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Stewart BC Hyder Alaska

Black Bears, Grizzly Bears, Salmon spawning

sunny 20 °C
View TaJ 2019 & TaJ 2019 June 27 to Aug 15 & TaJ 2019 - The Journey Home on Rooseboom-Scott's travel map.

We departed the picnic area outside Prince Rupert bright and early on the morning on August 9. Our destination, Stewart BC does not have super amenities so we stop in Terrace to resupply with food and drink.

The drive in to Stewart was full of bear sightings; single black bears along the road right-of-way. This one posed for a picture:


We were last here in August 2017. The photo of the Bear Glacier on the right is from that trip. The photo on the left is this trip. Can you see any differences:


We arrived at Bear Creek RV Park in the late afternoon, and sandwiched TaJ into a spot between two giant fifth-wheel trailers, one from Georgia and the other from Alabama. It was the last spot available for the entire weekend. Lucky us!

The Annual Bear Festival was on in Stewart and we took in a movie about Grizzlies at the local Museum. We were both feeling a bit off from the long day on the ferry and lack of regular sleep. We crashed early in an attempt to get back on level footing. Even though we had a cabin on the ferry and had the chance to nap during the voyage, a short night’s sleep before boarding and a late evening arrival in Prince Rupert cut our regular sleep patterns. Jenny and I both sleep well, so one night was all it took to get us back to feeling normal by the morning of August 10.

We learn from local chatter that the grizzlies have not yet appeared at Fish Creek, outside Hyder, Alaska at this point. This is the one photo we got from 2017.


When we were here in 2017 we were at the end of the grizzly feeding time; a week earlier they said and we would have seen our fill of grizzlies. So, for 2019 we decided to get here that precious week earlier, and what: No grizzlies have yet appeared in the river. We buy the three day pass for boardwalk access. The cost is $13 Canadian per person.

The thing about Fish Creek is you have to be patient and put in some time there. The boardwalk along the creek is about 600 feet long and gives you a wonderful view of the spawning salmon in the creek. The fish here are Chum and Pink salmon. The Chum males run as large as 30 pounds and the females about 20 pounds. They are easy to spot among the thousands of Pink salmon in the river. Pink Salmon rarely go over 6 pounds so the size diversity is dramatic.


Over the course of two days we spend almost 5 hours on the boardwalk, in 4 visits. No grizzlies, just a single small black bear. The staff at Fish Creek think there was a bumper crop of berries in the highlands and the bears were still up there devouring them. Driving back to the campground, just across the border from Hyder we did see this black bear on the road:


We drove up to the Stewart Glacier, the 5th largest in Canada and the largest that can be driven to. You can stop at the toe of the glacier:


and then drive a further 10 kilometers to the top of the glacier:


Beyond the top of the glacier the road continues and we went a further 6 kilometers up to find this tunnel through the mountain.


After a 40 kilometer drive back to Hyder we paused at the US border marker for this picture:


At the Canadian border guard station we came upon this little fellow greeting us at the Canadian border marker:


The road to the glacier is as rough as any of the logging roads we drove on Vancouver Island. Sully, our 2016 Honda Pilot is beginning to show signs of wear and tear from a total of 400 kilometers of rugged logging and mining roads. These roads are beyond gravel and should be driven on only if you think your vehicle is capable of handling the really difficult conditions. We expect at least a wheel alignment is in our immediate future!

We left Stewart on August 12 headed for Telkwa BC and a two night stay at the Fort Telkwa RV Park. We have heard great things about their wi-fi and we certainly need access. As I write this I can assure you that this campground is good, darn good. 5 stars.

On the way to Telkwa, we took in the totem poles at Gitanyow, and the museum as 'Ksan. Here are some photos from there.




We move on to Prince George and Dawson Creek in the coming days. Our next blog entry, perhaps later today, will be about the road ahead and the route of our journey home. We expect to arrive back in Millville Nova Scotia somewhere around October 5. We are at day 98 of our journey for 2019. The days on the road have been fun and we have truly enjoyed the experience so far. We still have more adventure in us.

Posted by Rooseboom-Scott 11:17 Archived in Canada Tagged stewart hyder_alaska bear_glacier stewart_glacier fort_telkwa_riverfront_rv_campg

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