GL1800Riders Forums banner

1 - 20 of 36 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
334 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Here are a few pics of a Grizzly that was killed by a truck, on, or part of Lolo pass, Mt.
Take note of the size of those HUGE claws !!
My wife and I are planning on riding Lolo Pass this coming summer, with a friend that lives in that area. Needless to say, my wife is now VERY nervous ! :eek:

Harry.







 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,123 Posts
I guess it won't do that again!

That's would just be an average bear here...it fits in the back of the truck. ;)

Here is the story on this...

This Grizzly was hit by a Truck on Lolo Pass. This is the pass between Lolo, Montana and Kooskia, Idaho - Check the HUGE Claws !!

The photographs that accompany this story were taken by Dennis Smrdel October 17th. That morning, at about 3:45, a logger driving a big Dodge diesel en route to Missoula hit something, but he wasn’t sure what, and he kept going. But a few miles later, after realizing his radiator was shot, he thought it best to turn around. He arrived back at a massive male grizzly dead in a ditch. A couple people had already discovered it.

It turned out the grizzly was one well known to some folks who live in the area, particularly the Smrdels, who reside smack in the middle of a major wildlife travel corridor just west of Lincoln. Fish, Wildlife & Parks set up a trap on his property in hopes of catching this bear. It had been up to some mischief, nosing around and breaking into his pump house three times. FWP bear specialist Jamie Jonkel said it had mastered “the art of breaking and entering” and “walking the gravy train.”

The bear, a healthy 12-year-old, was killed just a quarter-mile from the Smrdel’s, about at the Powell County sign on 200, and Dennis’s hunch is that the bear was making another trip back to his property.

“I’d have much rather seen him get caught (in the trap) and placed somewhere else,” Dennis said, “than dead on the highway.”

“It was a huge animal, a beautiful animal.”

The bear was originally captured in 1996 along the Rocky Mountain Front as part of a research study, as evidenced by its lip tattoo, and radio-collared until 1998 when the bear “went off the air,” Jonkel said. Hair samples showed that the bear made its way into the Blackfoot region by 2004, and Jonkel suspects—and hopes—it’s the same grizzly responsible for other area outbuilding break-ins last fall.

Jonkel said if a grizzly had to die he’s glad it was one that probably would have been put down anyway because of its habituation to human property. And he thinks the grizzly has helped residents in and around this wildlife corridor better understand their actions and how they affect bears. “It’s a good learning process for everyone,” Jonkel said. “It’s opened up their eyes as to how unique their property is.”

There’s been a lot of grizzly activity in the Lincoln area this year: on the Smrdel property alone, a trail camera has taken pictures of four different individuals, plus a female grizzly that was inadvertently caught in the trap, not on camera, Jonkel said. He said a bear’s range changes slightly each year depending on factors that affect its food supply, like drought.

And all too often humans affect that food supply, too. In Lincoln Canyon there are a handful of people with “big elk and deer feeding programs” that attract bears, Jonkel said. Plus there are the less-deliberate attractants, like bird feeders, garbage and pet food. In the midst of this heightened bear activity, residents are being more mindful; the Smrdels, for instance, have removed their salt lick, which can “create false game pockets,” Jonkel said.

The fewer unnatural attractants, “the better off it is for the wildlife in that area,” Jonkel said.

So what happens to the grizzly? Dennis hopes that the people of Lincoln can keep the bear at the Lincoln Ranger Station for educational purposes—so kids can learn, for example, “What to do and what not to do when you encounter a bear.”

Jonkel said there are multiple people on the waiting list for a grizzly hide, and they don’t always go where they deserve to, but, he said, “I have a feeling it will end up in the Lincoln Community based on the education that has already occurred there.”

“You can see pictures,” Dennis said, “but until you see one in person you don’t have a clue.”

Hmmm...controversy...Go Figure!

mtswiftfox (2 months ago)
This bear was hit near Lincoln, MT and not at Lolo Pass. To FWP's knowledge, there haven't been grizzly bears near Lolo Pass for some time.

erok2020 (2 months ago)
Thanks for the correction... I thought I read in a statement that it was hit on Lolo - and that the University (UM) was fighting for the bear. Apparently UM has a claim of ownership. Hmmm. I will verify... thanks again for comment!


- Heck...I even found a post dated Oct 4th, 2008 about this. Funny thing is that the bear was claimed to have been hit on October 17th. I can't seem to find anything to verify the year though.

- OK...I found out it
supposedly was in 2007 in Licoln, MT not Lolo Pass. Now, the other controversy is that it was either hit by a Semi, a Dodge pickup and one story said found on the side of the road dead.

You just gotta love this stuff! Nothing at Snopes.com...Anyway, I am done!
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
21,429 Posts
Holy Cow! That thing is huge!

