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Bear reported in Silver Star area of Park City Mountain

A trail junction close to the Silver Star area at Park City Mountain.
Parker Malatesta
A trail junction close to the Silver Star area at Park City Mountain.

Park City Police have received reports of bear sightings in the area over the weekend.

On Sunday around 7 p.m. officers were called about a bear on a Park City Mountain trail.

The caller said the bear didn’t attack or injure anyone but that their partner suffered some scrapes trying to get away from the animal.

Park City Police Lt. Jay Randall said the bear encounter was in the Silver Star area, but couldn’t provide further details.

Park City Mountain Communications Manager Emily McDonald said the resort could not confirm the siting. McDonald said the resort encourages guests to always be respectful of the natural environment and to keep a safe distance from any wildlife on the mountain.

Scott Root, outreach manager for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, said bears are leaving their winter habitats to look for food as the weather warms.

“Unfortunately, there’s a time or two when hikers - and we have a lot of hikers and mountain bikers - may encounter bears out there, and if it’s a female with cubs, that makes the situation a little bit more dangerous,” Root said.

Here’s what he recommends to handle an encounter.

“If you’re far away and you see the bear first, just slowly keep your eyes on the bear and back out of the area,” Root said. “If it’s one of those where you both come around a corner and she’s not happy you’re there, you stand your ground, you don’t run away, and you don’t climb the tree, because they can climb trees, and they can out run you, and they can out climb you.”

Make a lot of noise, raise your arms to appear bigger, and most important, carry a can of bear spray, Root said.

“If you’re a cyclist or you’re a hiker, just keep it with you, and you need to have it like right up your side… Bear spray can work on mountain lions or sometimes charging moose.”

More safety information about wildlife in Utah can be found here.