I once edited a hunting movie. Need I mention that the budget was an issue? Poor filming of hunters trying to kill their prey, which they didn’t even plan to eat. With that said, there was an awkward ending to one of the adventures caught on film, as they hunted a grizzly somewhere in the Yukon. After tracking down and killing the beast, they realized the sun was setting and they had no time to carry “their trophy” back to the truck considering its weight. They decided to return on scene the following morning only to discover that another, much bigger grizzly, had moved the carcass half a mile away from where they had left it, and had eaten its heart. That footage was the only contact I had ever had of a grizzly before I started this road trip.
In Alaska, we had the opportunity to camp on a deserted island for five days, where we planned to surf an outer reef. A few days prior to our departure to the island, we heard that there had been two grizzly attacks in the town where we were staying. Taking into consideration the high concentration of grizzly in Alaska, we armed ourselves with some bear spray…just in case. We searched the internet and read up on ways to avoid grizzlies and how to protect ourselves if we ended up at their mercy. The advice we compiled was to be very noisy, and in case of an attack to "straight-in-the-face-push-kick" the beast… yeah right! So armed with this new knowledge and our secret weapon, we were good to go.
After the boat left shore, leaving us on the deserted island, we now had to face a new reality. Picture this; two guys each carrying 70 pounds of gear plus their surfboards, walking on lava rock, singing aloud and yelling to scare away any grizzlies… I bet the grizzlies had quite a laugh! In search for a good place to set up camp, we realized that our secret weapon, our super bear spray, was still sealed in its packaging… practical isn’t it…?
During the entire five days, only one grizzly showed up. Lucky you say? I guess we did a good job setting up. A nice fire, tent, and food set up in a triangle. Let’s not forget sinking our food, and keeping a look out for wild life when cooking. I was lucky enough to catch our new friend on film. Even though the 700 pound grizzly noticed our presence, there was a mutual "respect" between us. Wild animals are indeed dangerous, but stupid humans are even worst.
The great thing is, once we got back on mainland, we got a refund for our still sealed up bear spray…