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Mother bear attacks bow hunters in North Idaho

The two men were able to escape after using bear spray against the female grizzly.

SANDPOINT, Idaho — A pair of hunters survived a grizzly attack after they accidentally surprised a mother bear with her cubs Wednesday morning. 

The attack happened north of Sandpoint in the Apache Ridge area of the Upper Pack River drainage.

The archery hunters say they did not realize the grizzly and her cubs were nearby until they came upon her suddenly. The men used bear spray to fend off the attack, but one of the hunters was injured by the bear.

RELATED: 2 grizzly bears killed after conflicts near Yellowstone

Both hunters were able to walk out of the backcounty by themselves. The injured man was taken to a local hospital, where he received stitches and was later released. 

The attack is under investigation by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game. People who plan to hunt and recreate in the area are asked to use caution and be prepared for an encounter with a bear. 

RELATED: WATCH: Camera captures Idaho grizzly bear and her cubs emerging from den

Both black bears and grizzlies inhabit the Selkirk Mountains, officials say. Anyone who will be entering grizzly country is urged to carry bear spray and know how to use it. 

For more information about grizzly bears in Idaho, click here.