A curious bear stuck its nose into a camper’s tent along the Appalachian Trail in New Jersey, leading to a shutdown of the camping site.
The black bear encounter occurred in Stokes State Forest at the Brink Road Shelter on the evening of May 18, Caryn Shinske, a public information officer for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection told McClatchy News.
“Due to increased bear activity, camping and drinking water access at and around” the shelter is closed for an unspecified amount of time, New Jersey State Parks, Forests & Historic Sites wrote May 19 on Facebook. “Hikers should plan their itineraries accordingly to avoid camping at the shelter until further notice.”
Shinske detailed how the “bear rubbed its nose up to” the tent’s screen, “causing (its) nose to partially enter” on May 18.
“This is the only recent human — bear interaction in the area that State Park Service staff is aware of,” she noted.
The shelter is commonly used by hikers camping out overnight while hiking the Appalachian Trail, according to Shinske. The trail spans more than 2,000 miles throughout 14 states.
Black bears are the biggest mammal living in New Jersey, according to the state DEP.
Stokes State Forest is located in northern New Jersey roughly 86 miles north of Trenton.