Category Archive 'Grizzly Bear'
26 Nov 2019

Colin Dowler Fought Off a Grizzly with a Small Pocketknife

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Colin Dowler, on his 45th birthday, went camping overnight and trail biking on Mount Doogie Dowler, a 7,000-foot peak overlooking Heriot Bay in British Columbia.

When attacked by a Grizzly, this being Canada, he had nothing to defend himself but a tiny Buck pocketknife. (Outside magazine)

As soon as I got out of the bush and onto my mountain bike, I was on the home stretch. I was excited about celebrating my birthday when I got back.

Peddling away, I came around a bend, and there was a grizzly bear, about a hundred feet in front of me. So I stopped and said, “Hey bear,” because that’s what you do when you see one.

He looked into the bush, looked back up the road, and started walking my way. I kept talking to him. I decided not to turn around to get out of there, but in hindsight, maybe I should have.
The grizzly was pretty close, and my bear spray was gone. It fell out of my backpack somewhere on the mountain. So I grabbed one of my hiking poles and extended it to use as some sort of deterrent. I was still straddling my bike in the hopes that the bear would just step off the trail.

It’s a logging road, so it was basically two tire marks with a bump in the middle. He continued to saunter up the road toward me but stayed in his lane. He ended up getting pretty close, maybe 20 feet away. It made me nervous that he hadn’t left yet.

I stepped off my bike, and he kind of shuddered, like he was a little bit jumpy in that moment. He kept approaching until his head was parallel with my front tire, and as he walked past, he dipped his head down. We made a little bit of eye contact, and I looked away, because eye contact didn’t really seem like something I wanted to do.

I remember thinking as he was walking by, Man, this would be cool to video. I’d have footage of a bear walking just clean by me and carrying on his way.

He kept walking by until his rump was almost past my rear tire. And then he did a 180-degree turn.

I spin around, standing with my mountain bike between us. He shuddered again and started walking toward me. I started backing up and talking to him again. I was just trying to speak nicely to the bear in hopes that he would change his mind.

I held out my hiking pole as he approached. I ended up poking him right in the top of the head. He pushed into it, did a flip move with his head that rolled off the pole, and got his mouth onto it. We had a tug-of-war, until he let go of it and started closing in on me again.

I dropped the pole and kept backing up. I flung my backpack between us, hopeful that some food in one of the outside pockets would keep him busy for a bit. He stopped and took a quick sniff, but after maybe half a second, he was coming toward me again.

Then he began doing very slow, deliberate swats at my bike. The first one was pretty mild, but then they got more powerful. As he swatted, I threw my bike at him, and he got briefly hung up on it, but then he lunged forward and grabbed me between my ribs and my left hip.

That’s when it really sank in—I was in trouble.

RTWT

27 Oct 2017

Man Shot Grizzly Off His Front Porch

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Bozeman Daily Chronicle, October 24:

A man shot a grizzly bear on his front porch near West Yellowstone last weekend after it broke into his garage to get a hanging elk carcass.

Andrea Jones, a spokeswoman for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, said the incident happened on Sunday evening south of U.S. Highway 287 and near the Grayling Arm of Hebgen Lake. She said an agency investigation determined that the man shot the bear in self-defense.

“We have a pretty clear case of self-defense here,” Jones said.

Jones said the bear was a sow grizzly likely more than 15 years old. It broke through a metal door to get into a garage where an elk carcass was hanging.

The homeowner heard noise coming from the garage. He grabbed a gun and went onto the front porch to see what was going on.

“There was a bear not 10 paces from him on his porch,” Jones said.

Jones said the man told FWP investigators that the bear turned and began to approach him. He shot the bear dead.

Jones said investigators saw bloody paw prints around the property, including within 10 feet of the front door. They also saw paw prints on the home’s living room window.

The bear had been trapped by Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team researchers once before, but it didn’t have a history of run-ins with people.

Jones said it appeared that the garage was secured properly and that there was nothing the homeowner could have done differently.

She added that it’s important for people to recognize that both grizzly and black bears are still wandering around and trying to fatten up for the winter.

RTWT

I hope the black bear raiding my bird feeders reads this one.

08 Sep 2017

Bow Hunter Mauled by Grizzly in Montana

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Rexburg Standard Journal:

A grizzly bear mauled a bow hunter in southwestern Montana, slashing a 16-inch cut in his head that required 90 stitches to close.

