Chat Rooms (0 Chatting)  |  Search  |   Login/Join
* For the benefit of the community, commercial posting is not allowed.
Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Listening Point - General Discussion
      Problem bear by Back Bay (Basswood)     
 Forum Sponsor

Author

Text

VoyageurNorth
distinguished member(2612)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/28/2020 02:28AM
This message has had HTML content edited out of it.
We heard of a very aggressive bear on the portage area near Back Bay.

Customer came in a day late because they couldn't go through the portage, the Forest Service (& maybe the DNR) closed it until they can "manage" the bear.

They told us that a young boy was on one side of the portage when the bear came very close to him. The boy went (or was) standing in the lake and tried to move down the shore and the bear also moved, sort of blocking his exit.

A canoe came by and picked up the boy. I don't know if it was part of his group, or a person doing a good deed.

All that seems quite clear is that this bear is way too aggressive and is not afraid of people at all and needs to be removed.
 
      Print Top Bottom Previous Next
airmorse
distinguished member(2722)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/28/2020 06:47AM
What the heck is up with all the Bear issues this year.
 
tumblehome
distinguished member(1729)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/28/2020 06:57AM
Problem bears are very common this time of year.

I know I'm in the minority but I think it's the people that need to get removed. We are in their house. Not visa versa.
Tom
 
airmorse
distinguished member(2722)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/28/2020 08:09AM
Maybe it's a case of problem bears being reported is why it seems that there are more bears issues.
 
Jaywalker
distinguished member(2359)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/28/2020 09:15AM
Getting hungry waiting for the blueberries to come in maybe. Or with the dry weather maybe whatever other plants they like to nibble just weren’t abundant this year?
 
schweady
distinguished member(6996)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
06/28/2020 09:24AM
I have always been told that, no matter the weather conditions, bears will adapt to eat whatever natural items are available. In dry years, when many folks blame increased campsite raids/human interactions on the lack of berries, etc, bears will actually switch over to opening logs and eating ants and other bugs, etc.

This year, many have noted the large increase in folks snapping up permits in an effort to get away and distance in the woods. Perhaps a lot of the increased reporting can be attributed to increased visitors. Perhaps it's partly due to inexperienced/careless campers out there in higher percentages right now.

And it pains me to see this happening on Agnes. Again.

Agnes, Alpine, Back Bay on Basswood... could the bears be going through the lakes in alphabetical order?? :-)
 
06/28/2020 10:14AM
Red Rock is on that list too, isn't it? I thought I read something about that lake recently as well...
 
Great Melinko
distinguished member (191)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/28/2020 03:38PM
Not sure where the problem is...
Or maby some bears didnt get the memo they need to run away when encountering at human. ( yes I know most bears will run away )
The way I see it, Im in their back yard not mine.
Even habituated bears are just looking for a snack. ( again in their backyard)
Rogue and sick bears are something different that warrant attention.
I've have several encounters with bears, most ran away a couple didnt...I never consided them a problem.
Just my 2 cents.

 
missmolly
distinguished member(6958)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
06/28/2020 04:37PM
I like your screen name, Dan. What does it mean?
 
BWPaddler
distinguished member(9225)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
06/28/2020 05:19PM
Interesting twist about bear potentially targeting a child. I've brought many a kid into the BWCA and not always right with me on a portage... something to consider. Glad another paddler was able to scoop him up!
 
acanoer
member (42)member
 
06/29/2020 12:19PM
BWPaddler: "Interesting twist about bear potentially targeting a child. I've brought many a kid into the BWCA and not always right with me on a portage... something to consider. Glad another paddler was able to scoop him up!"

Predatory bears commonly target smaller humans
 
JimmyJustice
distinguished member(608)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/29/2020 02:00PM
missmolly: "I like your screen name, Dan. What does it mean?"

I will surmise that Mr. D.B. Cooper is into I.C.P. and jumping out of planes with a suitcase full of cash.
 
mschi772
distinguished member (460)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/29/2020 02:05PM
I would caution everyone against speculating that there is an abnormal amount of problem bear activity this year and/or speculating about why we seem to be hearing more about it this year. It is a very good thing that people are regularly communicating with each other about their bear activity concerns, and it is especially great that they are sharing this information with the right people so often (outfitters, USFS). I know it is tempting to speculate, but just be happy and pump your fist in celebration at all the wonderful information sharing that is occurring. Leave it to the outfitters, USFS, and ecologists who have way more information than any of us have to speculate about what trends may or may not be real.
 
