Tuesday, December 14, 2010

CARNIVORES: Grizzly Stores Part III

I should probably tell you my first Grizzly Story, although there is no photo. I was fly fishing with my youngest daughter Ashley. I had taken her on a fishing trip into some of the back country lakes in British Columbia. In this case it happened to be Plateau Lake. To get there required using a very difficult and challenging road -- 4x4 high clearance and winch required. We were the only ones at the lake. We got out in our float tubes just at dawn the first morning. The water was still and the mist coming off the lake provided an idyllic setting. We were in the shallow end fishing up against the shoreline. Ashley was about 75 yards away from me when I heard a thump, thump through the woods. To my astonishment it was a fully grown male Grizzly Bear. Since Ashley had the camera I couldn't take a photo. I waved my arms to get Ashley's attention so she could come closer and take the photo. A minute passed and she was no closer to me (and the bear). In fact she may have been further away. So, I wave my arms again signaling her to come with the camera. This time I got the Grizzly's attention. I was in water about three feet deep, and the Grizzly Bear was no more than 10 feet away from me. As he stood up my mouth and eyes opened. This was the most amazing and beautiful animal I had ever seen in my life. He was 8 feet tall and probably weighed well over 1000 pounds! I was awestruck. The Grizzly could have easily waded out in the water a couple of feet and done what ever he wanted with me. I could had hit him with my fly rod I was that close. But, no, he wasn't interested in me. He went back down on all fours and "waddled" up the shoreline about 50 yards and then disappeared into the words. It was only then that my heart started pounding. It was truly a one-in-a-lifetime experience. 

So, I don't leave you today without a photo, here are a couple of Grizzlies I caught in Yellowstone late one Spring:

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