DKU: MN Man fights off 3 bear attacks with 5″ Knife

A Minnesota man went out after dark to help a friend track a bear that they thought they had killed. They were wrong. Brandon Johnson was knocked unconscious by the charging bruin and when he came to the 525 pound black bear was gnawing on his shattered arm. Brandon fought back by repeatedly stabbing the bear with a 5″ knife. The bear let go and sauntered off, but returned two more times.



“The bear backed off and soon walked away, but minutes later it came back.

“I could feel like all the energy and adrenaline I had built up was leaving,” he said.

The bear left a second time while Johnson screamed for help from his fiancé and friends scattered in the woods.

But, for a third time, the nightmare returned.

“Once I got to the point where I thought I was going to die, and I got myself to the point where I was ready to die, there was no more fear,” he said.

Johnson said he shoved his hand into the bears open mouth stabbing it throat.

The bear grabbed onto to Johnson’s leg, picked him up, slammed him to the ground, and walked away.

Friends found the carcass the next day, 50 feet from where the attack occurred.”

I am surprised there is no mention of a firearm. Regardless, when Brandon recovers he will have the mother of all stories to tell around the fire.

I hope his friend let him keep the pelt.


I guide fly-fishermen in the Smoky Mountains National Park and encounter bears several times each season. Usually it is the bear’s ass as it busts off up the hill and through the bush. There have been a few more “interactive” incidents, but I have never felt truly threatened.


Mama Bear and Cub. Greenbrier Creek GSMNP

I am prohibited from carrying a firearm while operating my business in the Park (though you may when acting as a private citizen), but I do have my Mora Bushcraft. I don’t really miss a gun in the National Park (the Cherokee Nat’l Forest is a different matter, due to potential 2-legged predators), but potential bear defense is something I consider when selecting a knife for the Smokies. Then again, I am fishing and not chasing a wounded bear at night as a general rule.


Update 12/14/14: Welcome Instapundit readers. I am a little embarrassed that the good Doctor passed this one along, it is just a reblog with little original content on our part. Thank you to Glenn and thanks to those of you joining us regardless.

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  1. MD Matt says:

    Sometimes you get the bear and sometimes…

  2. I wonder if we can identify the knife in the video. I can’t quite make it out.


  3. KBK says:

    Yeah, he’s lazy that way often.

  4. forrest says:

    Going into the woods after dark to look for a wounded bear that your buddy shot and not even bothering to bring a gun would normally qualify one for a Darwin award, except that this fool was lucky enough to survive.

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DKU: MN Man fights off 3 bear attacks with 5″ Knife

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