Category: bears

Why Aren’t There Giant Animals Anymore?

Since I moved to Alaska and learned about the state’s Pleistocene history, I’ve bemoaned the absence of the ice-age mega-megafauna. Here in the interior, 20,000 years ago, mammoths, wooly rhinoceros, giant ground sloths, Smilodon, dire wolves, short-faced bears, American lions, and other now sadly absent animals, roamed. While a few ice-age mammals persist (think musk oxen, bison, and moose), most…

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Bears and Plant Communities

Last week I finished up my final guiding trip of the summer season. It was a long one, two weeks, with just two clients, a great (and hilarious) couple from Germany. At some point, I’ll get around to telling some more about this challenging trip, but suffice to say we got hammered by all kinds of weather, trekked over 50…

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Bear Spray, Guns, and Bearanoia

Each summer I lead four or five wilderness trips into Alaska’s Brooks Range, or other wild parts of the state. The trips last anywhere from five days to over two weeks and can involve, backpacking, canoe or raft trips, or packrafting. The clients vary a fair amount in age and experience, but I’ve noticed one commonality: everyone worries about bears.…

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