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Natural Connections

Sep 15, 2022

The voices filtering through our Boundary Waters campsite were so calm and sweet-sounding it took me a minute to process the words: “Hey, bear.”

Lake water dripped from my swim shorts, and I continued toweling off in the sun while the meaning sank in. “Hey, bear!”

Looking across the wilderness campsite, where a group of colorful tents lined the woods on the way back to the latrine trail, I saw a fuzzy black shape in their midst. Ally and Caleb, a young couple who’d been resting in a hammock, were calmly talking to the bear, waving their arms, and doing all the right things to let the bear know that camp was full of humans without startling it. The bear did not care.