I live in Forest Lakes near the top on the west side and we see many bears coming in and out of the Bureau of Land Management area. I have compiled a photo album of bears near our home since 2012 and love sharing them. Most folks when they have visitors drag out their family album of grandkids, but I bring out the bear book.
A few weeks ago I shared the bear book with several residents of Evenings Porch. They were glued to the photos, asking many questions for 1½ hours.
This time I brought a bear hide with me. My son-in-law, Bard Iverson, is a taxidermist, and allowed me to share this beautiful specimen with them.
The bear was killed a few years ago in a hunt in the Wolf Creek area, but the hunter didn't have the funds to pick up the finished product. The assisted living residents, Jerry and Joan Horton, Helen Haeffer and Marrianne James, were amazed at the claws on the black bear and the size and beauty of the animal.
Jerry had a close encounter with a bear and shared his story. He thought he saw an ugly big dog in the distance, but it was a bear heading his way. Jerry turned the opposite direction, as did the bear, but later they met face to face. Both were scared and fled.
This time Jerry could get nose to nose without danger.