Hiker in serious condition after grizzly attack
Sat. Aug. 27 2005 8:33 PM ET
CTV.ca News Staff
A female hiker in Banff National Park survived a grizzly bear attack one day after a black bear killed a Manitoba man.
The Banff incident occurred Saturday on the Lake Minnewanka trail near the townsite of Banff.
Park officials say the woman somehow came between two grizzly cubs and their mother, which led to the mother bear briefly attacking the hiker.
All three bears then moved on, and the woman managed to walk out and find help.
People rushed her to Banff’s hospital, but then she was transferred to a Calgary hospital where she is listed in serious condition.
Wardens have closed the trail and are clearing the area near the attack.
In Canmore, just outside Banff’s eastern gates, a young grizzly killed a woman earlier this summer. Isabella Dube was out for a run with friends, but she was using a trail the authorities had warned against.
A Selkirk, Man. man died Friday after a black bear attacked him as he picked wild fruit.
Incredibly, the family of Harvey Robinson, 69, went out to the site of the attack Friday afternoon with an RCMP officer — and was attacked by a bear.
The RCMP officer shot the bear with his service revolver. A search found the bear dead several hours later.
Robinson is the third person killed by a bear in Manitoba history.
A rabid bear attacked Diane James in June 2003 in her own yard in Beausejour, Man.
“It came at me with no hesitation, no warning whatsoever,” she told CTV News.
She fought the animal, squeezing its nose, even considering trying to gouge its eyes. Her injuries included a badly torn scalp, but she lived.
Most experts say avoidance of attacks is the most important step.
Surprising a bear can be dangerous, and one should be especially careful around their food sources, says Parks Canada literature.
If one is subjected to a “defensive” attack by a bear that feels surprised or threatened, Parks Canada recommends that you try playing dead.
In many cases, the bear will be making a “bluff” charge.
However, if a bear attacks at night or after stalking you for a prolonged, it sees you as food, not a threat. In that case, Parks Canada recommends fighting back with everything at your disposal.
Similarly, if you tried the playing dead approach, and the attack hasn’t ended after about two minutes, the bear thinks you’re food and it’s time to fight.
With a report from CTV’s Rachel Lagace