Stories

What of the bear encounters?
It wasn’t until our 5th day down the Cassiar Hwy that we encountered our first of many bears. I didn’t even see it when we rode by, but Nathan, the diligent, is always on the look-out and spotted a black bear in the bushes on the side of the road. Shortly after we passed, the bear wondered onto the road and allowed us a few moments to gawk from a comfortable distance down the road. Because the bear was solid black and solidly 10ft tall, we didn’t have the nerve to pull out the cameras and photograph the beautiful beast. That is roughly the scenario for all the encounters we had.
Our most confrontational encounter was with another black bear that at first didn’t realize the danger it was in. Here he was faced with two gruff bikers with legs of steel who mean serious business and would never back down from an opportunity to display their manly strength. We tried to warn the bear of the situation he was in, but as most adolescents in the animal kingdom, he cared very little and was content to ignore us and continue foraging. Both Nathan and myself would consider ourselves to be pacifists and lovers of wildlife, but after 5 minutes we decided enough was enough. We dismounted our steeds and went to park them safely along the side of the road, not wanting our bikes to suffer any of the fury we were about to throw the bears way. The juvenile black bear must have interpreted the seriousness of our body language and quickly skirted off into the woods at the side of the road. During our breakdown of the situation we came to the conclusion that our bikes were blocking the bear’s view of our immense legs of steel, and it wasn’t until we dismounted and gave an accurate view of our manly strength did the bear become aware of the true danger it was in.
All of the bears we have encountered have been relatively small black bears, alone, and completely unconcerned with our presence. After the encounters of the Cassiar, we feel much more confident about how to interact and deal with bears. Albeit, neither of us are interested in testing our methods on a Grizzly. However, we did ride straight into Grizzly country to see if we could watch them feeding on spawning salmon at Fish Creek in Alaska (adjacent to Stewart, BC). Much to our disappointment, we did not see any Grizzlies chasing and feasting on fish. So much for the 100 mile detour off the Cassiar.

5 Responses to “Stories”

  1. Max says:

    Justin,

    It looks like you are getting close to Prince George. Don’t forget to turn right.

    -Max, Sara, and Tucker (and Quincy, too)

  2. Lander says:

    Well now. . . you’re not that far from Bozeman are you? Longfellow school was on lockdown last week when a blackie wondered onto the playground at the end of the day. Why it was not scared away by screaming children is beyond me. Keep the stories and photos coming. We’re loving them!
    Lander and John

  3. Max says:

    BEARS! Neat.

  4. Patrick says:

    Love it dude. Are you sure the bears were not afraid of your trusty steel steeds? Good thing those bears thought twice.

  5. Caitlyn says:

    Great entries, both written and photographic. Keep up the adventuring! We miss you here, but we are all proud and excited for the many beautiful sights you’ve been seeing and the passionate way you are getting after the road.

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