A group of tourists traveling through Yellowstone National Park’s Lamar Valley were met with an unfortunate reminder of the importance of car insurance during this year’s bison rut, after one bull decided to redesign their bonnet with its horns.
In a video posted to Instagram account TouronsofYellowstone – an account that often highlights the bad behavior of visitors to national parks – a car full of people were sat in stationary traffic when a herd of bison began to move across the road. Thankfully, one of the tourists started recording, because what happened next would otherwise make for a fairly unbelievable phone call to their insurance provider.
A large bull approached the vehicle and rammed its horns into the car, causing the vehicle to bump upwards. Pictures taken after the incident show that the bull had managed to make a pretty hefty tear in the bonnet. Male bison can be more aggressive during rutting season, which may explain this bull’s sudden disdain for motor vehicles. Either that, or it would’ve preferred to see a Ferrari.
Although it seems that these particular tourists were just plain unlucky, there’s no shortage of incidents where Yellowstone tourists have gone against official advice (and abandoned common sense) in favor of a close encounter with a bison.
Last year, there was a spate of bison-related injuries at Yellowstone, after people decided to approach the animals. Other visitors have also tried “rescuing” bison calves from rivers and cold temperatures, resulting in the death of the young creatures after they were rejected by their mothers as a consequence.
Whilst bison might appear friend-shaped from a distance, they are wild animals, both territorial and unpredictable, and have injured more people in Yellowstone than any other animal. The National Park Service recommends visitors stay at least 23 meters (25 yards) away from bison, and to go in the opposite direction if they would otherwise end up in close proximity.
And maybe check if your car insurance covers bison attacks.