Michigan man wounded in bear mauling north of Glennallen

A Michigan hunter suffered severe injuries when he was mauled by a grizzly bear during a hunting trip near Glennallen on Tuesday, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Word reached Alaska Wildlife Troopers shortly after 5 p.m. of the attack on 33-year-old Nicholas Kuperus. The mauling occurred along the upper east fork of the Indian River, about 60 miles north of Glennallen.

“(Kuperus) and his hunting partners surprised a sow grizzly bear with three cubs,” troopers said in a statement on Wednesday. “Kuperus was attacked by the sow and received serious puncture wounds to his arms but was able to deter and stop the attack using bear spray.”

Wildlife troopers were able to contact Kuperus with a satellite communication device. Troopers used a state-owned small plane to land on a nearby ridgetop and pick Kuperus up, flying him to Glennallen for medical attention.

The Anchorage Daily News reported last week that another hunter was mauled by a brown bear near Ship Creek, up the valley from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. The man had shot the bear and thought it was dead, but when he approached it charged.

Chris Klint is a web producer and breaking news reporter at Alaska Public Media. Reach him at cklint@alaskapublic.org. Read more about Chris here.

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