Officials to increase grizzly safety actions


WYOMING – Game and Fish officials are now planning to increase grizzly bear management efforts along Highway 26 near Togwotee Pass in order to maintain safety of wildlife and people.

Lt. Matt Brackin of the Wyoming Highway Patrol said what started as a handful of people watching a sow grizzly bear and her cubs has evolved into large swaths of people illegally parking their vehicles and creating a serious safety issue along the highway.

“This is not like a national park where motorists are traveling at much lower speeds and expecting to see wildlife with the public pulled over to wildlife watch,” Brackin said. “This is a major highway with numerous large semi-tractor trailers that can’t stop in short order to avoid stopped vehicles or excited pedestrians that are criss-crossing the road. It has become a significant safety issue.”

State troopers plan to start citing individuals illegally parked.

Game and Fish officials have started to haze the grizzlies away from the road. Large game supervisor for G&F Dan Thompson said the issue on Togwotee Pass has escalated into a situation that is unsafe for the grizzly bears.