There’s very little in the natural world scarier than a charging grizzly bear. Somehow, one of the cuddliest looking animals out there can quickly turn into something out of nightmares, charging at speed up to 35mph. How this park ranger manages to stay calm and continue to do his job after witnessing this beast charge towards him is beyond me, but good for him for doing so.
Not a ton is made clear about the situation from the video description or the video itself, other than that it occurred near Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park.
One commenter on the video, Brady Dunne, claims to be the park ranger in the video, though. We can’t verify that his story is true, but, according to his comment, he responded to the scene after the bear had charged at multiple guests, using the gun to cause the bear to associate humans with negative stimuli.
“I responded after the bear had charged numerous visitors for getting too close. He has an injured paw from fighting another male bear. He did not maul anyone prior. And the lesson I gave is called Aversive Conditioning -Pavlov’s Law. Negative stimuli (it’s like a slap to a bear) associated with an aggressive behavior. It’s for the bears benefit so he does not hurt anyone and end up dead.” – Brady Dunne
PLEASE be respectful of wildlife. Don’t harass bears, don’t harass bison, don’t harass anything. Take a picture from a safe distance if you really want one and move on. If there’s a crowd forming around an animal, don’t join the crowd. Remember to read and follow bear viewing etiquette if you plan on trying to see one.