Tag Archive: grizzlies


Grizzly Bear trophy hunt – meaning that a bear is being killed and stripped of its pelt, and that more than ever it is the European (so-called) hunters who come to British Columbia, to partake in the (rather liberally set provincial quota for) hunting and killing those animals.

[ http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/grizzly-bears-overhunted-in-b-c-say-researchers-1.2417306 ] .

So, what is the point exactly of stripping a bear of its pelt and hanging it up on the wall ? Or do they use the bear pelts as carpeting ? Or do they think that there is a major market for any of its parts ? maybe in China ?

I cannot see the point of it, yet. For example, a Norwegian traveling all the way to the most Western Canadian Province, British Columbia, in order to return back home with the skin of one of the most intelligent animals. One of the remnants of a Grizzly bear population that has been shrinking to only pockets in Western Canada.

While the BC government claims that set quotas are scientifically proven (or, should I say “clinically proven” ?), scientists here who study the Grizzly bear population know otherwise. [http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/grizzly-bear-kill-limits-being-broken-across-bc-study-says/article15301716/ ]

And don’t you hate it, when a government agency (these are not professionals or scientists, but politicians with no science or even statistical background), determines how many bears can be killed in one season. Don’t tell me, female bears are also included ? ! And who is controlling the hunt ? Any member of those BC governmental agencies ? Is anybody out there in the cold and the wilds to check if the “right” bear is killed ? [Reminds me of the Right Whale in the 19th and 20th century, who were almost completely exterminated. – http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/north-atlantic-right-whales-hunted-to-the-edge-of-extinction-405848.html ]

For those visitors from out of Canada, don’t touch our bears, leave them be, go hunt your own (people) or animals, whatever they be.

Illegal trophy hunts of grizzly bears. It is a cowardly act to kill unarmed civilians during a war or occupation, the hunt is also on for trophy grizzly bears. Mostly residing in Canada’s northern British Columbia. The numbers are staggering – 300 bears killed a year, 250 bears by way of (lottery-assigned) trophy hunts. The numbers are staggering. Trophy hunting resulting in taking the head, paws, having the pelt processed for mounting.

The trophy hunting of coastal grizzlies is not so much a sport as a search and destroy mission by trophy hunters with militia-style mindsets” (cowards who missed out of serving in any significant war theatre and intend to make up for it.) These marvellous majestic creatures are already fighting pollution, habitat loss and pipelines crisscrossing their habitat [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enbridge_Northern_Gateway_Pipelines ]

Suggestion to those ‘militia-style skinheads’ : “Stand in front of a mirror, shoot at yourself, pin on some (purple heart or other) silly war medal, and march in the Memorial Day parade “I am a hero, I served”. At least that way some of the grizzlies can stay alive.

Coming back to trophy hunting of our grizzly friends in BC: The EU has issued a ban on import of such animal parts. However, hunters from Europe and elsewhere in North America come here regularly to hunt, get the skins processed and somehow illegally export them to their country. The Raincoast Conservation Organisation is working on this. [ http://www.raincoast.org/projects/grizzly-bears/troph-hunting/ ]

[NOTE. s.a. http://renataveritasopinion.wordpress.com/2013/09/23/obsession-with-guns/ ]

Despite my many years living in Alberta’s wilderness, I would have considered it a rare privilege to actually have encountered a grizzly bear in the wild. Black bears I have encountered many.

Grizzlies, so near, yet invisible

My first meeting up close with a grizzly had been in a wildlife park during our many travels through the United States and most of its national parks. In the Black Hills of South Dakota, on our way to Mt. Rushmore. [ https://www.bearcountryusa.com/ ]

This was in the summer of 1976, the year of America’s Bi-Centennial celebrations. I had just graduated in December of 1975 from Syracuse University, New York State. And taken the time off to travel extensively that summer with my little boy, eight years old, in our old square back VW van – a really old model. I called it our ‘Hobomobile’, as it served also as our home for many weeks. By Fall of that year we went up north into Canada, before the cold set in. Shortly after we arrived in Alberta in 1976, I got myself work. Then from January 1977 until into the 1990s working in Alberta’s oil industry.

Talking about grizzly bears : –

From 1978 on until the year 2002 I mostly lived by myself – after also my son left for the USA in 1990 do do his graduate studies in Alabama – in the Foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Alberta. Surrounded by wild life. Because all those many years I had horses, I also had large pieces of land. Mostly wilderness, treed. After nine years in the Kananaskis country south west of Calgary, during the 1980s, several times with a group of other riders and the horses, we made overnight trips for several days to Two Jack Lake, Lake Minnewanka, Banff National Park area. Because this is so high up, this is also prime Grizzly bear country. For several days we camped out in large Army tents, the entire compound surrounded by electrified barb wire, against bear visits.