Duckman
distinguished member (413)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/29/2020 03:13PM
mschi772: "I would caution everyone against speculating that there is an abnormal amount of problem bear activity this year and/or speculating about why we seem to be hearing more about it this year. It is a very good thing that people are regularly communicating with each other about their bear activity concerns, and it is especially great that they are sharing this information with the right people so often (outfitters, USFS). I know it is tempting to speculate, but just be happy and pump your fist in celebration at all the wonderful information sharing that is occurring. Leave it to the outfitters, USFS, and ecologists who have way more information than any of us have to speculate about what trends may or may not be real."

A lot of new people in the woods and on the lakes. I wonder if there are more reports about "problem" bears because it is so new/shocking to newcomers. I'd imagine a lot of reports might be like this for the same encounter:

BWCA veteran/board regular: "We saw a bear, here's what happened and what we did. Pretty cool."

New person on first trip: "We were almost killed by a blood-thirsty monster bear."
 
VoyageurNorth
distinguished member(2612)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/29/2020 06:20PM
I don't think there are more reports, just reports. The berries are just coming out in some abundance & when blueberries come out, that will help too.

We just try to let people know when a bear has been a bit pesky. If we can warn paddlers, maybe they don't stay in an area and the bear may learn it isn't such easy "pickings" after all. I'd rather have a bear learn than get shot as a nuisance bear.

This aggressive bear, especially one that decided to keep the kid from getting out of the water, is an especially dangerous situation for people. Maybe keeping the portage closed will do it but not likely if the Forest Service considers it aggressive enough to close the trail.



 
mackjakey
 
07/07/2020 12:55PM
I went to Basswood in early June, camped west of Washington island. We had bear issues morning noon and night. It was a very large mom and a second or third year cub. They keep raiding the campsite next to us which had 9 guys in it. They did everything possible and they keep coming, yelling screaming throwing rocks even warning shots would not stop them. They just kept coming. Finally after leaving talked to the woman at prairie portage and she said there were multiple groups on basswood raiding camps with no regard to humans. Talked to the ranger and the DNR at Tower hoping someone would go out and take care of this issue.
 
Atom
member (9)member
 
07/07/2020 04:28PM
VoyageurNorth: "We heard of a very aggressive bear on the portage area near Back Bay.

mackjakey: "I went to Basswood in early June, camped west of Washington island. "

Looks like this is in the same location?

 
Atom
member (9)member
 
07/09/2020 10:17AM
mackjakey: "They did everything possible and they keep coming, yelling screaming throwing rocks even warning shots would not stop them. They just kept coming. "

mackjakey when you say warning shots, you mean with a gun? And the bears had no reaction?
 
acanoer
member (42)member
 
07/09/2020 11:13AM
Atom: "mackjakey: "They did everything possible and they keep coming, yelling screaming throwing rocks even warning shots would not stop them. They just kept coming. "


mackjakey when you say warning shots, you mean with a gun? And the bears had no reaction? "




Not uncommon for some bears to have no reactions to gun shots.

 
Atom
member (9)member
 
07/10/2020 12:56PM
VoyageurNorth: "We heard of a very aggressive bear on the portage area near Back Bay.

Customer came in a day late because they couldn't go through the portage, the Forest Service (& maybe the DNR) closed it until they can "manage" the bear.



I spoke with the Forest Service and they said there currently aren't any closed portages in the BWCAW right now.
 
VoyageurNorth
distinguished member(2612)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/10/2020 07:00PM
Then maybe the bear was dealt with. I had asked the Ely FS to let me know, but your notice is the first I heard of the bear problem not being there any more.
 
Atom
member (9)member
 
07/10/2020 07:05PM
Hmm, I'm not sure about that. Unless they dealt with the bear but didn't mention it to me which is possible. Here is what they said in regards to the Back Bay portage.

"There are no closed portages in the BWCAW at this time, including the portage from Pipestone to Back Bay. The area you are referencing did have some recent bear activity with the latest bear report from that area occurring a little over a week ago. The Forest has seen plenty of bear activity so far this season, with most occurrences happening on the eastern side of the Wilderness."

Please keep us posted if you do hear anything from the Ely FS.
 
