All this can be accomplished on Chillhowee Mountain. "We don't know whether the bear was hit or not. The attack came Thursday afternoon in the Cherokee National Forest in southeastern Tennessee. Authorities say finding and killing the bear is the priority. It was just action,” she said. Susan Cenkus tried to save her son by distracting the bear, which resulted in her being mauled, too. “And there was the bear, and he had Luke. Her brother, Luke Cenkus, 2, was hospitalized in stable condition. The rare attack by a black bear occurred Thursday during the family's outing to a waterfall in a remote part of the Cherokee National Forest. Be safe and we will see you all Wednesday night. Wildlife officers planned to put out more traps Friday morning, he said. Dept. Some states want to buy their own vaccines. On April 13, 2006, Susan Cenkus and her children were hiking near the Chilhowee Campground near Benton Falls when a 200-pound black bear grabbed her 2-year … Will Biden ease the sky-high tension between the U.S. and China? The attack took place at Benton Falls near the Chilhowee Recreation Area, about 22 miles east of Cleveland, Tennessee. Black bears usually avoid humans. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Rangers were not certain the captured bear is the one that attacked the family, but its size led officials to believe they caught the bear they had been seeking, she said. Bald River Falls (Tellico Plains, TN) round trip … All Rights Reserved. Unaka Ranger District (8a-4:30p M-F) 4900 Asheville Highway Greeneville TN 37743 (423) 638-4109 (423) 638-6599 (Fax) Ocoee Ranger District (8a-4:30p M-F) 3171 Highway 64 Benton TN 37307-5823 (423) 338-3300 (423) 338-6577 (Fax) Chilhowee Campground, Tennessee - Camping & Campgrounds. Officials want to know if an illness might explain its behavior. Susan took the two youngest children to Benton Falls, a popular destination in the the Cherokee National Forest, not far from Cleveland. Mrs. Cenkus and her children were hiking near the Chilhowee Campground near Benton Falls on April 13, 2006, when the bear attacked Luke, then 2. Her 6-year-old daughter, Elora, and 2-year-old son, Luke, were along for what began as a leisurely walk in the woods. Tracy Boulian/The Plain Dealer Susan Cenkus and … Richard Taylor with TEMA Search and Rescue will be the guest speaker for the April 14 meeting. "It was off the trail to Benton Falls, where some kids had seen a bear earlier," Mr. Hicks said. Biden administration says no. Cenkus and her boy, Luke, survived, but her daughter, Elora, was killed by the bear. Rangers said black bears rarely attack humans and that the animal may have been suffering from a disease that affected its behavior. In May 2000, a woman was killed by a black bear near Gatlinburg. or west from Ducktown TN. Enjoy lots of mountain flora (rhododendron) along the trail. When the bear attacked, the 6-year-old girl ran away, authorities said. Animal Planet: Story of bear attack in Cherokee N.F. The Benton Falls Trail lies at the heart of the 25-mile trail network in the Chilhowee Recreation Area, and connects directly to the highly sought-after Slick Rock Loops for … Thousands of Guard troops will remain in D.C. through mid-March, Larry King, veteran talk show host, has died at 87, 30-year secret reveals real killer just before start of murder trial, Arizona GOP censures Cindy McCain and Governor Ducey, The impeachment managers who will argue the case against Trump, Birx: Inauguration-related gatherings could be "superspreader", How Trump's second trial could be different from the first, House Republicans divided as some attempt to oust Liz Cheney, Firefighter's sign language Pledge was homage to late father, Biden signs orders to streamline stimulus checks, expand food stamps, Democrats weigh options to pass Biden's massive COVID relief bill, Biden unveils COVID strategy with slate of executive orders. The attack, by an adult black bear, occurred at a waterfall in Cherokee National Forest, in the state's far southeastern corner. © 2006 The Associated Press. (Watch ranger perplexed by attack -- 2:44). This road is approximat… It is ashame, but these things do happen when you are in the woods where Black Bears roam. The trail is well marked and the falls themselves are beautiful and have a unique look. There's a $3 day-use fee per vehicle to use the recreation area. 7-acre McKamy Lake offers a swim area with a sand beach, and fishing from the bank. As they were leaving the area around the waterfalls a bear was sighted near the trail. While visiting a waterfall, the three were attacked by a black bear. The bear scaled a fence and picked Luke Cenkus up by the head, holding the toddler aloft, Hicks said. