Saturday, October 5th 2019, 6:18 am - The bear chased the cyclists down a black diamond trail
A group of three cyclists from Metro Vancouver had a frightening encounter with a black bear that chased them down a trail on Mount Seymour in British Columbia.
On September 27 the cyclists were travelling down the black diamond trail when they noticed a black bear standing in the distance. Suddenly, the bear began running towards them and the trio quickly rode down the trail in an attempt to create a safe distance between themselves and the bear.
Brad Martyn captured the scene on his helmet-mounted camera and is heard urging his friends to hurry and cycle quickly.
The trio briefly stopped after travelling one kilometre down the trail to see if the bear was gone only for it to barge out from the trees a few moments later.
The black bear that chased the cyclists. Credit: Brad Martyn
They figured that a new strategy was needed, so they lifted their bikes up to appear larger and began making loud noises. Their efforts worked and the bear turned around and walked away.
Vanessa Isnardy from WildSafeBC says that most black bear encounters in B.C. are not an issue and they aren't interested in engaging with humans.
During this time of year, they are focused on foraging to prepare for the winter and are very active during the day and at night, particularly when fewer people are around.
In the event of a bear encounter, Isnardy says that you should stop, stand your ground, and don't run because this could promote response to chase.
Gathering as a group, picking up their bikes to appear larger, and creating noise was the best thing that the cyclists could do because it signalled that they were not a potential food source encouraged the bear to leave the area, says Isnardy.
Bears feed from April through to November and their food sources change throughout the months. In the spring they typically feed on lush greens, while in the late summer and fall they eat berries and salmon. Isnardy says that it is important to never give bears food because they will become increasingly tempted to venture into communities to find more food.
The North Shore Mountain Bike Association has issued an advisory saying that riders and hikers should stay away from the western flank of Mount Seymour after this encounter.
It is recommended that people carry bear spray to protect themselves when they venture into areas that could be inhabited by bears.
The original video from Brad Martyn can be seen on Youtube, here.