Since I have lived here in the Berkshires for years now, most of the time in rural areas, I always thought I would see a bear somewhere along the line.

My first experience was living in Hinsdale when we first moved here. Getting ready to go to work I leave out really early in the morning.

In the first encounter, I did not get to see the bears but was opening the door and something felt out of place, like the garbage can, the bird feeders, and all kinds of things scattered all over the porch. then I look down and see a huge paw print.

So I close the door real quick and run upstairs to Scott( aka hubby). I Had him escort me out to my car with a shotgun in tow. I Did not even see the bear but that scared me to death, the second time was a momma and two baby bears just crossing over on our deck, and Scott going out there to shoo them away.

Another time we had some super windy weather and had loaded up our garbage in the back of the truck to take to dump it, well by the time we got ready to go there was all kinds of our garbage from the bags scattered everywhere.

With the wind, it was a major cleanup and took forever. Of course, I am looking around for paw prints, but did not see one until Scott pick up a paper plate that had been in the garbage with a huge paw print that covered the whole plate.

Lately, I have been seeing folks post pics on their Facebook pages so bears are definitely getting busier and in more people's yards.

The latest was a big old bear trying to get into our garbage receptacle. luckily for us Scott had made it so bears could not get into it, he did say it was a big bear, Scott is 6'1 and said the bear was taller than him.

I am sure we are going to see a ramp-up on sightings as we get closer to their hibernation time.

Have you had an experience with a bear here in the Berkshires? If so tell us about it or send us a photo of that experience we will post in this story.  Cheryl@wupe.com

Here are some tips from Mass Wildlife on how to make your yard less bear-friendly

mass.gov/bears
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IF YOU ARE EXPERIENCING PROBLEMS WITH BEARS OR HAVE QUESTIONS, VISIT MASS.GOV/BEARS OR CONTACT YOUR NEAREST MASSWILDLIFE OFFICE:

Western Wildlife District, Dalton: (413) 684-1646

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This guy lounged by the pool, climbed a tree then ran off. This is the second visit they have had. About a week ago their security camera caught a bear out for a midnight stroll.

Melissa peck
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