Well I was reluctant to post this but after speaking with my dad I will because he feel it is important to emphasize how important a satellite phone and an emergency preparedness plan can be. My dad and I were on a sheep hut and started walking in on the 8th like many others here. We found our suitable camping spot and pitched out tent the night before sheep season at 5000 feet. We saw rams and one we felt was legal just needed a closer look once the season had started. We had discussed bring a sat phone a few times but decided not too until our wives caught wind of it and demanded we did, so we did.
Early on the morning of the 10th we had a visitor bite my dad in the face a few times through the tent. He does not remember the bite happening. He thinks he sub sequentially rolled over and brought the animal on our tent and the tent collapsed. We both now were freaking out screaming kicking, punching and generally flailing to get this animal off of us. The animal was on us for only a few seconds 15- 20 maybe, but felt like an eternity. I finally got my foot up and on its ribs and thrust it off of us rather easily. I am a big guy and was adrenaline raged but the animal felt like it was 30 to 40 pounds and had it step on me a few times and felt like a small dog in weight. After finding my way out of the mangled tent I grabbed my rifle and raced barefoot to look below us and then to the ridgeline only 80 yards above us. Not vegetation to speak of and lots of smaller rocks. I saw nothing of the animal and came back to my dad looking like below. So we talked it over and his jaw was not operational and could hardly swallow. We debated if he could walk out the 6-7 miles but he felt he could not intake fluids or breathe properly so we needed to activate EMS and get some help. Since I was not well versed on a sat phone and was not aware if 911 worked I called an individual who in turn called 911 for me and then I called them back with a number to call the troopers. It took 2 hours for a med flight chopper to land on ridge and come and get him. With him in good arms it was up to me to pack up camp and walk out all our gear back to the drop off point and head to hospital to see how my father was faring. As it turns out he needed over 100 stitches to close all the wounds on his face and has a broken and dislocated jaw which is currently wired shut. I received no injuries.
So many will ask.
We did have food it was in our vestibule completely opposite of where the attack happened. So was it smell related? It was barely light so was sound involved? What type of animal did this? I gave our tent to an area biologist to analyze in the lab and had no conclusions for us. Area biologist said it was most likely 3 year old bear of some kind. I have a hard time believing that I can thrust a 3 year old bear off of us and send it flying rather easily. I also heard snarls and was stepped on a few times by it and it was rather light animal. If a bear cub where was momma? If was an abandoned cub why did it not go for easy food in the vestibule? Could it have been a small wolf or wolverine?
Thing we learned!
Don’t panic think things through. Stop the bleeding and analyze what needs to be done.
Have an emergency call list with sat phone or other emergency contact form such as trooper dispatch or coast guard.
Don't be afraid to pass your health history on to your partner and if on meds or illnesses like diabetic ect to pass along to EMT's if needed.
Have a useful first aid kit. Be able to stop serious bleeding and a wrap for adequate pressure.
Know what your partner is packing in terms of weight. We both did not have top of line high dollar gear that weighed a little more. I packed everything out including food so the SOB could not get an easy meal from us. I walked with all gear for 5 miles and couldn’t go any more with both so unstrapped second and then shuttled packs for the last 2 miles.
He is OK and on the mend now just got an awesome tag stolen from him. Bottom line be safe and prepared for the worst case scenario! What do you think the animal was We have our guess and it doesn’t match ADFG’s guess.