Round a corner, over a hill, our ride ended abruptly. Charging across the roadway a formidable obstacle barred our passing. En route, the sow unexpectedly pivoted, backtracking to where she had begun.
Dumbstruck, straddling our bikes, we watched the scene repeat itself several more times before a small black form joined its mother. Together they ran across the road in front of us, taking cover in the tall grass on the other side. Left behind, two terrified cubs scrambled up a tree, crying out for their departed mother.
Mounted on hind legs, mother rose from the tall grass to survey the scene. In response, we slowly rode away from the potentially volatile bear reunion.