JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — With the onset of spring, bear sightings are becoming more prevalent as visitors venture to parks and trails. In just the past week, bear activity has been reported at Apex, Deer Creek, Windy Saddle, South Valley, and Pine Valley Ranch, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
There were no reports of negative interactions but being bear aware can make a difference. As the weather warms up, the animals emerge from hibernation and can be dangerous.
A 39-year-old woman was killed in a bear attack near Durango last week while taking her dogs for a walk. CPW officers found signs of consumption on the body and an abundance of bear scat and hair at the scene. A female black bear and her two cubs were found near the area and were euthanized. Human remains were found in two of the three bears .
Prior to last week’s incident, CPW said that there have only been three documented deadly bear attacks in Colorado.
Not all bear attacks happen in the wild. A 54-year-old man survived an attack by a bear inside a home in Aspen last summer. He said the bear knew how to open doors and just let itself in. At some point, the bear swiped the man with his paw leaving severe cuts to his face.
According to CPW, bear attacks are quite rare but they urge visitors to be bear aware. Being bear aware means securing your trash bins, compost containers, and livestock. Be mindful of your surroundings and leash your pets. If you see a black bear, stay calm. Do not run, back away slowly, and if attacked, fight back.