We went hiking with the family this weekend at Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains. We did a short but fun trail called Abrams Falls. Every time we hike, the hubby is always on bear lookout. He really, really wants to see a bear. I really, really don’t.
So we are driving back after the hike through the Cades Cove scenic loop, a one-way 11 mile drive that kind of feels like a redneck amusement ride at times. At one point, all the cars come to a dead stop. We were trying to get to a rest stop at the middle of the loop, so we were a bit annoyed. Finally, the cars moved and we approached the rest stop. “Got alot of traffic today cause of that bear in the field”, says a man as we walk up.
Ooooh! A bear! So hubby and I run over to look. We are staring out in the field, not seeing anything. Suddenly, I notice – the bear is not in the field, it is walking along the fence not 10 yards from us!! There are people driving by in cars within 10 feet of the bear, and even bigger idiots walking along the fence right next to the bear. Then the bear casually hops the fence, taking no notice of the crowd.
Next someone mentioned it was a mama bear, and the cub was in the tree right in front of us. At that point, we hightailed it to the car.
I must say though, people are idiots. Entire families, with their kids, were walking up toward the bear. This is why people get attacked, and its not the bear’s fault. People are so used to watching nature on TV, they have no fear when they see these things in real life. They think the camera or camera phone they are holding up will protect them when the bear decides to charge. So far, I haven’t found any news articles about a bear attack this weekend. And to think, the Moose slept through the entire thing!