Saturday, May 2, 2009

Shooting at Grizzlies

After dinner, the usual crowd was waiting beside the dorm for everyone to gather for an evening walk. Something moving down the hillside behind the General Store caught my eye. I looked up and at first thought I spotted a wolf walking down the hillside. NO, it was a bear!!! I screamed, "BEAR!!" Everybody scattered, some running to get their cameras and some walking up towards the terraces where the bear appeared to be going. When I came back down with my camera, the bear had moved out of sight behind the General Store. We started walking up towards the terraces.

At first, the bear was hiding behind some sagebrush. We couldn't determine whether it was a black bear or a grizzly. Finally, it moved and we could definately tell it was a GRIZZLY!

Then, the grizzly decide to mosey on up towards the terraces. All along the way, there was a group of admirers following it in that direction. We were walking along the road.

Finally, the bear stopped to rest in some tall grass between the terraces and the Judge's house at the trailhead of Beaver Pond's Trail. There was some idiot that got EXTREMELY close to the bear. You are supposed to stay 100 yards away from bears. In the picture below, the bear is hid by the tall yellow grass. The idiot is NOT 100 yards away from it:

Joan in our group walked down to the visitor's center to inform the park rangers that there was a grizzly roaming in the area. Remember, this is only a couple hundred yards from WHERE I LIVE!!! Plus, the Beaver Pond's Trail which many of the employees here in Mammoth, not to mention park visitors, hike frequently. And, the boardwalk for the Mammoth Terraces are just a few feet from the area the grizzly was hanging out in.

So, 3 rangers pull up in 2 different vehicles. The first two go to the idiots who are way too close. The third pulls out a shotgun and loads up!!!!

As the ranger was loading his gun, the grizzly comes down the hill closer to us.

The ranger shot at the grizzly to scare it off and try to get it to move out of the area. The grizzly was definately startled by the shots and ran off up the hill. But, he soon stopped, turned, and looked back at us as if to say, "Why are you shooting at me?" If the bear keeps frequenting this area, the rangers may tranquilize him, cart him off way back in the backcountry, and turn him loose. Otherwise, there is too much danger of him attacking all of us living and visiting here.

Supposedly, when the ranger fired the shots, there was a second bear that darted away up the hill that NONE of us saw!!! Maybe the first bear was the "bait" to get all of our attention while the second bear snuck up on us for the attack!!!!!!!!!


  1. Did you ever think you would be this close to a grizzly? Enjoying your pictures and stories very much!

  2. OMG!!! I can believe you are getting to see this. How amazing is it to see all these wild animals? Well be careful and stay safe. love ya

  3. Wow! That was a cool story! I feel like I'm reading a storybook when I read your blogs! I love it! I bet that was scary! You will have so much to scrapbook, you could be scrapbooking for a lifetime! Becareful and don't feed the bears. lol

  4. Wow, I love that you are keeping this blog so we can all keep up with you and read about your adventures. So exciting. I am SOOO glad you went. Keep blogging and be careful. Miss you