I read Backcountry Bear Basics, by Dave Smith, last summer and definitely recommend it if you spend time in bear country.
I thought I was fairly bear aware, but this book certainly opened my eyes to a number of misconceptions I had about bear behaviour and how one should best handle an encounter with one.
Smith debunks many of the common myths about grizzlies and black bears and offers sound advice on how to best store food, choose a safe campsite, and avoid encounters with bears in the first place. There is also specific advice for various recreational pursuits.
Along the way, he explains how to distinguish between grizzly and black bears, but it’s not always easy to do. If you’d like to practice your bear identification skills, the state of Montana offers free online training and self-testing that’s pretty good. Click here to try it out.
Backcountry Bear Basics