Black Bear Sighting Near Our Little House


As we enter the dog days of August, it’s not your typical long, hot days here. We’re having unseasonably cooler and rainy weather (although the humidity remains) for this time of year.

As well, bears are on our mind, instead of dog days.

No, not the type of bears found in my cabin décor, but real, honest to goodness black bears.

My aunt, who lives about ¼ down the road, called on Sunday to say they had just seen a juvenile bear climb up a tree near their deck to try to swipe a suet cake they had out for the birds.

They’ve been here full time since 1999 and although we knew bears are here, somewhere, this is the first sighting for either of us.

She wanted to warn me as she didn’t know which direction the bear had gone and she was afraid for our dogs.

We’ve been on alert, but so far, no sightings.

It reminds me of when I heard what we were told was a mountain lion three years ago. Our Emma then went missing that summer and I saw the mountain lion crossing the road about 1 mile from Our Little House.

I want to see a bear, but I want us all to remain safe.

In the meantime, here is a recipe I made up later that day from a few things I had hanging out in our pantry.

It’s not a black bear recipe, but a black bean recipe.

It’s a good Meatless Monday for a cool, rainy night.

Living Large Black Bean and Corn Vegan Casserole

1 cup cooked brown rice

1 can diced organic tomatoes

1 can organic sweet corn

1 can organic black beans

1 onion, diced

2 garlic gloves, pressed

1 tblsp. olive oil

2 tblsp. taco seasoning (we use Spanish Gardens, found in Kansas City)

1 tsp. crushed red pepper

1 tblsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 tblsp. McCormick’s Mexican spice blend (optional for vegetarian instead of vegan dish)

1 cup organic grated Mexican blend cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook brown rice and set aside. Heat olive oil in a skillet. Add diced onions and press garlic into the pan. Cook until onions are translucent. Add rice and onion/garlic mixture to large bowl. Add corn, beans, tomatoes and spices. Mix well. Place mixture in a large casserole dish. You can add cheese and bake on top (optional) or put cheese on individual servings when it comes out of the oven. Bake just about 20 minutes or until heated through. Serve with warm tortillas or chips.

Have you ever seen a black bear, mountain lion or other large wildlife? Were you terrified?   

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6 Responses

  1. Sheryl M says:

    Up in NW Georgia, we’ve seen (and have had reported) quite a few black bears this summer. One even came up on the office deck to eat the resident cats food. I’m wondering if it’s the rainy weather that’s bringing more bears out?

    • Kerri says:

      Hmm, I don’t know, Sheryl. Did you see the story about the bear in Florida that came up and napped on a family’s porch because it was looking for shade? Now they’re saying it is too used to humans and will have to be killed. I hate it when all humans can do is kill wildlife after we’ve invaded their territory.

  2. Donna says:

    I’d much rather run into a black bear than a mountain lion any day. Sorry your dog (I’m guessing Emma’s a dog?) went missing around the time you were seeing one. How sad for you, and scary.

    Thanks for sharing the recipe – gotta love anything with garlic, black beans, and tomatoes!

    • Kerri says:

      Yes, Donna, Emma was a shepherd/Rottie mix, a pretty large dog and she was out with a pit bull and a pit/lab mix, so whatever got her was pretty large and pretty bold. It was very sad and now, 3 years later, we still miss her.
      Hope you enjoy the recipe!

  3. Mo says:

    I know we all like to see birds in our backyards but feeding them in the Summer is a bad idea in many ways. In our neighborhood salmonila and conjuntivitis spread via the bird feeders and killed dozens of finches, towhees and sparrows. A bit south of us West Nile Virus is believed to have been more concentrated due to the number of people feeding birds. The Jays and Crows were most affected.

    Bears seem especially attracted to bird feeders in the area. The sad part is that when a bear begins to scavenge for food provided by humans it ends up dead. The wildlife officials here say “fed bear, dead bear.”

    We have two regulars, Chubby Boo Boo (300+ pounds) and Mr. Wooly (a cinnamon colored black bear) We don’t generally have a problem with them as we are careful with the barbeque, garbage and don’t feed the critters.

    Every couple of years someone shoots one on their porch or in their cabin. They become quite bold and dangerous once they become accustomed to humans. A weekend visitor lost a dog that was tied up at the campground… very sad. All they could do was watch in horror. Folks forget Disney is not reality…

    • Kerri says:

      You’re right, Mo, people do forget that this is reality, not fiction and bears don’t wear uniforms or really help us fight fires. We don’t feed the wildlife for this very reason, but I know I cannot control what others do. We also watch what we put into the garbage cans, as I don’t even like attracting raccoons.