Grizzly attack leaves one dead and two injured


In what officials are describing as perhaps the worst bear attack in Montana history, one person is left dead and 2 more, including a woman from Ontario, seriously injured. 

The horrific attack occurred Tuesday at the Soda Butte Campground, near Yellowstone and is believed to be the work of a mother Grizzly bear with cubs. 

Deb Freele of London awoke to a feel of a bear chewing on her arm. When she screamed, the bear clamped down harder so she told herself to go limp and play dead. 

That strategy saved her life, as the bear let go and moved on. 

Another man, whose identity has not yet been released, was not so lucky and he died of his injuries.

A third person was also injured in the same campground. 

Freele’s husband was sleeping in a nearby tent and had not realized what happened until it was over.

Officials today are saying they have captured the bear responsible for all three attacks.


22 thoughts on “Grizzly attack leaves one dead and two injured”

    1. Great video Trapper! Thanks, that was awesome..and a PRIME example of a mother bear protecting her cubs.

      Seriously though, you’re not going try to convince me the Montana attacks were the act of a mother protecting her cubs?


    1. CC, Yes mother bears are notoriously protective that’s a given…but is this recent fatal attack in Montana an example of a mother protecting her cubs?

      This mother bear systematically attacked 3 different campers in the same camp ground while they slept, killing one of them.

      Is this still considered protecting her cubs? Perhaps she felt threatened or feared for her young? If so, why didn’t she didn’t she just leave the area, instead of ripping into three separate tents; one after another!

      If searching for food is considered part of the ‘protecting your cubs’ clause, because obviously that’s what she was doing, then I guess she was looking out for the cub’s best interest.

      Otherwise this situation is better described as a predatory attack…albeit an extremely rare one, as I’ve never heard of a sow act in the way this one did..unless she was sick.

      Very few people in history have been mauled to death by female bears…Im going to look it up actually.


      1. Here’s a clip from the latest report on the bear attack, indicating that the cubs were actively involved in the fatal attack (further evidence of a predatory attack)

        “All the victims did the right thing, and there was no telling why the bear picked out those three tents, Fish, Wildlife and Parks Warden Capt. Sam Sheppard said.

        “She basically targeted the three people and went after them,” he said.

        Evidence at the campground suggested the three cubs were present and likely participated at least in the fatal attack.”


  1. LOL, no I was suggesting that the Montana attacks are the result of a mamma bear protecting her cubs. I just thought it was a neat video and wanted to share it so plugged it in here.

    As for the Bear attack. I’ve said my piece in the other bear article (below). It’s not the bear’s fault.

    It’s too bad though that we couldn’t adopt this death sentence solution toward all the humans out there that are predatory in nature…..

    1. Trapper, I know you hadn’t said it yet..I was just waiting for you..hehe

      By the way, I’m not condoning the destruction of all bears…its not about that at all..I just think sometimes we need to call a spade a spade.

      Sure, bears do attack as a reactionary thing, from fear or protection of their young..but other times they attack people with the intention of killing and eating them.

      I just think it’s just good to be aware of what can happen…


      1. From what I could uncover in the bear attack statistics, there have been a small number of fatal attacks in history caused by female bears with every one, though, it involved a Brown or Grizzly bear.

        I was unable to find any record in NA of a death caused be a female Black bear with cubs.


  2. Above post should read……I wasn’t suggesting that the Montana attacks are the result of mamma bear protecting her cubs…..

  3. some info i found from some peer reviewd studies

    Simply stated, human incursionsinto or encroachment upon wildlife habitat forrecreational or residential purposes carry withthem certain risks. Human fatalities caused by large carnivores such as black bears and cougars are exceedingly rare, averaging <1 death per year (Beier 1990, Floyd 1999, Hererro 2002). Deaths due to a spate of hazards associated withoutdoor activities (e.g., bee stings, spider bites, dog bites, and lightning strikes) occur with fargreater frequencies. Yet, when wildlife att acks do occur, they become high profi le and often attract an inordinate degree of media att ention, possibly resulting in an amplifi cation of risk perception by the public (Gore
    et al. 2005). This is due, in part, to a culturally ingrained fear and loathing of large carnivores in western society Kellert et al. 1996).

    Ministry of Natural Resources (OMNR) commissioned the Nuisance Bear Review Committee (NBRC) during 2003 to examine black bear–human interactions throughout Ontario. To some residents, the increasing human–bear alteractions have resulted directly from the MSBBH. Yet, while the NBRC did not find “any connection between the ancellation of the spring bear hunt and recent increases in nuisance [bear] activity,” it did recommend that “a limited spring black bear hunt be re-instated for socioeconomic reasons, but under strict conditions” (Poulin et al. 2003). This suggestion was never acted upon, and the MSBBH continues today. However, in 2004 OMNR did follow the NBRC’s recommendation and implemented the Bear Wise program

  4. So just for curiosity and knowledge.

    When a mama cub is with babies most time the male aint around? does she raise the cubs all by herself? Does the male just find a female get her pregnant and doesn’t stick around?

  5. the male bear only inpregnates the female . from my understanding a boar (male bear ) will kill cubs to bring the female into heat again

  6. While a boar will gladly make a meal of any cubs he can kill it has nothing to do with getting the female into heat. Unlike African Lions female black bears do not go into heat after loosing cubs. The biology of black bears requires the females to come into heat at a particular time of year (late spring, early summer) to have their cubs in February/March while denning.

    A popular misconceprtion pushed by the animal rights people to furthur their aggenda to stop the spring bear hunt is that hunting was the main cause of orphaned cubs and thus the death of these cubs. In truth the number one cause of cub mortality is male bears. As the spring bear hunt focussed on male bears the lack of a spring bear hunt increases the number of boars in the spring thus increasing the mortality of cubs. Once again proving the lack of education on the part of the anti hunting faction. Animal welfare is their smoke screen to impose their agenda on others.

    1. Thanks Rick for the bear are a wealth of information! Its just one more argument for the spring hunt..I can’t believe how frikin wrong and misguided these people were with their bear cub theories back when they lobbied to cancel the spring hunt!

      When do you leave for Manitoba again??


  7. This was all very good information. Thanks for the research and posting. In my opinion, bears will be bears. Be prepared for all circumstances, but don’t let it stop you from enjoying nature. I always liked my uncle’s reasoning for not sleeping in tents, although I sleep in one every time I’m out there: “Tents are like sausages in a ziplock bag for bears!” lol

  8. There was just a report on TV that a nature photographer was baiting the bears at the campground in Montana where the attack occurred. It appears that this is another case of human irresponsibility which resulted in the death of someone. The bear was later killed by the authorities and its cubs will spend the rest of their lives in a zoo.

  9. QUOTE: “fishr says:
    August 5, 2010 at 6:55 pm
    There was just a report on TV that a nature photographer was baiting the bears at the campground in Montana where the attack occurred. It appears that this is another case of human irresponsibility which resulted in the death of someone. The bear was later killed by the authorities and its cubs will spend the rest of their lives in a zoo.” END QUOTE

    I told you it wasn’t the bear’s fault.

  10. Good for you Rick…we’ll all be living vicariously through you on your trip.

    Have you ever thought of lowering your standards a bit out there..and consider taking a 110-120 class buck, instead of holding out for that 150+

    I guess it’s tough, though, when you see all the monsters?


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