Cranbrook man fights off grizzly attack

Cranbrook’s Jake Blackmore was attacked by a grizzly bear while hunting elk on Saturday

Cranbrook’s Jake Blackmore was released from Elk Valley Hospital in Fernie on Monday after being attacked by a grizzly bear while hunting elk on Saturday.

“I’m the luckiest most blessed hunter and dad in the world and can’t wait to get back out there and chase some more bulls around,” said Blackmore on a Facebook post on September 30.

On Oct. 1, Blackmore posted that he’d been asked numerous times to share his story about the bear encounter and so he described the harrowing event in detail in a status update.

He and his hunting partner, his 16-year-old son Jeron, were hunting elk along the Elk River when they spotted a bull. Jeron moved ahead while Blackmore watched the animal through his binoculars. That’s when he heard a noise to his left.

“I turned my head just in time to see a mama [grizzly] bear coming at me at full speed,” he wrote.

“In less than two seconds she football tackled me and knocked me flying about 30 feet. She was right on top of me tossing me around like a rag doll.”

Blackmore added that even after the attack he is still so amazed by the stealth, speed and power of grizzly bears. With the bear on top of him, Blackmore yelled at her and the bear released him, but not before sinking her teeth into his left leg and shaking him.

Astoundingly the bear’s teeth penetrated his leg on either side of his main artery, neither puncturing, nor damaging it.

After dropping Blackmore, the bear turned and bit her cub; Blackmore believes she did this to send the cub away to safety.

“It went off crying out in panic,” Blackmore wrote. “I’m sure it was just as confused as I was as to why momma bear was in such a nasty mood.”

He said that this brief pause gave him a precious window of time to ready his rifle.

“In all the craziness I got my last bullet ready to fire as she came towards me, mouth open roaring just like in the cool bear movies,” he said, demonstrating a remarkable sense of humour about the encounter.

Blackmore was up against a fallen log with his gun in hand, ready to fire from his hip. With the mother grizzly coming at him, Blackmore squeezed off a shot when she was just about eight feet away from him, aiming for her gaping mouth. He missed and just grazed her face, which spun her around and sent her off following the direction her cub had gone.

His son, who was off trying to get the bull elk, came running back after he heard the yelling and his dad’s gunshot. Blackmore apologized for ruining his hunt. Jeron said to him, “well you can check that one off your bucket list.”

Blackmore tied his jacket around his leg, which was bleeding profusely. They called a friend who lived nearby and they were on their way to the Fernie hospital within 10 minutes.

“I know we were super lucky, blessed or whatever you want to call it. It could have been so much worse.”

Blackmore agreed to an interview and he hopes that his experience will teach others about grizzly safety.

Just Posted

Drug use a problem at Trail hockey games, warn RCMP

Police recommend changes to Trail Memorial Centre washrooms

Montrose moves to ban pot retail

Retail, production and distribution of non-medical cannabis sales prohibited under Montrose bylaw

Castlegar, Grand Forks areas to see cleaner winter roads under new contract

YRB set to take over 10-year maintenance contract on Monday

Setting sail to fight kidney disease

Trail’s annual Kidney Walk included an opportunity to raft down the Columbia River

MP Cannings spared brunt of Ottawa tornadoes

MP Richard Cannings was spared the impact of the tornadoes that hit the Ottawa region

VIDEO: Rare close encounter with whale pod spotted off B.C. waters

Pod of southern resident orca whales breach within arms length of whale watchers

Veterans Affairs ordered to take second look before supporting vets’ relatives

Liberal government ordered officials to adopt a more critical eye

Dead B.C. motorcyclist was member of group that raced down mountain road

Some group members record their rides on Strathcona Parkway and post times to page

Indigenous athletes in spotlight at BC Sports Hall of Fame

New gallery to feature Carey Price, Kaila Mussel and Richard Peter

B.C. couple who went missing on flight from Edmonton named by family

Family released a statement Wednesday saying they’re still intent on finding the two-seater plane

VIDEO: A close look at what you were breathing during the B.C. wildfire season

Electron microscope images show soot and tar particles generated by worst B.C. fire season

B.C. woman donates $250,000 to ovarian cancer research for friends

Two of Patty Pitts’s friends passed away from the disease within a year

B.C. could provide clues as to how New Brunswick electoral results shake out

Premier Christy Clark faced a strikingly similar scenario following the province’s 2017 election

Ottawa working to iron out kinks in public alert system

The alerts are being credit with saving lives during last week’s tornadoes

Most Read