There are eight species of bear worldwide, including the mostly carnivorous polar bear and the giant panda of China, whose diet consists entirely of bamboo. Brown bears (pictured) roam the forests and mountains of North America, Europe and Asia, but the biggest reside in the Kodiak Archipelago of south-western Alaska. Most bears are omnivorous and eat almost anything; grizzlies regularly prey on 800 kg moose or forage for nuts and berries. Male brown bears can grow up to 2.8 metres (9.2 feet) and can weigh up to 360 kilograms (790 pounds). Their average live span is 25 years. The American black bear is the most common of all the world’s species and are a third smaller than a brown bear, with males growing up to 2 metres and weighing up to 250 kilograms (550 pounds). Their average life span is 18 years.
- Brown bears can eat as much as 40 kilograms (90 pounds) of food a day.
- Despite their size, bears can run up to 50 kilometres an hour (30 miles an hour).
- American black bears hibernate for three to five months of the year in dens, depending on the weather, and the females give birth at this time – while still asleep!
Time of year: The south-western parts of British Columbia enjoy some of Canada’s best weather: visiting between late spring and early autumn offers the best chance of missing the rain.
Destination: Embark on an early morning walk or ride around the compound of the Clayoquot Wilderness Resort, Canada, and you are almost guaranteed to see the black bear foraging in the undergrowth or exploring the water’s edge. For 3, 4 or 7 nights this premier ‘camping-style’ resort offers 20 luxury tents furnished with all the usual home comforts (including queen and king-size beds), in a setting that offers its visitors exciting outdoor experiences. The resort’s staff customise daily wilderness activities based on each guest’s individual abilities, desires and experience, and with activities from hiking, climbing and archery to whale and bear watching, fishing and horse riding, there is something to suit every taste. A popular family destination, the resort ensures that every age is catered for and combines the ultimate luxury with thrilling adventure.
Price Guide: From $4,750 CAD for 3 nights.