We spent the night at a campground on Lolo year before last. We were always a bit disappointed we never got to see a Grizzly when we go north, but now I think I'm glad we haven't. We got charged by a black bear on the side of the road on hwy 64 going across the mountains west of Taos one year, but he wasn't anywhere near the size of that monster.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
819 Posts
We were always a bit disappointed we never got to see a Grizzly when we go north, but now I think I'm glad we haven't.
When I went to Glacier I stayed here:

http://www.glacierparkinc.com/Lodging/PropertyDetails.asp?id=3&prop=M

Every night at dusk there were grizzlies on the hillside a mile (maybe 2) away. A dot to the naked eye, a grizzly through binoculars, and very neat through a small telescope. Many Glacier Hotel is tucked away off the beaten path, which may explain it.
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
21,429 Posts
When I went to Glacier I stayed here:

http://www.glacierparkinc.com/Lodging/PropertyDetails.asp?id=3&prop=M

Every night at dusk there were grizzlies on the hillside a mile (maybe 2) away. A dot to the naked eye, a grizzly through binoculars, and very neat through a small telescope. Many Glacier Hotel is tucked away off the beaten path, which may explain it.
Yea, we went and had lunch at that hotel one day. Nice place. Though I am pretty sure it was someone who worked at one of the lodge restaurants that stole my credit card number while I was there. Many of the kids working in the restaurant were from Russia, and that is the day my credit card number got stolen. Just a word to the wise, be careful who you give your credit cards to at the National Park Lodges. Most of the summer time employees are young kids from all over the world, and not all of them are honest.
 
H

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
I agree, highway 12 is beautiful. I put a semi in the river there many years ago, curve snuck up on me. I got out fine, but scared the heck out of me. My son was supposed to be along on that trip, but plans changed at the last minute. I think if he would've been in the passenger seat, he probably would've been crushed. Thank you God.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,131 Posts
Here's a pic of two moose standing by the sid eof the road when we went over Lolo Pass last year. Lots of wildlife to watch out for. Also a pic of the infamous sign along the highway.:twisted:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
569 Posts
Your wife shouldn't worry, Bears don't ride Goldwings:lol::lol::lol:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,748 Posts
. . . . We were always a bit disappointed we never got to see a Grizzly when we go north, but now I think I'm glad we haven't. . . . . . .
I always smile when I read about people being disappointed when they did not see a bear (or a moose) as they traveled north, especially riders.

There are only two types of riders - those who have not seen a bear (or moose) on the highway and those wish that they were part of that first group. (That'd be me.)

The way I see it is almost every one who rides the mountains in the western US, more so British Columbia, and pretty well for sure in the Yukon & Alaska will have a "bear (or moose) on the highway" encounter.

These encounters make great stories but some are not fun at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
354 Posts
Yeah, at night you just slow down a little and hope none of the creations are on the road. Bad thing is their eyes don't lite up like the deer in the lower 48 so you don't get any advanced warning. :roll:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,496 Posts
Did Lolo pass this last September.... and Beartooth pass... great riding... seriously considering moving to Missoula just to be near all these great places to ride...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,748 Posts
... seriously considering moving to Missoula just to be near all these great places to ride...
Yes, there's a lot of great scenery in the north-west part of the US. But if you are really thinking of relocating to Missoula I'd suggest that you take a ride up hwy 200 to Sandpoint ID first. There are several really interesting little towns that look like great places to live.

PS. Where is the 'Redneck Rivieria'
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,123 Posts
A funny story for you...

My wife and I were out camping early spring last year and came upon a large Black Bear. We were driving down the mountain in our 1-ton Duramax at the time so we were safe. Anyway, I had the driver-side window down and as the bear started to approach despite the diesel rattling; I crept the window up as it moved closer. All the while our Yorkie was getting very agitated and growling as deeply under her breathe as any 5-lb dog could. By this time the bear was within 3-4 feet of the door, all of a sudden, our Yorkie exploded and thank goodness I had the window up otherwise I think she would have been on the bear. Except for a boar running from a sow with cubs, I do not think I have ever seen a bear move so fast as that one did. It was hilarious!

That bear is a big but not when you lay it next to some of the 1000+ lbs Kodiak Brown Bears I have seen in the wild. I made a plaster cast of a Kodiak Brown Bear when I lived on Kodiak Island. It measures nearly 10" across the front paw pad alone. The bear was quesstimated to be about 1100 pounds. I located the prints about 100 or so yards from our house. That fall, someone killed what we believed to be that same bear and I think it made Boone and Crockett top-ten.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,690 Posts
i like to see bears and we saw plenty on our 2007 Alaska trip

but they do make me worry when we are camping

its a little reassuring if ther are a few dogs in the campground because bears usually will avoid barking dogs
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,972 Posts
I think the problem would be solved if you rode a motorcycle on the Lolo and did not drive a Dodge truck! We rode it in 2006 and it was fantastic. The Clearwater River was a great side view while negotiating the beautiful road! :cool:

 
1 - 20 of 36 Posts
Top