WATCH: Grizzly Bear Gets Alarmingly Close to Group of Bicyclists, ‘Everyone Was Shaking’

by Amy Myers
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(Photo By: Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

While taking a break along Glacier National Park’s scenic Going-to-the-Sun Road, a group of bicyclists had a frighteningly close encounter with a grizzly bear.

This road is a popular area in the national park to see wandering wildlife, but no one expects a grizzly bear to appear just a few feet away.

In a video that one of the bicyclists captured, you can see the group has tucked themselves into a spot in the snow just off of the road. Meanwhile, the bear wanders by on the other side.

Maureen Gerber, her husband and the other bicyclists followed bear safety guidelines and immediately alerted the bear of their presence. Grizzlies, in particular, can become aggressive if you startle them. So, as soon as you see signs of them, you should begin calling out and yelling to ward them away.

That’s exactly what the group did, and as a result, the bear continued on its path down the road, never so much as giving them more than a glance. Likely, the animal was already well familiar with humans visiting its habitat in the national park and didn’t have reason to give a warning or approach the group.

Glacier National Park Bicyclists Joined Groups, Brandished Bear Spray as Grizzly Passed

According to Cowboy State Daily, Gerber and three other bicyclists were 10 miles into their ride when they spotted the grizzly bear. Another group of riders, too, saw the animal, so they decided to put down their bikes and cluster close together. More than a dozen of people crowded on the side of the road, a few of which were children. In the video, you can see a couple of bikes placed between the group and the road, including a child-sized set of wheels.

They then began a chorus of “No bears” as the grizzly leisurely walked on by.

“We put our bikes down and got behind them while others stood up with their bear spray and we all made noise,” Gerber recalled. “We were just sitting there. Everyone was shaking. It was pretty scary.”

Gerber and her husband, who filmed the incident, are from New Jersey and often don’t run into big wildlife besides the few urban deer. However, according to the bicyclist, even more surprised than the New Jersey couple were the folks from Montana, who were much more familiar with animals that kept their distance.

“These guys [Montana residents] have lived out here for 60 years and they tell me they’ve never come that close [to a grizzly],” says Gerber, who is from New Jersey. “I guess because I’m originally from the East Coast, I thought this happened all the time. I guess it was a big deal.”

Outsider.com