Another Grizzly Attack, This Time in Denali

Man uses bear spray, gets away
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2021 3:41 AM CDT
Another Grizzly Attack, This Time in Denali
Stock photo of a grizzly bear in Denali National Park.   (Getty Images / Paul Racenet)

Grizzly attacks have been making headlines in recent months, but the latest story has a happier ending. A hiker in Alaska's Denali National Park was attacked Monday night, but managed to deploy bear spray, which the park service believes may have cut the attack short. The bear, who had two cubs with her, left the area and the man walked 1.5 miles to a visitor center and was picked up by a transit bus, the Anchorage Daily News reports. NPS says the 55-year-old Indiana tourist is in stable condition after being treated for puncture wounds to his calf, left ribs, and left shoulder. The man was hiking alone in dense fog when the bear charged from behind a bush, NBC News reports.

"Due to the apparent defensive nature of this attack, there are no plans to locate the bear involved," the NPS statement says. "Female bears with cubs are naturally defensive of their young, especially when surprised. There is no indication that this bear is unusually dangerous." A backcountry area of the park has, however, been closed for a week as a precaution. "Separation of bears and people following a natural defensive attack helps achieve the objective of keeping people safe and bears wild," a park spokesperson says. The man remains hospitalized. This is the first grizzly attack reported in Denali this year. (Another grizzly attack survivor in Alaska flagged down a helicopter.)

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