When you live in the mountains, some of the aphorisms have to change.
The blooming season doesn't really start around here until June, but the grizzlies sure are out in force. There have been up to six grizzlies sighted in the same area as where the runner was killed last year just a kilometer or so down the trail from my back door. I love my evening trail walks, but I guess I'm going to have to be back on the sidewalks for a little while until they manage to find some food and start moving higher up the sides of the mountains. I'm even reconsidering some of my mountain biking routes.
I sure hope we don't have problems with them on the trails around the town site this year, because almost inevitably, we end up with a human/bear incident, and in virtually every one of those cases, the bear loses. Even when the human survives, it's usually a death sentence for the bear.
The other problem is that if there are that many bears in that small an area, they're going to have trouble with too small a home range, and they could very well end up traveling down the mountainside toward the highway and being killed there, or on the train tracks. That's what happened to Bear 66 who kept us all on our toes around the Banff town site last summer - including biting an illegal camper on the ass near where I work. Bear 66 was killed by a train leaving her three cubs orphaned. Two of the cubs were then hit by cars on the highway only 3 weeks later. The lone survivor was taken to the Calgary Zoo, but I don't imagine it's having much of a life either. I really hate to see that happen, and it occurs far too often out here. The local wardens call the stretch of the TransCanada Highway that runs through Banff National Park the Meat Grinder.
I was fortunate enough at the end of last week to see a gorgeous grizzly sow with two perfect little cubs-of-the-year playing around her as she snacked on dandelions. That's the kind of thing I get to see on my drive to and from work many days. It sure makes the commute easy to take! I'm pretty sure this majestic lady was the one I saw.