Hunter attacked by mother grizzly bear east of Cranbrook

WATCH: A Cranbrook man is recovering in a Calgary hospital after an amazing fight for his life with a grizzly bear. Julia Foy reports.

A man is recovering in hospital today after being attacked by a grizzly bear east of Cranbrook Tuesday night.

Chad Dueck was bow hunting for elk in the area when he was attacked at about 7:30 p.m.

“At about 50 metres he stood up and made a noise to alert the bear that he was there and the sow at that point charged him, ran right towards him,” conservation officer Joe Caravetta said.

“It knocked him down, it started clawing him, biting him and threw him around. He was able to get up, and with his bow in hand and his arrow in hand, fight off the grizzly or hit it.”

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The man managed to fight off the bear who then left the area with her cubs.

WATCH: Cranbrook man fights off bear with bow and arrow

Dueck was able to walk to his vehicle and call for help. He suffered head and neck injuries and is now in Calgary’s Foothills Hospital. He is expected to make a full recovery.

Conservation officers say Dueck was in the wrong place at the wrong time. They do not believe the bear was injured and they have no plans to destroy the animal.

The agricultural fields where the attack took place have been temporarily closed.

On Tuesday the City of Cranbrook issued a statement saying a bear sow and three cubs had been spotted in the area.

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A mother bear with three cubs has been spotted over the noon hour Tuesday (September 1) in the Kennedy Road area. The cinnamon coloured sow and her family were seen quite close to where a lone black bear had been spotted in the same area over the past day or two.  In both instances, the bears were seen foraging on the chokecherry bushes in the area.

Dueck’s stepmother says his martial arts training kept him calm while under attack, which likely helped save his life.

“His hunting buddies that were at the hospital last night all said the only hunter they would know that would survive something like that is Chad,” said stepmother Christie Dueck.

-With files from Jon Azpiri and The Canadian Press

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