Skip to comments.Fourteen-foot grizzly killed in Alaska
Posted on 07/26/2006 8:03:17 PM PDT by kiriath_jearim
Fourteen-foot grizzly killed in Alaska
By D.A. Ray, outdoor correspondent The Sun
Deer hunting is one of the major seasons in Oklahoma. What would you do if you were doing just that and a huge bear charges you? An employee of the U.S. Forest Service in Alaska recently faced just that scenario. Although it was not bear season in the Last Frontier State, he was justified in killing the bear in self defense.
He was out deer hunting when a large grizzly bear charged him from about 50 yards away. The guy emptied his 7mm Magnum semi-automatic rifle into the bear, and it dropped a few feet from him. The big bear was still alive so he reloaded and shot it several times in the head.
The big bear was just over one thousand six hundred pounds. It stood 12 feet, six inches high at the shoulder and 14 feet to the top of his head. It is the largest grizzly bear ever recorded in the world. Just imagine an animal of these proportions charging straight at you with nothing but hate and destruction in its very being.
The Alaska Fish and Wildlife Commission did not let the U.S. Forest Service employee keep the bear as a trophy. It will be stuffed, mounted, and placed on display at the Anchorage airport to remind tourists of the risks involved when in the wild. Hunters who hunt bears in Alaska are also very familiar with the fee associated with taking a trophy bear in addition to the cost of a hunting license. The last price I heard ran in the $3000 range.
The really bizarre part of the story started when the bear was examined by the United States Forest Service. Based on the contents of the bear's stomach, it was established that the bear had killed at least two humans in the 72 hours before its demise which included a missing hiker.
The U.S. Forest Service, backtracking from where the bear had originated, found the hiker's 38 caliber pistol emptied. Not far from the pistol were the remains of the hiker. The other body has not been found.
Although the hiker fired six shots and managed to hit the bear with four of those shots (the Service ultimately found four 38 caliber slugs along with twelve 7mm slugs inside the bear's body), it only wounded the bear and probably angered it immediately.
The bear killed the hiker an estimated two days prior to the bear's own death by the gun of the Forest Service worker. Think about this: If you are an average size man; you would be level with the bear's navel when he stood upright. The bear would look you in the eye when it walked on all fours!
To give additional perspective, consider that this particular bear, standing on its hind legs, could walk up to an average single story house and look over the roof. It could walk up to a two story house and look in the bedroom windows. Think about what was running through the mind of the U.S. Forest worker when this huge thing was charging.
I have been fortunate enough to go to Alaska about a half dozen times. This trip is always exciting and offers spectacular fishing, scenery, and crisp air. On my first trip to Craig, Alaska, the guide gave me a 44 Magnum pistol and told me that black bears were numerous in the area and to only shoot if one was on top of me. Well, a four hundred pounder showed up across the stream from me and let me tell you, that was an eye opener. Thankfully, the bear was more interested in the salmon than he was of me.
After seeing the story on the 14-foot grizzly, hunters, hikers, and fishermen will be more aware of the potential dangers traveling the wilderness in Alaska. Although I am sure an encounter with a bear this size is very rare, encounters happen just the same.
Kanawa's going to need a bigger knife.....
Now I'm going to read the article.
LOL!! I guess so!!
If this bear were in my living room he could bust his head through the ceiling and I could go up stairs and stand eye eye with him.
That's one hell of a big bear.
That's a bear of a bear!
We need your expert commentary
I am confused about this story. My Dad called me this morning and asked me to check it out. He says he has had it forwarded to him in the past.
I looked it up on snopes, and they said it is a 5 year old story. Admittedly, snopes is not my favorite debunker, but it says the story was updated early last year.
Partly true, partly not. http://www.snopes.com/photos/animals/bearhunt.asp
You beat me! :)
Note to self: You might as well be unarmed as carry a .38 in grizzly country.
