Troy Hurtubise & The Grizzly Bear Suit from Project Grizzly!
The first thing you should know about the man we’ll be discussing today is that he had a weird lifelong obsession with bears, specifically grizzly bears.
His name was Troy Hurtubise, he became a minor celebrity for his desire to design protective suits against grizzly bear attacks.
His strange antics caught the attention of a filmmaker named Peter Lynch who made a documentary focused on Troy Hurtubise and his attempt at designing a grizzly bear protection suit in 1996, titled “Project Grizzly”.
“Project Grizzly” would go on to become a cult classic and one of the most successful Canadian documentaries ever made. There was even an episode of The Simpsons with a premise gained from Hurtubise. In it Homer tries to develop a bear-proof suit called the BearBuster 5000. (See Gif below)
Troy Hurtubise and his fascination with Grizzly Bears
Troy developed a fascination with bears in the 1980s after a random encounter with a grizzly bear in the Cariboo region of British Columbia when he was 20 years old. The video below is Hurtubise discussing this encounter with a grizzly bear.
Troy Hurtubise Finds his Purpose in Life!
It was at that time he decided his life would be spent inventing a bear-repellant spray. He soon realized testing his spray with actual bears was necessary and also potentially suicidal. He was not deterred, oh no, he just changed the focus of his work onto creating a protective suit for the person doing the testing.
So, he set out to create one, spending most of his time and all of his money on the idea over the next few decades. Completely abandoning the spray, he obsessed over the design and testing of his ursus bear suit.
The thing that eventually brought Troy Hurtubise to the attention of filmmaker Peter Lynch and the world was the humorous testing of his bear suit.
Troy Hurtubise’s bear suit tests included crashing himself into a brick wall, being struck by a truck, rolling down hills and so much more. Below I’ve added a few Gif’s of Troy Hurtubise testing his bear suit!
Troy Hurtubise Testing his ursus Bear Suit!
Troy Hurtubise ursus Suit Testing Video from Project Grizzly!
The other inventions by Troy Hurtubise!
Troy Hurtubise’s other inventions usually came during the creation of his ursus suit. When a necessary component couldn’t be found Hurtubise would invent it himself. Below are a few of those inventions.
Firepaste is a white paste that, when dry, is flame and heat resistant. The paste has a consistency similar to clay when wet and dries into a gray material resembling concrete. Troy Hurtubise’s need for firepaste came from a failed fire test with the Ursus Mark VII where the metal exoskeleton heated up, popped the air bags and left Hurtubise with numerous burns.
As a demonstration for the military in the summer 2004, Hurtubise put a thin mask of firepaste on his face and aimed a specialized blowtorch which produced temperatures of thousands of degrees directly at the mask.
The temperature of Hurtubise’s face during the test measured no difference under the mask after nearly ten minutes, and the integrity of the material was not compromised.
According to Hurtubise, the angel light made walls, hands, stealth shielding, and other objects transparent. He claimed that beams from the device had the side-effects of damaging electronic devices and killing goldfish.
After testing the device on his own hand, he claimed he could see his own blood vessels and muscle tissue as clearly as if the skin had been pulled back, but the beam caused numbness and made him sick.
I haven’t been able to find any images or any verifiable evidence that the angel light actually existed, other than statements made by Troy Hurtubise himself.
The Trojan Suit
In 2007, Hurtubise made an announcement about a new protective suit designed to be worn on a battlefield by soldiers. It was named the “Trojan Ballistics Suit of Armor” by Hurtubise.
The suit had many features including a solar powered air system, recording device, compartments for emergency morphine and salt, and a knife and gun holster.
Hurtubise hoped the military would purchase the Tojan suit but they passed. After failing to receive an offer to buy the suit, he was forced to put the prototype up for auction on eBay. The hope was that it would bring in enough money to sustain his family due to being bankrupted from the creation of the suit. Unfortunately for Hurtubise and his family, the auction didn’t meet it’s reserve price.
The Death of Troy Hurtubise!
In February of 2010, Troy Hurtubise was driving on a highway when his car collided with a truck carrying gasoline, which caused explosion. The transport truck driver suffered minor injuries, but Hurtubise was killed in the accident.
The Ursus Suit may not have transformed the modern battlefield the way he set out to do but he left his mark on this world. There are millions of people all over the world who knows the name Troy Hurtubise, that’s more than most of us can say.
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