Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Watch Out for Bears...and Ultrarunning

[Image credit National Geographic]

Via Dependable Renegade, who calls this "The headline I've waited all my life to read":

Naked Vermont governor almost eaten by bears

We get directed over to Raw Story and the rest of the tale.

“The (bear) charges me on the porch — I’m tearing through the door,” he reportedly said. “You almost lost the governor. Security was not there. I was within three feet of getting ‘arrrh.’”
Shumlin is also quoted as saying: “I sleep like many Vermont boys, without too much clothing at night. I’m not a big pajama person. The bottom line is: The bears were dressed better than I and they could have done some real damage.”

I've seen black bears here in the east numerous times while running in the backcountry--and the not-so-backcountry--and every time it was like "Wow!" rather than a fear-inducing situation.

I seem to recall that the number of confirmed black bear attacks on humans over the years is virtually nil, so I know I'm much more at risk from a fall or a bee sting than from a bear.  Yet it's one of those fears that non-trail-runners seem to bring up repeatedly in discussing our sport.

If I see a bear, I figure that at that moment I'm the luckiest guy alive.  And no, I don't approach the bear saying "Nice bear...just let me pet your muzzle."  I give them space.

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