Suzanne Knudsen was less than a mile into her run Monday morning when a pair of brown bear cubs stumbled across her path on a trail near her Alaska home. The next thing she knew, the cubs' mama hit her from behind, attacking her and knocking her to the ground, reports KTUU. As Alaska Dispatch News explains, the 59-year-old lay still til the bears left, then used her cell phone to call 911. She was airlifted from Bird Valley to Anchorage within an hour—"amazingly fast" by Alaska standards, notes ADN—with severe, but not life-threatening, injuries.
A wildlife biologist says two things didn't help: Knudsen was wearing ear buds and wasn’t carrying pepper spray or any kind of deterrent. The attack is the third this summer—two months ago, a woman was mauled after she and her husband were separated while running at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson—this one also involved cubs. And in June, a man in the interior was mauled near his cabin. (Not all bear encounters result in violence.)