Saturday, October 8

What a West Coast wonderful day! The drizzle in Campbell River gave way to a brisk but dry day on the water and in the Orford Bay, leaving behind mist that cloaked each mountain. Dall’s Porpoise raced along the channels as we journeyed north to the Orford, only allowing us a brief glimpse of their dorsal fins. Once in the Bute Inlet we were graced by Surf Scoters, Cormorants, and some Auklets. Upon our arrival to Orford Bay, the “patience game” was unnecessary today, as we saw a Grizzly Bear right as we drove to the Grizzly sign (old Tower #3)! How fitting. We saw another bear at Tower #5 and on our return drive got to witness one bear floating down the Orford River. At Tower #2, a mother bear and 3 cubs were immediately visible, fishing and scrambling over logs. Momma caught a very large salmon and allowed the cubs to feast. Two more bears were present nearer the tower, and right as we turned to leave a 7th bear walked out of the trees! Bald Eagles and Ravens were also flocking to get some scraps from the hungry bears, with 2 juvenile Bald Eagles locking talons and posturing at one another. We continued on to the Estuary Tower and were fortunate enough to see 4 more bears, potentially another sow (mother) with triplets! Stunning scenery of the Bute made the perfect backdrop for our last look at Grizzlies. The return journey passed quickly on calm waters, with the sun even making a slight guest appearance through layers of mist.

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