The Cassiar Highway

Trip Start Sep 13, 2008
Trip End Oct 04, 2008

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Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Sunday, September 21, 2008

We rose early and headed back to Fish Creek to try and see a Bear. As we entered the Fish Creek Car Park we saw a large female Grizzly Bear on the bank of the river. We raced out of the car and onto the enclosed boardwalk just in time to see the bear head out into the car park and walk right past our car.

Having finally seen a bear at Fish Creek we decided to continue along the rather bumpy road to the Salmon Glacier. From Fish Creek it is approx 15 miles and takes around 50mins up a very steep winding road to get up to the Salmon Glacier viewing point, but once there the view was amazing and definitely worth the drive! The Salmon Glacier is the third largest glacier in North America and the largest glacier in the world accessible by road.
After taking in the breath taking scenery we headed back down the bumpy road, through Hyder and Stewart and back onto Hwy 37A to Meziadin Junction. At Meziadin Junction we got onto Hwy 37 North.

The scenery on the Stewart Cassiar Highway is breath taking along its whole length, but the stretch of road between Meziadin Junction and Dease Lake is especially good. There are also many great opportunities for spotting wildlife. WE saw several more bears along this section of the highway including another Grizzly, who seemed quite comfortable with us taking a number of pictures of him whilst he ate an assortment of plants.
As the scenery along the Stewart Cassiar highway we decided to take our time and not rush onto Watson lake but spend the night in a small town (hamlet really) called Iskut. According to the guide books we had read there seemed more to Iskut than there actually was. The guide book stated that there was a shop, post office, gas station and restaurant / cafe. What it neglected to mention was that all of these services are located in one building! There were only a couple of places to stay in town The Red Goat lodge and the Bear Paw Ranch Resort.

We decided to stay at the Bear Paw Ranch Resort about 6 km north of Iskut. When we arrived the place appeared to be closed for the season, but after knocking we managed to rouse the owner who so she had a room available for the night. The main ranch building was built to imitate an Austrian Chalet as the owners are originally from Austria. The room was comfortable and it appeared that we were the only guests. The room was approx 70 which did not include breakfast, breakfast was an additional 6 each, which consisted of luke warm tea, cold toast, egg, ham served in a rather cold dining area. However, this may have been caused by the -4 tempeture outside and the fact that it was snowing.

Distance Travelled - 441Km
Time Taken - Approx 4.5 Hours
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