Bear awoken from hibernation now wandering Basalt area for food

BASALT, Colo. - A bear wandering around Basalt doesn't seem to realize it's almost Christmas.

The bear, apparently disturbed during hibernation, has been seen around town lately, looking for food.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife spokesman Mike Porras told The Aspen Times that the bear could have been awoken by something natural or man-made and then likely began looking around for calories to remain awake.

Police have been getting calls from people worried about the bear because it's not hibernating. Porras is urging residents not to feed it and put away bird feeders and other possible sources of food.

It’s tough not to feel sorry for the young bruin, described as a large cub that appears to be a decent shape.

Wildlife officers don’t want to intervene because the bear isn’t posing a threat by raiding trash or breaking into houses, Porras said. If people are diligent about cutting off the calories, the bear will hibernate, he said.