Gigantic 1,400 Pound Alaskan Brown Bear Wins Fat Bear Week Championship

The bear that shares its name with a jumbo jet '747' won the most prestigious fat-bear competition in the world.

Annaliese Wiederspahn

October 07, 20203 min read

Fat bear 747

There are many who would probably argue that voting in the presidential race is more important than voting for the fattest bear at Katmai National Park.

We take the opposite stance, however.

There are few things more important than marking your ballot for a fat bear.

If you voted, congratulations. There is a winner.

Katmai National Park, which is located in southwest Alaska, named a winner on Tuesday for the annual contest and really there was no contest.

The bear named “747” annihilated the bear named “Chunk” by a 47,055 to 21,854 vote margin.

There is not an Electoral College in the Fat Bear Week contest so there should be no controversy with the outcome (although Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will probably find a reason to call it unfair).

Just how big is 747?  There’s no official weigh-in because officials would probably get their heads ripped-off.

So instead they use a 3D scanner which estimates how big these bears are. 

‘747’ clocks in at just over 1,400 pounds. To put that in perspective, a telephone pole is about 1,000 pounds. A sailboat is around 1,300 pounds. John Daly is 4,500 pounds.

“Few brown bears ever grow as large as the bear who shares an identification number with a jet airplane,” Park Service officials said.

That size is beneficial because he doesn’t have to compete against other bears. He’s the biggest kid on the playground and other bears leave him alone.

“Although dominant bears can maintain their rank in the hierarchy through aggression, 747 typically keeps his status by sheer size alone. Most bears recognize they cannot compete with him physically and they yield space upon his approach,” official said.

“Many staff who’ve worked at Katmai for many years say that [747] is the biggest bear they have ever seen,” Katmai media ranger Naomi Boak told The Washington Post. “It’s pure coincidence that he has the same name as a jumbo jet, but he is the size of a jumbo jet.”

According to acclaimed bear-expert site The Verge, the annual competition was started in 2014 as a way to celebrate how fat and healthy the park’s bears are.

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Annaliese Wiederspahn

State Political Reporter