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Yellowstone’s first bison goring in ’21

JACKSON (WNE) — An inglorious and painful, though hallmark, sign of Northwestern Wyoming summer passed by over the weekend near the shoreline of Yellowstone Lake.

The unfortunate, typically annual event that unfolded was a Yellowstone National Park tourist being gored by a bison.

Public Affairs Officer Linda Veress confirmed over email that a 30-year-old female from Ann Arbor, Michigan, was hiking with a partner on the Storm Point Trail when there was a wildlife interaction that turned dangerous.

“We’re not clear how the encounter with the bison occurred,” Veress wrote in an email. “The female sustained significant injuries and was flown to Eastern Idaho Medical Center in Idaho Falls, Idaho.”

There is no more information available about the incident, she said.

Although it’s unclear what led to the goring, oftentimes incidents with bison that don’t work out favorably for Yellowstone visitors are precipitated by people getting way too close.

Park regulations demand that visitors keep at least 25 yards away from bison, elk, moose, bighorn sheep, deer and coyotes, and 100 yards away from bears and wolves.

Of course, tourists don’t always buy into the park’s guidance or heed bison warning signs. And sometimes, they get charged — or worse.

Veress wasn’t privy to the nature of the Michigan woman’s injuries but pointed out that they were severe enough that she had to be airlifted to a hospital.

Yellowstone typically sees one or two bison gorings a year, park officials have told the Jackson Hole Daily in the past.

But that’s the average, and there have been unusually goring-filled years, like 2015, when five visitors were injured by bison by mid-July.