Thursday, June 5, 2014

Running by a Grizzly? Keep Running!

So says Craig Medred, writing for the Alaska Dispatch.

As kids in Alaska, we're all taught a few fundamental lessons about bears:

  • If it's a grizzly, DON'T RUN! Make a lot of noise, maybe climb a tree if you can. If you're attacked, curl in ball and play dead.
     
  • If it's a black bear, make a lot of noise and fight back if it comes to it. Don't climb a tree, don't play dead. Black bears climb trees and they eat carrion.
     
Well, Craig's article proposes that you may be better off running from a grizzly after all. He points out that through radio collar observations, there are an estimated 65 grizzlies in the City at any given time, very well habituated to runners, hikers and bikers - though with a few notable exceptions

Recently a jogger was mauled after she saw a bear and stopped running. Problem was, she stopped right between the sow and her cub, which is obviously the last place you want to be. Arguably she would have been better off continuing to run by the bears for at least some distance. Monday morning quarterbacking is just that though. Thankfully she's still alive.

While the best way to avoid a mauling is to avoid a bear, Craig still advocates some offensive protection such as bear spray and firearms:
"...I do have a special place in my heart for firearms, having once shot a grizzly off my leg, thus stopping it from doing further damage. Guns are great if you know how to use them well."
Indeed.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be courteous and of good spirit.