Here we are on Tuesday May 24 morning in beautiful Bella Coola –grizzly capital of the west.
Trip from Montreal was uneventful, had one night in Vancouver, saw some friends, and then headed to the ferry Saturday morning.
Sylvia spent the week in the photography workshop on Gabriola Island with twelve other participants. She will describe it, but it was all she had hoped for and more.
Beautiful island with BC tall trees and seriously laid-back approach to life.
Glenn had three days in Victoria and Sooke with Family – it was great to catch up as we don’t see the West Coast Crew too often.
Left Gabriola early Saturday morning for the 5-hour drive to Port Hardy. Took the scenic route with a few stops to check out the ocean and mountains and sleep. Again, beautiful.
Got on the ferry Saturday evening from Port Hardy for a 21 hour trip including a ferry change at Bella Bella and stops at Shearwater, Ocean Falls and to finally disembark at Bella Coola.
These BC Ferries are BIG and amazing.
Got some good sleep in a cabin on the first leg to Bella Bella and then stretched out on a bench during the second leg. It is still pretty cold up here, so the ferries had very few passengers.
Healthy food – burgers, fries and poutine.
Spectacular scenery as we moved up the inlet inwards to Bella Coola
Settled into our log cabin at Grizzly Resort. Not disappointed at all., New cabin in a beautiful natural setting.
Lazed around Sunday
Monday visited some ancient Nuxalk First Nations Petroglyphs.
Funny how things happen. You need a First Nations Guide to go there but Monday was a holiday, so the office was closed. At our Lodge’s suggestion we were just cruising the streets of Bella Coola looking for someone to take us up. No idea why but we stopped a pick-up truck and asked the driver if he knew of someone who could do that. He said, “Go knock on that door and fellow’s brother can take you”. As it turned out it was the ‘fellow’ himself Chris Nelson who took us, and he was in fact once the head of the organization that did the tours.
A lot of knowledge and very accommodating. We further lucked out as there was no one else there. It was a quite moving experience as we heard the stories.
So, we really lucked out and a very informative 1 ½ hour session on the history of the petroglyphs which are thought to be over 5,000 years old. Chris entertained us with a couple of songs and really did a great job telling us some native stories. Quite outstanding.
Next was a 7-hour jeep trek with the owner of our lodge Leonard Ellis. This has been the highlight of the trip so far. Biggest red wood tress we could imagine AND saw close up 11 bears including 5 grizzlies.
They are out eating grass along the road at this time of year and so we were able to stop beside them or just across the road. Better than seeing them on foot alone in the forest! Magnificent animals. Leonard is a long-time guide and outfitter, so he had a lot of information and stories to give us. Not sure we can beat this part of our trip.
Changed our itinerary a bit and will go to Nimpo Lake tomorrow for one night. Will take an hour or so flight over the coastal range of mountains to see some other wise inaccessible sights and hopefully get some great photos.
Having a good time and now sleeping in till 9 am local time or noon Montreal time
Hope all goes well back East
Mom, Dad, Grandma, Grampa
Aka Sylvia and Glenn
Some pics below
"One doesn’t stop seeing. One doesn’t stop framing. It doesn’t turn off and turn on. It’s on all the time."
~ Annie Leibovitz