Wildlife officials are investigating after finding a woman’s body near Yellowstone National Park.
According to Montana’s Fish, Wildlife & Parks Department, the hiker was found dead on a trail about eight miles west of West Yellowstone in Custer Gallatin National Forest.
The woman’s injuries are consistent with a bear attack. Nearby they found adult grizzly tracks and at least one set of cub tracks. Officials believe the woman was hiking alone and not carrying bear spray.
Officials have issued an emergency closure of the area as they investigate and try to locate the bear.
Monata’s FWP released these reminders for anyone in brown bear territory.
- Carry bear spray and be prepared to use it immediately.
- Travel in groups whenever possible and make noise, which can help alert bears to your presence.
- Stay away from animal carcasses, which often attract bears.
- Follow food storage orders from the applicable land management agency.
- If you encounter a bear, never approach it. Leave the area when it is safe to do so.
- Keep garbage, bird feeders, pet food and other attractants put away in a secure building. Keep garbage in a secure building until the day it is collected. Certified bear-resistant garbage containers are available in many areas.
- Never feed wildlife. Bears that become food conditioned lose their natural foraging behavior and pose threats to human safety. It is illegal to feed bears in Montana.
Learn more about bear safety.