Woman looking for bears duped by wooden ones in West Kelowna | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Woman looking for bears duped by wooden ones in West Kelowna

Katrina Sopow (left) with boyfriend Ben in West Kelowna.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Katrina Sopow
September 01, 2021 - 6:00 AM

While bears appear to be on the move in urban areas searching for food or displaced by wildfires, one West Kelowna woman cannot seem to spot one.

Katrina Sopow went looking this past weekend in hopes of getting an up close look at a bear, only to discover the bear was made of wood.

She is always on the lookout for bears in the area — as she has never seen one — despite the many posts, photos and warnings she sees about them on social media.

READ MORE: Fall bear encounters arrive three weeks early thanks to Interior drought

“I was driving along the Westpoint Mobile Home Park when suddenly I spotted a bear on the hill just above it,” Sopow said. “I sped up, turned into the park, drove down the road, bumped my way over the speed bumps and tried to get to where I saw the bear so I could get a better look. Here I’m thinking, ‘Finally, I found you!’ I was so excited.

“As I pulled up, I found it, the black painted wooden bear silhouette and two cubs that someone has perfectly placed on the hillside. I cried, I started laughing so hard at myself."

Sopow said she is sharing the story because the world needs a little laugh during difficult times.

The mother bear and two cubs are wooden cut-outs painted black.

“They look like they’ve been there for a while,” Sopow said. “They are right on the bank in someone’s back yard so I’m guessing that is who put them there. Whoever the owners are, they really fooled me.”

READ MORE: Kamloops RCMP asking residents to be aware after two bears spotted in town

Sopow has lived in the Okanagan for her whole life and moved to Rose Valley eight months ago, where she heard and saw a lot of warnings of bears in the area.

“There were always bear sightings in the park and in the residential areas so I was excited to see some just by driving down the road," she said. "I guess I went in with the expectation that I would see them every time I was out and about.

"Every time I'm driving I keep an eye out cause I figure I'm bound to see one, since everyone always does, but it still hasn't happened. I think maybe the bears are conspiring against me and avoiding me, since they know I want to see them so badly.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Ainslie or call 250-819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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