Skip to comments.Attack in Great Smoky Mountains National Park 'rare,' official says
Posted on 06/09/2012 9:28:25 AM PDT by deoetdoctrinae
GATLINBURG Authorities are on the hunt for a stranger who slashed and sexually assaulted a 44-year-old woman in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park Friday.
Veteran personnel at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park said they don't recall an incident of this magnitude occurring in the Park especially with the tourist season in full swing.
"Things like this don't happen everyday. It is definitely a rare incident," Melissa Cobern with the Public Affairs Office of the National Park Service said.
Authorities confirmed late Friday that a woman stabbed on the Gatlinburg Trail in the National Park on Friday suffered multiple wounds and was sexually assaulted by a man she did not know.
(Excerpt) Read more at knoxnews.com ...
I'm hoping the woman will fully recover, and the perpetrator will be caught, convicted, and caged for a long time.
i have hiked that trail. Never alone though. No fun in exploring nature without someone to share it with. My kids carried the bear spray and I just carried.
I think Wee Willie Klintoon banned firearms in the national parks and forests.
I can’t remember if it was rescinded, I do recall a big fight over it, with the bureauKaRatz yelping about how no one EVER gets attacked in the parks and forests and why do you EVIL Republicans want to turn them into Dodge City.
However, I do also recall that this is NOT the first time for this kind of thing. There was a guy going up and down the Appalachian trail raping and murdering people, and there were others, I just don’t recall right now.
That idiot law WAS repealed in 2010, but not without a lot of teeth gnashing by the moonbats.
Horrible! I have been to the Smokey’s many times. ALWAYS armed. Be it animal or human animal, there’s simply no one there to help you in many stretches of the woods. You are on your own...
Lol...what a waste he was.
Yes, they gave their routine prediction of “Wild West gunfights”, and are probably ticked off that it hasn’t happened.
One note of caution. Those who carry in the national parks still need to be aware that they need to abide by the laws of the state (or states) in which the park lies. Also, don’t carry into visitor centers or ranger offices, as these are categorized as federal buildings.
Damn the socialists to hell.
Both of those are excellent common sense precautions.
Firearms were prohibited in National Parks long before Clinton came along and they have never been prohibited in National Forests other than specific rules for campgrounds. The prohibition on carrying in National Parks was lifted a few years ago during Bush’s administration.
I also have been to the Smokies many times. Hiked on the AT, Boulevard, and several other trails, sometimes alone, sometimes in a group. I was once pestered by a persistent bear, but have never sensed the least danger from any person. Freak assaults can happen anyplace. The Smokies are a very safe and friendly environment; frankly, I do not need the extra weight of a weapon.
This attack was almost certainly by a day use visitor to the Park, very close to his vehicle and "civilization". Though all of the Park is relatively safe, the back country is far safer than day use facilities attracting casual visitors and those who would prey upon them.
Depends on whether those you are exploring nature with are capable of shutting their mouths for more than two consecutive minutes. Constant, purposeless, inane, media-driven chatter and the Glories of Nature do not mix well.
I have hiked this trail twice, once with company and the second time to escape from it. I encountered maybe one person along the trail, seated on one of the benches. I was less concerned with attacks from humans than with the big thunderstorm that was looming up behind me and echoing off the hills, and with the bears which had begun to frequent the area. Encountered no bears, and the rain didn't begin until I got off the trail (which, as you'll remember, emerges smack into a Gatlinburg parking lot with no preamble). Luckily, there was a pretty good barbecue place not too far along the River Road into which I could escape.
In retrospect, I should probably have been more concerned about human aggression, which is more frequent than unprovoked bear attacks here. A black bear generally won't attack unless you've scared it, or have come too near its cubs, or just have something delicious which it feels it has every moral right to share, whereas humans seem to think along the lines of (a) "I want to hurt someone," and (b) "There you are!" I don't own a gun (no moral objections--just don't have a gun) and would frankly balk at the idea of having to carry one into the national park on the grounds of simple propriety ("One shouldn't have to do this!"), but this might be one of those cases where the moral high ground leads straight to the graveyard.
