National Treasure #154: Knight Inlet

This one is kind of a two-fer.

Knight Inlet or Tsawatti or Tswawadwi is one of the principal inlets of the British Columbia Coast, and the largest of the major inlets in the southern part of the Coast. It is fifth in sequence of the great saltwater inlets north from the 49th parallel north near Vancouver, but it is the first whose outflow points away from the Strait of Georgia, opening into Queen Charlotte Strait at the Kwakwaka’wakw community of Memkumlis (often known by the name of the group who were based there, the Mamalilaculla) on Village Island. – Wiki

Ah, you’re thinking, “That Knight Inlet.  The fifth (in sequence) of the great saltwater inlets north from the 49th parallel near Vancouver.  Of course.”  

I freely admit that I did not know there were great saltwater inlets on the BC coast, nor that some (but not all) of them had outflows pointing at the Strait of Georgia. It reminds me of the various continental divides, with which I am reasonably current (no pun intended, honest) given my recent trip to Yellowstone National Park.

My parents visited Knight Inlet a few decades ago with some intrepid friends.  I suppose they flew out to Campbell River on Vancouver Island and then boated in from there.  Or they might have flown directly to Knight Inlet Lodge, for all I know.

Ah, you’re thinking, “I’ve heard something about Knight Inlet Lodge, but I forget exactly what.”  The What might be its status (self-identified as we say these days) as “Canada’s premier grizzly bear resort.”

Not a resort for grizzly bears, you understand, but a resort for those who want to see grizzly bears, in the wild, unreasonably close.  I myself am happy to leave the grizzly-bear viewing to others, but that means I might never see this 125-km Canadian fjord (an inlet by another name) in the flesh.

Nor, for that matter, am I likely to sea-kayak around Broughton Archipelago Marine/Provincial Park which is at the mouth of Knight Inlet.  But don’t let me discourage you: There are all sorts of tours.

And it’s all undeniably striking.

Kayaking site photos

Grizzly bear photos and videos

 

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4 Comments

  1. Tom Watson

    I’m absolutely certain that seeing grizzly bears up close is an awesome sight. But I’m content to watch them from the distance of one of those wonderful nature programs that come on TV Ontario. It’s as close as I need to get.
    Tom

    1. Isabel Gibson

      Tom – Yes, I’d be more inclined to go to Churchill to see polar bears from the safety of a big tundra buggy, I think. Being in the same body of water as a grizzly seems like a Bad Idea.

  2. Jim Taylor

    The Chinese had it right with the yin-yang duplex, didn’t they? The sea-flat yin of the water, balanced by the vertical yang of the mountains. The horizontal of the gravel beach with the vertical of the fir trees. Or, perhaps, in a less geometric mood, the sheer sense of awe inspired by the sight of a grizzly up close balanced with a healthy dose of terror.
    Jim T

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