Forget holy cow. Holy bear! Seeing a bear in the Adirondacks is not uncommon. Seeing one this big is a different story.

Diana Golden and her family saw the huge black bear walking through their campsite in Old Forge.

Keep in mind, the Adirondacks and Catskill Mountains are home to bears. When they get hungry, they go hunting. In addition to keeping food sealed to avoid a bear encounter, you should avoid eating or cooking after dark too. Just ask these campers who had a bear join their picnic.

Never leave food in your car unless it's in the trunk. Bears are resourceful. If they know there's food inside, they'll find a way in. Even if they have to use the door handle.

Once the bears are inside the car, the destruction begins...

Remember, you're in their habitat, not the other way around. If there's no food to be found, bears will usually move on. "Bears are opportunistic feeders and will remember where they find easy food, and return to that location frequently," says the DEC.

Bears often cross streets, passing through residential areas, looking for food. "Not every bear that passes by is a problem bear. However, available human food sources can quickly turn them into one," warns the DEC.

You may also want to carry bear spray as a precautionary measure. If a bear does approach, don't give it food. Make noise to scare it away.

Call the DEC Regional Wildlife Office at 518-897-1291 to report any bear encounters. Get more tips on how to reduce human-bear conflicts at DEC.NY.Gov.

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