A 30-year-old man was gored by a bison at a Utah state park, then brought his 22-year-old date there and she was gored too

Michelle Mark

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  • A Utah man who was gored by a bison three months ago brought his date back to the same park — where she was also gored by a bison.

  • Kyler Bourgeous, 30, and Kayleigh Davis, 22, both received injuries after the attacks, but are on the mend.

  • Utah State Park officials say neither were at fault for the attacks, or did anything "out of the ordinary" to provoke the bison.

  • Bourgeous said he brought Davis to the park because he assumed his attack was just "really bad luck" and that it couldn't possibly happen again. It did.

  • He said he probably won't return to the same park again, because he has "this weird feeling that the bison there really don't like me."

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When a bison charged at Kyler Bourgeous in June, it punctured his hip and armpit. Then it trampled him, breaking his ribs and collapsing his lung.

"I thought my incident was a freak accident with really bad luck with the positioning," Bourgeous, 30, told The Standard-Examiner.

But despite the injuries, he walked out of the hospital just days later. He started hiking again less than two weeks after the incident.

It happened again

The story of being gored was so wild he even used it to break the ice with a girl he met online, giving her some sage advice for any future bison encounters: "Stay still, so it doesn't come after you again."

bison

Flickr/Brian Gratwicke

That warning came in handy sooner than Bourgeous had expected, when the pair went on a date at Utah's Antelope Island State Park — the same place he was gored.

Not long into their date, the pair were running down a trail when a bison charged at 22-year-old Kayleigh Davis, using its head to flip her into the air and puncture her thigh.

Read more: A bison stampede stopped traffic in Yellowstone, and one family filmed the horrible moment a bison plowed into their car

When she landed on the ground, she remembered Bourgeous' warning and tried to remain motionless while the bison sniffed and dug at her with its hooves.

"While I was up in the air, I was like, 'Am I going to hit my head or my back? I don't know.' I was scared," Davis told KSTU. "He was … digging at the dirt like he's going to charge after me, but I stayed still and he stopped."

Park officials have advised visitors to back away or 'give the animal a very wide berth' if they encounter a bison

Despite the two rare attacks, Utah State Parks Lt. Eric Stucki told the Standard-Examiner that neither Davis nor Bourgeous were at fault or "did anything out of the ordinary" that provoked the bison.

A number of recent news reports have documented tourists misbehaving around bison, taunting thempetting them, or simply getting too close.

The National Park Service even released a tongue-in-cheek infographic mapping out which parts of a bison are okay to pet (none of them are).

Utah State Parks noted in a statement that visitors who encounter bison on trails should immediately back away, return the way they came, or leave the trail and "give the animal a very wide berth when passing it."

As for Bourgeous and Davis, The Washington Post reported that they're still dating, and Bourgeous visited Davis multiple times in the hospital before she was released Monday. He said he doesn't intend on returning to the same park anytime soon, though.

"I generally am not superstitious, but I have this weird feeling that the bison there really don't like me," he said.

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