Mammoth, MT: National Park Service authorities are issuing a warning to stay away from the wildlife this week after a man rode a bison bareback from a location just outside Old Faithful Village to Mammoth Hot Springs. According to the man, he was trying to hunt bald eagles.
Rangers warn that bison have been known to throw people into the air, often resulting in injury or death. They say it is miraculous that this man, who is now being held in a hospital in Billings, Montana, is still alive.
The man was seen in the forest near a road holding a rifle on the back of the bison. He did not appear injured at the time, but was reported to park authorities.
The man was seen only barely holding on to the bison’s horns when he arrived at the Mammoth Hot Springs, where the bison finally shook him loose. He was then trampled, and the bison retreated into the forest.
He was found with several wounds in his chest and extremities, but to the medical staff’s surprise, no injuries to the head or vital organs.
The National Park Service warns that his survival was very unlikely, and dangerous to not only him but the bison and motorists he passed on his way as well. They advise that all guests stay 25 yards (about 23 meters) from animals like bison.
The man faces prison time, fines, and a lifetime ban from National Park Service grounds.