Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Nothing to Bear but Bear Itself!


When you’re tracking a highly dangerous animal-say, a grisley–you first pick up disturbances on the ground or bushes. As you follow the weak signs, they tend to get fresher and more definitive: the outlines of pawprints become clearly forced into the soil, and the broken branches are quite new and dripping sap. Then you may hear grunts and snarls. If you persist, suddenly rising before you to his full 12-foot height stands the grisley bear, and his intentions are now quite clear indeed. You are his next meal. No escaping now: such bears can run at 35 mph, and I do not think you are that fast.

Experienced trackers would have picked up that it was a grisley very quickly, and would have made proper preparations in case of an encounter with this most fearsome animal in the North, including retreating to the truck to get a high caliber rifle and pistol, asking others to accompany them to provide even more firepower, and walking in a skirmish line to give everyone a good shot.

I see your so-called kooks as amateur trackers that have picked up early signs of the bear, but have little idea what they need to do next. The professionals are not on site yet, but the bear is lurking around, for sure, snorting often (too often!), and making his presence known, although at some distance.

These anateurs know well that they could lose their lives to the bear, so they make noise, shout, wave their hands wide and all those things that just might scare the bear off. None of them had the wisdom to carry a good weapon in the midst of grisley country. Of course, they look like bumbling fools and idiots to an observer that is blissfully unaware of the bear signs and sounds that provoked those people.

But, the grisley bear is really there, and will be for the time being…

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