AZ Woman Learns About Buffalo Up Close and Personal at Yellowstone

Tim Malek /
Tim Malek /

Every year park officials at Yellowstone remind people not to mess with the wildlife. It’s one of the basic tenants of visiting a park or going camping. Yet every year, someone needs to learn the hard way. They end up being an example of what not to do for all the other hard-headed people at the park.

A 41-year-old Arizona woman got to become that example on July 17th.

In a field near Lake Lodge on the north side of Lake Yellowstone, the woman and another person encountered two bison at an unidentified distance. Turning their backs on the bison, they started walking away.

It was at that point that the bison attacked. Trampling her to the ground, she was gored multiple times in her chest and abdomen. Being so remote, she was airlifted to Eastern Idaho Medical Center in Idaho Falls, ID.

So far no update as to her condition has been given, but she is likely in serious condition as these kinds of attacks are fairly serious.

Park officials require guests always maintain a 25-yard gap from large wildlife. Bison, elk, deer, and moose all require this kind of distance to be maintained. Bear and wolves require a 100-yard distance.

As frequently shown on survival shows and in the ever-popular show Yellowstone, these animals can cover a large swath of distance very quickly and aggressively.


It’s human nature that some people need to learn the lessons of life the hard way. For this woman, this kind of lesson came at a significant cost, but thankfully not her life as of the time of writing. Hopefully, someone else can take the lesson and obey it.