Slowly, though, he found his confidence. He started to run again and to think more about the future. One weekend, Jenna came home from school. They went shopping and, for the first time, they didn't mention the bear. They grew proud of their scars.
"Thank you, God, for giving me the opportunity to give this blessing for these individuals you brought to our rescue," he spoke into the microphone. "Many of these people here are my true friends. Please guide their hand to reach and touch many more lives."
In June, he ran in San Diego's Rock 'n' Roll marathon, finishing in 3 hours, 39 minutes and 48 seconds. But it was nine minutes too slow to qualify for Boston. The next day he was depressed.
The bear still had him.
LAST summer, 11 months after the attack, Johan returned to Glacier National Park and set out again on the trail where he and Jenna had encountered the grizzly. He wanted to see Grinnell Glacier. Marilyn joined him, as did Gary Moses, one of the rangers who helped rescue him.
Johan wore the same running shoes that he had had on during the attack. He carried the same camcorder. As he hiked through the woods, a wave of familiarity swept over him. Past Lake Josephine, the sound of waterfalls in the distance broke the stillness. He remembered how quiet it had been when he and Jenna had passed through here, when all they heard was the wind and the water.
He took photos of wildflowers, marveled at the scale of the park and, as the trail rose in a series of switchbacks, he pointed to a moose walking below in the shallows of Grinnell Lake, its wake cutting a perfect V in the turquoise water.
He looked at the surrounding mountains. "It's cool that we survived."
He began to recount the story. Here is where I wanted to take another picture. Here is where Jenna grew impatient with me. Here is where I took that last shot of her.
He started to cry.
"I'm a little surprised at how emotional this is," he said. "I don't know why."
He paused to gaze out upon a field of ankle-high wildflowers, the pink-purple tufts and candlestick blooms bending in a gust. In the distance stood a thick, ragged patch of alder scrub and elfin spruce.
"You know there's a grizzly out there," he said, almost in awe. After the attack, the National Park Service had determined that the grizzly was acting defensively and did not destroy it.
At the scene of the attack, Johan and Moses climbed down to the ledge where they had waited for the rescue helicopter. Before them stretched the great Grinnell Valley in all its immensity and silence. Zephyrs cut across the lake, its surface changing color in the wind and the shadows of the passing clouds. "It may seem weird to say this," he said, "but I am glad that this is beautiful. It makes me feel that the battle was worthy."
They continued along the trail, and at an overlook of the valley, he held the camcorder to his eye and captured the scenery. "OK, Jenna," he said into its microphone, "this is what we missed."
On the way back, he stopped again at the ledge. There was no bear. It was gone.
"It's done," he said.