The biggest National Park in the U.S. saw its first death caused by a bear attack.
A grizzly bear reportedly mauled and killed a hunter in Alaska's Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, the first such occurrence to happen since the Park was established in 1980.
The National Park Service (NPS) said the incident happened on Sept. 20 in the 13.2-million-acre area of southeast Alaska.
The hunter was apparently conducting a 10-day moose hunt with an acquaintance near the Chisana River drainage. The specific injuries and cause of death were not released, but no other people were attacked.
The identity of the deceased hunter was also undisclosed until completion of an investigation.
"Visitors are encouraged to be Bear Aware when traveling in the backcountry and take precautions such as carrying bear spray and using Bear Resistant Food Containers," said the NPS in the official news release.
To put it in perspective, ABC News reported that Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is the size of Yellowstone, Yosemite, and Switzerland combined. It's the world's largest international protected wilderness area.
Debate will always circulate around the best bear protection, whereas bear spray, sidearms, and smart precautions are all mentioned as viable ways to avoid such attacks.
At the same time, all the Bear Resistant Food Containers in the world won't necessarily stop a grizzly from attacking if provoked, startled, or put in a position where it feels threatened.
Alaska is known as an unforgiving place, with a landscape and wildlife that can and will put your life at risk without batting a proverbial eye.
It's exceedingly unfortunate that someone lost their life, and the hunter's death will hopefully serve as a reminder to be prepared for the worst.
NEXT: MAN LAUNCHES CLOSE-QUARTERS ATTACK ON COYOTE THAT THREATENED HIS FAMILY
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