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Thread: Bear Euthanized

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grampus View Post
    The article is correct regarding 2 bears. I met Glenda once, and knew Ralph many years (he was one of my high school teachers). Ralph passed away a few yrs ago after struggling with cancer. I spoke with him once about that day. It was a definite predatory attack. And without bear spray, Glenda never had a chance. The bears ignored her pack, which had snacks, and focused on her, then aggressively defended the body. Since that day, I more often than not carry bear spray and have had a few “iffy” situations with bears above Elkmont.

    Jim Parks
    More often than not, there are those temporary signs at the trailhead there in Elkmont warning of bear activity.

    About 3 years ago or so, I was fishing up Little River and happened on a big pile of fresh bear scat, and I mean fresh. I fished on up the river a couple of more hours and was walking out and standing by the stream just a little lower than where I saw the scat, some tourists asked me if I saw the bear just a few minutes ago and I said no. As it turns out, the bear and I most likely crossed paths in or beside the stream and I never knew it, I guarantee he did.

  2. #12
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    Apr 2007
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    JayR

    Part of the problem that happened in 2000 was there had been serious bear problems at Rough Fork Campground with campers leaving in the middle of the night. So when Glenda & Ralph go up, they’re unaware as Glenda sat on the rock at the fork of the trail reading a book while Ralph fished the loop up to Goshen Prong.
    In July, I was up near #21 when right as we started a bear came down the creek bank and couldn’t see my fishing partner & he couldn’t see the bear. Fortunately arm waving & yelling, caused the bear to gradually alter its course. In the Spring, Another friend was directly approached out into the creek and onto a rock. He got his bear spray and it turned away before having into use it.
    Not 5 yrs ago I was walking down the road about 1 mile above the parking lot when a bear crossed in front of me and a friend 5 times. Each time, it made eye contact as it approached to within 10 ft. I had my spray out and thumb on the trigger. 1 move closer and I would’ve used it.
    I’m most concerned about bears above Elkmont. They seem the most habituated anywhere in the Park.

    Jim Parks

  3. #13
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    Mar 2015
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    That's eerie that one made that much eye contact.

    Other than the one time I had with passing a bear, I have never had any other encounters there and I have fished that stretch of river probably into several dozens of times and right at 40 years.

    The part I forgot to tell about my encounter was when I was driving out I got to the last curve just above the campground before the road ties back in to the main road at the campground where the stop sign is. Set up were a couple of rangers with a dart gun out. I kind of figured as the bear made his way down the road towards the campground where it could smell food cooking and he was in a pretty routine route. Whether they got him or not I don't know.

    To go back even further in time, our family had a cabin in Elkmont and back in the mid to late 80's one of our friends whose family also had a cabin there was running on the quiet walkway between the bridge and campground and literally ran into a bear. Both of them startled the **** out of each other. The bear left a puncture wound on her leg as I recall. That was the most action I can remember from years ago but on occasion the bears would come out and try to break into some of the cabins. On occasion they were successful but they were still pretty much scared of us humans.

  4. #14
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    This was ancient history. I can't remember what I had for breakfast yesterday. I do know that bears are always encountered just about anywhere in the park, especially campgrounds and picnic areas. Vaguely recall an instance where campers were at a back country shelter with a chain link gate for security. Bear approached the site and wandered around for a while until it got bored and left. Interesting that bears are spotted all the time in downtown Gatlinburg. All trash containers in the city are to be bear proof.
    Stopped to read a sign in Cade's Cove last year that warned of bear activity. We stayed in the car.
    John Torchick

  5. #15
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    Apr 2009
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    SE Tennessee
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    Speaking of bears, look at this. This course would require a pitch-and-run shot.
    https://newschannel9.com/sports/outd...al-golf-course
    John Torchick

  6. #16
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    May 2007
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    Halifax, VA
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    Several years ago I fished Road Prong one day, then the next day I was sore and trying to fish roadside some. I stopped in the parking spot above road prong right by the loop tunnel. The WPLP runs to the south side of the road there below the parking spot, I walked back down toward Road Prong and dropped off in a really thick spot. As I put my flyrod behind, threading the laurel going down the bank there was a really noticeable sounds of a rock clicking against another rock. I thought "nothing to it" but I remember noting it. When I popped out of the thicket I had one foot in the water, couldn't see a thing until then, and there were 2 cubs looking at me like "what in the world is this?!" They were 10-12 feet away if that!! Mama made a noise upstream, a grunt if I remember right, and I remember thinking that's what the rocks clicking together were, her hunting. I heard her run toward us, it was only 2 or 3 jumps and she saw me, our eyes met, and she raised both front paws and stamped them in the water and huffed loud! I started trying to back up but I couldn't, my flyrod was still straight up in the bushes and they were so thick and steep. At that same instant the cubs both hauled tail out the river and straight up the other bank away from me, and a split second after mama took off after them! I just stood there for a few seconds catching my breath and thinking how close I came to my last fishing trip!
    <(((>< In tribute to Ben, Duck Hunter extraordinaire, and man's best friend.

  7. #17
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    Oct 2014
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    What could have caused this man’s death after arriving at the campsite and setting up his tent? Falling in the creek and hitting his head, heart attack, suicide? It seems to me that a bear attack in an area known for aggressive bears is a very real possibility. If so a firearm may have saved his life.

  8. #18
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    Mar 2007
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    No idea what happened. I was surprised by how long the autopsy results can take. I don't think there are rogue bears over there causing problems. Lots of people are in and out of that watershed now days, there most likely would have been many more problems. He may have had a firearm? There's nothing stopping him from legally carrying in the park now days.
    Last edited by flyman; 10-17-2020 at 02:47 AM. Reason: 42
    "Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it."
    Salvador Dali

  9. #19
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    If a firearm was used, according to TWRA officers, you might want to have some scratches or bite marks to show them. Just shooting a bear and no evidence of attack could be surmised as poaching. "Officer, it charged me and I shot it!"
    John Torchick

  10. #20
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    Oct 2014
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    In the case of Jenny Bennett it took several weeks for the autopsy results to be released, as in almost 3 months. A quick google search of causes of death in national parks shows wildlife attacks to be at the bottom of the list, and fatal black bear attacks are incredibly rare in general. More likely this situation was an accident, overdose, or suicide. If concluded to be a bear attack I think it will give pause to those planning solo trips in the gsmnp. I am very interested to know the details here, including if it was a bear attack did he have any sort of deterrent in his possession.

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