 PM   #1
jprism OP
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Gun across boarder

I will be traveling from the US through Canada to Alaska this summer and will try and camp every night. I downloaded the Canada form "INSTRUCTION SHEET NON-RESIDENT FIREARM DECLARATION" and will fill this out showing only one legal firearm a 1911 Model 45ACP Pistol used for wildlife protection. I have heard all kinds rumors...some say that using the above form for a legal gun NO PROBLEMS...others say that they will simply take and hold my gun until I return to pick it up.

Does anyone have real knowledge of the gun policy when crossing into Canada?

Thanks, Jim
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Old 04-18-2013, 12:39 PM   #2
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Don't think so

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Originally Posted by jprism View Post
I will be traveling from the US through Canada to Alaska this summer and will try and camp every night. I downloaded the Canada form "INSTRUCTION SHEET NON-RESIDENT FIREARM DECLARATION" and will fill this out showing only one legal firearm a 1911 Model 45ACP Pistol used for wildlife protection. I have heard all kinds rumors...some say that using the above form for a legal gun NO PROBLEMS...others say that they will simply take and hold my gun until I return to pick it up.

Does anyone have real knowledge of the gun policy when crossing into Canada?

Thanks, Jim
I may be mistaken but I'm fairly sure that you, as a gringo, cannot transport a handgun through Canada under any circumstances. I believe that the Firearm declaration form is restricted to long arms only. You will want to do some more research on this and have absolute certainty. If you show up at their border with a firearm that is illegal for Canada, they will likely remember you the next time they see you and that might not be a good thing.
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Old 04-18-2013, 01:14 PM   #3
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You can't bring it in, all you could do would be to ship it to Alaska and have it for that portion then ship it home.
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Old 04-18-2013, 01:22 PM   #4
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Having it shipped to alaska and then shipping it back home is probably the easiest way to bring it on your trip. But like lycan1 said call Canadian border services and see what they say first.
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Old 04-18-2013, 01:35 PM   #5
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I agree on the shipping thing, it might be doable but it would be a pain in the ass for sure.

BTW 1911 is not a illegal firearm in Canada, officer model even meets barrel restrictions,, we got lotsa them here, but...., they are restricted, which basically means we can transport them to and from firing range or events etc., no CCW here, we can own them no problem, but very tight restrictions on any handguns here.

Good Luck, Todd
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Old 04-18-2013, 01:48 PM   #6
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Oh ya, on the wildlife thing, are there times Ive wanted a side arm when things go bump in the night?, absolutely, was it necessary...no. Good camping skills and a clean site are way easier then packin.

.45s just pissoff the grizzlys anyway
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Old 04-18-2013, 01:51 PM   #7
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Do a search, it's been covered. The practical answer is no.

But in a nutshell, a handgun is a Restricted Weapon in Canada, so you also need an Authorization to Transport ("ATT") application form approved as well.

Good luck getting one of those for your intended purpose, it's usually only for bona fide hunting guides, law enforcement professionals or certified target shooters for going back and forth to the range. Canadians don't get carte blanche to run around in the woods with handguns, neither will you.

The wait can also be several months, so you'll want to get cracking on that in advance. Not sure if you need multiple ATT's if you want to travel across more than one province.

AND, even if you get through the two hoops above, you will need the convince the officer at the Border that you need a gun. He has 100% discretion to let it in or not. The slightest bit of lip or attitude, or any lack of knowledge as to what you can and can't do with the gun or the proper storage procedures and your trip plans are finished. Hell, you can even be finished if he's in a pissy mood because his wife didn't put out that morning before he went to work.

You will need to have it in a locked container, trigger locked, and ammunition stored separately at all times. That means that if you do run into Booboo and Yogi in the woods you'll have a good 5 minutes of being chewed on before you can unlock the case, pull the trigger lock, get the ammnunition, load, and fire your handgun. So, the authorties are generally of the opinion that since you'll be dead anyway by the time you do that, you won't need the handgun

They do have some discretion at the border to seize it or to just bounce you back to the US to give you an opportunity to not bring it in. Up to them, but they can also mark you as "Denied Entry" and cite firearms for the reason. Good luck getting back in ever again after that shows up on the screen when the next guy scans your passport. At the very least you'll get the full search with the rubber gloves in the room with no windows treatment every time you want to cross the border in the future. They will give you a receipt if they do take it it from you though
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Old 04-18-2013, 02:01 PM   #8
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If you really feel you need a weapon, ship it from a licensed dealer in the lower 48 to a dealer in Alaska. Many dealers will do this for a reasonable fee. Handguns are tightly regulated in Canada. Long guns, within what may be called "sporting arms" are relatively simple to bring in.

Buy some bear spray for protection in Canada. As long as it's clearly labeled as bear spray, you won't have a problem. If it's labeled as for use against humans, it's also a restricted weapon.

Canadian firearms laws are one thing that you don't want to mess with, unless you wish to be politely but firmly turned back at the border for the rest of your life.
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Old 04-18-2013, 02:05 PM   #9
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What he said, I forgot to add, WHATEVER YOU DO!!!!, please do not think about not declaring it when you coming into Canada, the grizz will look like a walk in the park.

I know you took the time to ask so you wouldnt do that, but for others finding this in a search, if you forget that you have your weapon on you or in the car or the gps inadvertently directs you to the border, just tell them you screwed up, dont panic and they will be cool and send you back or hold it for you.......as long as their wife put out last night


From a guy who lives in a border town.
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Old 04-18-2013, 08:01 PM   #10
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Easiest!

