I love bears. Ever since I was little and saw my first grizzly in Yellowstone National Park, I have been obsessed with them. The size of their teeth, the sharpness of their claws, the unpredictability, all of it has a kind of romance for me. Reading the diaries of Lewis and Clark, I would often image what it would be like to be stalked by one of these 800 pound beasts.
Bears are scary to many people, and we have reason to fear them. They can run over 30 miles an hour at times and kill an elk. When hiking in bear country, you should always make noise, carry bear spray and follow all rules on food, but occasionally a bear gets too close. My closest experience to a bear was a few years ago out in the Grand Tetons. I was hiking to my favorite hidden hot spring when I rounded a corner and got within 10 feet of a male grizzly. He was a notorious problem bear, with both ears tagged and a radio collar around his neck. I was downwind of this guy, so I imagine we were both equally shocked to see each other. I quickly backed away, he slowly shuffled off to the side of the meadow and for the next 40 minutes, we watched the other cautiously. My heart raced, but eventually I went back to being calm and relaxed.
I later recalled this story to a friend of mine, who directed me to a book about all the bear deaths around the area. Some friend. However, after reading this book, I was intrigued to get rare bear footage, even hoping to sacrifice a camera or two to get a shot of a bear up close eating. Sadly, a BBC camera man/badass beat me to it and just recently captured this video of a grizzly in Alaska. In the video, which is beyond awesome, you see a bear playfully try to eat a GoPro camera. You get to see the teeth, the claws and, for the first time without scars or death, you get to see inside the bear’s mouth as it tries to eat you. Check this out…it is so flippin rad!
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