Hoonah man mauled by brown bear

JUNEAU — A man suffered non-life threatening injuries after being mauled by a brown bear in Hoonah.


The 58-year-old man was walking near downtown Hoonah about 9:45 p.m. Wednesday when the bear attacked.

The man, who hasn’t been identified, suffered “bites to his lower body and injuries to his back from the claws,” Hoonah Police Chief Corey Rowley told KTOO.

The man was taken to the Hoonah Medical Center for treatment and then transferred Thursday by a commercial medevac service to Sitka. His condition was not immediately known, but Rowley told The Associated Press he was stable when he left Hoonah.

Rowley said there was concern for children walking to and from school, and extra patrols were on duty early Thursday. “Everybody made it to school safe. Neighbors have all been warned,” he said.

The bear, with one cub, has been spotted twice in Hoonah in the last week, but this is the first time she approached anyone. He said there was no indication the man got between the sow and the cub.

Police searched for the bear after the attack. Rowley said they used thermal imaging equipment and located it in a deep canyon, but couldn’t reach the animal. It was gone Thursday morning.

Rowley said Alaska Wildlife Troopers and state wildlife officials will assist in the continuing search for the bear later Thursday.

“We’re actively pursuing the bear to make sure she’s not within the city limits right now,” he said.

Hoonah is a Tlingit community of about 750 people, on Chichagof Island about 40 miles west of Juneau.


  • Switchboard: 907-586-3740
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-586-3740
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Business Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-523-2230
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback