Hiker Forced To Leave Injured Wife in Grizzly Country To Seek Help

by Lauren Boisvert

A hiking husband and wife found themselves in a nightmare situation on July 18 when the wife broke her leg while on the trail. The couple was hiking on their anniversary in Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex located in the Helmville, Montana area. They had no way to communicate with anyone and were 7 miles from the trailhead. To top it all off, rescuers found they were surrounded by grizzly bear scat.

“Her husband had to leave her there to hike out 7 miles for help as she broke both bones in her leg above the ankle and couldn’t walk,” said Two Bear Air rescuers in a statement after the incident. The scat indicated that bears liked that area. The woman’s husband had to make the decision to leave her alone in grizzly bear country in order to get help.

Rescuers from Two Bear Air found the woman and hiked with her on their backs out of the wilderness to the helicopter. They had to land a mile and a half away from her location and hike in to get her, due to high winds.

“When deep in the backcountry, bring a satellite communication device to save valuable time and enable the group to stay together,” the rescuers said in their statement on Facebook. According to helicopter pilot Rob Cherot, per the Missoulian, he left Glacier Park International Airport at 7:00 pm and arrived at the site around 8:24 pm. The hiker’s wife was in grizzly bear country for nearly an hour and a half before rescuers were able to reach her. Luckily, no hikers nor rescuers came into contact with any bears during the incident.

Hiker Forced to Leave Wife in Bear Country; Plus, Grizzly Gets Too Close to Videographer in Search of Fish

In other grizzly news, a wildlife videographer had a bear come a little too close for comfort while he was filming. Back in March, videographer Casey Cooper posted a video on TikTok of two grizzly bears sniffing around the edge of a lake in search of food. A moment later, one of the bears starts lumbering towards Cooper. The camera moves back and forth like Cooper is looking for an exit.

One reason the bear may have come so close to Cooper is there was a big dead red snapper right in front of where he set up shop. A commenter even brought this up, writing, “Pro-tip. Don’t set up next to a dead salmon [sic].”

The bear paws at the snapper for a moment, then lifts his head and sniffs at the camera, which seems to be a GoPro possibly attached to Cooper’s head. Cooper didn’t make any big, sudden movements or sounds and stayed perfectly still. The bear paid him no more mind, and just walked away. While not all grizzly encounters are so benign, this is one that ended well.