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4 Day Grizzly and Black Bear Tracking on Horseback in South Chilcotin Mountains, British Columbia

Chilcotin Holidays, 3300 Gun Creek Road, Gold Bridge, British Columbia, Canada

Short Bear Tracking Wildlife Tour in Canada

Embark on a once-in-a-lifetime journey as you seek one of Canada’s mightiest and most awe-inspiring species - bears. What buried traits will you discover during your time in the bear country? The thrill that comes with an objective pursued, a goal achieved, and a victory savored is indescribable. Throughout this bear tracking and conservation horse pack trip, you will get to experience these meaningful moments. Each horse ride during these all-inclusive vacations brings the exhilarating opportunity to view these Canadian treasures.

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 260 pounds / 118 kilograms (extra charge for riders who are over 230lbs)
  • Tack Type: Western
  • Horse height range: Between 1,40m and 1,70m height
  • Horse breed: Mountain Cayuse horses, a special breed from the wild Chilcotin Mountains


  • Grizzly and black bear tracking on horseback
  • Explore majestic mountains teeming with wildlife
  • Learn about conservation and land stewardship to help preserve wildlife
  • Explore quiet valleys and wildflower meadows frequented by bears and their cubs
  • Learn about difference and similarities between Grizzly and Black Bear
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • 3 nights accommodation

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced


4 days with instruction
Group size: Maximum of 7 participants
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During this vacation, you will stay one night at the ranch accommodation and two nights at the alpine camp.

The ranch

From the grasses that blanket the alpine meadows to the ancient trees that line the riverbanks, every life form in nature plays more than one role. The horse ranch is no different.

It is a launching pad for deep wilderness adventures, a place to enjoy the wilderness with the comforts of home, and a training ground for future wilderness explorers. No matter what wilderness experience you come for, you will find that the active, working ranch is at the heart of every outdoor adventure here.

The ranch is truly a special place. It is the epicenter of every outdoor adventure and training program that the hosts run at Chilcotin Holidays. It is a place that generates meaningful wilderness experiences and new opportunities for growth. And it is the place that brings the people who enter its gates closer to nature and closer to the life they have always imagined.

This working ranch is nestled in the pristine wilderness of Southwestern British Columbia. With its prime location at the doorstep of Big Creek Park and the South Chilcotin Mountains, it provides an ideal launching point for a special brand of remote, deep wilderness journeys.

It is a modern-day equivalent of the last outpost, the place where early explorers and mountaineers would stock up on supplies for their daring expeditions. Today, you will see their guides gathering provisions and gearing up at the guest ranch before each and every outdoor adventure.

Even once your journey is underway, the horse ranch continues to provide the logistical support that makes every deep wilderness journey possible. So while you may not spend much time at the guest ranch before you embark on your outdoor adventure, you will certainly enjoy the benefits of having an established working ranch to support your journey.

For nature-seekers who are not quite ready to dive into a remote wilderness journey, the guest ranch provides a comfortable place for you to explore the wilderness at your pace. Because the horse ranch is situated in the midst of such stunning, pristine wilderness, there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor adventure.

Mountain trails, which are perfect for the horseback riding, hiking, and mountain biking, are right at the doorstep. Each day you will get to enjoy the beauty of the pristine mountains, lakes, and forests, knowing that all the comforts of home await you at the guest ranch.

If you desire solitude and a place of your own, chalet rentals are the ideal settings for a restorative mountain getaway. From a charming cabin for two to a chalet that can accommodate over a dozen people, their private rentals provide your own personal retreat.

For nature-seekers who enjoy a more dynamic atmosphere, the ranch house is a lovely home away from home. Along with all the basic amenities, it provides private rooms with en-suite bathrooms.

What Chilcotin Holidays loves most about the ranch house, however, is the unique opportunity to interact with people from all walks of life and corners of the globe. Whether you are chatting with a fellow guest over a cup of coffee or enjoying a lively conversation during family-style meals, there is always something interesting going on.

