Pocket Park Camping Hampered by Bear Attacks

The Stapleton MCA has long encouraged residents to have fun events at the several Stapleton pocket parks. One of the events that has been encouraged over the years is a camping outing. Parents are encouraged to bring their families and camping gear to the pocket park and have a fun, low stress camp out. Of course, many families are unable to make it through the night, but the families are all able to enjoy their time out.

This year, no one ended up staying through the night at one of the Eastbridge pocket parks. “We had a great evening,” said camper David Westerberg. “We played some games, grilled, had s’mores, and drank some beverages. The kids had a great time, and everyone began getting their kids in the tents around 10:30.” It was about an hour later when the camping experience became a nightmare for the 100 or so campers.

“All of the sudden, we heard screaming and yelling,” said camper Chad Jones. “People immediately ran out of their tents to see what was going on and saw three bears tearing apart tents. No one thought to elevate their food or take the normal precautions you take when you are out in the bush.” Colorado DNR officer Mike Bird explained why bears may have come to the Stapleton pocket parks. “Bears are smart,” said Bird. “They also have incredible senses. Bears have been continually wandering down the front range for the easy food and garbage people leave out. The Stapleton pocket parks just provide a good target.”

Luckily, no one was hurt, and the bears eventually moved on after going through everything. “We placed some new signs at the parks just so everyone will stay alert,” said Bird. “After having a successful gathering trip like that, they will most certainly come back to the same spot.” Jones is unsure if he will have another pocket park camping experience. “Obviously, it will take the kids a little while to get over it. If we do participate again, we will definitely take significantly more precautions than we did last week.”

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