Ultramarathon Runner Gets Attacked By A Coyote During 150-Mile Race In California

Dean Karnazes with a face paint

Whether you’re competing in a 5k race, a marathon, triathlon, or even a 150-mile race, the only worry that may cross your mind is that your body might just completely shut down from dehydration or exhaustion.

Surely, never in a million years you’d worry about nearly getting mauled by a wild animal while competing in a race, right?

Of course not.

However, this is exactly what happened to this one poor soul, who was competing in the Headlands 150-mile Endurance Run last week in Sausalito, California.

According to NBC Bay Area, Dean Karnazes a pretty well known ultra-marathon runner, was competing in the event, and was on mile 37 around 3 AM, when a coyote came out of nowhere and attacked him.

He told the outlet:

“I was running and I heard some footsteps behind me, I thought it was a big dog on the trail and I turned to look and it was a coyote.”

The coyote then proceeded to knock him down.

Karnazes doesn’t believe that the coyote was actually trying to hurt him, though. He said he thinks the creature was going for the energy bar he had:

“Honestly, I think it didn’t know what to do. He was looking at me, I was looking at him, he was going for the bar.”

Karnazes is an ultramarathon runner, and has competed in some of the world’s best ultramarathon events, like running to the South Pole and has done 50 marathons on 50 consecutive days in 50 different states.

He’s even competed in the water, and has been attacked by a shark before.

However, a coyote is a first for him. He noted that a lot of people tend to leave food out for animals that live around the trail the race was going on at, and both he and Fish and Wildlife officials are strongly against the gesture.

He said:

“Let’s cut that out. Let wild animals be wild animals.”

Ken Paglia of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife weighed in on the issue as well:

“Conflict with coyotes stems from people feeding them. Coyotes see opportunity. They get conditioned to think they can get food from us. They’re going to keep pushing that boundary.”

He posted the aftermath on his Instagram, and although he warned those about the dangers that could happen after feeding animals, he doesn’t want this incident to make people afraid of the outdoors:

“This was a very isolated incident. I think that I’ve been on many trails, none of them ever bothered me.”

Nevertheless, still a scary situation in general.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock