You are here

Two Bears Struck By Vehicles, Killed Sunday In Grand Teton National Park


Two bears died Sunday in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming after they were struck by vehicles. The first, an adult female black bear, was struck on U.S. Highway 89 north of the Deadman’s Bar Road Junction around 7:30 p.m. The second, a male grizzly bear cub of the year, was hit later the same evening on the North Park Road (U.S. Highway 89) between the Pilgrim Creek Road Junction and Colter Bay Junction.

“These unfortunate incidents are an important reminder for all of us to slow down and be vigilant when we travel through the park,” Superintendent David Vela said in a release. “Especially with the traffic levels that we are seeing during this busy season, it’s important to obey posted speed limits, maintain a safe following distance behind other vehicles, and be especially watchful around dawn and dusk, when wildlife are more active.”

The circumstances preceding the incidents are unknown, as the motorists did not stop or report the incident in either case. Motorists are reminded that any collisions with wildlife must be reported as soon as possible to the Teton Interagency Dispatch Center at (307) 739-3301.

Teton Interagency Dispatch Center received a report from a passerby of an adult grizzly bear removing a cub from the roadway just before 10 p.m. Sunday night. Rangers responded to the scene, just south of Colter Bay Junction, and confirmed that an adult grizzly bear had removed a cub from the roadway. Grand Teton wildlife biologists searched the area in the early morning hours on Monday. The biologists discovered the deceased cub, which weighed between 40 and 50 pounds, approximately 40 yards off the road and removed it from the area. The bear's carcass will be preserved and used for educational purposes.

According to National Geographic, the cub was the offspring of famous Grizzly 399 and given the nickname “Snowy” for the whitish-blonde coloring of his face.

“The death of this cub is especially tragic since Grizzly 399 is nearing the end of her reproductive life, and sadly she has only replaced herself in the population with one adult female, Grizzly 610,” Wyoming Wildlife Advocates wrote on its Facebook page. “399's cub, known as Snowy or Spirit by the bear watchers of Grand Teton, was adored for its antics and notably white face and will be sorely missed.

A total of 37 animals are known to have been struck by vehicles on park roadways in 2016. One grizzly bear cub, two black bears, nine deer, two bison, nine elk, two coyotes, and one red fox were involved in those collisions, which do not always involve a confirmed mortality. Over 100 large wildlife are known to be hit on park roadways annually, with 118 in 2015 and 115 in 2014.

In addition to caution and vigilance on park roads, park visitors are reminded not to approach or interfere with park wildlife. The safe viewing distance for bears and wolves is 100 yards, while all other wildlife should be given at least 25 yards of space.


National Parks are not zoos.  People need to be respectful & remember this is their home.  Slow down and keep a safe distance.  Losing this bear cub is very distressing. The world is mourning along with bear #399. 


When I was driving in Glacier, at night, serveral years ago, I had the high beams on and drove very slowly.  I was deathly afraid of hitting one of the many large mammals there, as such a collision could be fatal, FOR ME, if I was going too fast.  Apparently some people can't figure this out.  Amazing.  Too bad we can't invent an idiot detector.

ive found that most idiots are registered democrats. The safest we can do for the animals and environment is to ban them from entering our parks. NPS could check your political affiliation at the gate. 

Bubba, I'd disagree. Partisanship and idiocy can, and do, often go hand-in-hand.

of course you would disagree, you are a democrat.

No, actually I'm not. 

Bubba - Idiots come in all persuasions, particularly the ones that do idiotic things in national parks.  I can assure you, whatever persuasion, Kurt is not an idiot.

I am a registered Democrat, so I guess Bubba would screen me out, even though I came up with the idea.

Add comment


This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide