We live in bear country and it’s not uncommon to see bears getting into trash or near hiking trails. You should be “bear aware” and prepare for encounters.   

The first thing to do is prepare your property. Make sure it is unlikely to attract bears. Birdseed is a very high calorie food for bears, so bring your bird feeders indoors at night. Give your grill a cleaning to get rid of the smell of grease and be aware of any food or anything that smells like food surrounding your house.   

And it’s no secret that bears like to get into trash so make sure you trash is secure or put away.   

RELATED: First Bear Attack of the Year Recorded Northeast of Durango

Your car is also a place to have prepared for bears. You would be surprised how many bears can get into cars that are unlocked.   

Both Dan and I have spotted large bears in our yards in Poncha Springs multiple times and residents have also seen them in Salida and surrounding areas as well. Be safe, be prepared, and be “Bear Aware” this time of year.