Khutzeymateen Provincial Park, also known as K’tzim-a-deen Grizzly Sanctuary, is a wild, way-off-the-beaten-path land and marine park established specifically to safeguard grizzly bears and their habitat. Scientists estimate that about 50 grizzlies are protected by the no-hunting restrictions of the remote rain forest sanctuary.
The only way to see the resident grizzlies is from a small boat or plane guided by a permitted outfitter, such as Sunchaser Eco-Tours and Bluewater Adventures.
“As you enter the Khutzeymateen Inlet, the landscape changes dramatically,” says Erin Boyle, who traveled to the sanctuary as part of a Bluewater excursion.
“In June, the mountains on both sides are carpeted in thick hemlock and bunches of alder, and the banks are lined with protein-rich sedge grass, an early-season staple for bears.
We kept our binoculars trained on the shore, and it wasn’t long before a solitary, subadult grizzly was spotted at the water’s edge grazing in the sun. It was peaceful and still, and [it] felt like we were a million miles away.”