By Matt Kroschel

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4)– Most bears in Colorado are hibernating by this time of year. The ones that are left are not ready for their winter slumber and that can make for a dangerous situation.

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Nathan Knight shared video of an encounter with a bear that he spotted inside an SUV on Friday. The bear didn’t seem to have any fear of humans while it proceeded to leave the SUV and walked to a nearby trashcan. All this while Knight hollered at the bear to leave.

(credit: Nathan Knight)

“Regardless of the time of year, bears might come out in January or February if they are hungry,” Kris Meddledorf said. “The bear that we dealt with today was almost 2 years older, female, 85 pounds, didn’t have the fat stores that she needed on her at this time of the year.”

(credit: Nathan Knight)

That bear will be relocated to North Park where there is less snow on the ground right now, hopefully allowing the bear to have better luck finding a den.

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(credit: Nathan Knight)

Unlocked cars, especially Subarus, are prime targets. Bears paws can easily slide behind the door handles and pop them open on those models of vehicles. Those vehicles are broken into time and time again.

(credit: Nathan Knight)

“The number one thing we can do for bears is take care of our trash,” said Middledorf.

As the remaining bear scramble to find food, wildlife managers urge people to take away the temptation and lock their cars.

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Matt Kroschel covers news throughout Colorado working from the CBS4 Mountain Newsroom. Send story ideas to and connect with him on Twitter @Matt_Kroschel.