Grouse Mountain Grizzlies Awake from Hibernation

Grizzly Bears Grouse Mountain

Images courtesy of Grouse Mountain. (Photo by Devin Manky)

Ever had a nap where you sleep so long you’ve forgotten what day it is? For Grinder and Coola, Grouse Mountain’s resident grizzly bears, their longest winter sleep just concluded after 153 days of hibernation!

The annual awakening of the massive male grizzlies signals the coming of summer adventures, even though skiing and riding still remains open thanks to the colder Spring climate and fresh snow.

Grizzly Bears Grouse Mountain

Images courtesy of Grouse Mountain. (Photo by Devin Manky)

“We’re pleased to welcome Grinder and Coola out of hibernation and watch them playfully explore their habitat”, said Dr. Ken Macquisten, Refuge Director and Veterinarian. “Hibernation through the winter is a natural way for Grizzlies to conserve energy during a time of low food availability. The annual awakening of the massive male Grizzlies signals the onset of spring and summer adventures and we welcome all guests to visit these magnificent animals at the Grouse Mountain Refuge for Endangered Wildlife.” 

Regarded as two of the most popular residents at the Peak of Vancouver, the now 17 year old Grizzly bears Grinder and Coola originally came to Grouse Mountain’s Refuge for Endangered Wildlife in 2001 when they were rescued after being orphaned during separate incidents in Bella Coola and Invermere.

Now, you can watch the two playful grizzlies from a safe distance as they roll around in the snow and stretch their legs after a long winter nap.

grouse mountain grizzlies

Image courtesy of Grouse Mountain

The two grizzlies have been living on Grouse Mountain for 17 years. Each bear has its own story of how they were found as small orphan cubs. Grinder was found in Invermere, BC, where he was wandering alone on a logging road, dehydrated, thin, weak and weighing only 4.5 kg. His mother was never found, so he was taken to live in a new, safe environment on Grouse Mountain. Similarly, Coola was found orphaned on a highway near Bella Coola, BC. His mother had been killed by a truck and, of her three cubs, Coola was the only one to survive.

Now, they live a relaxing life in the wilderness sanctuary on Grouse Mountain. You can view them anytime with your alpine experience lift ticket. There’s even a “Breakfast with the Bears” experience that lets you get up, close and personal with the beautiful, big bears.

Learn more about the grizzle bears and their wildlife refuge on the Grouse Mountain website.

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One Response to Grouse Mountain Grizzlies Awake from Hibernation

  1. Good to see them up. Was just out there for a photography assignment and they hadn’t been confirmed they were out of hibernation yet.