It looks like the Forest Service is being super careful now. Story in Salt Lake Tribune.

.  . . and here is a Tribune editorial. Wildlife encounters: Develop and learn strategies for survival 

 
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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

4 Responses to Two campgrounds in Wasatch (Northern Utah) closed until troublesome bears caught

  1. avatar Linda Hunter says:

    In the Salt Lake Tribune editorial the author says to “If you see a bear, make noise. Back away slowly. Never run, or make direct eye contact, or get between a mother bear and her cubs” This is not necessarily the right advice. . I think that certain populations of bears are learning that humans are “wusses” , easily scared off so the bear can do what it wants with their stuff. I have made eye contact with many a black bear and stood my ground until they realized that it was MY stuff and they should leave it alone OR they might get a snout full of pepper spray. . the public gets SO much confusing advice about bears they have no idea what to do, and if they do get offical advice, it doesn’t always work because it is not always right. The bear experts know what to do in a bear encounter and many people live with bears daily with no problem, but the experts can’t tell other people how to do it because if the person doesn’t do it right, it could backfire and then more lawsuits!! You can’t stand your ground with a bear if you are shaking like a leaf. . . it’s a real catch 22 made worse by the press everytime someone gets hurt. Although, I am seeing a real improvement in the press’s efforts to tell the truth and get the right ideas across.

  2. avatar john99 says:

    Linda: It seems the advice they are giving pertains more to grizzly encounters than black bear. Black bears very rarely attack in defense of cubs. You are correct, you need to stand your ground with a black bear and be intimidating if necessary which would include giving eye contact. Seems the author is confusing blacks and grizzlies.

  3. Black bear behavior seems to change as they get larger, and, of course with hunger too.

    Almost all predatory bear attacks in the Unites States and Canada are from black bears, not grizzly bears

  4. avatar Linda Hunter says:

    Ralph that is true. . . black bears need to have grizzly bears around in my opinion. Otherwise they become the top dog and they are not as resonable as grizzly bears in my experience. Black bears get more “pushy” if they think that humans are scared of them. When they live with grizzlies they get their clock cleaned once in a while. I wholly advocate grizzly recovery in the lower 48 state, not just for this reason, but whereever there are grizzly bears people don’t seem to liter as much . . perhaps fear of death is the only thing that can make some people clean up after themselves.

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‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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