Bear smart in the park
Reminder to be alert for bears in Riding Mountain National Park
Resource Conservation staff at Riding Mountain National Park (RMNP) would like to remind the public of the possibility of meeting bears in the park. The bear population has been very active lately as they take advantage of this year’s abundant berry crop. The number of encounters between bears and people has risen recently, but fortunately there has been no aggressive behaviour reported to date.
The August long weekend is traditionally the busiest weekend of the year at RMNP. With a lot bears and a lot of people sharing the same area, the chance of humans encountering bears rises. Parks Canada reminds visitors to be “Bear Smart” and alert when travelling to areas where bear activity has been high.
While the number of bear sightings remains high, park staff will be extra vigilant about securing wildlife attractants. Please do your part and don’t leave out food, coolers, garbage or other highly scented items. These items can catch the attention of a curious bear looking for an easy meal.
Visit the RMNP’s website at www.parkscanada.gc.ca/riding for more helpful information about being Bear Smart and about the “Bare Campsite” program. Visitors can obtain information about recent bear sightings and trail closures at the Visitor Centre, or by calling 204-848-7275.
Reminder to be alert for bears in Riding Mountain National Park © Parks Canada
- DO be alert when in areas where bears are likely to be, such as near berry patches and other food sources.
- DO Travel in groups.
- DO make noise. Bear bells, conversation and singing will let the bear know where you are. Bears normally leave an area once they’ve sensed a human.
- DO make your presence known by making noise and waving your arms if you see a bear while hiking.
- DO keep dogs on a leash and under control. A roaming dog might be perceived as a threat to a bear or its cubs.
- DO walk away slowly if you surprise a bear nearby.
- DON’T cook food near your tent or store food inside your tent. Instead, keep food in a secure vehicle or use rope to suspend it between two trees.
- DON’T climb a tree, but wait in a vehicle or building for the bear to leave an area.