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Friday, December 30, 2016

The Last Bear of 2016!

Our last bear wandered the paths in our forest in early December. Now, he's gone to bed just like all his brethren.

I have footage of his last days of wandering. It's remarkable how slowly he was moving as his metabolism wound slowly down toward hibernation.

Early on 12/3, he started walking on bear trails, albeit very slowly. I first picked up his image at a bear-marking tree. He sniffed it...

... and sniffed it some more.

Before leaving, he showed us the snow matted in his rump. I think he'd been sitting someplace for a while before he walked to this tree.

Just a little later, I found his tracks. On this remote road, he loped along the left edge, I rode my snow bike in the middle, and a rabbit hopped along the right of the road. We all left our tracks.
I captured video footage of this bear at several sites over the next 36 hours. He visited several bear-marking trees and then came to my house! That made me laugh after I'd had fun tracking him the previous day.

We have a bear-proof bird feeder that the local bears all know is truly bear-proof and rarely visit. I don't think that this bear was a local bear so he spent a long time on his hind paws staring up at the food over his head. His slow pre-hibernation behavior was markedly different from the behavior of the only other bear who visited back in May.

I hope that you enjoy the video!


  1. Goodness, he was up late. Lol. Good night bear.

  2. Do the dogs not hear him and bark when he's so close to the house?

    1. In the summer, they always hear the animals that are outside the house. In the winter, they sometimes do but not always.

      I was quite surprised to see that he'd been here at an hour when we were certainly awake but we didn't notice the white flash going!

  3. Goodnight Smikey see you soon
    Lily & Edward

  4. love the picture of the three different tracks!
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  5. He's really moving slow.
    We laughed at the bear proof feeder.
    He sure gave it a try though.


  6. I wish I had that excuse, "oh, I'm just getting ready to hibernate...that's why i'm so slow and sleepy!!"

  7. Great pictures. Those bear paw prints are very impressive. It was nice of him to come visit you so you did not have to keep tracking him.

  8. That's really cool. My daughter and her husband live at the base of the Rockies. No bears have wandered down there but there is a cougar that occassionally wanders the street at dusk.

  9. Now all he needs are some fancy ribbon streamers and he would do a May Pole Dance. Slow and steady, and off to bed we go.Thanks for sharing this wonderful part of your life, I cannot imagine how it must be to have these magnificent animals at your back door. Happy New Year for tomorrow.

  10. Love the video, and oh my gosh,, those bear tracks are huge!


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