DR JACK AND THE BEAR SPRAY
High in the mountains above the spawning pools where we spent a lot of time photographing Black and Grizzly Bears are many huge waterfalls that feed the hundreds of lakes and thousands of smaller falls as the snow melt makes its way down to the Salmon and Bear Rivers that feed into the Portland Canal. One Summer day Dr. Jack and his wife, visitors to this area, drove high into the mountains, almost to the snow line, to photograph the amazing variety of flowers that bloom in the spray of one of the larger falls. Dr. Jack decided to climb up on some of boulders at the edge of the falls to get a closer shot of the blossoms. Now, everyone knew (or was told) to always carry bear spray in this area, particularly when away from the bear viewing area because the 'mountain' bears were definitely not acclimated to human presence nor did they have the easy source of food found at the spawning pools and the surrounding berry bushes. As Dr. Jack exited the car his wife handed him the bear spray and he slid it into the pocket of his cargo pants and made his way up the side of the falls. He bent down to capture a flower image and (you need to know that Dr. Jack was a tall and very ample man) evidently his ample middle squeezed the bear spray trigger and he received a big shot of the burning liquid into his pants! He had not realized that his wife had released the 'safety button' on the spray for him! When friends drove up they found Dr. Jack still dancing around frantically and at first it appeared that he had wet his pants until they watched as he poured several more cans of cold coke into his pants in an attempt to cool down the burns he had received! Needless to say, Dr. Jack was a lot of fun and nobody laughed harder with him than he did at himself.
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