Rebecca Clark said she is grateful to be alive after she had a harrowing encounter with a bison that quickly turned violent.
While hiking by herself at Texas’ Caprock Canyons State Park, Clark started recording a video as she tried to pass by a group of bison – who apparently felt like Clark was too close for comfort despite her distance.
Clark's video captured the moment when a bison charged at her.
“He rammed my back and caught me and flipped me in the air, caught me and then flipped me in the air, and flipped me face first into the mesquite bush,” Clark told “Good Morning America.”
@rebeccaclark Solo hiking at Caprock Canyons State Park & Trailway in Texas. I was charged and gored by a bison because I was to CLOSE to be passing them on a trailway They are beautiful creatures protected by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD) and are a part of the Texas State Bison Restoration Project where the park has restored the historic Charles Goodnight Bison herd (The Official Texas State Bison Herd) to a portion of its former range in the park. I am posting to support safety while enjoying Texas State Parks #TPWD #bisonetiquette101 #hikingsafety #llbean #chaos #rei ♬ dumb dumb - sped up - mazie
Clark was left gored and wounded and said she waited in the bush for nearly an hour before she was airlifted to a hospital where she stayed for six days. She said thankfully she’ll be okay.
“It could have been my spine. It could have been my organs. And it was literally just the skin on my back that he just gored up and put a pretty good, pretty big hole in me,” said Clark.
- 2March 15, 2022
The video of Clark’s encounter has since garnered over 2.1 million views on TikTok, and sparked new debate about nature etiquette, especially around wildlife.
“She needs to keep at least 75 feet, and I would say 100 feet, away from a mighty powerful creature like a bison,” said Jeff Corwin, a wildlife expert and the host of “Wildlife Nation.”
Annually, over 47,000 people are injured and approximately eight people die in the United States after being attacked or bitten by wildlife, according to a 2019 study conducted by the Department of Wildland Resources and Utah State University.
Experts fear that social media is leading people to put themselves at risk and approach dangerous animals for the perfect shot.
“This is what happens to people throughout the United States is we've often lost our natural fears and have become overly confident,” said Corwin. “Especially when TikTok is a part of the conversation.”