“I could hear bones crunching, just like you read about,” said Tom Sommer, as he recovered in a Montana hospital on Tuesday afternoon.

Sommer said he and a hunting partner were looking for an elk they had been calling Monday morning when his partner spotted a grizzly bear feeding on an elk carcass in the southern end of the Gravelly Range, just north of the Idaho border.

“The bear just flat-out charged us,” Sommer said. He said it closed the 30-foot distance in 3 or 4 seconds.

His hunting partner deployed his bear spray, which slowed the bear’s charge. Sommer said he grabbed his canister so quickly that he couldn’t release the safety and he couldn’t afford to look down as the bear closed in. He ran around a tree twice and dropped his bear spray in the process.

Sommer then grabbed his pistol and turned to confront the bear.

“It bit my thigh, ran his claws through my wrist and proceeded to attack my head,” Sommer recalled Tuesday.

He still had his pistol in his hand and was going to shoot the bear in the neck when it swatted his arm down, Sommer said.

“Just like that it stopped. He stopped biting me, he got up and started to run away,” said Sommer, who splits his time among Idaho, Missouri and Florida.

His hunting partner had been able to deploy the rest of his bear spray, ending the attack Sommer estimated lasted about 25 seconds.

“It could have been a lot worse,” he said.

Sommer found his bear spray canister. His hunting partner had some blood coagulation powder and they made a turban, stopping the bleeding after about 15 minutes.

They walked a mile back to their spike camp and rode mules another 4 miles out to their base camp, followed by a two-hour ride in a pickup truck to get to the hospital in Ennis.

“Through it all I was very conscious, very level-headed and low key about it,” Sommer said. “Besides some scars, it doesn’t appear that I will have any problems.

RTWT

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First reported by gun writer Mike Venturino on FB.

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Extensive gossip, wisecracks, discussion at 24 Hour Campfire.

28 Jul 2017

Darn! She Almost Had Him

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A young sow named Bear 148 almost caught a fleeing bicyclist earlier this month in British Columbia. Had it not been for a passing couple and their truck, she would have.

Sporting Classics:

Two Idaho sightseers wanted to see wildlife on a recent trip to Radium Hot Springs, British Columbia, along the BC-Alberta line. Did they ever! The couple was driving a pickup truck along Highway 93 when they spotted a bicyclist heading their way, fast. It wasn’t until they saw what was behind him that his need for speed became clear.

A young grizzly bear, known to local authorities as Bear 148, was hot on the cyclist’s trail.

“I was sitting in the passenger seat and had my cell phone and had been taking scenic pictures all the way,” Cassie Beyer told CBC News. She continued taking pictures as the chase unfolded, snapping the above image during the process.

Another driver began honking their horn at the bear, allowing Beyer’s husband to put their truck between the cyclist and Bear 148. With the cyclist safe, the couple then headed on down the road.

This wasn’t the first encounter with humans Bear 148 has had this year. The young sow has chased a woman who was pushing a stroller and walking her dog; has interrupted a rugby event at a nearby high school; and has followed a number of hikers. She was relocated to nearby Kootenay National Park earlier in July but returned to Radium within two days.

As amazing as the bear’s brazenness is, the public’s outcry over the incident is even more so. Locals are organizing protests against the Alberta government’s decision to euthanize the bear if any more incidents occur, despite the many close calls people have had with 148 in 2017.

RTWT

Well, if Bear 148 will stick to only eating bicylists, I think she ought to be treated as a priceless natural resource, be bred from, and have her offspring transplanted to Eastern states.

08 Jul 2017

Watch Out For This Bear!

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19 Mar 2017

Unwise

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13 Feb 2015

Old Ephraim Versus Electricity

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“A Montana grizzly bear attempts to retrieve an electrically charged, road-killed deer. The deer is electrified as an experiment to protect hunters’ game kills and, in turn, to minimize bear-human encounters.”

Hat tip to Henry Bernatonis.

31 May 2014

Tums Bear Commercial

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Also from Harberson.

08 May 2014

New Record Grizzly Bear

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RecordGriz

Fox News reports that a Grizzly Bear taken last Fall near Fairbanks by a fellow out hunting moose has broken the Boone & Crockett record.

Larry Fitzgerald and a pal were moose hunting near Fairbanks, Alaska, when they came across fresh bear tracks in the snow. Three hours later, the auto body man had taken down the grizzly that left the prints, an enormous bruin that stood nearly 9 feet tall and earned Fitzgerald a place in the record books.

