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Hiker injured by bear in Yellowstone National Park

GRIZZLY BEAR (file photo)
Posted at 10:40 AM, May 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-28 13:20:49-04

GREAT FALLS — A man was injured on Friday in Yellowstone National Park by a bear.

Park officials said in a news release that it happened Friday morning while the 39-year old man was hiking on the Beaver Ponds Trail at Mammoth Hot Springs, about 1.5 miles from the trailhead that originates from the Old Gardiner Road.

The man was hiking alone when he encountered what he believed to be two grizzly bears. One bear "made contact" with the hiker and he sustained "significant injuries to his lower extremities," but was able to hike out on his own.

He was taken to Livingston Hospital by a park ambulance; the nature and severity of his injuries has not been released.

The Beaver Ponds Trail is closed until further notice, and park staff are sweeping the trail to ensure no other hikers are on the trail. No other details about the incident have been released at this point; we will update you if we get more information.

Park officials provided the following "bear aware" safety tips:

  • Stay 100 yards away from bears at all times.
  • Carry bear spray and know how to use it.
  • Be alert. Watch for fresh tracks, scat, and feeding sites.
  • Make noise.
  • Hike in groups of three or more people.
  • Don't hike at dawn, dusk, or at night, when grizzlies are most active.
  • Don’t run from a bear.

Yellowstone National Park guidelines state that visitors must stay 25 yards away from all large animals – bison, elk, bighorn sheep, deer, moose, and coyotes - and at least 100 yards away from bears and wolves.