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A couple of bear cubs in Gatlinburg were looking for a way to have fun on Tuesday, August 13! The two cubs stumbled onto the deck of a Gatlinburg cabin and climbed right into the hot tub. Ginger Maples in Gatlinburg caught the bears’ hot tub adventure on camera, and we’ve got the video! Below you can watch the video of the Gatlinburg bear cubs in the hot tub, and learn more about bear safety in the Smoky Mountains.
Gatlinburg Bear Cubs in Cabin’s Hot Tub
Two Gatlinburg bear cubs climbed up into a cabin’s hot tub for some fun in the water! WBIR shared a video taken by Ginger Maples in Gatlinburg that shows the cubs making their way in and splashing around. The two bears can be seen playing with each other in the hot tub before the video cuts to them cuddling with their mom after their fun is over. If you listen closely toward the end, you can hear one of the cubs purring! Watch the video below:
Gatlinburg Bear Safety
When you visit Gatlinburg, it’s important to be aware of bear safety. With more than 1,500 black bears in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the number of bear sightings on the rise, the city is taking more precautions to educate tourists on bear safety. You can find brochures and pamphlets with helpful information throughout the information centers in the park, and numerous signs throughout the park. Recently, the National Parks Conservation Association worked with TWRA to create a placemat about bear safety. The BearWise placemat features bear safety tips and is designed for children to color and solve puzzles that will teach them about bear behavior.
Here are some important Gatlinburg bear safety tips to keep in mind:
Never feed or approach the bears. No matter how “cute” the bears are, you have to remember that they are wild animals, and their behavior can be unpredictable. Stay 50 yards away from the bears at all times, and keep all food secured away from the bears.
Never leave food or trash unattended. Even if it’s just for a second, you never want to leave food or trash unattended. Always pick up all your trash and throw it away in bear proof trash cans. Many of the bear sightings at cabins are because the bears can smell food and have come to dig through the trash for scraps.
Always lock your car doors and keep windows rolled up. You’ve probably seen the video of a black bear in Gatlinburg trying to break into a car. This is one of the many instances that have occurred just this year. Be sure to keep your car doors locked and windows rolled up to avoid damage from bears.
If a bear spots you, don’t run. Most of the time, bears just want to be left alone. If the bear stays still after spotting you, move away slowly and sideways so you can still keep an eye on the bear. Sudden movements and running may cause the bear to react and chase you.
Where to Safely Spot Black Bears in the Smoky Mountains
If you’re hoping to see a black bear while you’re in the Smoky Mountains, there are few places you can go! Here are some of the most popular spots to safely view black bears:
Cades Cove: Black bears are most visible in Cades Cove in early mornings and late evenings. The best part is that this 11-mile loop road allows you to see the bears from the comfort of your car! You’ll also have the chance to spot other wildlife, like white-tailed deer.
Ober Gatlinburg’s Wildlife Encounter: To guarantee you see a black bear while you’re in the Smoky Mountains, visit Ober Gatlinburg’s Wildlife Encounter! The Wildlife Encounter is home to a black bear family, including Minnie and BJ, and their grown 6 year olds, Holly and Chief. You will also be able to see Birds of Prey, river otters, bobcats, and more.
Three Bears General Store: If you’re in Pigeon Forge, be sure to stop by the Three Bears General Store. Not only can you find the perfect souvenirs to take back home, but their live bear habitat has 3 black bears you can see and feed! There’s even a Make-UR-Bear Factory where you can get your own special black bear stuffed animal to take back home with you!
Hoping to see more animals while you’re in the Smoky Mountains? Read our blog, “Where and When to Spot Your Favorite Smoky Mountain Wildlife.”