In light of the rising frequency of human/grizzly bear conflicts, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game is advising hikers, hunters, and fishermen to take extra precautions and keep alert of bears while in the field. "We advise that outdoorsmen wear noisy little bells on their clothing so as not to startle bears that aren't expecting them.
We also advise outdoorsmen to carry pepper spray with them in case of an encounter with a bear." It is also a good idea to watch out for fresh signs of bear activity. Outdoorsmen should recognize the difference between black bear and grizzly bear excrement: Black bear excrement is smaller and contains lots of berries and squirrel fur. Grizzly bear excrement has little bells in it and smells like pepper.
Apparently this one is getting another spate of forwards. It is just weird that my Dad asked me just today about it. : )
Relax. Aim small. Do it again. Relax. Aim small. Do it again...
This story has been a somewhat exaggerated.
Next time, make sure that bear is down! Use a Kanawa Bear Killer!
I've had a rash of forwards lately that were passed around a long time ago too. I live in Alaska, and bears can get hugh and series (har har) so it's not hard to believe this story. I love bears....at a safe distance. ;)
Anybody remember that movie "Grizzly" with Christopher George as the forest ranger? This story reminds me of that. Awesome beast.
Whoa! By BS meter is on red alert. This is likely the story of the young airman from Elmendorf AFB who shot a large griz' on Hinchinbrook Island and then positioned hisself several feet behind the bear for the pix. Yeah the paws were big. So what? I once placed my size 12 foot in a 9 foot sow's hind paw print with room to spare.
The biggest Brownie I ever saw was a 12 footer from the Olga Bay area of Kodiak Island. That bear weighed out at 1500 lbs. (parted of course). It is highly unlikely that they would get much bigger than that.
The other problem I have with this story is that as far as I can recomember, the USFS issues .375 H&H rifles for big Alaska bear protection. A 7mm Mag is OK for non-dangerous game like Sitka Blacktail deer and poodles and such but it is not a proper bear gun.
Did you take that picture with a POLARoid?
you suckered me right in with that one! LOLLOFLHHO little old lady laying on the floor laughing her hiney off
So YOU'RE the one. I heard about you falling for that. Someone wrote it on a bathroom stall in Fairbanks. (just kidding) ;)
Grizzly bears call it bell peppers. ;)
I love you Bear!
Maybe the same type Harry Callahan used on Alcatraz.
This one of mine, hope to get more this September on my trip.
I remeber when I killed my first 18 foot grizzly with a plastic spork one morning on the western shores of Newport beach.
Oy vey, I should pay closer attention to posts to me.
Is this one of your victims too? LOLOL
Might have been a Browning semiauto. BTW great screenname...
Actually that bathroom stall was in a McDonalds.
It just so happens that my sister, was working the window there at the time.
After she got bitten by a Møøse she went to wash up and found the writing on the wall.
We saw several bears on our way down to Haines a few years ago. We saw plenty on POW island too. There's plenty of bears in our area as well, but so far, no problem.
Holy moose COW! What a moooving story.
Lol, I remember it was a shoulder launched missile. Let me ask you this...did you realize at the time that it was just a furry version of "Jaws" - complete with a Matt Hooper, a Quint, a Mayor and a "Chief Brody"?
Where the bears hunt you...
Even at 10'6", the bear is big enough to scare any sane person (and a few insane ones, too). Thanks for the link.
Yes, plus we (high school buddies) were mad that we wasted money on the movie.
In bear country I think I could justify having that Desert Eagle .50 cal I want. ;o
the .38 is for your self when you can smell the bear's breath on your neck.
Those drive-by bitings are the things nightmares are made of. I hope that moose fried.
The Alaska Fish & Game service has a survey on guns used by Alaskan hunters. 6.3% use the .375 H&H and it is considered a brown bear gun. They mention at the end of it that hunters who use the bigger guns seldom get enough practice to be effective hunters. The kick wears them out during practice and good aim is more important than foot pounds of killing force, that a 30 ought 6 will pass through most large game. 46% of hunters tested on a moose silhouette at 100 yards had a "kill" with 3 shots.