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West Yellowstone bear attack prompts temporary forest closure

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Authorities yesterday responded to a report of a grizzly attack north of West Yellowstone. This is not an image of the bear suspected in the attack. PHOTO LEILA BOUJNANE, UNSPLASH


WEST YELLOWSTONE — Portions of the Custer Gallatin National Forest north of West Yellowstone were closed yesterday afternoon after authorities received a report of a grizzly bear attack near the Bakers Hole Campground area.

At 3:42 p.m., according to a statement by Gallatin County Emergency Management, the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, U.S. Forest Service, West Yellowstone Police Department and Hebgen Basin Fire and EMS responded, locating the injured party after approximately 50 minutes of off-trail searching. The individual had sustained significant scalp and facial injuries, the statement said.

Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue responded via snowmobile with a rescue toboggan, according to the statement, the patient was transported by volunteers to the toboggan, then taken by snowmobile to a nearby ambulance. Hebgen Basin Fire Department EMS crews then transported the patient to Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center for further medical treatment.

Gallatin County authorities are reminding residents and visitors to be conscientious in the backcountry as bears come out of hibernation and look for food sources.

The Forest Service along with Fish, Wildlife and Parks are investigating the incident.

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