first bear attack on Vancouver Island

Hikers of the West Coast Trail and other great walks on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, take comfort that there are no Grizzly Bears on the island. And that the Black Bears are famously non-aggressive.

Until this attack on fisherman Blain Pharis:

… A black bear swam across Gordon River and climbed up onto the wharf as Pharis neared his vessel, said Hitchcock. The bear followed Pharis onto his boat and mauled him.

Four men armed with fishing gear including a filleting knife, gaff and hammer swarmed the bear and killed it.

The animal’s internal organs were examined in a necropsy and it was found to be elderly, at more than 10 years of age, and in poor health. …

Bear attack a first for the Island, expert says – Vancouver Sun

This was at Port Renfrew, the trailhead for the WCT.


Since 1986, eight people in B.C. have been killed by black bears and 75 have been injured.

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