Conservation officers were forced to take extraordinary measures Wednesday to reach a bear that scaled a tall cedar tree next to a Safeway in North Vancouver.

Authorities were called after the animal wandered near the grocery store’s parking lot at 27th Avenue and Mountain Highway around 12:45 p.m.

By the time officers arrived, the two-year-old female had already climbed so high they needed a fire truck ladder to access it.

“It was a little difficult to get our dart gun off to immobilize it,” conservation officer Ashley Page said. “It certainly wasn’t an ideal situation, but we managed.”

PHOTO GALLERY: Bear scales tree in North Van

Officers eventually managed to tranquilize the bear, leaving it slumped over a number of branches. A crowd of onlookers applauded as the animal was placed in a harness and lowered to the ground.

Firefighters set up a safety mat before tranquilizing the bear in case it fell.

Page said the bear was already yellow-tagged, meaning it’s been immobilized and relocated before, but she’s hopeful it can be moved once again.

Conservation officers are urging North Shore residents to make sure their garbage is safely stored and inaccessible to bears to prevent similar situations in their neighbourhoods.

“The bear wouldn’t be here in the first place if it wasn’t drawn down by smells of garbage,” Page said.