Grizzly Squirts Self with Pepper Spray | God's World News

It's our June giving drive! Help more kids see God at work in the culture.

Grizzly Squirts Self with Pepper Spray

  • T1 87193
    A wild mother grizzly bear and her cub in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming (AP)
  • T2 29157
    A Montana entrance to Yellowstone National Park, which is located in parts of three U.S. states: Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming. (AP/David Goldman)
  • T3 33754
    The morning sunlight illuminates the Grand Tetons at Grand Teton National Park, north of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. (AP/Brennan Linsley)
  • T1 87193
  • T2 29157
  • T3 33754


You have {{ remainingArticles }} free {{ counterWords }} remaining.

The bad news: You've hit your limit of free articles.
The good news: You can receive full access below.
WORLDteen | Ages 11-14 | $35.88 per year

Already a member? Sign in.

A 35-year-old Massachusetts man was hiking on Signal Mountain in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, on Sunday. Two grizzlies approached him, and one attacked. He pretended to be dead while being bitten . . . before something unexpected happened.

Speaking to rangers afterward, the man—whose name hasn’t been released—said he came across a small bear that ran from him.

Uh-oh. You know what the Bible says, “Let a man meet a she-bear robbed of her cubs rather than a fool in his folly.” (Proverbs 17:12)

The man did the right thing. He didn’t run but instead reached for his bear repellent.

Then he saw a larger bear charging at him in his side vision—and then two bears.

He did not have time to use the spray. He fell to the ground with fingers laced behind his neck. Thankfully, one finger held the spray canister.

One bear bit him several times. Suddenly, the attacking grizzly bit into the man’s can of bear repellent. Zing! The bear got a surprise burst of the painful red pepper substance. Both animals fled.

The man was able to get to an area with cell phone coverage and call for help. First a helicopter and next an ambulance evacuated him to a nearby hospital. He is expected to make a full recovery.

There was no word when Signal Mountain or a road and trail to its 7,700-foot summit would reopen. Officials closed the area because of the attack. Such closures are typical after a grizzly attack on public land.

Officials will not pursue the bears. They believe the animals behaved naturally after being surprised. The biting grizzly may have been trying to protect a cub, according to park officials. Mother bears aggressively defend their offspring and remain with them for two to three years after birth.

National park rangers track and study many of the 1,000 or so bears in the region, which includes Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. But they weren’t familiar with the two bears responsible for the attack on Sunday afternoon.

The attack happened even though the victim followed instructions about carrying bear-repellent spray and making noise to alert bears in the forest.

In addition to those bear safety guidelines, experts also advise that hiking in areas like Grand Teton be done in groups and with food stored safely.