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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Troopers: Bear mauls guides after group got close to cub

By Rachel D’Oro Associated Press

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – A brown bear mauled two wilderness guides who were leading a hiking excursion in Alaska after the group came between the female animal and her cub, state troopers said Friday.

The guides – a man and a woman – were rescued by the Coast Guard after being injured Thursday. Troopers said the bears left the area after one of the victims used pepper spray.

The names of the guides were not immediately released. Officials said they are crew members of the 74-passenger cruise vessel Wilderness Explorer and were leading 22 people on the hike in southeast Alaska.

The injured woman was flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where she was listed Friday in serious condition in intensive care, according to hospital spokeswoman Susan Gregg.

Both guides were initially transported by helicopter to Sitka for emergency medical treatment for multiple injuries and severe lacerations, the Coast Guard said.

The male guide was treated and released, according to Sarah Scoltock, a spokeswoman with Seattle-based Un-Cruise Adventures, the vessel operator.

No one else was injured, Scoltock said.

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