I'm a volunteer Hunter Education Intructor in my (very) spare time and last night got talking with one of my students who is also a beekeeper. As we were chatting, he mentioned that "it's about time to start using smoke again...". Apparently, he only uses smoke when he visits his bees starting in the fall. He claims that's the only time they're protective. He doesn't even use a veil. He did agree that, once in a while, a hot hive will change his mind. I wonder about this less intrusive approach. Does anyone out there have thoughts? Would it be prudent to take a smoker, but use it only if the cloud of bees took things personally?