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Mountain Goat Fatally Attacks Hiker in Olympics

Posted by Lauren Braden at Oct 17, 2010 04:10 PM |

An aggressive mountain goat attacked Bob Boardman of Port Angeles near Olympic National Park’s Klahhane Ridge on Saturday, October 17. Boardman died within hours from his injuries. We at WTA are incredibly saddened by this news, and our hearts go out to Bob, his friends, and his family.

Since the 1920s, when mountain goats were first introduced to the Washington's Olympic Mountains, they have captivated and beguiled, irritated and taunted. On rare occasions, an aggressive goat has blocked a hiker's way, or followed hikers along a trail. But never has one seriously hurt or killed a human. Until now.

Tragically, an aggressive mountain goat fatally attacked a hiker, Bob Boardman of Port Angeles, near Olympic National Park’s Klahhane Ridge on Saturday, October 16. Boardman died soon after the attack from his injuries despite swift action by nearby hikers and Coast Guard medics, who arrived on the scene via helicopter. According to the Peninsula Daily News, Boardman was a devoted hiker, diabetes nurse and musician.

We at WTA are incredibly saddened by this news, and our hearts go out to Bob Boardman, his friends, and his family.

This mountain goat attack is a bizarre incident. A sidebar article in the Peninsula Daily News describes how the Park has been familiar with and monitoring this particularly aggressive goat for some time. Olympic National Park's spokeswoman, Barb Maynes, said this ram was known for its aggressive behavior, such as following people along trails, and such reports had prompted warning signs at trailheads in the area. The park had been monitoring the ram for "the last several years," she said. Rangers shot and killed the ram soon after Saturday's attack. The ram would have been killed before if there had been a report that it had made "physical contact" with someone.

A recent trip report from Klahhane Ridge on describes this particular ram as cantankerous. "He has been known to be somewhat aggressive towards hikers, bullying them out of his territory."

What a heartbreaking end to this hiker's life. May he rest in peace.

Update: There are additional details about the attack and aggressive goats in Olympic National Park in Monday's Seattle Times article on the incident.



I'm glad to see it was written the ram was bullying them out of "HIS" territory. We are in their territory. We always take a risk when we hike. We never think it will be fatal, but wildlife are never predictable. It was a sad ending, as a person was out enjoying the beauty of the land and maybe even hoping to see wildlife, but you never know when they'll turn on you. R.I.P.

Posted by:

lipstickhiker on Oct 17, 2010 05:03 PM

Just wanna know one thing....

Who got the mounted the head and horns of this beast!!!

Posted by:

anthonymaw on Oct 17, 2010 08:23 PM

I had a close call once...

My friend and I were in the Enchantments on a side trail to Gnome Tarn viewing Prussik Peak when six goats (3 adults and 3 youngins) came down the trail behind us. We were over looking a cliff above lake Vivianne when the front adult started charging us. In panic, we ran to the south and barely managed somehow to get away from that goat. I trust bears more than goats at this point.
Be careful up there folks, you can be non threatening and trying to avoid and still be targeted. Know what to do when encountering wild life.

Posted by:

MachoMtMatt on Oct 17, 2010 09:35 PM

Tips for dealing with a cantankerous goat

Does anyone have tips on ways to deal with a cantankerous goat? What's the best way (other than not being there in the first place) to keep both the hiker and goat safe?

Posted by:

ryanjsalva on Oct 18, 2010 09:07 AM

King 5 Article

The cover pic for this video is one of my own photos![…]l-Park-hiker-105138334.html

Posted by:

Pribbs on Oct 18, 2010 03:25 PM


This serves as a great reminder that the outdoors are dangerous! The unexpected really can happen and being killed by a goat is high on my list of unexpected. Let us all be careful out there so that we won't be next.

My best wishes to the family.

Posted by:

geologirl on Oct 20, 2010 09:20 PM