On our recent weekend journey to the south, one destination was washed out. We climbed up into the mountains near Bansko, only to be turned back by heavy rains (which we learned later caused flooding in the hotels and homes of that ski resort).
We had hoped to reach the Dancing Bears Rehabilitation Park, located near the village of Belitsa. The park was founded in 2000 by the Four Paws International organization to serve as a refuge for bears exploited and maltreated as dancing bears.
On Wednesday the Bulgarian press reported that a 65-year-old man was killed by a bear in the Rhodope Mountains in southern Bulgaria. The man, from the village of Kutela, was attacked in the forest near his home when he was collecting firewood. Residents of the village were afraid to leave their homes. Two days later, hunters shot and killed the killer bear, but authorities began searching the area because they thought the animal may have a cub.
We hope to visit the bear park in Belitsa in the future.