Bear Safety

Wildlife scientists note that there is an average of one bear attack in the park each year. In 2011, in separate incidents, two visitors were killed by bears inside the park. Your safety cannot be guaranteed.

Safe traveling in bear country begins before you hit the trail:

  • When you arrive at the park, check with the nearest backcountry office or visitor center for recent bear activity before hiking.
  • Know what areas are closed for bear management.
  • Before you set out, be sure to learn what to do if you unexpectedly encounter a bear.
  • When hiking be alert for bears, watch for fresh tracks, or scat.
  • Report all bear encounters and wildlife incidents to a park ranger immediately.
  • Please watch our videos and read the information below to help you travel safely in bear country.
A grizzly bear stands on it's hind legs to look over the sage brush.

Reducing Your Risk of a Bear Encounter

See a bear before you surprise it. Read More

A grizzly bear walks across some snow in a melting meadow.

Reacting to a Bear Encounter

How you react to a bear encounter depends on the situation. Read More

A National Park Service employee standing in an unoccupied field sends a cloud of spray out from his bear spray.

Bear Spray

Learn how to use, when not to use, what type to choose, and where to store. Read More

A large grizzly bear stands protectively over a carcass.

Understanding the Bear's Mindset

Base your reaction to an encounter with a bear on the bear's behavior and the cause. Read More

Did You Know?