According to reports, a man from Alaska miraculously survived a brown bear mule that included multiple bites on the head, a crushed jaw, and a cavernous scalp wound.
Allen Minish, 61, was alone researching land for a real estate agent in a remote part of the state. He was typing some numbers into his GPS unit when he noticed the animal was walking about 30 feet away.
“I saw him and he saw me at the same time, and it’s scary,” Minish told The Associated Press by phone on Wednesday from his hospital bed in Anchorage, the day after the horrific attack.
He suffered a bruised jaw, a scalp wound so deep that the doctor said he could see bones and multiple cuts, and received 100 stitches after a 4½ hour operation.
Minish also has a mark over his badly injured right eye.
He said the bear caused the devastating injuries in an attack that lasted less than 10 seconds early Tuesday near the small community of Gulkana, about 190 miles northeast of Anchorage.
When he attacked Bear – whom Minish said was taller than the 300-pound black bear he’d seen earlier – he tried to dodge behind small spruce trees.
But that didn’t stop the massive animal that pierced her on the way to his terrified victim.
In desperation, Minish held up the pointy end of his survey pole and pushed it toward the bear to keep it away from him – but it just tossed it away.
The force of the blow knocked Minish to the ground.
“When he pounced on me, I grabbed his lower jaw to pull him away,” he told the news agency.
He explained to KTUU that he had tried the maneuver, “because if you grab a dog’s lower jaw, it won’t be able to bite you.”
“So I punched a hole in my hand with my molar, but he couldn’t close his mouth. And all he did was scratch my hand with his top,” Minish told the station.
“But then he turned his head so fast that he hit my hand free,” he continued, “and when he did that he fell, grabbed my head, took the first bite, relaxed, and took the second bite, who was stronger. And then he cracked all the bones and part of my head. “
Minish said the moment the bear put its mouth over its skull, it thought, “Saints – that’s a big bear!”
When the bear finally let go, Minish turned his face to the ground and put his hands over his head as the animal strolled away.
“I realized I was in pretty bad shape because I had all this blood everywhere,” he told The AP.
While he was on the 911 phone, Minish took off his surveyor’s vest and T-shirt and wrapped them around his mutilated head to stop the bleeding.
Minish said he managed to give the dispatcher his exact coordinates from his GPS device – but even that was an ordeal, “because I got so much blood in my eyes and on the GPS, I kept wiping everything . “
When the rescuers finally arrived an hour later, one of them called him a hero after seeing how much blood he had lost.
Rescuers tried to get him onto a road parallel to the nearby Trans-Alaska Pipeline to meet an ambulance, but when those efforts failed, they helped him a quarter of a mile through swamps, brushes and trees to an airport respectively.
He was flown to Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, where he is listed in good condition.
Minish said he left his gun in his vehicle, but it wouldn’t have mattered anyway because the bear was moving on him too fast to be of any use.
He can now add his name to the list of six people he knows who were attacked by bears in Alaska.
“I think I feel happy,” Minish said, adding that someone told him he was better hurt than dead.
“Honestly, it wouldn’t have mattered either way. You know, if it killed me, it killed me. I had a good life. I’m going on. It didn’t kill me, so let’s go the other way now to stay alive, ”he added.