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Night of the Grizzlies
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Night of the Grizzlies

4.07 of 5 stars 4.07  ·  rating details  ·  307 ratings  ·  49 reviews
Jack Olsen's true account, traces the causes of the tragic night in August 1967 when two separate and unrelated campers, a distance apart, were savagely mangled and killed by enraged bears.
Paperback, 221 pages
Published June 1st 1996 by Homestead Pub (first published 1969)
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I know this is supposed to be one of the best books out there on grizzly attacks, but I just didn't enjoy reading it.

Although the subject matter -- two grizzly attacks in Glacier National Park on the same night in 967 -- is engrossing, the writer's style did not appeal to me at all.

I believe this was originally published in 1969, so perhaps the writing is a bit old-fashioned for my tastes. The author spends a good two-thirds of the book describing scenery, flowers and animals, that might set t
I run in to grizzly bears from time to time while hiking in Glacier National Park, 30 minutes from my home. Though they normally just turn tail and run away from me, I thought this would be a good book to help me better understand these lumbering creatures that share the trail with me.

I'd just read McMilion's book "Mark of the Grizzly" and found it to be loaded with the science of the grizzly bear, its habitat, what to do and not do if you encounter a grizzly in certain situations (e.g. while fe
Overall, a very good story, and very sad because it's true. Despite the terribly written preface, the story was written well and built suspense, despite some archaic writing that sounded more like the '50s than '69 (e.g., chauvinistic descriptions of women and embarrassments like, "For a year Gildart and his wife had lived on the Rocky Boy Indian Reservation in northern Montana, where they eked out a living and learned the Indian ways...."). Right. "learned the Indian ways" in a year. And it's " ...more
The story of two separate deadly grizzly attacks that happened in Glacier National Park on the same night in 1967. The book, published in 1969, is now out of print--probably because much of the information in it is now really dated. Still, a fascinating tale.

I see the book as an important work of journalism. The author pulled together the full story of the bear management practices (or lack of them) that led up to these two awful attacks--a story that the National Park Service obviously tried to
A terrific page turner for anyone who's been backpacking in Glacier NP (or just plain loves the wilderness). This book outlines the tragic consequences of human encroachment of natural habitats, ignorance, overconfidence, and bureaucratic passing of the buck. I found this book to be very enjoyable, and it can perhaps be considered a relatively early pioneer of the environmental and natural conservation writings. It was Krakauer-esque, or perhaps it is more accurate to state that Krakauer's writi ...more
Dec 02, 2011 Fox rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Fox by: Holly
This book was originally given to me when I was living in Montana, roughly three hours away from Glacier Park. During the time I was living there I had heard of a few grizzly encounters, most occurring amongst my friends who were camping during the late summer and the like. No one I knew personally had been harmed by them - but a few had been treed. I was lucky enough to see one in person, about ten years from me, in Yellowstone Park before I returned to the east coast. Well, I feel a bit better ...more
Book Concierge
Over the course of U.S. history, the grizzly bear’s environment has been steadily encroached upon by man, the grizzly’s only enemy. Once roaming over the Great Plains and mountains of the western United States, they have retreated to the few remaining wilderness areas that afford them sufficient food. Still, they remain solitary and typically avoid humans. In this nonfiction work, Olsen explores the events that culminated in one night of terror in August 1967 when two young women were savagely a ...more
Hannah Haas
The Night of the Grizzles is a book I had to read in school. Most often I dread reading books the school tells me to but I REALLY enjoyed this one. It is a story about two 19 year old girls who are killed by Grizzly bears in Glacier National Park around the summer of 1967. The beginning is rather slow but after you hit about chapter 4 you will not be able to put it down, I promise. Hands down one of the best non-fiction books I have EVER read! (: Be sure to check it out.
I waited until AFTER I returned from Glacier National Park to read this book.

Thank God.

On one night in the 1960s, grizzly bears killed two campers, both young women, at two separate camp sites in Glacier. They were the first recorded fatal bear attacks in the park's history and led to radical changes in how people and animals interact at national parks.

The story is eerie on its own, but Olsen is at his best here, drawing out details and digging into why and how things happened.

