My beauty is beyond compare. Thick black fur covering me from nose to paws, protecting me from the cold winters. I have brown eyes that could use glasses for distance, but excellent closeup vision. My large ears are also covered with fur, but I can hear a footfall a mile away. My hearing is one of my best assets for my safety.
I left my mother at the age of 18 months, but have survived easily. The forest is full of berries, nuts, and other vegetation that is quite sufficient. For a special treat, I enjoy catching salmon in the freezing water. The cold doesn’t bother me with my luxurious fur coat. I am quite adept at catching fish because of my long sharp claws. The salmon are easy, because they offer themselves up at a certain time of year. Sadly for them, spawning season is, I imagine, both delightful and dangerous. We bears are grateful for their sacrifice.
I’m also a good swimmer, buoyancy of the waters making me very agile and quick. On land I can run fast as long as I’m not carrying the extra weight of hibernation. I’ve even heard some of my family accomplish a speed of thirty miles per hour. However, that top speed will not be maintained for a complete hour. My sense of smell is outstanding. In fact I will probably smell you before I see you.
If you come upon me and my friends, I will know it. As long as you back up slowly, I have no reason to think you are a threat. However, if you turn and run, chances are I will be faster than you and I might be hungry. So be warned, and smart. If you see fresh bear scat where you’re trekking, remove yourself from the area immediately; walk don’t run. It’s likely I’m already watching you to judge your presence as friendly, or threatening. If my cubs are near, don’t stop to take pictures or ooh and ahh. I am a very protective parent, just like you.