Running Into A Bear On The AT

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 1 week ago

News from the mountains.

A woman had “an unusual encounter” with a bear while hiking on the Appalachian Trail Saturday, according to officials from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

GSMNP spokesperson Dana Soehn said the park’s wildlife biologist and park Rangers interviewed the woman Monday morning after receiving a radio report of a “bear attack.” She said she wanted to make sure to pass on the information to our staff regarding her interaction with a bear along her hike.

The woman was hiking in the eastern section of the park in a fairly remote section of the Appalachian Trail near Camel Gap when a bear darted quickly across the trail knocking her over, according to details from the park.

The woman told park officials the encounter happened very quickly, but she was certain that it was a bear. The bear did not linger or react when it knocked into her and kept quickly going on its way.

She was hiking with headphones so she had no advance warning of the bear approaching the trail as it crossed over, according to the park.

Soehn said while it’s not unusual for bears to cross the trails while people are hiking, it is unusual for a collision to occur. Normally people hear a bear’s approach and have time to react before the crossing.

By the time she heard movement in the tree branches near the trail, the bear was already crossing and knocked her over, according to the park. She was not injured and the bear did not attempt to access her pack or interact with her in any way.

Why does anyone want to listen to music when you can listen to the birds, wind, rustling of the trees, and animal life?

And for goodness’ sake, keep your head on a swivel when you’re in the bush.


Comments

  1. On August 8, 2019 at 8:22 am, Fred said:

    I don’t know, this is strange. The bear was obviously going somewhere in a hurry. I’ve seen a bear move at all out and that’s usually in response to food. Probably a coyote kill or an inured animal that made the mistake of crying out. It is weird to be in a bears path. Clearly whatever the bear was up to was not about the woman. Bears don’t knock prey down and circle for a kill. When they take a dear or such they go on it, and finish it with breathtaking aggression and rapidity.

    And if the bear was moving to take food it likely would have been very loud crashing through the brush. But this notion seems to persist that bears are noisy and lumbering. So, one more time, if a bear doesn’t want to be heard, you won’t hear it.

    These articles are always short on the type of details that matter. Did the woman then change course and return the way she came? That little tidbit might matter if a mamma was trying to keep her away from cubs. Still, a challenge on the trail before the bear moves off with her cubs would have been 99 percent more likely than knocking somebody down.

    Headphones!?! Ugh. Condition white all the time can get you killed.

    Or, the lady is a liar, which was my initial thought, but it could have been a dear (not sarc), or a bigfoot (you decide).

  2. On August 8, 2019 at 5:42 pm, Sanders said:

    My daughter texted me photos of a few different bears she saw on a recent camping trip in the hills of Virginia.

    She’s looking for something a little more powerful than her .380.

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You are currently reading "Running Into A Bear On The AT", entry #21657 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Animals,Mountains and was published August 7th, 2019 by Herschel Smith.

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