Friday, October 19, 2007

Bear viewing in the Bella Coola Valley

Autumn is fishing time for bears. Chris Czajkowski (of Nuk Tessli fame) and a friend went to look for bears in the Bella Coola Valley. They didn't have to look for long:

The grizzly came ashore:

Soon after the grizzly left, a black bear came a-fishing:

and came pretty close too:

The grizzly, who hadn't gone that far must have picked up black bear scent (supper?) and stood up:

It wasn't long before they saw a black bear taking refuge high up in a cottonwood tree:

A little later, an uncomfortably close view of a mother and cubs:

A final comment from Chris:
There is some concern about the number of bear watchers and bears in such close proximity, especially the "watchers" who yell or throw stones towards the bears (not at them) in order to make them look up and be more interesting for the photos. I saw a group from a drift boat do just that. The bear was between us and the boat. If the bear had got angry she would have come up the bank to us in a bad mood. Bears don't recognise people in boats as being human, even if they make a noise. But people on land are people!


Anonymous said...

Very surprised to hear that someone in a drift boat had rocks to throw at a bear...(?) Rocks in a boat? Maybe there was an embellishment by chris about this statement...


Jeffrey Newman said...

Chris Czajkowski wrote:

As you can see from the first picture, the Atnarko is shallow at spawning time with a number of exposed gravel bars. Regarding this particular driftboat - some of the people were actually getting out of it and walking on the gravel bars (in chest waders) - hence easy access to rocks!