Steps to Work­ing a Griz­zly Bear in the Chilcotins

Bicycling (South Africa) - - Stories -

1. Meet a man and a woman lead­ing a horsep­ack train over Windy Pass. Chat briefly, then pay at­ten­tion when they say…

2. “Watch out for the griz­zly up the trail. Make some noise. And work it. You’ll be fine.”

3. Pre­tend, col­lec­tively, that you know what it means to ‘work’ a bear.

4. Tie your shoelaces, have a snack, stay to­gether, and con­tinue up the trail, be­cause what else are you go­ing to do?

5. Just when you thought the horse pack­ers were – like you’d said all along – ghosts from the 1800s haunt­ing the Chilcotins, see the bear, spook the bear, watch it run off the trail about 10 me­tres be­fore it stands up and turns around.

6. Hold your ground, make eye con­tact, un­hol­ster your bear spray, whis­tle, shout, and im­por­tantly, back away slowly and de­lib­er­ately. Make eye con­tact. Chill.

7. Think about stop­ping to take a pho­to­graph, ag­o­nise over it, de­cide against it, and con­tinue walk­ing de­lib­er­ately back­ward.

8. You’ll know if it’s gonna suc­ceed in less than a minute. Good luck!

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