Men interrupt bear breaking into their car – it doesn't end well

Black bear investigating car
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Two men ran into trouble recently after trying to confront a black bear casually breaking into their car. After leaving their vehicle unlocked and unattended for a few seconds, the pair turned to find a young animal opening the driver's door to investigate. They tried to scare it off, but instead of fleeing the cub gave chase, sending one man tumbling down a steep bank.

A video of the encounter was shared on infamous Instagram account TouronsOfNationalParks, which calls out bad behavior at sites of natural beauty around the world. These often involve wildlife, with recent incidents including a shirtless man chasing wolves, a Montana tourist poking a moose (with predictable results), and a woman trying to pet a bison.

We don't know what happened after the clip finished, but hopefully the only thing bruised was the man's dignity.

Staying safe around bears

The fact that the cub knew to approach a car and didn't run when the two men approached suggests it has already become habituated and lost its natural wariness of humans, possibly as a result of being fed from a vehicle. Habituation is a serious problems for wildlife, changing animals' behavior and increasing the chances of encounters with people. It's important to keep your food out of reach of bears, as well as toiletries and anything else with a strong smell that may attract their attention. 

That's particularly important in areas like National Parks with a high population of bears, "In some parks, food may be stored inside your car as long as it is out of sight, with windows completely closed, and only during daylight hours," advises the National Park Service.

"Never store food in a pickup truck bed or strapped to the outside of a vehicle. In other parks, all food must be removed from your car and stored in lockers. Remember to clear your car of food wrappers, crumbs in baby seats, baby wipes, and even canned food and drinks."

For more details of what to do in a close encounter, see our guides what to do if you meet a bear and how to use bear spray.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.