Until you do...
For multiple excellent reasons, criminals and crazies rarely venture more than a mile from the trailhead. The back country is where I spend 99% of my time, and I desire neither the weight nor the responsibility of an unneeded weapon. Perhaps others visit the wilderness to make some kind of point. I go to enjoy the wilderness.
Lol...what a waste he was.
I used to think we would never have a worse president.
I had my sons in a backpacking store a while back, and showed them a bear bell. They asked me what that was for.
I explained that it is very dangerous to surprise a bear on the trail. The animal might feel threatened and attack. So you tie this bell to the bear so you’ll hear it and can avoid that area.
They said, “Oh, that makes sense.”
They said, Oh, that makes sense.
There's the mark of truly responsible parenting: providing an alternate reality against which the youngster will learn to judge, through his own experience, the true shape of Reality! (It might involve a consequent period of hospitalization, but no education comes without a price!)
A friend of mine in California sent me a notice that local rangers were trying to educate the public about the differences between black bears and grizzlies, as well as how to distinguish the poop of each of the species of bear. Grizzly poop (he claimed they said, though I suspect a jocular lack of veracity) may be identified by the presence of exhausted cans of bear spray as well as bear bells.
I once spoke to a Smokies ranger and asked what one really should do in case one was approached (or attacked) by a black bear, as I had read advice that ranged from "Hold your ground and the bear will likely turn aside" to "Lie still and pretend to be dead, as it is known that bears do not eat carrion," but I could not be sure that the bears had read those books that said this. The ranger replied that the best advice was to make yourself look as big as you could (by, perhaps, standing on a rock and spreading your arms wide) and to make as much noise as possible (I think my screaming and crying aloud to God would take care of that)--otherwise (I seem to remember her saying, but cannot be sure) to fight back with all you had--excellent advice, but not very encouraging in terms of probable outcome.
Thank our blessed Lord, I have never been close enough to a bear in the wild to have to put any of these to the test--most have been across a field in Cades Cove, or up in a tree or off in a hollow to one side of US 441 (where "bear jams" take place once a bear has been sighted and traffic piles up as people rubberneck to see it) or safely dead and stuffed in that Sugarlands Visitors Center in the exhibit of Wildlife of the Smokies. Bears have also likely not seen Disney films in which bears are amiable buddies that can scat like Phil Harris.
Post of the day!
The full park ranger bear warning needs to be on this thread.
Park visitors are advised to wear little bells on their clothes to make noise when hiking. The bell noise allows the bears to hear the hiker coming from a distance and not be startled by a hiker accidently sneaking up on them. This might cause a bear to charge. Hikers should also carry pepper spray in case they encounter a bear. Spraying the pepper in the air will irritate a bear’s sensitive nose and it will run away. It also a good idea to keep an eye out for fresh bear scat so you’ll know if there are bears in the area. People should be able to tell the difference between black bear scat and grizzly/brown bear scat. Black bear scat is smaller and will be fibrous, with berry seeds and sometimes grass in it. Grizzly/brown bear scat will have bells in it and smell like pepper......
I’ve hiked, canoed and camped in grizzly country in Canada and Alaska and always wore bear bells when walking. I also carried, in Alaska.
It’s extremely rare for an eastern black bear to attack a human. Most are quite wild and will avoid you. Making yourself large and noisy while standing your ground is your best bet. This advice is for eastern bears only; I would be much more cautious to avoid all Western bears, especially grizzlies and other brownies.
As a woman, or maybe it’s just me.. I have a super- heightened state of situational awareness. This is not as rare as they would like you to think.. there was a couple who was attacked and as you can imagine what a truly sick psychopath does to cause pain to couples. Moral high ground varies from individual to individual. Mine includes do not put myself or my children in danger. The other problem with this is.. if the criminals think everyone is unarmed and helpless... naturally they are easy prey. Think of the number of crimes we know about which happen in “gun free” zones. Gun free cities... etc. Bear spray shoots a 12 foot stream of high intensity cayenne. Non- lethal bear deterrent.