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Bear Activity Summary

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avatar Bear Activity Summary
May 13, 2014 12:07PM
Bear activity continues to increase throughout the park as the snow melts and spring food sources become available. If you see a bear foraging in an undeveloped area, please maintain a respectful distance (at least 50 yards) and avoid disturbing the bear by moving away if the bear approaches you.

Yosemite Valley has had multiple reports of bears in picnic areas at dusk over the last week. Additionally, bears have been seen in repeatedly in Valley campgrounds. Bears obtained food from campers on four occasions recently including incidents where a bear obtained food that was left out in a plastic bin and food from a food storage locker that was not latched. There were also multiple instances of food being taken by bears at night after being left or forgotten in backpacks that were left out in campsites. The best way to protect your property and help bears remain wild is to store all scented items and food in your food storage locker and ensure that it is latched completely. If you see a bear during your visit, please report it to the Save-A-Bear Hotline at 209-372-0322.

Other Wildlife Sightings: A mountain lions was reported in Poopenaut Valley this past week and multiple coyotes have been seen along roadsides. For more information on mountain lions in Yosemite National Park, please visit the National Park Service website, http://www.nps.gov/yose/naturescience/mountainlion.htm
avatar Re: Bear Activity Summary Bear Head
May 13, 2014 12:42PM
I don't understand the doofuses who forget to properly latch the campsite's food storage locker. They're so easy and straightforward to operate that there should be no excuse for leaving them unlatched. But I'll give those campers the benefit of the doubt and put the blame possibly on their children, since children are notorious for leaving things open and undone.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/13/2014 02:21PM by plawrence.
avatar Re: Bear Activity Summary
May 15, 2014 01:42PM
There is a lot of "that won't happen to me, it's always someone else". mentality out there. Last year we parked at the trail head to hike up to Mt. Hoffman, and parked right in front of a bear warning sign and a storage box, was a jeep, with several boxes and packages of snack cakes and chips, right on the passenger seat. As I get older, I think that the people who are simply paying attention, are becoming more and more outnumbered by those who pay no attention to anything past their noses. Is this part of getting older, or am I not the only one who thinks this?
Re: Bear Activity Summary
May 15, 2014 06:27PM
I agree with you. I think it is a combination of things: it won't happen to me, I am too wrapped up in my own world to see what is going on. I don't care and I am going to do what I want to do, or I am too lazy to go and do what I should do.
avatar Re: Bear Activity Summary
May 15, 2014 07:01PM
Did you notice if the jeep had in-state or out-of-state plates?

Last time I went backpacking in Yellowstone (late 2000s) I had a subsequent trip planned in the Wind Rivers, so I had food (4 nights worth) that I wasn't going to take with me to Heart Lake. I asked the ranger about it when I picked up my permit, because there weren't any trailhead bear boxes, and was told that leaving it in the car was fine. I mentioned the pictures Yosemite rangers have posted of cars having been peeled open by bears, and they said the bears there haven't been doing that. Of course, Yellowstone is a bit odd in other ways...surrounding national forest areas recommend BRFCs while Yellowstone requires hanging.

It's possible people from elsewhere just haven't internalized the local food/bear issues in the Sierra (in addition to the "just won't happen to me" thing).
Re: Bear Activity Summary
May 15, 2014 11:49PM
Campsites in Alaska specifically tell you to make sure and leave food locked up in cars.
Re: Bear Activity Summary
May 16, 2014 07:13AM
That's common practice in other parts of California where bears haven't learned how to do car break ins. At Courtright Reservoir, the latches on bear lockers in the camp are busted so the host tells you to lock stuff in the trunk.
avatar Re: Bear Activity Summary
May 17, 2014 08:30AM
Rangers around the country often roll their eyes when you mention Yosemite bears. They seem to be far more educated when it comes to breaking into cars for food than anywhere else. Possibly a factor of greater human impact over the years? Anyway, once they learned how to do it they passed the skill onto each subsequent generation. Brute force, a 2-mile sense of smell, and ignorant humans keep it going.
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