Man with Bear Spray Killed by Grizzly Near Yellowstone Park

grizzly bear

United States –- (AmmoLand.com) – On the afternoon of April 15, 2021, Carl Mock was attacked by a grizzly bear near Baker’s Hole Campground in Gallatin County, Montana. The campsite is just a few miles from the city of West Yellowstone near an entrance to Yellowstone Park. Mock could dial 911. Several agencies answered the call around 3:42 p.m. The first responders were able to find Mock after about 50 minutes of searching.

According to the Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue Facebook page, Mock had “sustained significant scalp and facial injuries.” Localnews8.com gave more details about the injuries:

Authorities say the bear attack left him with serious injuries to the left side of his face, head and neck. Judging from his injuries, they said Mock apparently used the correct fetal position to keep the bear from killing him, but the bear still managed to bite out a piece of his skull.

“I want people to know that Carl wasn’t out there… he wasn’t out there making stupid decisions and likes chasing animals. He is very aware of the rules and guidelines, ”said Cook.

Image from Gallatin County SAR on Facebook, bear attack scene April 15, 2021, cropped and scaled by Dean Weingarten www.facebook.com/GallatinCountySAR/photos/pcb.1418767205135492/1418767041802175

Further information was included in an update. Mock had bear spray, the safety tab had been removed, but it was not known if it had been sprayed. From ktla.com:

Mock when attacked had bear spray – a mace-like deterrent designed to protect against attack – but officials said they didn’t know if he managed to use it. Bear spray canisters have safety tabs to prevent accidental dislodging, and the safety tab on Mock’s bear spray was turned off, Jacobsen said.

The grizzly was killed Friday after indicting a group of seven rangers and other personnel as they approached the site of the attack. Several people fired at the animal and it died about 18 meters from the group, Jacobsen said.

Officials said they were confident the bear that was killed is the one who attacked Mock.

A Gofundme page was set up to cover Mock’s medical expenses. The website had donations of $ 28,752 when Mock died of a massive stroke. He has faced a massive number of operations.

Several reports indicated that a moose carcass was discovered within 50 meters of the attack site. This makes the fatal attack on a human unacceptable.

Grizzly bears have been known to be much more aggressive and dangerous than black bears since they first became known to the American government, as reported by the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1805.

Was this a failure of the bear spray? Yes.

Speaking to Morgan Jacobsen of Montana FWP, Morgan confirmed that bear spray debris had been found on Carl Mock’s clothing. In our table of gun defense against bears, the situation is only included when the gun was actually fired. The difficulties of accessing a defense tool are similar.

If a pistol had been fired but the bear had not been driven away, it would be counted as a pistol failure. In this case, the bear spray was sprayed, but it did not drive the bear off. According to the same criteria, the bear spray failed.

Investigators did not use bear spray. Jacobsen reported that the bear saw it attack them from a considerable distance. It was attacked by gunfire before it got within range of bear spray.

From krtv.com:

On Friday, a group of FWP guards and bear specialists searched the area and came across a large male grizzly bear. Guardians say the bear attacked the group and did not respond to numerous cloud attempts.

This correspondent has not found any information about the firearms with which the group of investigators was defended from the killer grizzly. In the picture of the search and rescue unit, one person is armed with an AR15 rifle, another appears to have a shotgun. FWP’s Morgan Jacobsen confirmed investigators had both rifles and shotguns.

Editor’s Note: Mr. Weingarten has compiled extensive coverage of US bear attacks. Especially the failure to wear “bear spray” as a defense.

About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten was a peace officer, a military officer, served on the University of Wisconsin’s pistol team for four years, and was first certified as a firearms safety instructor in 1973. He taught the concealed carry course in Arizona for fifteen years until the Constitution’s goal of carry was achieved. He holds degrees in meteorology and mining engineering and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in research, development, testing and evaluation for the Army.

Dean Weingarten

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