fr dogsrunningBear hunters on the Qualla Boundary may be able to run their dogs through tribal reserve land for a full half year following contentious discussion and a divided vote in Cherokee Tribal Council this month. 

black bearNearly a month after an Appalachian Trail thru-hiker found his night interrupted by an attacking bear, the backcountry shelter in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park where the incident occurred is open once more.

out frThe sun had not quite set when Bradley Veeder fell asleep in his tent May 10, feeling “tired but happy” after a 17-mile day on the Appalachian Trail.

The 49-year-old Montana native was no stranger to trail life, having more than 20 years’ experience backpacking in places ranging from Wyoming to Oregon to Nepal, and he’d been putting in 15- to 20-mile days ever since starting his A.T. thru-hike April 30. Sound sleep was an important part of the recipe. 

black bearThe case of a 400-pound bear euthanized after a hiker in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was bitten in the leg appears to have been a wrongful conviction. DNA results delivered Monday (May 23) showed that the bear that bit 49-year-old Bradley Veeder, of Las Vegas, on May 10 and the one that park staff euthanized May 13 were two different animals.

black bearThe Great Smoky Mountains National Park is terming an incident that left a Las Vegas man with a puncture wound in his leg a predatory bear attack, but Bill Lea, a renowned wildlife photographer who’s spent years observing bears in the wild, says he’s not buying it.

black bearCampers at the Spence Field Appalachian Trail Shelter in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park spent a harrowing evening in the backcountry May 10, huddling together for protection as a big black bear roamed the site. Around 11:16 p.m. that evening, it had approached a tent occupied by 49-year-old Bradley Veeder, of Las Vegas, biting the man’s leg through the canvas, then repeatedly returning to the area to snuffle through the then-empty tents.

Of bears and bees

out natcornI am not nearly so frustrated with my black oil sunflower seed-addicted bruin neighbor as I was after his little escapade last Friday morning around 2 a.m. I was trying to finish some writing before I left for my pre-dawn “day job” when I heard some noise on the deck. I had chased a raccoon away the night before and figured it was back. But the noise had a little more substance to it. Bear, I thought.

fr bruinBy Katie Reeder • SMN Intern

Hunters accused in a sweeping bear poaching sting in Western North Carolina have turned the tables on wildlife officers and prosecutors, tarnishing an operation that was initially trumpeted as a victorious round-up of rouge hunters.

fr bruinBy Katie Reeder • SMN Intern

When Chad Arnold pulled into War Paint Kennels during fall bear season in 2011, Jerry Parker pegged him as just another flat-lander willing to fork out big dough to bag a bear.

out bearbaitThe hunting community and wildlife officers have been engaged in an ongoing tug-of-war over the practice of baiting bears to make them easier to hunt.

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