Bear Scare Near Ketchum, Idaho
Camping is great if you can bear it. Idaho Fish & Game and the Forest Service have decided jointly to close a camping area in the Sawtooth National Forest.
A woman woke at a campsite and found a bear had one of her feet in its mouth.
A woman woke at a campsite and found a bear had one of her feet in its mouth. Murdoch and Caribou Campgrounds are closed in the area known as North Fork Road. A bear had already been spotted by campers in the area over a period of several days.
The bear ran away when the woman yelled. She wasn’t hurt. The full text of the Fish and Game statement follows:
Bear visiting campsite closes campground near Ketchum
KETCHUM – The Sawtooth National Forest has closed all camping along Forest Road 146 and 452, otherwise referred to as the North Fork Road. The closure includes Murdock and Caribou campgrounds. Backpacking from associated trailheads and day use activities are still allowed, but please use caution and be “bear aware”.
The Forest Service, in coordination with Idaho Fish and Game, decided to close the area to camping after a black bear began frequenting the area.
The bear first awoke campers at 12:30 am July 12 and was chased off. The next evening, July 13, one of the campers was awakened after feeling pressure on her right foot from the bear's mouth. She yelled and the bear ran off.
“She wasn’t injured,” said Fish and Game Conservation Officer Alex Head. “The sleeping bag was not damaged, but it did leave some saliva on the sleeping bag.”
Fish and Game officers set a culvert trap on July 14 and another one this morning. Overnight camping in the area will likely remain closed until the bear is captured.
All though food was not the cause of this bear coming into camp, officials remind campers to store food in vehicles or away from sleeping area in hard sided containers to avoid attracting wildlife into their camps.