Thing to do is leave it at home. Not worth the aggrivation. If you were coming to Canada for a Match and had an invite it would be no problem as long as you did the paperwork. Here in Canada you aren't allowed a handgun for self defence. Non restricted rifles and shotguns are ok against wild animals. 4inch handguns and less are Prohibited meaning you have to be grandfathered. 4.2 inch and longer is restricted meaning you can own and shoot one at an approved Range if you have a proper Licience and registration. Your chances of ever being bothered by a wild animal are slim and not. So just come on up and ride.
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Old 04-19-2013, 03:35 AM   #11
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The only Wild Animals that can scare me are male Moose...and a handgun would just piss one of those off!!
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Old 04-19-2013, 10:11 AM   #12
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Don't take your guns to town son ...

I've used the shipping option before moving back and forth between here and the L48 and don't recommend it. Its not cheap and you'd need to coordinate between a gun shop on your end and a gun shop up here. It would be a lot of work and expense to solely carry around with you while you're in Alaska. Then you'd need to do the process in reverse to get it back out. For what its worth, I'd skip the pistol and use the pannier space for something more practical and likely to get used (like beer).

Tens of thousands of people camp or otherwise recreate in Alaska and Western Canada every year and the probability of a bad encounter with a bear is extremely low. Should it happen to you, the chances are quite good that its something you've done that's put yourself in that position. You will see lots of wildlife on the ride but they will generally be doing their own thing and will continue to do so if left to be. If you're still concerned, others have mentioned carrying bear spray. I've also seen people carry compressed air horns as well as bear bangers (a little plastic device that makes a sound like a gunshot). I don't think I've ever seen them in the US but am pretty sure you could find them in Canada. Canadian Tire seems to have just about anything you could ever consider looking for.
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Old 04-19-2013, 11:38 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farmholio View Post
I've used the shipping option before moving back and forth between here and the L48 and don't recommend it. Its not cheap and you'd need to coordinate between a gun shop on your end and a gun shop up here. It would be a lot of work and expense to solely carry around with you while you're in Alaska. Then you'd need to do the process in reverse to get it back out. For what its worth, I'd skip the pistol and use the pannier space for something more practical and likely to get used (like beer).

Tens of thousands of people camp or otherwise recreate in Alaska and Western Canada every year and the probability of a bad encounter with a bear is extremely low. Should it happen to you, the chances are quite good that its something you've done that's put yourself in that position. You will see lots of wildlife on the ride but they will generally be doing their own thing and will continue to do so if left to be. If you're still concerned, others have mentioned carrying bear spray. I've also seen people carry compressed air horns as well as bear bangers (a little plastic device that makes a sound like a gunshot). I don't think I've ever seen them in the US but am pretty sure you could find them in Canada. Canadian Tire seems to have just about anything you could ever consider looking for.
Cambodian Tire usually has bangers and spray.
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Old 04-19-2013, 01:46 PM   #14
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Guns Into Canada

After reading the NON-RESIDENT FIREARM DECLARATION sheet it looks like I can legally cross into Canada with a legal pistol or rifle. The gun I will bring has a barrel length longer than 4.1 inches is a 45 caliper semi automatic and is therefore legal according to the Canada government.

I have camped all over the US in Grizzly and Black bear areas and have never had a problem with wild life in camp. I know not to eat close to my tent, discard all garbage in a bear proof container, etc. I have always carried a pistol with me on my camping rides in America but have never crossed into Canada. What I was looking for in this post was from those that have/do cross the US/Canada boarder with a legal gun and how much trouble it may or may not be to do so.

p.s. I also carry DAP Bear Spray, Boat Horn and a 12 Gauge Flare Pistol and therefore sleep real good at night.
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Old 04-19-2013, 02:45 PM   #15
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I've lived within 30 miles of the Canadian border since 1974. I know plenty of people that hunt in Canada. I know Canadians that are on competition pistol teams. I know American shooters that compete across the border. Half my town have relatives over the border.

Pistols are extremely difficult to bring into Canada. This is simple truth. As a private citizen who is just riding through, it is highly unlikely that you will be issued a pistol permit. I don't know if you've checked the RCMP regs, but unless you're an exceptional case the answer is no pistol.

http://www.cbsa.gc.ca/publications/p...-eng.html#P002

This is pertinent in your case, and would make the weapon useless, in the unlikely event you were issued a pistol permit:

Canadian law states that you have to transport all firearms unloaded. If you are transporting them in a vehicle, they must be kept out of sight in a part of a vehicle that is kept locked (the trunk, if there is one), unless the vehicle is supervised by an adult. You have to transport restricted and prohibited firearms in a locked case and equip them with locked safety devices to prevent firing. Antique handguns do not require a secure locking device, although all other transportation provisions apply.

"Supervised by an adult" has been interpreted as to mean in the immediate vicinity of the vehicle at all times when a firearm is being transported. Don't go to the "washroom" and leave the firearm unattended.

It's stretch for many Americans to get their heads around the Canadian firearm regulations. They, as you, feel there must be some sort of a loophole for decent folk that want to pack a pistol. There really isn't in normal circumstances. Even my Canadian friends who shoot competitively tend to leave their weapons in the shooting club safe, as it's far less hassle in the long run. In the long view, Canadians don't feel they need to keep a pistol in the house, or on their hip. As a matter of fact, it's considered an insult to many Canadians if you feel the need to lock your door. It's part of their national character. You're going to a nation that makes their own rules. It works for them. Respect it.
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