A resident of Harvard Road whose property backs up to the yellow (loop) trail of Oak Hill reported a bear in her backyard this morning (July 23, 2014). As always, be cautious when enjoying Littleton’s many conservation areas. We’re not the only mammals in there.
Though “bear bells” are often touted as a way to make bears aware of human presence so they’ll stay clear, talking in loud voices is reported to be far more effective.
Some good “Be Bear Aware” advice is available from the Center for Wildlife at: http://www.centerforwildlifeinformation.org/BeBearAware/Hiking_and_Camping/hiking_and_camping.html
The linked “Be Bear Aware” article mentions cougars and bison as it is meant to cover many national park and other wilderness areas across the country. Not everything in the article is a concern here in Littleton but the overall advice is valid. Don’t haul around smelly food, leave pets home or keep them on a short leash. Make noise. Back away if you encounter a wild animal. Stay on the trails. Don’t hike alone and let someone know where you’re going. All good ideas.