Gloria Dickie is a science and environmental journalist based in Boulder, Colorado. She graduated from the University of Colorado with a master's degree in environmental journalism, and holds a bachelor of arts in media, information, and technology studies from the University of Western Ontario. Her work appears in National Geographic News, High Country News, OnEarth, Outside, Discover, The Denver Post, Hakai Magazine, Adventure Journal, Arctic Deeply, bioGraphic, and Vice, among others. You can see more of her work at www.gloriadickie.com.
Growing up in Canada, I was used to the sight of bear-resistant trash bins at our national parks, and cities that bordered the wildland. When I moved to Boulder in 2013, I was dismayed to see that my condominium complex didn't have bear-resistant bins. The next month, three bears were euthanized by Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
It was then I began keeping track of all urban bear issues in the West. In 2014, I traveled to Aspen, Snowmass, and Banff National Park. In the spring of 2015, I concluded my reporting with a visit to Lake Tahoe. Along the way I consulted with dozens of bear experts, only a few of which made the final story. Of note were Bryan Peterson, of Bear Smart Durango, and Brenda Lee, of the Boulder Bear Coalition.
A big thank you also goes out to my editor, Michael Kodas, on the project.
Though many have noted the rise in urban bear issues on a regional basis, there are few journalistic reports that address this wide-ranging issue in the West. It's my hope this project will shed some light on the different issues urban bears have presented, and the different ways in which communities are trying to coexist with bears.