Scout survives attack by bear

A Boy Scout avoided serious injuries by playing dead when attacked by a bear during a recent camping trip in Pennsylvania.

After a bear ripped down his tent at Hickory Run State Park, Chris Malasics, 14, tried to figure out the best thing to do to not get hurt.  He then curled up in the fetal position inside his sleeping bag.

As the bear started tossing Chris around, his Scout leader tried to create a disturbance by banging pots and pans and flashing car headlights. The bear eventually got the message and wandered off.

Chris was taken to a hospital for treatment for his cuts and bruises. He was also given a precautionary rabies shot.

He said the experience will not keep him from going camping again.  In the future he intends to make sure he has pepper spray for any bears that may show up.


  1. Amazing. Incredible. Believe it or not, that once happened to my dad. at night, he had this huge mini kitchen at his campsight. he was in his tent and he heard a growl. using his instincts, he stayed in the tent. the bear ate all the food, but he didn’t hurt my dad.

  2. Pepper spray? There’s nothing like turning a curious black bear into an angry black bear! (Other versions of this report elsewhere also mention a comment about bringing a gun next time!) Whoa! Better check the “Guide to Safe Scouting” and with bear experts about all those ideas!!! (Any food or food odors in or around that tent? People are also teaching the bears to associate trash bags, scented or not, with food. So, while I’m no expert, I’d suggest not packing your sleeping bag, clothes, and other camping stuff in trash bags.)

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