National Forest Officials Warn of Bears Emerging as Threat Amid Minnesota Wildfires

by Michael Freeman

Though the rampant wildfires such as the Caldor Fire are enough of a threat on their own, national forest officials warn of another problem in Minnesota. It may be surprising, but bears are emerging as a possible issue in the area.

Officials leading the fight against fires in Minnesota attribute possible bear aggression to food donations and other supplies. In a social media update, Superior National Forest officials issued a statement on the matter.

“Donations have far out-stripped our need and our ability to store what we have received. We have no remaining storage space, and donations now must be stored in the open on pallets, making them an attractant to bears. We have had two instances of bear damage already.”

A common sighting in northern Minnesota, black bears rarely attack, but things change when food is involved. Noting they appreciate the generosity as officials offer other avenues to help fire efforts.

“We understand the genuine concern and undeniable generosity of community members, but we need to be able to return the focus of our logistics staff to supporting the Greenwood Fire and our firefighters.”

Instead, forest officials suggest donating to local fire departments and food banks. Additionally, they say “or thank a firefighter. We love signs along the road and cards.”

Minnesota Forest Service crews have fought the Greenwood Lake fire since it was spotted on August 15. Since then, it has burned over 40 square miles, though its pacing has slowed since then. As of now, the fire destroyed 14 “primary structures,” such as homes and cabins, and 57 outbuildings. Standing at a 14%containment rate, officials project it will be fully contained by September 10.

Netflix Releases Trailer For Bear Grylls’ Survival Movie

Speaking of bears, Bear Grylls recently revealed a trailer for his upcoming Netflix special You Vs. Wild: Out Cold.

The premise is Grylls experiences a plane crash in the mountains. He and his injured pilot need to find help or they’ll die, but the catch is Grylls suffers from amnesia. Adding to the twist is viewers decide how Grylls tackles various obstacles. Rock walls, caves, and even wild creature encounters will be handled by viewer suggestions.

“You Vs Wild the movie!” Grylls posts on Instagram. “We are all so excited to have our second You vs Wild film “Out Cold” airing on 14th September on @netflix and yet again, it is INTERACTIVE!” Bear Grylls said on Instagram. “So get ready to make more critical survival decisions to save the day. Ps please don’t get me killed!”

Jokes aside, Grylls seems to have faith in his viewers, noting in the trailer we’ll find our way back together. “I’ve spent my life showing you how to survive in some of the world’s toughest terrains. Together, you and I are going to find our way back to civilization.”

I can’t say I share Grylls’ faith in his fans, but leaving his fate up to them is a fascinating idea and should make for an entertaining film.