Image by Joanne Barnaby
Image by Joanne Barnaby
Image by Joanne Barnaby

It’s not often you hear about human beings coming face to face with wolves. Normally, the canine ancestors keep their distance and are more likely to watch you from a distance than visa versa. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case for Joanne Barnaby, who ended up staring down a desperately hungry wolf, which hoped to make her its next meal reports the CBC.

On Friday, Barnaby ventured out on a morel morel hunting mission near Fort Smith in the Northwest Territories with her friend Tammy Cauldron and dog Joey. Once she filled her basket full of morels, Barnaby was about to head back towards her truck when she heard a wolf.

In an interview with CBC, Barnaby recounted the frightening moment saying, “I heard this growl behind me. There was a long, tall, very, very skinny wolf. A black wolf. And his legs were spread and his hair was standing, and he was growling, and baring his teeth.”

The wolf, who was desperate for food, began stalking Barnaby. Ultimately, the wolf stalked her and her dog for over 12 hours, moving them further and further away from the highway.

At around 4:30am, Barnaby heard a bear in the woods and realized that a cub and mamma bear had been separated. “I realized that there was a chance that the mother bear would tackle the wolf if she felt that the wolf was a threat.”

Turns out she was right as she put the cub between her and the wolf. It was at this point that the mamma bear finally arrived and attacked the wolf. Once the fight ensued, Barnaby fled the scene. Upon arriving at a nearby lake, Barnaby pulled a beer she had brought along and let the alcohol ease her mind. “That little can of beer ended up saving my life,” she later recounted to CBC.

After praying to friends and family both alive and gone, she mustered up the will to make her way back towards the highway. She and her dog arrived at the highway on Saturday morning and were greeted by RCMP officials.

Later Barnaby said she wishes she brought a gun along. “If I had had that gun, it would’ve been a very short situation.”

Find the entire CBC article here: ‘I was in trouble’: Beer can and bears save mushroom picker from hungry wolf