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Dan Everett

Bear sightings on the rise near Riding Mountain National Park

05.07.2019 11:02
By: Frank McGwire

One area resident reports several sightings in the same day

Photo credit: Cam Hemming

If you're planning a drive through riding mountain national park this weekend, your chances of seeing a bear are the best they've been in a long while.

Area resident Cam Hemming who has a cabin in the old campground says he's experienced several bear sightings this summer including a few in the same day.

"Saw a couple in Onanole earlier this week, one on one side of the street where a lady was sunbathing a bear starting approaching her then her dog came running out and chased the bear away into a wooded area. After the dog came running back looking rather proud of itself, we saw another bear on the other side of the road right by Wood's Grocery, then a few minutes after that yet another one rummaging through someone's trash," said Hemming.

Hemming says bear sightings are common near highway 10 through the park or our by the golf course but the recent uptick in sightings in areas generally inhabitated by people is not normal.

"We're up here nearly every weekend and you might see them here and there, just yesterday we saw one on number 10 but we've heard lots of stories of bears venturing near populated areas. There was one the other day near a kids yoga class and more posts are appearing online lately, it's more than normal for sure," Hemming said.

On Canada Day Park Wardens tracked down a rather scrawny bear which was trapesing through the boardwalk area by the main beach in Wasagaming. Wardens shot the bear with a tranquilizer before carting it off.

"It's not normal for bears to be at the old campground or the boardwalk especially when there's that many people around," said Hemming.

For information on what to do if you encounter a bear click here.