HARVEY HUMCHITT JR. PHOTO A screenshot from the YouTube video of a wolf encounter Havery Humchitt Jr. made in 2013.

Cape Scott Lighthouse keeper experiences near-attack by wolf

He now has some important advice to give about his encounter

Cape Scott Provincial Park, on the northern tip of Vancouver Island, is known for its sandy beaches and old-growth rainforest, but it’s also a place where it’s not uncommon to spot a wolf.

Wolf attacks, however, are not quite so common.

Harvey Humchitt Jr. was born and raised on the coast in Bella Bella, kept the Cape Scott Lighthouse for 18 years and has been with the coast guard for more than 25. Prior to the first week of December, Humchitt Jr. had never been chased by a wolf.

“I just left the radio room and I was on my way to check my fuel. And along the way I heard a rustling in the brush and I turned my flashlight toward the sound and out lunges this really young wolf,” said Humchitt Jr., in an interview with the North Island Gazette.

He immediately saw the gate was open and ran towards the house. The wolf gave chase.

“It caught up to me when I got to the gate and it was close enough to take a bite and it did three snaps,” said Humchitt Jr. “In all my years I’ve never ever heard of a wolf giving chase to a person before.”

After making it inside just in time, the reality of the situation hit him.

“I think every single one of my senses were 100 per cent in operation and my adrenaline was really high. I could feel my heart just racing,” said Humchitt Jr., adding “When I got in the house the fear hit me, when I realized how close I was to getting bitten by a wolf.”

Humchitt Jr. has seen many wolves before at the light station, but mostly just passing through. He’s spotted them from a safe distance and even filmed a clip of a wolf visit a few years ago for his youtube channel.

However, after the encounter he checked in with some wolf specialists and learned he was actually at fault for the near attack.

“My action of running caused the wolf to give chase, because wolves are called course hunters meaning they kill their prey on the run, so if I stopped running and faced the wolf and started walking backward I wouldn’t have been chased by the wolf any longer,” he explained.

Humchitt Jr. said since his experience he has learned that the proper thing to do if you come face to face with a wolf is stand your ground and make yourself really big. If you have a jacket, unzip it and flip it up over your head to make yourself look bigger than normal and back away slowly.

As a last resort, the best thing to do is curl into a ball and protect all of your vital organs and hope the wolf backs off.

“It was one of the things that made me think that when they say these creatures out in the wild are unpredictable they really mean it – they’re unpredictable,” he said.

Humchitt Jr. added that he hopes his experience will help educate people, rather than deter them from visiting Cape Scott.

“Everybody to enjoy their experience at Cape Scott. It is such a beautiful park – there has never been an attack on a human reported at Cape Scott and we are lucky that way.”

Just Posted

Iconic Victoria rock music archivist ready to pass the torch

Royal City Music Project co-founder Glenn Parfitt wants valuable cultural material preserved

Editorial: when are Vancouver Island communities going to say no to increased taxes?

Local governments are finding it too easy to continually say “just a little more”

Big Lonely Doug protected along with 53 of his closest friends

Classic Vancouver Island tree among B.C’s largest old-growth trees now on protection list

Chinook retention begins on Vancouver Island, but amid new size limit

DFO calls measures ‘difficult but necessary’ following rockslide on Fraser River

VIDEO: Sparrows raise their chicks in Cadboro Bay deck planter

Jill Yoneda captured 11 days up close with tiny Junco sparrows

Pamela Anderson adds star power to B.C. Green Party town hall

Celebrity attended Nanaimo meeting with representatives from U.S.-based environmental group

‘Charismatic violent offender’ to be sentenced in Nanaimo drug debt tasering

Colin Damen Gary Lamontagne pleaded guilty to charges, including aggravated assault

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to make public transit announcement in Victoria on Thursday

Trudeau is speaking at a campaign countdown event in downtown Victoria

Victoria car show’s ferry event a highlight for arriving hot-rodders

Thursday’s grand opening event one of several planned for Northwest Deuce Days

Gas price inquiry questions Trans Mountain capacity, company denies collusion

The first of up to four days of oral hearings in the inquiry continue in Vancouver

Victoria Police make contact with cyclist seen clipped in dashcam video

The cyclist reached out to VicPD after the video was shared online

Will you be celebrating national hotdog day with any of these crazy flavours?

The popularity of hotdogs spans generations, cultures

‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

Overdoses caused by benzodiazepines can’t be reversed with opioid-overdose antidote naloxone

Most Read