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Ice Climbers Attacked by Grizzly Bear in Rockies

Visiting climbers were attacked by a grizzly bear after a day of ice climbing.

U.K. climbers Greg Boswell and Nick Bullock are currently on a trip to Canada for ice climbing. On Nov. 29, after climbing a route called Dirty Love on Mount Wilson on the Icefields Parkway, between Banff and Jasper, a bear attacked.

Boswell wrote the following on his Facebook page: “OK. Crazy news from Canada! I’m going to put it bluntly, but would just like to let everyone know I’m ok, just a little shook up and sore! I got attacked by a Grizzly bear last night and lived to tell the tail, and to make the three-hour descent and two-hour drive to the hospital.

“All stitched up now and on the mend. It’s a long story and I can’t be bothered to write it down just now. So here is a pic of me at the hospital. Sorry if you a squeamish.”

A screengrab from Greg Boswell's Facebook page.
A screengrab from Greg Boswell’s Facebook page.

Boswell later posted that, “Nick got me out of there and drove me to the hospital. It wasn’t a one-man mission to stay alive like the media is portraying, it was a friend doing as much as he could in a crazy situation to keep his friend from dying.

“I probably would have died of hypothermia or blood loss if he hadn’t kept me going.”

Bullock posted a blog post on Dec. 1 about the bear encounter. In it, he wrote, “…he grabbed the bear’s mouth and prized apart the jaws, pushing, and screaming… ‘Nick, Nick, help, its got me…’ I stopped running, and hearing my friend, the terror, the pleading – my survival instinct subdued. I stopped and turned, but I’ll tell the truth…”

Read the full story of the bear attack on Bulluck’s blog here.

Boswell and Bullock had spent the previous week successfully climbing three of the Rockies difficult winter mixed routes: The Real Big Drip V M8 WI7 200 m in the Ghost and two on the Stanley Headwall, Nightmare on Wolfstreet V M7+ WI6+ 175 m and Dawn of the Dead V M8+ WI6 140 m.

Boswell’s last blog post was titled, “Thankfully No Horror Shows on the Headwall,” read it here. In 2011, alpinist and mountain guide Barry Blanchard was chased up a tree with his client. Read about it here.

Parks Canada has spoken with Boswell and have yet to release a statement. While grizzly bear spottings are common, reports of attacks are rare, but on the rise. A report by the CBC in September noted that bear encounters are on the rise, read the story here.

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