Three Teenagers Mauled By Grizzly Bear And Her Cubs In Anchorage

A grizzly bear and her two cubs mauled three teens at Eagle River Campground in Anchorage, Alaska. The teens were hiking in a densely wooded area located approximately 10 miles north of the largest city in the state.

Four teenagers were hiking when they stumbled upon the bear and her young cubs. The three teens were transported to a nearby hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

"It's possible this group just surprised a mother brown bear," said Ken Marsh, a representative from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. "She reacted defensively, pretty much in brown bear fashion"

Two aggressive grizzly bears were killed in the Eagle River Campground in Anchorage earlier this week.

When Anchorage law enforcement officers were searching the woods for the teen hikers, they were charged by the bear and fired shots at the massive animal. The grizzly bear ran back into the woods as the police officers gave chase.

The officers followed a blood-speckled trail into the forest, but the red droplets soon dissipated. According to Marsh, the bear was likely wounded from the earlier gunfire, but not mortally, the Daily Mail reports. The search for the grizzly bear that attacked the three teen hikers lasted about three hours before it was called off.

Warning signs noting bear activity in the area were posted to alert Eagle River Campground visitors and others to enhanced bear dangers. Marsh also stated that the recent good weather has prompted more folks to venture outdoors. The Alaskan wildlife staffer is warning all residents and tourists need to remain "bear aware."

Anchorage police officials first learned about the grizzly bear and her two cubs attacking the group of teenage hikers around noon on Wednesday, KTVA reports. The group, which included two boys and two girls, got separated during the mauling. Approximately 30 first responder units converged upon the campground to search for the missing youngsters.

Anchorage Police Department Sergeant Cam Hokenson said officers had phone contact with several of the missing teens during the search. The first responders used their sirens and other noises to help the young hikers reach safety. The three teen hikers sustained a series of claw and bite marks but are expected to make a full recovery.

Anchorage is comprised of nearly 2,000 square miles, making it larger than the state of Rhode Island. Approximately 300,000 people share living space in Anchorage with about 65 brown bears and 350 black bears.

So far this year, a total of seven bears have been killed in Alaska to protect either life or property. A black bear was spotted at the Eagle River Campground not long after the three teen hikers were mauled by the grizzly bear.

[Featured Image by Scott E. Read/Shutterstock]