I have been invited on an archery elk hunt in Colorado in 2008. The group has been going for years and has an opening. They do not carry sidearms and say they havent had any problems. Having never BTDT, I envision downing an elk, and meeting or having a large critter(bear,etc) follow the blood trail dripping out of my pack loaded with meat while heading back to camp. I would rather not lug around extra weight(pistol) of its not needed, but i sure would like it there if I do need it. So anyone have trouble with critters in Co? Nothing to worry about? Buy a new .45?