Cranbrook man recuperating after grizzly attack

A grizzly bear attack that occurred Tuesday night has left a man with non-life-threatening injuries.

Arne Petryshen

A grizzly bear attack that occurred Tuesday night has left a man with non-life-threatening injuries.

Chad Dueck, of Cranbrook who is recuperating in Foothills Hospital in Calgary, described the encounter and subsequent injuries, on social media on Wednesday afternoon.

Dueck, who had been bow hunting elk, was airlifted out of Cranbrook late Tuesday night.

Conservation Officer Joe Caravetta said the individual was bow hunting and was confronted by a sow grizzly bear with two cubs.

He said the attack occurred across from the Pritchard Road area, near the city’s spray irrigation fields.

“He was injured by the bear,” he said. The bear then retreated. “Then the hunter was able to get out and get to a hospital.”

Late Wednesday, Caravetta confirmed that they had located the site where the attack occurred and found several personal items of the hunter.

“We also were able to ascertain in our opinion that the grizzly sow was not fatally wounded,” he said.

Conservation officers had initially thought the hunter had wounded the bear, it appears that is not the case.

“We believe that the bow hunter missed the bear,” he said. “We found all the arrows and nothing indicates that the bear was injured.”

Caravetta said a helicopter has surveyed the area and not located any of the bears.

“We believe they have left the area,” he said. “We are not proceeding with any further action to locate the bears and we do not feel that they are a public safety threat.”

Caravetta said the hunter did nothing wrong in the situation, and just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

“We’re still doing some ground verification on some other things, we’re not sure if there was some previous hunting that occurred that morning that may  have brought the grizzly bear in there,” he said, clarifying that a kill from another hunter earlier in the day may have attracted the grizzlies to the area.

“We got an inclination from the helicopter flight that there may be something like that that may have occurred,” he said. “So we’re doing some further investigation into that.”

Caravetta said it the attack is being looked as a defensive one, rather than a predatory attack. It occurred in the timbered area near between the field and the river.

Caravetta noted there were four conservation officers specialized in predator attacks there assessing the situation. Two of the officers are from this area and two drove down last night.

He said the recent drought has prompted bears to search out food and come closer to communities.

“B.C. getting numerous calls on bear sightings certainly relates to the fact that it was very hot, and a very poor berry crop, as a result bears are moving further distances to locate food as they get prepared for hibernation in the next two months,” he said. That is not just grizzly bears, but black bears as well.

Caravetta said, with the reduced natural food source out there, they are asking the public to be extremely diligent when out in the bush. He said it’s also important to be diligent on things that could be attractants to bears, such as fruit trees, barbecues and garbage.

“And just to be extra diligent in taking care that those attractants aren’t available to bears,” he said.

If you encounter a bear, call the RAPP line as soon as possible at 1-877-952-7277 to report it.



Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A man wearing a face mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19 walks past a mural in Vancouver on Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
212 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health over the weekend

A total of 490 cases remain active; 15 in hospital

Incumbent MLA Tom Shypitka is contesting Kootenay East for the BC Liberals. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)
Shypitka named opposition critic for Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation

The Kootenay East MLA has held the energy and mines portfolio since 2017

Item no 22, De-Kieviet Kindergarten class - Highlands, Starting Bid: $20
Christmas Village 2020 school auction items

The annual Christmas Village has gone virtual, here are the auction items from local schools

File Photo
Missing hunter found dead in South Country

A hunter was reported as overdue on Nov. 29, and was found deceased on Nov. 30 following an RCMP and SAR operation

Tamarack Mall in Cranbrook is preparing for Santa’s arrival on December 12. Photos will be available from a distance, similar to what is pictured above with this family from Ontario. Masks will also be required for anyone over the age of two. (Photo courtesy of Chloe Einboden)
Physically distanced photos with Santa

Tamarack Centre in Cranbrook is preparing for Santa’s arrival on December 12

The bids for the 2020 Christmas Village are open as of noon on Thursday, November 26. Please scroll through this album to see auction items available for bidding.
Christmas Village 2020 auction items

The Christmas Village has gone virtual, here are all the details

Fossil finds at Mt. Stephen. (Photo: Sarah Fuller/Parks Canada)
Extreme hiking, time travel and science converge in the Burgess Shale

Climb high in the alpine and trace your family tree back millions of years – to our ocean ancestors

Kettle bells sit aligned in an indoor fitness studio. (
1 COVID-19 case at a B.C. fitness studio leads to 104 more infections, 6 school exposures

According to case data released by Fraser Health, one case of the novel coronavirus carries a big impact

Vehicles drive past a display thanking essential workers in Burnaby, B.C. on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
B.C. changing COVID-19 case reporting as virus spread continues

Manual counting takes more time, leads to errors

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Christy Jordan-Fenton is the co-author of the book Fatty Legs, which has been mentioned amid the controversy of an Abbotsford school assignment on residential schools.
Co-author of residential schools book condemns controversial Abbotsford class assignment

Children’s book mentioned amid controversy at W. A. Fraser Middle School

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Kootenay East MLA Tom Shypitka takes over as energy and mines critic for the B.C. Liberal opposition. Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick (right) moves from health critic to assistant deputy speaker. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals pick critics to take on Horgan’s NDP majority

Interim leader Shirley Bond takes seniors, long-term care

Most Read