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Boston man, 24, competes against bears on Discovery Channel’s ‘Man Vs Bear’

Mike Rosa (center) will compete Wednesday against bears on Discovery Channel.Discovery Channel

A 24-year-old Boston man tested his strength against grizzly bears in an eating competition, tug-of-war, and other challenges as he competed on Discovery Channel’s “Man Vs Bear” Wednesday night.

Mike Rosa, an avid powerlifter, competed in five challenges against three bears at a sanctuary in Park City, Utah, this summer, Rosa said.

“[The bears] were really strong. They weighed 1,400 pounds,” Rosa said. “One pull was like a force that wouldn’t be reckoned with. No human could stand against a big grizzly bear, and the power is something you really can’t understand unless you experience it.”

Rosa and two other competitors faced off against three bears from the sanctuary: Bart, Tank, and Honey Bump, according to Discovery Channel. Other competitions included log rolling, an obstacle course, and a clash in a steel ball.


“The bears looked like they were having a blast. We were not allowed to approach them up close because of the danger part of it, but they were very well-trained. They waved to us and growled to us,” Rosa said.

Rosa said the show gave him a newfound respect for bears.

“I’ve competed in powerlifting and bodybuilding, but [the show] was completely game-changing. It was more obstacle-based and completely out of my comfort zone. It wasn’t just the physicalness, but it was also a mental game as well with the intimidation factor of the bears,” Rosa said.

Rosa’s goal on the show was to have an “absolute blast.”

“It was a total adrenaline rush. It was insane. It was a complete game-changer of scenery, especially coming from Boston,” Rosa said.