And if you desire some quiet moments, the ranch house has an extensive reading library. Guests often enjoy curling up with a good book and a cup of tea or basking in the summer sunshine on the deck chairs.

So if you would like to get back to nature, but are not quite ready for your deep wilderness journeys, this guest ranch is the perfect place to enjoy the mountains in a way that suits you. The horse ranch also provides a rich training ground for future guides, leaders, and entrepreneurs.

With diverse guide training programs, lodge management internships, and leadership training programs, Chilcotin Holidays adds a new spin to the concept of a working ranch. Everyone at the ranch, from guests to staff and students, benefits from the continuous learning opportunities that these activities facilitate.

That is what makes this place more than a horse ranch and more than a guest ranch. It is an active, working ranch that acts as the last outpost, a rich training ground, and a home away from home in this rugged, remote wilderness. In all of its roles, the ranch brings people from different walks of life closer to nature and closer to the lives they were born to live.

The camps

From a sea of stars that light up the night sky to the sound of complete silence, the wilderness campsites fill each moment with wonder and delight. The prime locations and tranquil surroundings of our established backcountry camps bring British Columbia camping to the next level.

With over 25 camps throughout the 5,000 square kilometer operating area, the staff can lead horseback camping trips through mountain ranges and locations that few people get the experience. As you journey from one camp to the next on Chilcotin Holidays' high level wilderness adventures, you’ll experience the sense of discovery and thrill of the unknown that drove early mountaineers to explore this wondrous wilderness.

With endless mountains to trek through and new discoveries at every turn, this wilderness is meant to be explored. And that’s precisely what you do in the wilderness adventures. Whether you’re hiking and camping or embarking on wilderness pack trips, the camps give you the freedom to explore this wondrous wilderness.

After scouting and exploring the far reaches of the 5,000 sq km operating area, there will be the best and most beautiful settings for each of the 25 wilderness camps. As you journey from one camp to the next throughout our horseback camping trips, you’ll experience more of nature in a few days than most people experience in a lifetime.

The camps create the ultimate British Columbia camping experience, taking you through forests of Douglas fir, over alpine tundra, and into meadows of wildflowers. Whether you are hiking and camping or riding through the mountains on horseback camping trips, Chilcotin Holidays' strategically placed camps are what make these British Columbia camping and remote wilderness adventures possible.

The wilderness camps run the spectrum of BC camping styles, from basic canvas tents on raised platforms to solid mountain cabins. Regardless of what corner of the park you’re in and which camps you stay at, you’ll get to savor the solitude and refreshment of remote wilderness.

The majority of the camps are placed off the beaten track. On many of the horseback camping trips and hiking and camping adventures, your fellow travel companions are the only people you see throughout our wilderness adventures.


Riding horses provides a unique way of observing the bears. You can quietly approach the grizzlies and safely observe them from horseback. This unobtrusive approach to grizzly bear viewing allows you to watch these majestic creatures without disturbing their natural behavior. Because this horse pack trip gives you the chance to observe the bears for long intervals, wildlife photography enthusiasts often have the opportunity to capture stunning images.

Each horse ride and bear sighting provides the chance to discover something new about nature and yourself. Learn everything about the differences and similarities between black bears and grizzlies from their anatomy, behavior, diet, and habitat.

This trip is also a great opportunity to understand the causes of conflicts between bears and human and how you conduct surveys and supervise the bear population in their habitat in partnership with the Wilderness Stewardship Foundation. Get involved and learn about minimizing the potential for bear and human conflict, prevent population fragmentation, and maintain genetic diversity.

The Canadian grizzly bear

The South Chilcotin Mountains are home to a thriving population of grizzly bears. Throughout the spring breeding season, the grizzly bears graze in the low meadow, providing you with a rare opportunity to observe these creatures for great lengths of time. As the season's change, the horse pack trips follow the movement of the bears as they seek different feeding grounds. Grizzly bear territory marker trees and massive bear tracks create an exciting opportunity to follow the movement of the bears from the alpine meadows to the sub-alpine terrain.

