Anyone who remembers the extraordinary Grizzly Man movie from 2005 will recall that it didn’t end well for the documentary’s central figure, Timothy Treadwell.
The American bear enthusiast lived in Alaska’s Katmai National Park for 13 summers until 2003, spending long periods of time among (right among) the grizzlies – behavior that caused deep concern among local park rangers who feared for his safety.
“I always give them respect and lots of room because a grizzly is the boss out there,” Treadwell once said in an appearance on Letterman. When Letterman asked if he was going to open a newspaper one day and read that Treadwell had been eaten by a bear, the audience laughed. But in 2003 that’s exactly what happened.
The tragic incident highlighted the potential power and ferocity of these majestic creatures, though many people who knew about Treadwell’s annual trips to the park weren’t particularly surprised by the fate that eventually befell the adventurer.
While it’s possible to go on safer organized trips to observe bears in their natural habitat, we don’t all have the time or money to make such a journey. So you might want to check out this webcam, set up in Treadwell’s former stomping ground of Katmai National Park.
The park’s operator has just switched its popular BearCam back on, offering online visitors a fascinating live-stream showing bears going about their business in the Alaskan wilderness.
Several views are offered, one of which shows the park’s Brooks Falls where around 100 bears each year come to feast on some of the largest sockeye salmon in the world.
“We are broadcasting from a truly magical place,” Charles Annenberg Weingarten of Explore.org, which operates the cameras, said in a release “I hope people use BearCam to relax, to reconnect with what’s beautiful and to have fun sharing those moments of nature with other people around the world.”
You can check out the BearCam by clicking here, but make sure to visit during Alaska’s daylight hours or you won’t see much!