*No “bears” were harmed, or even seen, photographed, smelled, heard, in the production of this post. Because they’re not real.
We were really expecting to see “bears” when we went to Banff National Park last month. We were warned to be careful when we reserved our campsites, we were warned on Twitter, we were warned by everyone at REI, basically everyone we met told us to be “bear” aware while camping in Canada.
We’ve seen pictures of them, we all have, but we’ve all also seen the iconic Bigfoot picture, right?
In our prep for Canada, we read multiple books on “bear” safety – how to store & hang our food, the distinguishing features between species, among a ton of other information for surviving in “bear” country. We watched documentaries, including Grizzly Man with the infamous Timothy Treadwell – there’s even footage of him touching them!
Almost had us convinced.
Our adventures have taken us all over “bear” country. From the west Texas desert in Big Bend National Park, to the black “bear” hotbed that is Cade’s Cove in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, to the aforementioned “you HAVE to be prepared for bears” Banff National Park.
Not a single “bear.” Not a “bear” turd, track or scent. Nothing.
We’ve basically gone searching for “bears” only to see a moose (once, in Breckenridge), some ringtails in Big Bend, and a chipmunk. All things that “bears” SUPPOSEDLY eat, but ne’er not one “bear.”
We hope we’re wrong; we want to believe. We really do. From a safe distance, outfitted with bear spray, a large group, while making lots of noise.
Try and prove us wrong and tweet us your best “bear” pics.