Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks’ investigation into a bear attack northwest of Columbia Falls has confirmed that it was an adult grizzly bear.
FWP said in a press release that at about 9:20 a.m. on Sunday, November 11, a man was hunting with a partner on private timberland off Trumbull Canyon Road. The man was walking off-trail in forested timber when he reported turning around as a bear attacked him. The bear bit the man’s arms and pulled him by the leg about seven or eight feet before letting go and running away. The man’s hunting partner contacted authorities.
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks’ Wildlife Human Attack Response Team responded along with Two Bear Air Rescue, North Valley Search and Rescue, Flathead County Sheriff’s Office, and ALERT Air Ambulance.
A Two Bear Air helicopter hoisted and flew the victim to a location where an ALERT Air Ambulance picked him up and took him to Kalispell Regional Medical Center. Authorities have not provided any other information about the man’s current condition.
FWP’s investigation included on-site visits, victim interviews, evidence collection, and analysis, and determined that it was a grizzly bear.
They concluded that a “surprise encounter” prompted the attack, according to FWP investigators. No action will be taken against the bear.