One of the days, as we were traveling along in the Canadian Rockies, we came across a grizzly bear in the not too far distance. “Stop the truck!” I said to Tom. It was after all our first grizzly of our trip … see most of the bears we encountered were black bears. So Tom, being a good sherpa, pulled over so I could observe and photograph the bear. It sure was a beauty too.
This bear was wandering around on the rocky landscape, in a location that I will never disclose. I’m not being secretive about wildlife sightings, but it will make sense by the end of this post. Promise :-)
This healthy looking grizzly laid down on the gravel and began to roll around. Oh, how cute, I thought … it’s scratching its side on the rough surface of the rocks. I was ecstatic with the angle because I just LOVE bear paws and claws!
It rolled over … kind of like a dog in the grass …
… and it continued to roll around … over and over. I was happily snapping off images and couldn’t believe what an awesome sighting this was.
Every so often, it would glance over its shoulder to get a glance at the crowd that was quickly forming. Most people were out of their cars. Many tried to get closer to this bear, which made me very annoyed. I mean, come on! Here we had this gorgeous bear … acting like a bear!!!
Hot dog!!!, I thought. We sure did hit the mother lode opportunity. This bear was giving us quite the show!!! Didn’t think that it could get better.
Well, you know when things seem too good to be true? After not too much longer, I checked my screen and saw something that haunts me still to this day. Something that was so inexcusable and disturbing.
That’s when I noticed that the grizzly bear was rolling around, like a dog when it rolls in something dead does. But this was not your typical road kill. This bear had been thrown hot dogs … not just one, not two, but 5 hot dogs!!! Many of the images above were worked on to eliminate what was the reality, as seen in those below.
Good Lord, who does that??? I’ve seen all kinds of things over the years, but I think that this is the thing that bothers me most. Spending a lot of time in various locations photographing brown bears (grizzlies), I sure hope that whatever IDIOT person was responsible for giving this bear HOT DOGS! or any other kind of human food, will be caught and fined. I mean, come on!!!
This is clearly not the case of a bear who raided a BBQ grill, took the hot dogs to his own little picnic area, to sniff and roll around in. This was deliberate! I can’t even imagine why anyone would do this. The reason that I will not disclose this location, and put this post out of order of our travels, is that this is not the fault of this bear. Happy to report that he didn’t even eat them.
When a wild bear is TAUGHT things that aren’t natural for them – like eating hot dogs provided by a human (no, make that spectator(s) standing within close vicinity – closer than regulations mandate), it can only lead to bad things for this poor bear.
As I mentioned, this grizzly bear didn’t eat the hot dogs and eventually got annoyed with the onlookers, who were slowly, but surely, invaded its personal space, so it left the area and went off into the brush. After we hadn’t seen the bear for about 5 minutes, Tom & I took a plastic bag and picked them up. I didn’t want this bear – or another – to come back for it.
Please remember that a FED BEAR is a DEAD BEAR !!!
After I wrote this post, I thought to myself, I could call this shot of the bear … Dead Bear Walking! I know that this is not the norm for human behaviors and that especially anyone who is reading this post, would never do something like this, but I felt that I had to share this with everyone. Let’s all get a dose of COMMON SENSE out there PLEASE!!!
More from our trip to come … so stay tuned!
© 2014 Debbie Tubridy / TNWA Photography