Books on whales and dolphins are full of pictures of breaching mammals. It is hard to imagine the number of hours it took and pictures, which were taken prior to digital camera to get one good photo. Spending three to four months each summer working for Grizzly Bear Lodge with many of those whale watching I know that a breach is not that common. The breaches that occur do not come with a five minute warning in fact most good photos are a result of “right place right time” with allot of luck added.
The grizzly bear tour from the lodge travels up Knight Inlet to the viewing stands on the Glendale River. It is estimated that there are close to fifty bears in the Glendale River valley and they come to this area to feed on the pink salmon that arrive in late August and travel up the rive to the man made spawning channel. The viewing stands overlook this spawning area and the grizzly bears come to fish, eat and fatten up for their winter hibernation. If one was to attract human attributes to the grizzly one might speculate that this bear was thinking “If I close my eyes maybe these humans will be gone when I open them.” or “If I can’t see them they can’t see me.” All in all the bears are very tolerant of our presence and we are ignored unless someone forgets to turn off their camera flash, makes a load noise or sudden movements. Just pretend you child or grandchild has just gone to sleep and you do not want to wake them, talk quietly and move slowly.