Hunter Fights Off Bear with 5-Inch Knife

After his friend shot a bear near Sand Stone, Minnesota, hunter Brandon Johnson set out to track the wounded animal armed with a five-inch knife.

“We wanted to give it four hours before we went out and looked for it to make sure the animal had expired,” Johnson told USA Today.

However, the bear wasn’t dead. When Johnson approached it, the 525-pound marauding beast attacked him.

“One tooth of the bear just broke the (left arm) bone right in half,” Johnson explained.

Severely injured, Johnson fought for his life by stabbing the bear with the knife.

“It’s just going to town on my hand and I just keep stabbing it and stabbing it and stabbing away and I am screaming and yelling,” he said.

The bear retreated, but soon returned for a second assault.

“I could feel like all the energy and adrenaline I had built up was leaving,” he said.

Once again, Johnson stabbed at the animal and, once again, it fled — only to return for a third time. The hunter thought he was doomed.

“Once I got to the point where I thought I was going to die, and I got myself to the point where I was ready to die, there was no more fear,” he said.

The bear picked up Johnson by the leg and slammed him to the ground. Then it left the scene. Finally, helped arrived. Johnson’s friends found him and helped him out of the woods to where an ambulance was waiting.

The next day Johnson’s friends located the dead bear. It was approximately 50 feet from where Johnson was attacked.

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 20 comments… add one }
  • Pontificant May 13, 2016, 7:25 am


  • WillB March 9, 2015, 11:19 pm

    Good thing he not only brought a knife with him but arranged for an ambulance to follow. Bet he’ll never go into the woods again with an ambulance backing him up.

  • Christopher February 3, 2015, 9:12 am

    I can see the new reality show now:
    Bear -VS- Man, with a knife. Jumps from a helicopter after spotting one.

  • mtman2 December 17, 2014, 8:15 pm

    A Cold Steel Boar Spear would’ve evened up the odds in his favor and would be almost no chance for the bear in skilled hands ~!

    • Russ December 18, 2014, 6:20 pm

      Now that’s being a man.
      I still would have at least head locked it, and made it give.

  • Grizz December 16, 2014, 10:54 am

    Here you have A VERY LUCKY MAN for sure, I have tracked many bear in my 30 odd years of guiding was only charged one time and I along with 3 others had guns thank God we did. I take my hat off to this man for sure!

  • lc December 15, 2014, 6:25 pm

    You are supposed to play dead when a bear is mauling you.”Easier said than done no doubt!” But when he went unconscious and stopped moving that’s what saved his life nothing else. I thought most everyone knew this but i guess not so spread the word.

    • Russ December 16, 2014, 12:46 am

      Thanks lc, but I’ll stick to a can of bear spray in my nice guy left hand,
      and a .44 mag in my no nonsense right hand.
      I’ll let the bear play dead, and talk about it with friends and family around the dinner table enjoying bear stew.

  • Paul December 15, 2014, 3:49 pm

    We all make mistakes and this was a doozy. I bet he learned a valuable lesson; it ain’t dead until you see it is dead; a knife is better than a stick, and any firearm beats a stick or knife at over 21 feet. By the way, fire till it is empty and then run unless you are saving one round in case he catches you.

  • Larry December 15, 2014, 3:20 pm

    This guy gives all gun owners a bad name. Where in hell was his large caliber handgun or rifle? Dummy!

  • Russ December 15, 2014, 12:48 pm

    What a carless MF tracking a wouned bear without heat.
    If he was a real man, he would have Choke Slammed it, then do an F5 and finished it with a DDT.

  • dieks62 December 15, 2014, 12:09 pm

    I’m a hunter myself and to me this guy has definitely more balls then brains: the bear just did what it was supposed to do and defend his own life. He’s just been a lucky ‘son of a bitch’ and if I were him I would look for hobbies other then hunting, lol!

  • friend of Darwin December 15, 2014, 11:28 am

    Looks like Natural Selection had a tough choice this time. He just happened to guess the right side of the coin

  • friend of Darwin December 15, 2014, 11:26 am

    Looks like Natural Selection had a tough choice to make this time. He just happened to pick the right side of the coin…

  • Ringo December 15, 2014, 10:17 am

    A VERY strange story…. sort of FARGO STYLE. What sort of nutcase goes after a wounded bear with only a relatively small knife. He is either lacking a few marbles upstairs or he has a deathwish. I really hope that he has at least learned something by this incident. Next time, at the very least, carry a .45-70 lever action rifle and pistol with a good bear load.

  • Vern December 15, 2014, 10:16 am

    Are we supposed to feel sorry for this guy? Tracking a wounded bear without taking a rifle just because (“We waited four hours…to be sure the bear was expired.”) As bugs bunny would say…What a maroon!

  • DanF. December 15, 2014, 9:33 am

    I admire this idiot’s sense of fair hunting. “The bear has teeth and claws, I have a knife.”

  • BigC December 15, 2014, 8:34 am

    They say, “don’t bring a knife to a gunfight”, I would apply the same logic to a “bear fight”!!!

  • clockmaster December 15, 2014, 6:50 am

    Unfair fight,
    he should have tracked the wounded bear with a tablespoon.

    • Russ December 15, 2014, 12:39 pm


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