We headed off nice and early for Meziadin area and planning a short day trip down to Stewart and Hyder, about 1 hour into the 3 hour trip, we decided to go into Stewart and stay a few days and be closer to the action – if there is any. Fueled up at Meziadin Turn off and there is nothing there – just the service station.
The drive down to Stewart is a windy but good road and the views are magnificent, follow a rushing river and suddenly Bear Glacier is right there on the side of the road, you are only about 1km (0.6 miles) from the face to the road, the road has parking spots for photos and sitting and looking around.
Continue down the valley through narrow passes but the road is good, we arrive in Stewart and set up the trailer, unhook the truck for the first time in about 4-5 days. Both desperate for a good coffee so down to town we go, only a few km’s away, and found the only open coffee shop and had a sandwich for lunch – it was 2pm.
Went to the Information centre and a walk down the boardwalk in town that is above the flood area at the end of the Portland Canal, this leads out to the Haida Gwaii Pass and the open ocean. There are hundreds of huge logs floating in the harbour and trucks go day and night delivering more.
Off home to slow down. We need to set up properly and get some dinner. The internet is great so I loaded up two video’s!! Been trying to load them for a week or more – finally got them up.
We were told to go to the Salmon Glacier and the Bear viewing boardwalk at Fish Creek both in Hyder, AK – yes we need to cross back into Alaska, USA for the day to visit these two places. Passports in glovebox and we were off early.
Drove across the border – no USA Border office, into the quaint and eclectic town of Hyder – a lot of the town buildings were as built 50-70 years ago and I am sure are only held up with the few repairs and layers of paint.
Got to Fish Creek Bear viewing area and there was a huge black grizzly bear – a young male about 5 years old and not yet fully grown – sitting on the other bank eating fish. There was loads of dead fish in the river and along side it and he would come across the river and hunt down the “just dead” fish and eat the eggs and organs and skin, then look for another. We stayed a couple of hours and took loads of photos. There were a few only like fish still coming up and spawning the majority were dead.
We drove on up to Salmon Glacier, it was a short while and the road turned to dirt, and we had about 25 kms to get to the top, the views were wonderful of the mountains and the passes. The road was one lane each way but the drop on the side was straight down and a little scary but the views were remarkable.
Got to the top of the pass at the Salmon Glacier and this huge wide and very very long glacier was coming through the mountain pass and turned to our left and headed down the valley we had just come up, at one point on the drive we did see the “toe” of the glacier being the end of it. Spoke to some very nice folk at the top and took another batch of photos before heading back down to try our luck again at the bear viewing area. No luck this time, our morning bear had gone off down river, the warden said for a nap.
Home for what is left of the afternoon, shared our firewood with Yvonne and Bill – a lovely couple travelling Canada and the USA in a very posh Mercedes camper. They are Canadians and travelling across Canada before heading south to Las Vegas and Arizona for the winter.
Next morning was a slower start and we decided to have one more chance at Fish Creek bear viewing – no luck at all but wonderful and friendly folk. One couple from Vancouver Island that come back here all the time for photographing bears and a Cayman Island family who are travelling the USA with two daughters and seeing the world. Very enjoyable few hours with these folk and no bears….. We are travelling tomorrow so home for pack up and tidy up for an early start, it is supposed to rain so we are hooking up and saving the work in the morning.