Extreme Humans

Timothy Treadwell – The Bear Whisperer

Last Updated on August 8, 2020 by Darshan Modi

Timothy Treadwell
Timothy Treadwell
Timothy Treadwell is a man who lived amongst one of the world’s most dangerous predators and came to understand and love them. Learn more about a man who almost lost his life to drugs and became the protector of the very animal that killed him.

Timothy Treadwell Superpower

Timothy lived amongst the bears and developed a relationship of mutual trust and respect with them


Timothy William Dexter (a.k.a. William Treadwell) was born on April 29, 1957 on Long Island, New York.

Early Life

Timothy Treadwell was born to Val and Carol Dexter and was one of five children. He achieved very average grades at school, but was the star diver for the swimming team. Timothy had a love of animals from young and even had a pet squirrel names Willie. When we went to university, he disowned his family and claimed he was an orphan born in Australia. He had dreams of becoming an actor and auditioned for the role of Woody Boyd in the sitcom Cheers, which when he lost it to Woody Harrelson, started him on the road of alcoholism and drug abuse.

About Timothy Treadwell

After two years at university,which he attended on a swimming scholarship, Timothy walked away from school, his family and everything else Timothy Dexter was. He became involved in a life of crime, violence and drug abuse.
One night after being arrested twice, once for assault and once for firing a gun illegally and high on drugs, Timothy dove off a third floor balcony and almost died from the fall and a drug overdose. This was his wake up call that he could not continue the way he was. That was the night Timothy Dexter disappeared forever and Timothy Treadwell was born.
All through his life, Timothy has dreamt of being a grizzly bear and this inspired him to live amongst the grizzly bears in Katmai National Park (which is home to about 3000 grizzly bears) for 13 years before his death.
Timothy wrote a book and was involved in documentaries that tracked and documented the life of the bears and proclaimed himself their warrior and protector.
Timothy Treadwell started a non-profit organisation called Grizzly People,which attracted donations from stars such as Leonardo DiCaprio and Pierce Brosnan. It was during this time that Amie Huguenard read Timothy’s book and fell in love with him, leaving her job and moving to Malibu to be able to go on camping trips with Timothy (January 2003). Timothy and his girlfriend, Amie Huguenard, were mauled to death by a big brown 28 year old grizzly bear on 06 October 2003. The entire incident was caught on camera, presumably by Timothy himself.
It is assumed he switched the camera on when the attack started. The bear was shot and killed when it charged the State Troopers and remains of Timothy and Amie were found in her stomach. There has been much criticism of Timothy since his death regarding his choices.
Some are of the opinion that his whole life was farce and his “love” of bears was just a way to get the money and recognition he craved as a failed actor. He has also been criticised for not taking the necessary precautions when around bears, such as carrying bear spray and having electric fencing around his campsite.

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Genetic Or Learned

Timothy Treadwell’s “skill” was leaned. By spending large amounts of time amongst the bears he learned, to a degree, how to avoid being killed by them.

Names Known By

  • The Bear Whisperer

Official Website

Timothy Treadwell Youtube Videos

Featured In

  • Book: Death in the Grizzly Maze: The Timothy Treadwell Story – Mike Lapinski, Michael Lapinski – 2005
  • Book: The Grizzly Maze: Timothy Treadwell’s Fatal Obsession with Alaskan Bears – Nick Jans 2006
  • Talk Show: Late Show with David Letterman 2001
  • Documentary : The Grizzly Man Diaries – 2008
  • Documentary : Headline Attacks – 2008
  • Movie: Grizzly Man – 2005

Books Published

  • Among Grizzlies (with Jewel Palovak) – 1997