Although Fitzgerald shot the bear last September, Boone and Crockett, which certifies hunting records, has only now determined the grizzly, with a skull measuring 27 and 6/16ths inches, is the biggest ever taken down by a hunter, and the second largest grizzly ever documented. Only a grizzly skull found by an Alaska taxidermist in 1976 was bigger than that of the bear Fitzgerald bagged.

I’m not really a trophy hunter, or anything,” Fitzgerald, 35, told FoxNews.com. “But I guess it is kind of cool.”

Fitzgerald brought down the bear from 20 yards, with one shot to the neck from his Sako 300 rifle. He said he and hunting buddy Justin Powell knew from the tracks he was on the trail of a massive grizzly, but only learned this week that he held a world record. …

Bears are scored based on skull length and width measurements, and Missouloa, Mont.-based Boone and Crockett trophy data is generally recognized as the standard. Conservationists use the data to monitor habitat, sustainable harvest objectives and adherence to fair-chase hunting rules.

14 Feb 2014

Jean Jacques Annaud, “The Bear” (1988)

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16 Jun 2013

Grizzly Bear Chair

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Humboldt County, California was once home to half-horse, half-alligator mountain men rather than Pacifist, tree-hugging, pot-farming hippies. One old-time resident, Seth Kinman 1815-1888, boasted of killing 800 Grizzly bears in his lifetime and of having shot 60 elk in one month. He made furniture out of his trophies and presented examples to Presidents James Buchanan, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, and Rutherford Hayes.

Hat tip to Greg Nylander via Vanderleun.

30 Aug 2012

Stopping Ephraim When He’s Angry

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A highly-provocative, must-read thread for those likely to go fishing or hunting in Grizzly Bear country from the Box O’ Truth’s discussion forums. (Firefox misinterpreted this as an attack site, which it is not. I just ignored the warnings.)

The bear came upon us on a creek at about 50 yards from the ocean. We were sitting, shooting the breeze. My friend fired first, hitting the bear in the left upper chest, it turned and ran at full speed around a bend. I popped up and shot as it passed through a small opening about 20 yards after it was first shot, about 1 second later. I hit it low in the left shoulder as it was running with it left paw extended towards the rear. The bear rolled another 15 or 20 yards, but was out of sight from our position. He let out a death bellow shortly after my shot. We waited 15 minutes before turning the corner and we found him dead.

We were both shooting the .375 H&H. CM was using the 260 Nosler Accubond and I was using the 260 gr. Nosler Partition. CM’s frontal shot hit high on the heart and my shot was low. … Both bullets exited from the same hole. … Remember, after a shot through the heart the bear went from a standing start to 35 MPH and had covered 20 yards in 1 second. Only after a second shot through both shoulders and the heart did it stumble.

CM’s bullet disappeared into the rear of the animal and mine went through the left shoulder, not breaking the bone, hit a rib, went through the heart/lungs exited the chest and stopped in the right shoulder, not breaking the bone.

We were in a race with the tide so we quickly skinned the bear and ran (staggered) a mile back to the cabin. The next day I went back to perform the autopsy. Something (many) had been feeding on the carcass and had eaten the bloody portion of the right shoulder including the bullet – one big bite. The next day another bear came and picked up the entire carcass, several hundred pounds, and walk off with it with out leaving a drag mark, presumably up the creek and into the alder where visibility was about 10 inches.

So, I think a grizzly bear is tougher than ballistic gelatin and a bullet that would penetrate 12 inches of jello would not penetrate 12 inches of bear shoulder. Therefore a side shot on a bear through the shoulder with a handgun cartridge would not make it into the chest or, if it did, would not have enough energy left to do much damage. Same bad news from the front. Even if the bullet eventually killed the bear it would not die in your life time which would only be another few seconds.

It has been determined the factor which determines your survival after a bear encounter – death vs being mangled – depends upon if the bear can get your head in its mouth.

They go on to discuss whether a hail of pistol bullets from a conventional large magazine handgun would work in such a crisis. I had John Linebaugh build me one of his 5-shot custom Bisleys chambered for the .500 Linebaugh cartridge. That pistol can send a 450 grain bullet downrange at 1300 fps, but the recoil is ferocious and I’m not sure exactly how fast I could hope to get back on target for a second shot. Not all that rapidly, I expect. All this is a very intriguing, and potentially a matter of life-and-death, debate.

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