Written by Alain Lagacé
There is no doubt about it, on the Golden Peninsula there are many black bears! If we target the most favourable places, we can sometimes see a dozen bears in less than a kilometer. River valleys are areas where temperatures are warmest and provide ideal habitat for black bears. In the fall, black bears take refuge in the valleys where they feed mainly on wild berries and sometimes even fish.
The easiest and safest way to observe bear behavior in the fall is by going to a secluded wilderness wildlife viewing camp where the animals do not fear human behaviour. The excursion begins by choosing a river valley that is exposed to long periods of sunshine, where the bays such as blueberries are most abundant and ideally close to a river or stream where fish spawn.
When you have found the ideal place with a large field of vision, you sit down and look at the distant horizon with a pair of binocular. The idea is to detect the slightest movement of black dots (the black bear). It is necessary to make the fix for a long time, because in times of abundance of food the bears move very slowly.
Once the bears have been spotted the bear specialist guide makes a discreet approach so you can closely observe the bears that are busy feeding. Sometimes they interact with each other, and if salmon or char migrate, they can be seen hunting.
A typical seven-day excursion takes us through the grandiose landscapes of varied post-glacial landforms – forest tundra, arctic tundra, dwarf shrub heath, bare summit, desert plateau…
Seeing black bears in their natural habitats is an experience in itself, but the most fascinating thing is to approach them very closely and to see them feed without them bothering.
If you need help planning your next 2021 Golden Peninsula adventure, let us know.
Alain Lagacé - email@example.com