THE DALLES, Ore. -- A black bear that somehow found its way onto The Dalles Dam spillway was shot dead Monday after wildlife officials determined it could not be rescued.

The bear was on spillway gate 22, said Scott Clemans, a spokesman with the Army Corps of Engineers.

Officials with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife were called to the scene and decided there was no way to safely save the bear.

Photos: Bear stranded on The Dalles Dam

The drop from the spillway is about 10 stories, and very steep, Clemans said. There was no way to safely get people in place to save the animal.

An Oregon State Police officer shot the bear, which dropped into what's called the forebay above the dam, he said.

Clemans said it's unclear how the bear got there. One theory was that the bear was upstream, got swept away in what now is high and swift water on the Columbia. Unable to get to shore, it ended up at the spillway.

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