UPDATE (AUGUST 21):
Cruise Hive received the latest statement from UnCruise Adventures which you can read in full below:
At 4:00 pm Thursday, August 18, we evacuated two crew members by helicopter from Sitkoh Bay off Chichagof Island to Sitka hospitals. One guide has been treated and released, and the other guide is being treated at a hospital in Seattle. Both have non-life threatening injuries. Both crew members are expedition guides with UnCruise Adventures.
They were on a hike Thursday with 22 guests and encountered a brown bear sow and cub about 2.5 miles up the trail. All 22 guests are unharmed. Both guides were carrying bear spray and emergency kits. The lead guide did not have time to use the bear spray; the second guide deployed spray and the bears moved on. The USCG helicopter found a place close by to pick them up – about 200 yards away from the group. Our own medical team hiked in to the scene to help with the evacuation. The team safely escorted the hiking group back to the ship.
All crew goes through wilderness training and bear safety training including how to avoid bear encounters. Expedition guides carry bear spray on all excursions off the ship.
Two guides who were taking cruise ship passengers on an excursion in Alaska have been mauled by a bear.
The U.S Coast Guard reported that one male and one female were airlifted after a bear mauled them on Thursday. The attack happened while hiking on the Sitkoh Creek Trail approximately 30 miles north of Sitka. The two cruise guides from UnCruise Adventures were leading 22 passengers from the Wilderness Explorer vessel. No cruise passengers were injured.
Watch the guides being airlifted:
Scott Giard, Lead Command Center Controller at Sector Juneau said:
“This case is a reminder of the constant dangers of the Alaska wilderness.”
“The close coordination with the Wilderness Explorer and our dedication to training in harsh environments allowed our crew to quickly medically evacuate the two to safety.”
The Wilderness Explorer is a small vessel which can carry 74 guests along with 26 crew members. The ship offers a wide range of adventure cruises in Alaska. Cruise Hive has contacted the cruise operated and will update this post once we get a response.