BILLINGS, MONTANA — This latest attack marks the fourth hunter who was attacked by a grizzly bear in the same area over the last couple weeks. All of the previous hunters sustained injuries that required hospital visits, but they all walked away alive. In the latest instance, the attacked hunter fought back and shot the bear.
“This hunter was walking through some downed timber when he was attacked by a bear at a very close range,” says Morgan Jacobsen, Information and Education Program manager for Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, Region 3.Via KXLF Butte
“During the attack, he shot at the bear several times with a pistol,” Jacobsen says. “The bear subsequently left. This hunter was from out of state but he had done his research and was prepared to defend himself in the event of an attack. Whether he hit the bear or not is still under investigation.”
The hunter has requested his identity be kept private, so details of the incident are limited. We do know, however, that the hunter used a pistol to shoot at the bear which was enough to chase it away.
This incident is a great reminder that its always necessary to be vigilant and prepared – no matter where you are. Clearly the hunters who have been mauled here recently were not expecting to be attacked by grizzly bears. They survived the encounter and lived to hunt another day. They should consider themselves lucky.
Shooting a bear comes with all sorts of additional dangers, but this hunter was prepared to take that chance to save his life. Bears hides are thick, and they aren’t the easiest to put down. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game recommend at least a .30/06 loaded with 200- or 220-grain Nosler to take down a bear.
Because these bears are protected under the Endangered Species Act, it is fortunate to hear this one had fled when it was shot at, and we hope it survives any wounds it may have sustained. Nonetheless, the hunter here acted in self defense to protect his own life from becoming endangered.
When out hunting where bears are a potential beast you may come across it is absolutely necessary to be prepared. There are lots of advice out there on how to prevent encounters with bears, but should those methods fail, having the right firepower with you may be necessary to survive; so be sure to pack your equipment as needed.