3 min read

Wild Grizzly Bears Find Random Stick In Field β€” And Flip Out

This is pure joy πŸ˜‚

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.

Wild grizzly lying in field
Marcel Gross

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.

Marcel Gross

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.

Wild grizzlies go nuts for backscratcher
Marcel Gross

Luckily, a wildlife photographer from Switzerland, Marcel Gross, happened to be traveling through the Yukon Territory during late summer when he spotted the bears and managed to capture their moment of sheer joy

Wild grizzly bear seen scratching back by wildlife photographer
Marcel Gross

"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."

Grizzly bear in the Yukon scratching his back
Marcel Gross

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.

Wild grizzlies getting backs scratched
Marcel Gross

"I was absolutely surprised," Gross remembered. 

Wild grizzlies getting a backscratch
Marcel Gross

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.

Grizzly bears find big backscratcher
Marcel Gross

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. 

You can help protect wild grizzlies like these by making a donation to the Western Environmental Law Center. You can also follow Marcel Gross and his amazing photographs on Instagram