If you saw a grizzly in the wild, you probably wouldn’t utter the words “Hello sweet thing” to it. In fact, you can be so stiff with fear that you stop breathing altogether. This Alaskan man not only speaks sweetly to the grizzly at first, but also intimidates him with his own roaring throat.
It’s the kind of short clip that you hold your eyes to and give you goosebumps.
Caleb Jacques is a grizzly bear safari guide in Alaska – you already know he’s cut from a different fabric. In the video, he guides a group, at a safe distance from a sow and her cubs. As the video begins, you can see a sub-adult grizzly approaching the group from the left on a stream bed.
The bear, curious and with no previous exposure to humans, walks up to the group. Caleb starts yelling “Hey” to the bear. On the left, a man can be seen taking pictures as Caleb continues to interact with the grizzly bear and says, “Hello, sweet thing… Carry on.”
Caleb realizes he’s given his bear spray to his apprentice and knows there’s no time to mess around and try to get a hold of it with the grizzly’s proximity. You can see he has his gun in hand, a .44SW. The grizzly bear is only a few feet in front of him and his group.
“You’re a good girl… Get out of here,” he says to the grizzly with authority. The bear climbs on tall grass and sniffs the air. Caleb keeps watching, not moving. The bear draws closer and Caleb’s sweet words turn into reprimanding sounds. “Ah, ah, ah… no closer,” he says in a hoarse voice.
The bear leaps forward in a bluff that Caleb can detect – he refrains from using his gun and instead yells “Hey!” in a threatening, cold voice. The bear, startled, recoils and continues to run towards the stream bed. Caleb walks and stomps forward, yelling at the bear for “Get!”
The bear turns its body back towards the group from a distance. Immediately Caleb orders his group to get behind him and raise their hands. The man recording does as he says and stands right behind Caleb, camera still in hand.
The bear tries to approach the group again, and Caleb’s voice turns into a roar as he yells at the bear to get out of there. The bear recoils, intimidated by the group’s formation and Caleb’s continued grunts and commands to leave. Then the video will be cut off.
Caleb used his ten years of experience to deal with that situation, knowing what would happen in each version of the scenario, and he put himself at the front of his group to protect them and take action. Fortunately, he didn’t have to use his gun and was able to scare the bear off – his group now has a great story with video evidence to tell for the rest of their lives!
Next, more chilling encounters with bears:
A giant grizzly bear sits casually next to the world’s calmest photographer – and he doesn’t flinch
A giant polar bear ambush its prey on an ice floe