You actually collect the grizzly hair left behind on these rub trees as part of a larger grizzly study, which allows you to track their movements and study their family structures. You will learn that grizzly bears in the South Chilcotin Mountains thrive on protein-packed pine cones, which allows this population to produce more cubs than average. In these mountains, it is not uncommon to witness a grizzly bear with three or even four cubs grazing in the meadows.

The Canadian black bear

Black bears populate all of British Columbia, into which you recognized five subspecies for the province, three of which are endemic. In contrast to grizzly bears, the black bear populations of British Columbia are considered to be stable. In the spring when grizzly and black bears leave the den, they move to valley bottoms or south-facing slopes where the snow melt is fastest, that provide you with great opportunities for sighting at the beginning of the season. During the summer and fall, the bears move with the berries as they riper at changing elevations.

Daily itinerary

Day 1

  • Arrive at noon for lunch with your own vehicle (the shuttle bus service is not available for the grizzly bear tracking trip)
  • Enjoy lunch at the ranch
  • Horse riding orientation (matching riders to horses, fit saddles, and practice horsemanship skills)
  • Introductory trail ride along Gun Creek
  • Dinner and review of trip information with your guides
  • Evening scouting for bears by truck
  • Repack your personal gear into mountain duffel bags
  • Overnight in ranch accommodations

Day 2

  • Breakfast at the ranch
  • Watch your guides pack and saddle your horses or get a hands-on orientation before you ride out to camp
  • Grizzly and black bear tracking and wildlife viewing throughout the ride
  • Break for lunch in a wildflower meadow
  • Stop at territorial grizzly rub trees to learn about your grizzly bear study and look for grizzly tracks on your way to camp
  • Arrive at camp, relax, and dinner time
  • Evening scouting for bears
  • Relax or join your guides in leading the horses to their grazing meadows
  • Overnight at camp

Day 3

  • Join your guides getting the horses in from their grazing meadows (a good opportunity to spot grizzly bears who can be found in the same meadows as your horses)
  • Early morning scouting for bears
  • Breakfast at the camp
  • Ride out to explore new trails and wildlife viewing locations
  • Break for lunch at a mountain pass
  • Watch for bears and their cubs as your ride through new valleys and meadows
  • Arrive at camp, relax, and dinner time
  • Evening scouting for bears
  • Relax or join your guides in leading the horses to their grazing meadows

Day 4

  • Early morning scouting for bears
  • Leisurely breakfast at the camp
  • Ride back to the ranch through bear habitat
  • Lunch on a mountain pass or alpine meadow
  • Arrive at the ranch and pack up
  • Depart from the ranch in the afternoon

Please note that your trip is subject to the unpredictable weather and terrain conditions that come with a mountainous environment. While Chilcotin Holidays do their best to stick to the itinerary, there are times when the current conditions and needs of the group require you to adjust schedules, campsites, etc. This is part of any true wilderness experience, however, and you are well equipped to adapt the adventure to changing conditions.


This holiday takes place in South Chilcotin Mountains area, British Columbia.


You will be served 10 meals included in the price.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Vegetarian
  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

  • Archery (50 CAD per hour)
  • Gold mine shaft exploration (based on a group of four with one guide, 400 CAD per truck)
  • Horse logging (100 CAD per person)
  • Horseshoeing (100 CAD per person)

What's included

  • 3 nights accommodation
  • 10 meals

What's not included

  • Accommodation upgrade (200 CAD per night)
  • Additional activities
  • Additional meals (15 CAD per breakfast or lunch and 25 CAD per dinner)
  • Extra charge for horse riders over 230 pounds and restrictions may apply for horse riders over 260 pounds (5 percent GST and 5 percent wilderness stewardship contribution surcharge)
  • Private group (extra 200 CAD per day per group - subject to availability)
  • Extra charge for riders who are over 230lbs
  • 3 percent hotel tax
  • 5 percent goods and services tax
  • 5 percent wilderness stewardship contribution surcharge
  • 8 percent room tax

How to get there

Recommended Airports


50.9161478000, -122.8119956000.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 50% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 30 days before arrival.
4 days / 3 nights
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Taxes are not included.

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