Michigan man victim of bear attack in Yellowstone National Park
John Wallace killed while hiking Mary Mountain Trail
by Yellowstone National Park
August 29, 2011
A 59-year old man has been identified as the hiker found dead on a trail in Yellowstone National Park on Friday.
John Wallace was from the community of Chassell, in Michiganís Upper Peninsula.
His body was discovered Friday morning by two hikers along the Mary Mountain Trail. The twenty-one mile long trail crosses the center of Yellowstone, connecting the west and east sides of the lower portion of the Grand Loop Road.
Wallace was discovered along the trail, about five miles west of the Hayden Valley trailhead, which is off the Grand Loop road between Mud Volcano and Canyon Junction.
Wallace was traveling alone, and had pitched a tent in a park campground sometime Wednesday.
Rangers discovered signs of grizzly bear activity at the scene Friday afternoon, including bear tracks and scat.
Results from an autopsy conducted Sunday afternoon concluded that Wallace died as a result of traumatic injuries from a bear attack.
The Mary Mountain Trail, the Cygnet Lakes Trail, and the section of the Hayden Valley west of the Grand Loop Road have been closed to hikers.
Park rangers, wildlife biologists, and park managers continue their investigation of the incident.
Visitors are advised to stay on designated trails, hike in groups of three or more people, be alert for bears, make noise, carry bear spray, and not to run upon encountering a bear.
Hikers and backcountry users are encouraged to check with staff at park visitor centers or backcountry offices for updated information before planning any trips in the central portion of the park.