Montana officials search for bear that killed cyclist

Hunt is on for bear that killed cyclist
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    Hunt is on for bear that killed cyclist


Hunt is on for bear that killed cyclist 01:26

Story highlights

  • Bear attacked mountain biker on trail new Montana park
  • Authorities set traps and cameras to find the bear

(CNN)A bear knocked a cyclist off his mountain bike and killed him in a rare encounter Wednesday afternoon near the Glacier National Park.

Authorities are now searching for the offending bear.
    The victim, Brad Treat, 38, had been riding on a trail off U.S. Highway 2 in Montana with another cyclist when the pair may have surprised the bear, according to authorities. The bear attacked Treat. His companion, who was not attacked, was able to get away to find help.
    Treat was pronounced dead on the scene, according to the Flathead County Sheriff's Office.
    Treat had been a career U.S. Forest Service officer of West Glacier, Montana. The Flathead National Forest office, where Treat had worked, lowered its flag at half staff.
    "The employees of the Flathead National Forest are deeply saddened to lose Brad," the office posted on its Facebook page. "He was a dedicated law enforcement officer and public servant. Our thoughts and prayers are with Brad's family, and we are working to support them and his coworkers during this immensely difficult time."
    Authorities shut down the Green Gate/Half Moon trail system as a precaution.
    Investigators from the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks collected DNA samples from the scene to try to identify the bear. They've also scanned the area, set traps and cameras in an effort to track down the bear.
    CNN affiliate KPAX reported that it was a grizzly bear that had attacked Treat. The area is home to many black and grizzly bears, with the latter being much bigger.
    "We are attempting to capture and/or confirm the identity of the offending bear," said Fish, Wildlife and Parks Warden Captain Lee Anderson in a statement. "When we have more information we will decide what actions to take."