Bear encounters are reasonably rare occurences, but they pick up in frequency during certain times of year- like right now, when bears are scouring for extra food to prepare for hibernation. While oftentimes bears have little interest in hikers, if they're being territorial or their cubs are nearby, they can get very aggressive very quickly. Knowing how to react when faced with an aggressive bear may save your life.
The official @weatherchannel TikTok account shared a scary video of hikers coming face-to-face with an aggressive bear. This video is truly gut-wrenching.
As terrifying as this video is, it demonstrates something really significant- how important it is to know what to when faced with a bear on the trail. Despite the bear showing potentially aggressive behavior, the hikers didn't turn around and run- as understandable as the desire to do so is, that can trigger a bear's chasing instincts, and then they'd really be in trouble. Instead, they backed away slowly, giving it space without turning their backs, and made lots of noise until it moved on. Because they stayed calm and practiced the proper protocol, they defused the dangerous situation and were alright- and didn't even have to use their bear spray.
This video was taken at Glacier National Park, Montana, where there have been quite a few bear encounters this season. However, bears can be found all over the country- Hawai'i is the only US state that does not have any wild bear population at all. Therefore, it's a good idea for hikers all over to read up on what to do in a bear encounter. Better safe than sorry!
"Reminds me of the time I got charged by a bear in Banff. Thank god I had bear spray. Saved my life. They closed they trail down for the rest of the day," @psteelflex recounted their terrifying bear encounter. "Kid was hiking solo. Fortunate for him family came up from behind. Solo hiker is vulnerable. More people, bear is less likely to be aggressive," @jwd4212 praised the hikers for banding together. "You guys were very chill, good job- this could have ended badly," @cherihuberdeau said, applauding their potentially life-saving reactions.
Always arm yourself with knowledge- and bear spray- before going on a hike. Knowing what to do when you encounter a bear may very well save your life one day, It certainly did for these hikers in this case!
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