Why Did The Grizzly Cross the Street?

Alaska, US – 2009

We made some mistakes during our backpacking trip to Denali, but in retrospect, it was all worth it.

One of the many reasons people go to Denali National Park is to see the wildlife, especially the grizzly bears. As a matter of fact, shuttle drivers would stop anytime a grizzly is spotted, however small and faraway it is.

Jack and I saw a lot of grizzlies from the shuttle, some of them were mere specks far, far, awaythey might as well could be rocks.

But these guys… they guys were real. And they have a story to tell.

Once Upon A Time There Were A Mother Grizzly With 2 Cubs…

The mother and one of the cubs managed to cross the street, but the second cub (let’s call him ‘Lil’ Bobby’ shall we?) was too busy sniffing rocks and got left behind (ha, that will teach him next time to always keep up).

Our shuttle stopped (of course, hello? The photo ops!) in-between the poor cub and the rest of his family, blocking his view.

Grizzly bear cub Denali
Lil Bobby is scared and confused...

Definitely unhappy and more-than-a-little anxious, Lil Bobby stood up on his hind legs and plaintively called out to his mom and sibling.

Hello? Mom?

Momma bear finally realized that she’s missing somebody…

Hmmm, I seem to be missing lil Bobby...

At this time, our shuttle driver put the shuttle in reverse to allow Lil’ Bobby to see the rest of the clan and to cross the street.

And lil' Bobby runs...
Lil' Bobby! What did I tell you about wandering off on your own?!

The family’s now reunited. The tourists got their gazillion pictures of the bear family.

Everybody’s happy!

Let’s go look for tourists to scare, kids!


So, why did the grizzly bear cross the street?

Because he was looking for his mom. Duh.

*Don’t hate me for my lame jokes*

Did you know?

That the grizzlies in Denali are smaller than their salmon eating cousins found in the rest of Alaska. Apparently a diet consisting of mostly-berries doesn’t do much for packing in the pounds.
More people have been killed during river crossings than by grizzly attacks. How many have been killed by grizzlies you wonder? See point below.
– Every since they started allowing guns in national parks, one grizzly has been killed in Denali. Number of people killed by grizzlies? Zero.

Tell us, folks:

Why did the grizzly bear cross the street?

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26 Replies to “Why Did The Grizzly Cross the Street?”

  1. That is fascinating that no one has been killed by grizzlies in Denali. Very comforting to those that want to hike there. Wonderful pictures.

  2. Denali is pretty neat. We wouldn't mind getting back there either. This time we want to go in the middle of the summer 🙂

  3. Well, the shuttle did back up to allow them to see each other before the mommy bear even noticed that the cub was separated. Don't know what would happen otherwise.

  4. Yup. We lucked out.
    It was in spring so the bears were in the middle of this transition stage where they go from winter fur to summer fur. I think that's why they look almost blond-ish from a distance.

  5. Haaaa! Good one! Especially now that they allow guns in National Parks. It's a good idea for them to try to get away from SP.

  6. Thanks. Don't they look all fluffy and cuddly? More like dogs really. I still wouldn't want one to lick my face though.

  7. We actually saw grizzlies while we were out hiking. Fortunately they were more interested in rocks and stuff than us.

  8. This reminds me that I should write up my story of of being stalked by a Grizzly outside of Anchorage last year. It's a bit unnerving. I wound up having to hike for two miles in a freezing cold stream to get away from him and didn't even get a photo. These pictures are amazing!

  9. I loved the story to go along with the pictures. Good thing there was a whole bus load with you, coming between mom and cub is usually a bad idea. Then again, it sure was an effective way to take photos of these cute berry eaters.

  10. Whoa! You guys really took those shots? He doesn't even look real, ha! I mean that in a good way of course =)

    The worst part about doing Alaska via a cruise is that we didn't even come close to Denali.

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