Bear Encounter Series

With hungry bears waking up all around southwest Montana, now’s the time to become bear-aware—and the Bear Encounter Series by the Center for Wildlife Information is a great place to start. These informative DVDs, produced in Missoula and with an introduction by the late General Norman Schwarzkopf (aka “The Bear”), include biological information, species-identification tips, instructions on the safe and proper use of bear spray, and what to do should an encounter occur. Especially interesting is the section on “inappropriate media messages,” which shows people like Timothy Treadwell demonstrating exactly what the average wilderness traveler should not to do around bears. Bear in mind (yuck, yuck), these videos are all about the info, so don't expect Cannes-caliber cinematography; it would only detract from the overall message anyway, which is this: bears are awesome but dangerous creatures, and knowledge is your best option—both for your safety and their survival. Available from the publisher for free (just pay shipping); email [email protected].