On the trail of a grizzly killing

Kids today pay more attention to Slate than most newspapers, and stories like Jessica Grose's A Death in Yellowstone make it clear why. 


Here's one quote, but you really can't sum it up in a 'graph or two. 

Peacock doesn’t believe there’s such a thing as natural or unnatural behavior when it comes to grizzlies, at least not as the bear managers define it. "It is within the range of the ‘natural behavior’ of any grizzly to kill a human during his or her average life span," Peacock wrote in his memoir of his first 20 years spent photographing and living in the Western Wilderness, The Grizzly Years. "The combination of a grizzly’s disposition on a particular day and the nature of its confrontation with any particular human is also probably unique. It would probably never happen again."

But despite thinking all grizzly behavior is "natural," he believes that some grizzly behaviors are predictable, and he gives me the standard set of instructions for what to do should we encounter any in the Pelican Valley. He tells me, "Just stay behind me and don’t do a thing. Don’t move a muscle. Just stay in a little knot and don’t do anything any of those other people did. Don’t scream. Don’t run."

It's too good a yarn, even if it's not a campfire story. 

Published by Kit Stolz

I'm a freelance reporter and writer based in Ventura County.

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