I looked through all the warning/danger tips under Yosemite, and they only talked about bears. In fact, there are more accidents involving deers than bears, although nothing as serious.
Both deers and bears like to hang around people for food. But the difference is that, when people see deers they like to get closer, but when they see bears they run away. People often think deers are cute and harmless. Well, not always. Deers can be unpredictable, especially during mating season. How do they hurt people? They butt and they kick. Unlike horses, they stand up and kick with their front legs instead.
At night (Sept 2003), on a campsite just outside Yosemite NP, we encountered a black bear two nights in a row. I did manage to get one picture of it, hoping the flashlight would scare it away. Do use the bear boxes...
Grizzly bears and mountain lions call Yosemite home. I did not encouter one here. Ironically, I saw a bear the other day in front of my house in New Jersey. They are here and there have been encounters. Don;t go off to far on your own here.
This park (as well as Sequoia and King's Canyon) have "wild" bears and so the visitors are requested to not leave any smelly stuff in the car (which even goes for toothpaste and perfums!). Hikers are adviced to do the same and use only vacuum-packed foods during their adventures, especially when they stay out in the open wild.
In the world of alpinists it is known anyway. Do not go onto climbing-tracks that are over your skills and never go alone. Take the warnings serious and don't think to quickly that "it will be alright". Yearly accidents happen with rookies and not seldomly lethal.
Wild Animals are exactly that, wild! As gentle as they look, there are more reports of deer-inflicted injuries every year than bear inflicted injuries. Yosemite is home to everything from deer to squirrels to bears and mountain lions. Even squirrels have fleas that can carry the plague! Mountain lion sightings are extremely rare and if you see one, report when and where to a ranger as soon as possible. They like to keep an update on where the mountain lions are. Just remember to never approach a wild animal no matter how tame it looks!
Black bears are very abundent throughout Yosemite! They are often brown and while not usually agressive, keep your distance! Do not leave any food in your car, not even an empty ice chest. Bears have learned that an ice chest means food and they can and will break into your car to find it. Bears can smell a donut from over a mile away. Don't even leave a stick of gum in the glove compartment! Always use bearproof lockers supplied around the park.
All these warnings of bears and I didn't even see a squirrel! No bear sightings that I can report of. Though one night we were awaken by the howls of coyotes/wolves.
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