It's worth noti
P.S. Winn
I remember this happening when I was a kid in Montana. The story takes you on the adventure, the sad and terrifying adventure of a grizzly bear after blood. This is a great book that tells the true story of the people who made it through the awful night and is a reminder to people...Yes bears are wild animals.
I had meant to read this book for some time but hadn't got around to it till now. I was visiting Glacier National Park and saw this book in Lake Mary's gift shop and bought it. I waited till I got home to read the story of two girls who were killed and attacked by different Grizzlies on the same night in 1967. It is a well-written book and it took me one day to read it because of the inherent suspense. I had also just hiked or camped near the places where the attacks occurred. I can say that the ...more
Sep 27, 2008 Noah rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Nature lovers, thrill seekers, bears that can read
This book tells the story of the first two deaths by grizzly in the history of the National Park Service (in the same night, no less), though considering how many hikers had gone missing and never been found in the preceding years, I'm sure there had been a few more they didn't know about. The author's conclusion has been proven wrong so far by the resilient animals--"The grizzly will not return; he will be lost forever, along with the wild frontier on which he lived his final few years as the m ...more
True, suspenseful. The reader knows what is going to happen, but the reader is held to the edge of their seats as the tragedy unfolds.
Heather Moss
I read this while I was camping at Glacier, which probably wasn't the smartest move. Let's just say I didn't do much sleeping. It's quite a gripping account, and I read it several times while I lived in Montana in the 1990s. Now that I live 2300 miles away and I'm much more likely to get shot by a drug dealer than mauled by a grizzly, I think I might read it again.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I have always respected the grizzly, now more.
Steve Carr
A true classic among wilderness books. I bought this book from the gift shop at the Glacier Park Lodge when there for a meeting in September 2006. Fortunately, I didn't start reading it until after I did some hiking. This was a gripping story of two simultaneous bear attacks in the summer of 1967. The conditions in the park which precipitated the attacks have been changed, but this haunting tale is forever woven into the fabric of this majestic place. It's a story you'll never forget.
Aug 09, 2008 Caleb rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People interested in books about bears attacking people.
Recommended to Caleb by: Bernd Brunner (not personally, but in his book about bears)
Shelves: non-fiction
This is a novel-like narrative leading up to the unlikely incident in the late 60's during which two young women were both killed by grizzly bears in Glacier National Park in the exact same night, after decades during which no one was killed by a bear. The stats and science are obviously pretty dubious at this point, since it's pushing 40 years old, but it's still pretty well written and surprisingly sober for a book about grizzly bears killing young women.
This book has been around for quite awhile, but it is still riveting and fascinating. It is the story of one summer in Glacier National Park when all situations came together to cause a tragedy between humans and grizzlies. It shows us that there are flaws in the park system, as well as in plain old common sense. This book was hard to put down, and well worth reading, because I feel that the same flaws and negligence could happen at any time.
Ben Vogel
My old friend Joe gave this to me to read, and by chance I started it when we were traveling out West. That was a crazy choice, because the story told in this book is real, it is riveting, and it will scare the hell out of you, especially if you are anywhere near bear country. I should find a copy and read it again (2011) as I originally read this in approx 1991.
To put the fear of god in you... and rightly so. Sing off-tune, rail on about your favorite subject, yodel. Do whatever it takes to warn them bears when you are rounding the bend, coming down the mountain, sleeping next to your toothpaste ill-adivsably. Bury your head and hope that they haven't singled you out for sustenance.
A well investigated account of the first grizzly attacks within national park boundaries and what lead to these attacks. In the aftermath of the attacks, there was a complete overhaul of the policies on bear management within the parks primarily stopping the trend of feeding bears garbage. A quick, interesting read.

This book is written quite differently than a modern author would write it. It was published in 67, when people didn't know as much about bears, therefore the author doesn't go into bear behavior almost at all. But it was well written in its own way and a must-read for people who find bears fascinating.
Acquired by Mom in the Many Glacier Lodge gift shop a few days before our hike out to Granite Park chalet; read by all 4 of us before the trip ended.

Interesting perspective as to how much has changed as far as relations-to-wildlife in just 45 years or so in the national park.
One of the few documentaries I've ever read - a fascinating story of how human stupidity and aberrant nature combine to make the worst circumstances possible and result in tragedy. A good, slow read - not one I burned through but still a book I looked forward to reading.
David Bales
Interesting book about the 1967 incident at Glacier National Park where a grizzly killed two campers after terrorizing the back country for that entire summer. The cheesy '70s movie "Grizzly" was loosely based on this as was the cheesy Will Collins novel of the same name.
Tova Ross
Amazing book - I could not put it down. The only reason I did, before finishing it, was because I heard a noise outside my door and thought it was a grizzly bear. Olsen paints an extraordinarily compelling and terrifying story that happened in real life.
Julie Huff
This book is about two deaths in Glacier Nat'l Park on the same night by two different grizzlies. It's an eye opener to what the park service used to be like. You can't be faint of heart for this gets pretty detailed.
at our night of the grizzlies party in Glacier NP we ate raw steak, drank bloody marys, and had a generally big time. In the midst of it someone came in to tell me about a death in the family. sweet irony.
This book was a thriller coming at you in every direction. With outstanding actions. There parts in this book where I would litterly pee myself. If you are a fan of the outdoors I recomend this book.
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