[ https://calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/grizzly-bear-ly-misses-hiker-after-charge-forcing-closures-in-banff-national-park ][ https://globalnews.ca/news/4255044/hiker-charged-grizzly-lake-minnewanka-banff/ ]

During those years I also had 160 acres of bare land far outside West of Cochrane, (north up Forestry Trunk Road, north of the (today Ghost River Dam area)). [ https://www.cottageclub.ca/history ]. This was so far out, surrounded by miles of Crown land, that there were no real neighbours. I made very many rides with my horses alone in this wilderness area high up in the Rocky Mountain Foothills, but never once came face to face with a grizzly bear. They are there, they can hear you, they can smell you. I can see traces of them. Besides that rarely would any bear or wolf or any wild animals attack a human, when going out alone in those areas, always make some noise, make yourself heard. This 160 acres by the way was close to the Stoney Indian Reserve. [ http://www.rockymountainnakoda.com/our-lands ]. My most precious book: These Mountains are our Sacred Places. The Story of the Stoney People. 1977. By Chief John Snow, of the Wesley Band.

Back to grizzly bears.

From 1994 until the year 2000 my land with my home and horses on 80 acres was even more remote, north west of Cochrane, Alberta, a wilderness where the nearest little town was Water Valley, Alberta. [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_Valley,_Alberta ]

Surrounded by hundreds of acres of Crown land. Often during those years I had to visit a saw mill somewhere in the middle of nowhere to pick up my rails for making my horse fences. There were no roads. This could only be done by a heavy 4×4 truck.

One day I drove in to see that guy who operated the mill. On my way in, a couple of guys in a truck came out, white as sheets in their faces. I thought they saw a ghost. They told me that there is a grizzly bear who had taken down a cow and still in there, feeding.

I drove on, passing by some yellow Dept. Forestry tape – WARNING BEAR – then on to the sawmill. No one there. Pretty eerie. Again the bear nearby, but not visible.

That’s as much as goes for grizzly bears. They are there, but cannot be seen. If you run into one unexpected, though, you better be careful !

Since 2002 residing in British Columbia, where Grizzlies and their sub-species – the Pacific Rain Forest white Spirit Bear – can hopefully be seen by sailing up the BC coast north Vancouver Island. Which I did in 2014, stopping various times during the sailing thru the Johnson strait. One of my videos during a storm [ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIVhEkGRiN8 ] . Grizzlies hunting for salmon – we did not see. [ https://renataveritashistory.com/2014/10/25/adventure-sailing-trip-northern-vancouver-island/ ].

NOTES. Links to earlier articles on grizzly bear hunt.

[ http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/grizzly-bears-overhunted-in-b-c-say-researchers-1.2417306 ] .

otherwise. [http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/grizzly-bear-kill-limits-being-broken-across-bc-study-says/article15301716/ ]

During the many years living in Alberta’s wilderness outside of the big cities of Calgary and Edmonton, along the foothills of the Rocky Mountains NW of Calgary, I have encountered situations which to most city dwellers may seem frightening.
(This post continued from my last post – on Encounters with Grizzly Bears [ https://renataveritashistory.com/2014/05/29/alberta-wilderness-stories/ ]).

With our horses we went from Alberta in the Foothills West of Calgary across the mountains towards Jack Lake. [ http://www.albertawow.com/campgrounds/Two_Jack_Lake/Two_Jack_Lake.htm ].
It was a long hike across steep terrain. Near the Two Jack Lake campgrounds, there were also sites specifically set up for horses and riders to overnight in big green armee tents. Upon arrival, I noticed that the entire site had been enclosed with high razor wire. Which during the night was electrified. We stayed three nights in those tents.
At that time nothing particular happened, but the ever present danger of Grizzly Bears in the vicinity could not be overlooked. That was mainly what this fencing was about.
From there after three days back to home – the horses in trailers. My little Q.Horse gelding was one to not load easily. Three guys were needed to coax him into the trailer. Poor thing !
(NOTE. Did not take a camera at that time – but offer a video of another trail ride NW towards Banff, organized by my friends of the Bar C Ranch, then good old Lester B., owner. Bar C today became a big resort [ http://www.bar-c.com/barc/home.html ] )

Grizzlies are scary in a sense, because they are unpredictable and large enough to take
down a cow. Which they often do. But more caution should be given to the big cats, like the cougar. On my 80-acre ranch NW of Calgary in the Foothills, I did have – apart from my resident moose cow – the occasional cougar. Hiding in those enormous wood piles left behind by the loggers. (Next post – the logging operations). Meanwhile news of a “cougar shooting” right here in our neck of the woods: [ https://renataveritashistory.com/2014/06/03/they-shot-a-cougar-vancouver-island/ ]