Bears


Help us keep bears wild while protecting yourself and your food!


Black Bears are numerous in the Park. They do sometimes show up at campsites. The following are ways you can help keep Baxter State Park’s bears wild and alive.


Never feed bears (or any other wildlife in Baxter State Park).

Don’t burn or bury food scraps or packaging; the odor attracts bears and other animals. Pack out all leftover food and garbage.

Store all food, toiletries, cooking utensils and scented items in your vehicle with windows rolled all the way up or on a bear pole, cable or tree limb, 15 feet high, 10 feet out on a limb. A bear relies on its incredible sense of smell to find food and can smell things we can’t, such as canned food or a tube of toothpaste. Properly hanging food or storing it in a vehicle also protects it from the commonest trouble-makers: squirrels or mice!

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Black Bear and Cubs by Jane Thomas

Don’t approach bears to take photos. If a bear walks toward you, shoo it away with hand gestures and loud noises. Please help ensure the bear’s survival in the wild by not feeding or coaxing it to get closer for a photo. All of these behaviors can cause bears to lose their fear of humans and become aggressive.

As cuddly and cute as bears look, they are wild, unpredictable animals! Baxter State Park is managed as a natural wild setting for animals. If we are forced to relocate a bear or bear cubs to another area, their chances of survival are greatly reduced. We need your help to keep Baxter State Park’s bears and other animals wild.

Thank you!

Failure to comply with Baxter State Park Regulations or follow these instructions will result in eviction from the Park and/or being issued a summons.