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- I'm Coyote Peterson.

With beauty often comes danger

and we tend to forget that in the wilderness,

we are no longer at the top of the food chain.

(bear growling and roaring)

(adventure themed music)

There's no wilderness greater than the backcountry

of Montana, an epic expanse of untamed beauty,

that is home to some of North America's

most incredible animals.

Every year thousands of adventurous hikers

set off down rugged mountain trails,

escaping the confines of every day life

and immersing themselves into the wild.

Being lost in nature, we all hope to catch a glimpse

of something beautiful, a chance encounter,

and an experience that will never be forgotten.

The scenario we just painted for you

is a common instance that can happen when hiking out here

in the backcountry of Montana.

What you're actually looking at here is Adam.

Now, Adam was raised in captivity

and he's a bear that's used for educational purposes

and as an ambassador for his species

to teach you guys what to do, and not to,

if you ever encounter one of these beautiful animals

in the wild.

Scenario number one, and best case for you,

is that you stumble upon a grizzly bear

and it doesn't see you.

Stop, stay quiet, back up slowly

and get yourself moving in another direction.

Now the second scenario you could find yourself in

you turn a corner and all the sudden,

it's you and a grizzly bear.

You see the bear, and the bear sees you.

This is the most dangerous situation that you can be in.

Grizzlies don't typically want anything to do with humans

what you want to do is make yourself look

as big as possible.

(bear growling and roaring)

Woah bear, woah bear, woah bear!

If that bear feels threatened

it should turn around and walk back up into the forest.

Once you know that the bear is out of eye sight

you hop into your car, or wherever it was that you came from

and get yourself to safety.

Now the third, and worst case scenario

is what happens if that bear advances.

You are never, I repeat never

going to outrun a grizzly bear

so don't even try.

(bear growling)

A lot of people think, "Hey, I've got on my hiking pack,

"let me get off my pack, throw it to the bear,

"and try to distract it so that you can get away."

This pack, on your back, this is your barrier

between the bears teeth and it's claws.

What you want to do is drop to the ground

and get in the fetal position as quickly as possible.

Get down here like this, tuck in, press your arms

against your legs and most importantly, get your hands

behind your neck.

Grizzly bears don't typically eat people,

what they see us as, is a threat to their territory.

As soon as that bear feels that the threat is eliminated

it will probably just disappear back up into the wild.

(bear roaring) Now, he might take a couple bites,

he night take a couple swipes,

but using this tactic increases your chances of survival

by about 90%.

(bear roaring)


Look at that set of teeth!

I just gave you three great tactics

for surviving a bear encounter.

But, there is one other thing that could save your life,

bear spray, don't ever head off into the backcountry

without it.

If you have a bear encounter, and you've got time

to get this off your hip and spray it,

these bears have incredibly sensitive noses

there's a good chance that bear is going to head off

in the other direction, and you're going to

escape the encounter unscathed.

Man, that was intense.

Getting swatted at by a grizzly bear.

Okay, so now we want to get you guys up close

with some of Adam's incredible features.

Grizzlies are opportunistic omnivores,

meaning that they'll eat anything that they come across

from grasses, like you see him chomping on here

all the way up through a moose.

Bears use their noses to follow their prey

they can find dead animals, they can find berries

they can find just about anything

and oftentimes what grizzlies will do is follow a wolf pack

to where they have killed a moose or a caribou

and they'll actually be able to scare those wolves away

and then they've got their meal.

That's the opportunistic that I'm talking about.

All he needs to use is his size and mass

to drive anything off of a kill.

One feature about this bear that is incredibly impressive

is those front paws.

Absolutely enormous.

And at the ends, armed with five massive claws

that average about 3.5" to 4" in length.

A single swipe of that paw can take down a deer.

One thing beyond those claws that's impressive

are those teeth.

The bite force of a grizzly bear is about

1,100 pounds per square inch.

That's enough to crush a bowling ball,

you don't want to be within the grasp of a grizzly bear.

Grizzlies also have incredible hearing

that's why you don't often see bears in the wild

because they can hear you coming for miles away.

Now the grizzly is the largest brown bear species

that we have here in the United States

and at one point in time their territory ranged from

Central, all the way through the Western United States.

Unfortunately, as humans encroach upon their territory,

they've been pushed to near extinction here in the lower 48.

Only 800 grizzlies still live here in Montana

and about 600 in Wyoming

all of whom live in Yellowstone National Park.

Completely awe inspiring to be in the presence

of a bear the size of Adam.

The scenario that I showed you guys today

is something that hopefully you never find yourselves in

but I hope that you learned a little something

in case you ever find yourself in that worst case scenario.

I'm Coyote Peterson, be brave, stay wild

we'll see you on the next adventure.

If you thought that was one wild adventure

check out these other animal encounters

and don't forget, subscribe to follow me and the crew

on this season of Breaking Trail.

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