Wolf attack survivor, 16, talks after Minnesota ordeal

August 28, 2013 (LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH, Minn.)

Noah Graham is counting his blessings after a surprise attack and a camping trip he'll never forget. The 16-year-old was lying in a sleeping bag outside his tent Saturday, in rural Minnesota, when he was mauled by a grey wolf.

"I didn't hear the wolf coming, I didn't see it. Just no sense at all that it was there until it was actually on my head," said Graham.

Graham reached back and used his bare hands to pull his head out of the wolf's jaws, leaving a four-inch gash and deep scratches.

"I thought for sure it was going to come back at me and that's the scary part," Graham said.

Authorities tracked down the wolf they believe attacked Graham. It's been put to sleep and is being tested for rabies. Investigators say the wolf had an unusual jaw, possibly making it hard for the animal to hunt, leading it to scrounge for food at the campground.

"It kept it from acting as a normal wolf would," said Tom Provost, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Wolf attacks on humans are incredibly rare. This was the first documented wolf attack ever in the state of Minnesota - and in all of North America. There have only been two documented deaths caused by wolf attacks. But even with those slim chances, you won't find Graham sleeping outside his tent again the next time he goes camping.

Copyright © 2023 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.