Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials are on the hunt for a bear after a hiker reported the animal acted aggressively toward him and his dogs on a Red Rock Canyon Open Space trail Thursday.
A news release from the city of Colorado Springs stated that several trails will be temporarily closed until the bear is found, including the Section 16 Trailhead, Palmer Loop Trail and the southern end of Red Rock Canyon.
The hiker told Parks and Wildlife officials that the bear approached him near the Section 16 trailhead. He and his two dogs were just 100 yards up the trail on a midday hike.
One of the man’s dogs, which was on a leash, bolted toward the scrub oak brush lining the trail. It was then that the bear emerged from the brush and headed toward the hiker.
The man told officers the bear showed no fear. Instead, it pursued one of the dogs. The hiker said he kicked the bear in the head and threw rocks at it until it retreated.
The man was treated for minor scrapes on his legs.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service team will help track and euthanize the bear for the safety of the public, the release read. Parks and Wildlife asked that people avoid the area until the search ends.
Click here for Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s bear awareness tips.