A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about grizzly bears

Aug 15, 16, 17 - Stewart BC, and Hyder AK

Grizzly_Bears, Glaciers

rain 13 °C

After our couple of days in Dease Lake, and our trip out the Telegraph Creek Road, it was time to move on to Stewart BC. The 450 kilometer drive was uneventful. The road is narrow, winding, but well paved.


With very little reason to stop along the way, we were in Stewart by mid-afternoon and settled into the River's Edge Campground, a full service r/v park. $41 per night, spotty internet. It did have showers, which we needed desperately after 5 nights of dry camping, and a laundromat...we were running out of clean underwear :)

We did stop for a picture of TaJ with the Bear Glacier, on the road into Stewart.


Our arrival also brought the rain. It rained pretty well our entire time in Stewart, sometime heavily. First night we had pizza in town, at the only pizza spot in Stewart. We'd rate it an 8 out of 10.

The next morning was our first visit to Hyder and the Fish Creek Boardwalk to see the Grizzly Bears feeding on salmon. The river has a large run of pink and chum salmon and regularly attracts bears to feed on the ample fish in the river. Here is a shot of the boardwalk, which is 15-20 feet above the river. The boardwalk holds up to 400 people, safely above the fray below, although we understand from the rangers that people have been stupid enough to leave the boardwalk in an attempt to get a "better" picture of the bears.


Selfie on boardwalk:


This is what the excitement is all about. This is a 4-5 year old male grizzly, a really adept fish catcher. He caught 5 salmon in just over a half hour, and ate one of the right in front of us. The crunching is audible to all on the viewing platform.




We went to the boardwalk 5 times in our two days there, just to have a looksee. The best viewing times are early morning and evening. In between we took a drive up the road to see the glacier on the Hyder side. On the way up this determined little bird held us up for 5 minutes. Jenny had to get out of the car and finally shoo her away


The road is steep and winds along cliffs past abandoned and active gold, silver and copper mines. This glacier is near the top of the road. As you can see we were pretty well socked in with rain.


On our other trips to the bear viewing boardwalk, we saw a female grizzly and a black bear mother with twin cubs.


As the rains continued, the water level in Fish Creek began to rise and the bears abandoned the river for the time being, as the water was murky and deeper than normal, making catching more difficult. We spent our time at the local museum, learning a bit of the history of the community. Local people live on logging, mining and tourism, and are deeply affected by changes in government policy that affects their livelihoods. There was much talk that politicians in Victoria, who, for the most part, have no idea of what life is like in the northern 50% of the province, where almost all of the economy is derived from natural resources like logging and mining, make decisions that affect them.

The town is lovely with moss hanging from the trees.


Hyder AK is slowly sliding into oblivion, with less than 50 people living there.


Eagles abound in the rivers;


These old cars are reminiscent of earlier days and make a nice scene in downtown Stewart


We departed Stewart on the morning of August 18, heading 475 kilometers south, to Prince Rupert, where we met up with out old travel buddies, George and Karmen Reid, who we met in Newfoundland, in 2013, and have hooked up with on the road 6 times now. Their Airstream is a real cutie:


Our next adventure will see us park TaJ and head over to Haida Gwaii for three days. The next blog entry will cover this jaunt to the home of the Haida.

Posted by Rooseboom-Scott 11:52 Archived in Canada Tagged salmon grizzly_bears glaciers stewart hyder Comments (1)

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