Can you clarify what you're saying the myth is about mother black bears and their cubs?
Bear behavior is very different depending on where you are. Anchorage saw two significant Griz attacks within city limits this year. Two seperate bears (differentiated by DNA testing) caused significant injuries to two individuals 3 or 4 weeks apart in almost exactly the same place this summer.
For the most part, black bears here will stalk but rarely attack. There was a fatal mauling about a decade ago by a black bear, but other than that they tend to be more curious than anything. I've crossed paths with several black bears on local trails, all of whom were completely uninterested in me. We have between 200 and 300 black bears living within Anchorage, far fewer Griz, but they are there, mostly concentrated around Campbell Creek (good fishing for them). They all got a bit testy this year when we had a very late start to summer... even the grass was late, and that is their usual spring diet.
To the OP: the advice to contact the rangers in the area you're about to visit is good advice. They know the bears in their region and can advise you on how best to keep them wild.
Edited by midnightsun03 (12/10/08 03:34 PM)
YMMV. Viewer discretion is advised.