Route de la Baie James



Yes, there are black bears up here. Fortunately, black bears are generally non-aggressive and usually run from humans. But there are exceptions.

You simply need to be properly careful, that's all. Follow these suggestions:

  • Don't ever leave food out.
  • Keep a very clean campsite, and always put everything (food, dishes, pots, etc.) away as soon as you're done with it.
  • Don't eat in your tent.
  • Always put food away in your vehicle when you're not actually eating.
  • Don't leave a cooler with food in it outside of your vehicle.
  • If you're traveling by bicycle or motorcycle and camping, hang your food up by rope from a tree. It should be at least 10 feet off the ground, and well away from the trunk.
  • Don't approach bears - they are wild animals capable of killing you should they choose to do so. Fortunately, 99.9% of the time they don't want to have anything to do with you.
  • Be very wary of mother bears with cubs (baby bears). If you see cubs stay away; be extra cautious.
  • Don't camp in dirty campsites where there's garbage about.

Most of the time, wild animals want to get as far away from you as possible. Wild animals fear humans and want nothing to do with us - they see us as dangerous. This is especially true the farther away you are from civilization.

The bottom line is ... be properly careful with your food and related things, be aware of mother bears with young, and generally stay away from bears when encountered.

There's plenty of books and advice on the internet about how to deal with bears. I won't repeat all that here. But do remember that in the James Bay area there are only black bears. There are no grizzly or polar bears here - they are the truly dangerous ones.


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