November 26, 2012 - Two hikers were attacked by a grizzly bear in Southeast British Columbia on Sunday, according to CTV News.
The man and woman had been walking in Cherry Creek, near Kimberley, B.C., when they came across a grizzly bear feeding on a deer it had killed. “The hikers got within 15 feet, unknowingly, and it startled the grizzly bear,” Sgt. Joe Caravetta, of the East Kootenay Conservation Officer Service, said Monday.
The grizzly bear attacked the female hiker first, then turned on the male hiker, only to return to the female and continue its attack. The woman is in her late 50s and the man is 80.
Sustaining bite injuries to the head, arms and legs, the pair were rushed to a local hospital and then flown to a Calgary hospital where they remain in stable condition.
After assessing the evidence, conservation officers classified the incident as defensive in nature. The bear was believed to have two cubs with it. “The bear was just defending its food,” Caravetta said, adding that had the grizzly been acting in a predatory fashion, conservation officers would be pursuing the animals to destroy them.
The man and woman are local to the area where the attack occurred, and regularly hike there.