Victoria Pham was out on a run on the Mt. Wilson Trail when she came face-to-face with a bear who wanted to share the trail.
In video captured by Pham, the bear comes within a few feet of the runner, who said she could have reached out and touched the dangerous creature.
But instead of panicking, she stayed quiet, and the bear walked by Pham and other hikers without incident.
“There were actually a few people behind me, they weren’t in the video, but they were talking to me, like ‘Hey, what are you doing?’ I’m like, ‘I’m going to let it pass.’ They asked, ‘Are you sure?’ and I said, ‘Yeah, I’m going to let it pass. It’s the best thing to do right now,'” Pham said.
Lynne Levin-Guzman, who can be heard on Pham’s video, said this isn’t the first close encounter she’s had with a bear.
“I’m not scared because we literally had a bear live at our house, under our deck. This is Sierra Madre,” she said.
Marcus Ortiz said he carries bear spray to be safe, but that’s just what you have to do in Sierra Madre and surrounding areas, where bears are plentiful.
“We’re walking in their house, actually, for the most part. We’re walking in their yard and we have to always remember that and stay cautious … We also realize they’re probably more afraid of us than we are of them,” Ortiz said.
Experts agree that it’s best to leave bears alone if they’re encountered in the wild.
This is hardly the first bear sighting near Mt. Wilson, which locals say is home to plenty of bears.
Bears have also recently been spotted brawling in Monrovia and in east L.A. County, among other sightings.