Grizzly Bear and cub ©2011 D. Edgers Sturges
©2011 D. Edgers Sturges

Last autumn, my painting was selectd for the Oil Painters of America Western Regional Exhibition in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. It was a fun event. I love Jackson Hole and I also love how close it is to two of my favorite places, Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park.

Yellowstone National Park is one of my favorite places to visit on Earth. I am lucky to live only five hours away from this amazing place and I get to visit there quit often. So on our way home, my traveling companion, wildlife artist Debbie Edgers Sturges and I decided to take a little ‘detour’…

Now, I have been going to Yellowstone for over 25 consecutive years and have only seen a few Grizzly bears during my many visits. Even Black bears are exciting and unusual to see these days. Gone are the days when the bears would walk up to the cars like ‘Yogi Bear’ and beg the tourists for their picnic baskets. This was dangerous behavior and nowadays, the rangers quickly remove those ‘trouble’ bears into the back-country.

So needless to say, my friend and fellow painter,and I were more than excited to see a mother Grizzly sow and her cubs up close and personal. Yes, I was dangerously close to the bears. But, I am from bear country and I take bears very seriously, so I filmed the video from the safety of my truck.

Did you know?

  • Adult Grizzly bears can run from a standing start up to 25 MPH in 6 seconds, and can cover over 109 yards in 6 seconds!
  • A male grizzly can easily run 30 MPH.
  • …and a female with cubs will lope at up to 15 MPH.

If that mother bear got upset with us, she could have charged over to the crowd in just a few seconds and all those silly tourists would have been clambering for the security of my pickup truck – if they were lucky!

I hope you enjoy this quick little video of highlighting the bears, bison, elk, geysers and more!

You might like some of my other fun travel posts:

Safety Tips for the Outdoor Painter

New Zealand: Painting & Playing in the God Zone

Birdwatching in New Zealand: In Search of the Rare Fiordland Penguin

How to Pack for Painting: Tips to For the Painter Traveling by Plane or Car

How to Build Pochade Box from a Cigar Box

Up Close & Personal with New Zealand’s Giant Longfin Eel

My Tour de France

Water Soluble Oil Paints: Facts, Tips & Why I Use Them

Turn an Altoid Box into a Mini Watercolor Set

Lori McNee

Lori McNee is a professional artist who specializes in still life, and landscape oil paintings. She is an exhibiting member of Oil Painters of America, Plein Air Painters of Idaho, serves on the Plein Air Mag Board of Advisors, and is an Artist Ambassador to Arches/Canson/Royal Talens. As the owner of, Lori blogs about fine art tips, marketing, and social media advice for the aspiring and professional artist. As a social media influencer, Lori ranks as one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women on Twitter, has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and named a #TwitterPowerhouse by The Huffington Post. She is a keynote speaker, has been a talk show host for Plum TV, writes for F+W Media publications including Artist’s Magazine, Artist’s & Graphic Designer’s Market, Photographer’s Market. Also, Zero to 100,000: Social Media Tips & Tricks for Small Businesses. Lori is also a member of the CBS Entertainment Tonight & The Insider Tweet Team.

5 thoughts on “Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Family: Too Close for Comfort!

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  3. Celia says:

    I visited Yellowstone and its surroundings for only 5 days! It is such a special place, how lucky you are to be able to visit so often.Thank you for sharing your video.

    • Lori McNee says:

      Yes, Celia. I am very lucky to live so close to Yellowstone. I find a lot of inspiration each time I visit there. Thank you for enjoying the video and commenting. I really appreciate it!

      Lori 🙂

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