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/tennessee/goforth-creek-trail "They suffered a lot of puncture wound injuries consistent with a bear attack," Mr. Hicks said. My wife and I have hiked to Benton Falls where the attack occured. The trip back to Tennessee, to Cherokee Forest, to Benton Falls was huge in the healing process, but, for a mother, the last look at a child is so very hard to take. You just may have to deal with a good amount of mud on the way. A bear was standing over her. PLEASE NOTE: This is an information and administrative office located in Cleveland, TN and is not actually in the forest. Authorities hunted Friday for a black bear that picked up a 2-year-old boy in its mouth and mauled his mother, critically injuring them before killing the child's older sister. The mother and the boy were critically injured and flown to Erlanger Medical Center in Chattanooga, authorities said. The bear killed a 6-year-old girl and seriously injured her mother and brother. It was euthanized and sent to the University of Tennessee's College of Veterinary Medicine in Knoxville for examination, Moore said. It was April 13, 2006, when Susan Cenkus from Ohio went on a hike to Benton Falls in the Cherokee National Forest in Polk County. Researchers are developing stickers for masks to detect COVID, California Privacy/Information We Collect. Witnesses told authorities the bear picked up the boy in its mouth while the mother and other visitors tried to fend it off with sticks and rocks, said Dan Hicks, a spokesman for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. Benton Falls Trail is an easy 1.5 mile (each way) hike to the 65 foot waterfall. SLIDESHOW: Images From Report | … Directions: East from Cleveland Tn. After a long day of rafting on the Ocoee River, what better way to wind down than hiking to one of the areas famous waterfalls, taking a dip in a mountaintop lake and grilling some protein of your choosing at a nearby grill? How Trump's second trial could be different from the first. And then they came running back saying there’s a bear," Mr. Hicks said. The attack took place at Benton Falls near the Chilhowee Recreation Area, about 22 miles east of Cleveland, Tennessee. They had no way of knowing a killer bear awaited them at Benton Falls. The trail is well maintained and is easily accessible from the parking lot. Benton Falls (Reliance, TN) round trip length – 3 miles; difficulty – easy; region – southern; The majority of this trail is smooth and sandy which makes it a great all ages hike. of Education extends student loan payment freeze, Who leads federal agencies until Senate confirms Biden's nominees, Climate activists expect a lot from Biden and aren't afraid to say so, Joe Biden's "Day One" actions and his promises for his first 100 days, 30-year-old secret reveals real killer just before start of murder trial. And if you go after a good rain the falls will be quite powerful. This was a great experience for my family. There are several overlooks to pull off and enjoy with long range views of the mountains and Parksville Lake. This trail presents an easy downhill on the way in. When paramedics arrived about 20 minutes later, they found Elora Petrasek a short distance away, the bear hovering over her mauled body. Turn right into Chilhowee Day Use Area. The trail ends at Benton Falls, which is a 65-foot falls with a small, very shallow pool at the bottom. Many of you will probably recall the story of the Ohio woman and her two small children that were attacked by a bear in the Cherokee National Forest back in 2006. But in the excitement, Elora disappeared. https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/tennessee/benton-falls-trail Located in the Chilhowee Recreation Area, Chilhowee Campground offers more than 70 campsites, electric hookups, RV sites, tent-only sites and multiple bathhouses.The campground is usually open from early April to late October, with an overflow area and day use area open year-round. We hike in the Smokies and I always wonder how close any bears are! By Ben Benton and Mike O’Neal Staff Writers One child was killed and two family members were hospitalized after a bear attack Thursday afternoon on Chilhowee Mountain in Polk County, Tenn., according to Cherokee National Forest spokeswoman Nina Barrow. Luke Cenkus, whose skull was punctured, was in stable condition after surgery, doctors said. The day-use area includes McKamy Lake, a swim area with sand beach, picnic sites, a group picnic area, and a bathhouse. In a written statement asking for privacy, the family called Thursday's events "understandably very difficult for the entire family to cope with.". He will be giving a powerpoint presentation which will include information on the bear attack at Benton Falls and the 2009 electrocution of a young man who climbed a high tension tower. Hicks said authorities were using dogs and set traps baited with honey buns and doughnuts. Rescuers found the girl's body about 100 yards down the trail from the falls. Chillhowee Mountain is one of the larger mountains in the Ocoee River Basin and is easily accessible by vehicle by driving up Forest Road 77. Rescuers later found her lifeless body near the falls--mauled by the bear. The bear killed Elora Petrasek, 6, of Clyde, Ohio. She may have been trying to run away when she was caught, Hicks said. Copyright © 2021 CBS Interactive Inc. All rights reserved. to air tonight. The family was at a pool below Benton Falls on Chilhowee Mountain when the bear attacked, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency said. The attack took place about 1 1/2 miles from the Chilhowee Campground, he said. Hike to the beautiful Benton Falls in the Cherokee National Forest on this easy out-and-back hike that's good for kids and dogs. The 640,000-acre park runs along the Tennessee-North Carolina line southwest of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. … Mr. Hicks said the attack came shortly after 4 p.m. Thursday as the family enjoyed the water pooled at the base of Benton Falls along with other families. Wildlife experts meet in East Tennessee for bear attack response training. Forest Ranger Dan Hicks said he was perplexed by the attack "because it goes against what I've been telling the public for a long time.". Associated Press - May 3, 2008 12:05 PM ET CLEVELAND (AP) - An Ohio woman who survived a black bear attack that killed her 6-year-old daughter in 2006 has returned to the Cherokee National Forest. Located on the Benton Falls Trail in the Overhill country of south eastern tennessee. The attack came Thursday afternoon in the Cherokee National Forest in southeastern Tennessee. Her mother, Susan Cenkus, 45, was in critical condition at a Chattanooga hospital. The family was at a pool below Benton Falls on … Doctors at Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga say Susan Cenkus has soft tissue injuries to her upper and lower extremities that will require additional surgeries. Issues of Time. The trail is one and a half miles to the falls. It is wide enough for two people to easily hike side by side. This was one of only two recorded fatal bear attacks in Tennessee, so the odds of harm by a bear are low, but follow all suggestions on the bear-awareness signs. Glena Ann Bradley, a schoolteacher from Cosby, was attacked by two female bears when she took a walk on a trail near a Smoky Mountains campground. Located in the Chilhowee Recreation Area, Chilhowee Campground offers a multitude of camping opportunities for both RV and tent sites, many with electric hookups. A three-day effort to trap the animal ended at noon Sunday when rangers found a bear in one of eight traps they had set across the recreation area, U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Sharon Moore said. "When they got ready to leave, the kids ran up the trail, as kids do. The attack occurred yesterday afternoon at a mountain pool below Benton Falls near a campground. He had his paw on Luke.” Preparing to die, she snatched away her son and fought the bear. As adults tried to scare the bear away it ran in … I can't think of any time other than, just really rare circumstances," said Monty Williams, park ranger. First published on April 14, 2006 / 8:49 AM. “There was no thinking. Click Here to try 4 Free Trial "It's a pretty rare thing, black bears generally don't attack people. The attack occurred about 4:20 p.m., according to Polk County dispatcher Gary Verner. The Forest Service temporarily closed the Chilhowee Recreation Area and the Parksville Campground, as well as several roads and trails in the vicinity of the attack. CNN.com gives you the latest stories and video from the around the world, with in-depth coverage of U.S. news, politics, entertainment, health, crime, tech and more. From Highway 64, turn on NFSR 77 (sign says Chilhowee Recreation Area) and drive 7.2 miles. Leashed dogs are permitted on the trail. Benton Falls hike is an easy trail that can be done by people of all ages. A black bear attacked a family of three in Polk County, Tennessee, killing a 6-year-old girl, and seriously injuring a 2-year-old boy and the children's mother. There was no blood, but it chased it off.". on Highway 64. (CNN) -- Authorities captured a bear Sunday that they suspect was responsible for the mauling of an Ohio family in the rugged mountains of eastern Tennessee, a U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman said. Sun, Apr 17 - Lady Slipper Trail, CNF-4 mi M, off trail. The bear was euthanized and there have been no problems since. The bear scaled a fence … The girl's death is only the second confirmed fatal black bear attack in Tennessee, the U.S. Forest Service said. A popular destination especially in summer, Benton Falls offers a lot of reward with a little effort. "Allegedly, after the rescue squad found the little girl, one of the squad members fired a shot from a small caliber handgun," Hicks said Friday. The most strenuous part is a set of stairs leading down to the gorgeous tiered waterfall. A week after her visit to Benton Falls, Cenkus said she was grateful that her son appears not to have been traumatized by the attack. University of Tennessee 's College of Veterinary Medicine in Knoxville for examination, Moore said country south. Recreation area ) and drive 7.2 miles the Falls themselves are beautiful have. 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