and I thought roads in Manitoba were bad!

Black Bear Montana photo

Colbert Was Right
In urban areas, cyclists need to watch out for cars. But in more rural places, there are other dangers. 57-year-old Jim Litz, a science teacher in Missoula, Montana, learned this when he t-boned a black bear while riding his bike to work. Read on for the details.

“I was lucky. I was truly lucky”
He was traveling about 25 mph when he came upon a rise and spotted a black bear about 10 feet in front of him. “I didn’t have time to respond. I never even hit my brakes,” Litz said.

He tumbled over his handlebars, planting his helmeted head on the bruin’s back, and man and beast went cartwheeling down the road. The bear rolled over Litz’s head, and its mass cracked his helmet. As the duo toppled over one another, the bear clawed at Litz’s cycling jacket, scratching his flesh from shoulder to buttocks before scampering up a hill above the road, where it stopped and whined.

Litz’s wife drove by soon after and took her husband to Community Medical Center, and he immediately called Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks to report the unusual collision. Game wardens told him they didn’t think the animal was seriously injured, but was more likely suffering from some bruised ribs – just like Litz.

“I was lucky. I was truly lucky, because I accosted the bear and he let me live,” Litz said. “I truly respect them. They’re beautiful creatures.”

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About bigjac

Just a middle-aged man whose blood pressure and cholesterol were out of wack and needed a tuneup, bad. Then I rekindled my love for riding a bike -- just the simple act of turning the cranks. What happened next is I met a lot of neat people who are as nuts as I am. Ride on.

2 thoughts on “and I thought roads in Manitoba were bad!

  1. You know, a couple of days ago, when the Carillon news reported that bear that jumped on the hood of a car at a stop sign, I was thinking about the possibility of running into a bear while riding and I dismissed the thought as unlikely. Guess I better think again.

  2. So I thought almost hiting a deer was bad… By the way, I’m pretty sure the doe I almost hit and her friend, a small buck, have succumbed to the PTH 52 traffic this summer. Unfortunately, thats not a surprise.

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