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Bear in Steamboat Springs put down after trapping family in home for 45 minutes

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS – A bear that entered a home on Tue., Sept. 7 just east of Highway 40 in Steamboat Springs, trapping the residents inside, was euthanized by Colorado Parks and Wildlife after displaying aggressive behavior with responding wildlife officers.

A large black bear entered a home near downtown Steamboat Springs through an open garage door and became trapped inside, also trapping the owners in an upstairs room. The bear was aggressive with responding wildlife officers and could not be hazed from the house after 45 minutes. The bear was put down for reasons of health and human safety.

Residents in the area told CPW District Wildlife Manager Adam Gerstenberger the bear had gotten into food in their garage recently as well.

“The bear had a broken lower jaw that was split in the middle,” Gerstenberger said. “It had healed up wrong and one of its canines was hanging out from its upper lip. The other lower canine was shattered, so its teeth weren’t meeting up. The injury is likely the reason why the bear had turned to human food sources.”

Black bears in Colorado are entering hyperphagia and will spend up to 20 hours a day trying to eat more than 20,000 calories to fatten up for winter. As bears start to prepare for hibernation and hunt for food, Coloradans may see more bear activity in urban areas. Coloradans should be careful to secure attractants and food sources around their house that can attract bears.

For more information on bears in Colorado, visit If you have questions or need to report bear problems, call your nearest CPW office

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