VoyageurNorth
distinguished member(2612)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/10/2020 07:12PM
Will do. Don't know how they would have gotten it to "move" away or if it just moved away on its own. There is still a berry/food shortage for the bears and this bear seemed to be just hanging out in that area for quite some time.

 
Atom
member (9)member
 
07/10/2020 07:46PM
Good to know. Yeah I have a trip planned for the following week with a route that goes right through that portage. Hopefully the bears have moved on from that area by then. Don't want to have any up close run-ins on a portage.
 
Gaidin53
senior member (61)senior membersenior member
 
07/12/2020 12:13AM
Darnit! We’d love to see a bear but not in camp or on a portage. This deal with the kid is scary! Someone else said in a different post I read if you leave camp to fish bring the food/smellables in the canoe with you. This year that makes a lot of sense. Northern Tier had posted about the Serviceberries being in season July 1st. Hopefully that helps feed the bears and keep them out of campsites.

Makes me debate on carrying on my trip coming up! Yes I have a CCP in Minnesota. Here is the deal though! I really would rather not. Last thing I’d want to do is harm a bear or honestly even fire a firearm to scare a bear in the BWCA. I’ve cleaned plenty of walleye on Lake of the woods during a long trip this year but I’m even debating If I want To harm a fish in the BWCA. Somehow it’s different for me.

Yup I know about keeping a clean camp. We couldn’t drop a speck of food last year. Whoever scraped the pot and ate it also added water to clean it and then drank that. My son didn’t realize the process and volunteered for a baked good pan. He dumped half a Nalgene in and had to chug it with the cake residue. I was pretty proud of him when he kept it down.

Happy everyone is communicating though and keeping everyone aware!
Ryan
 
Minnesotian
distinguished member(1845)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/12/2020 11:20AM

Just got out from this area on Friday. Went in with two boy scout troops. One group stayed next to Washington Island one night and the other was somewhere in that area the next night. Both groups ended up going through the portage in question over the next couple of days. I am happy to report that neither group encountered any bear activity.
 
Atom
member (9)member
 
07/12/2020 11:50AM
Hey that's awesome to hear! Thanks for the info!
 
07/12/2020 11:50AM
There is a problem Bear here in the campground in Colorado too. It’s a big cinnamon Colored Black Bear. It scared a family out of their campsite and then ate their Birthday cake. Then it tipped over three dumpsters. The Pitkin County Sheriff came out and shot it with a bean bag. It was back in an hour. If you let a bear eat cake it’s hard to deter. DON’T let them eat cake!
 
SummerSkin
senior member (88)senior membersenior member
 
07/12/2020 10:11PM
Zulu: " There is a problem Bear here in the campground in Colorado too. It’s a big cinnamon Colored Black Bear. It scared a family out of their campsite and then ate their Birthday cake. Then it tipped over three dumpsters. The Pitkin County Sheriff came out and shot it with a bean bag. It was back in an hour. If you let a bear eat cake it’s hard to deter. DON’T let them eat cake!"
Thanks for this warning! We will pack pies only on our next trip.
 
acanoer
member (42)member
 
07/13/2020 05:50AM
Zulu: " There is a problem Bear here in the campground in Colorado too. It’s a big cinnamon Colored Black Bear. It scared a family out of their campsite and then ate their Birthday cake. Then it tipped over three dumpsters. The Pitkin County Sheriff came out and shot it with a bean bag. It was back in an hour. If you let a bear eat cake it’s hard to deter. DON’T let them eat cake!"

Non-lethal rounds as seen here are only temporary solution.
 
Duckman
distinguished member (413)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
07/13/2020 07:34AM
acanoer: "Zulu: " There is a problem Bear here in the campground in Colorado too. It’s a big cinnamon Colored Black Bear. It scared a family out of their campsite and then ate their Birthday cake. Then it tipped over three dumpsters. The Pitkin County Sheriff came out and shot it with a bean bag. It was back in an hour. If you let a bear eat cake it’s hard to deter. DON’T let them eat cake!"


Non-lethal rounds as seen here are only temporary solution. "


Kind of like training a dog. I'd imagine bean bag rounds only work if it's consistent, and since they aren't going to get shot with one every time they try to raid a campsite, I doubt the bear will make the association.
 
      Print Top Bottom Previous Next
Listening Point - General Discussion Sponsor:
Tuscarora Lodge & Canoe Outfitters