Yellowstone Bison Tosses Visitor From Trail Near Old Faithful
A 72-year-old woman was headbutted, pushed and thrown from a trail by a bison Tuesday afternoon near Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park, the first such incident in 2018.
Virginia Junk of Boise, Idaho, suffered minor injuries. Park rangers treated her at the scene before she was taken by ambulance to Madison Memorial Hospital in Rexburg, Idaho.
According to the National Park Service, Junk did not see the animal as she walked around a bend in a trail in the Old Faithful area. She wasn't able to move away before the animal dropped its head, butted her in the thigh, then pushed and tossed her from the trail.
No citations were issued as a result of the incident.
The Park Service says it's the first incident of a bison injuring a visitor in 2018. One such encounter occurred in 2017, and it happened five times in 2015.
In a statement, officials emphasize that animals in Yellowstone are wild and unpredictable, no matter how calm they may appear to be.
"When an animal is near a trial, boardwalk, parking lot or in a developed area, give it space. Always stay at least 100 yards away from bears and wolves, and at least 25 yards away from all other animals, including bison and elk," the Park Service says.
Should the need arise, visitors can always turn around and move away from an animal to avoid interacting with it in close proximity.