Living on the vast and beautiful tundra in northern Canada is all fine and good — until you have an itch to scratch. And wild grizzly bears know this predicament all too well.
Because of the tundra's particular habitat, trees are few and far between, and without tree trunks, the bears can't partake in that very satisfying bear pastime of rubbing up against rough tree bark for back scratches.
So when a couple of grizzlies, likely a mother and her nearly full-grown cub, found a random metal stick poking up out of the ground, they took full advantage.
"I was watching these bears already for at least one hour," Gross told The Dodo. "They started to came closer to the road [and] I went back into my car. And suddenly one of the bears stands on his back legs."
The large stick was likely installed there along the road to help measure snowfall — but it clearly served another, more important function for these bears.
"I was absolutely surprised," Gross remembered.
The bears clearly abandoned themselves to the simple pleasure of scratching their backs on the stick. In total, Gross watched the pair's antics for about two hours before the bears continued walked off into the distance.
The wild grizzlies were doing nothing more than scratching an itch, but little did they know they had a real impact Gross, who loves wildlife.
"This has probably been the best and most memorable moment of my whole epic 403-day trip," Gross said.