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“Great Bear Watching”

Browning Pass Charters
Certificate of Excellence
Mount Prospect, IL
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Great Bear Watching”
Reviewed 28 June 2014

After seeing reviews, we chose Browning Pass Charters for our bear watching trip. We were assured that the boat would go at a relaxing pace, which was needed for my tendancy for motion sickness, even on fairly calm waters. This was the best decision we made. Captain Mike was welcoming and full of knowledge and stories of the area. The morning we headed out was rainy and cold. The inside cabin with the coffee pot on the warm stove was a welcome sight!

It took an hour or so to get to the area where we started to see the bears. Mike was able to get us close enough for pictures, but not too close to startle the bears. We noticed that, after we watched the bears several minutes, other charter boats would show up with their passengers. This happened at several locations. With the inside cabin and large windows, we could wait in warmth and dryness until we saw a bear, then go out on deck or upstairs to take pictures in the rain. The other boats were open to the elements, and those on our boat were very happy to know we were dry and warm, with lots of space to move about.

We'd recommend this trip to everyone!

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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73 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Grand Cayman
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Amazing Bear and Wildlife Trip!”
Reviewed 23 June 2014

We wanted to do a bear-watching trip while in Tofino, and were recommended Browning Pass Charters by the concierge at our hotel. We couldn't have been happier with his recommendation! Mike, the captain, welcomed us warmly onto his boat (a 37 foot charter yacht with a cabin and an upstairs viewing deck) and offered us freshly made coffee before the off. He only takes a maximum of 12 passengers at a time, so there was plenty of space on the boat, both inside and outside, for everyone to move about comfortably. Mike was wonderful - he was both knowledgeable about and respectful of the wildlife and, as a result, we saw a number of bears (including a mother with her two cubs hiding up a tree!), eagles, seals and even an otter. We never intruded on the animals' space, but got close enough to observe and take photos. As a consequence, we really saw the animals going about their business without being concerned about our being there. The weather was wet but the cabin and covered deck kept us dry as we passed through some of the most amazing scenery we have seen. This was a truly memorable trip, made even better by Mike. I would thoroughly recommend Browning Pass Charters if you are ever lucky enough to have the chance to do a trip like this!

Visited June 2014
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Thank CambridgeClarey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scorton, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Make browning pass charters a MUST”
Reviewed 17 June 2014

Tofino is a very special place and mike's correspondence via email prior to our arrival in canada, told us we were making a very good choice to go with him,,,

An early start and some super fresh coffee on his boat, gave us a good start to the next few hours, the scenery is stunning and when we pulled into a bay and saw a pair of black bears on the shoreline, it brought a tear to my eye, amazing creatures, crunching the crabs as they turned over rock after rock. Mikes knowledge and passion was inspirational,,, we got to see another pair and then one on its own during the memorable journey...

Mike is a lovely gentleman and certainly made the whole experience a superb one, from that first email from the UK right to the day of the trip,,,

Terri and Gordon (UK)

Visited June 2014
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Thank terri s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cottingham
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Two fantastic trips. Difficult to better!”
Reviewed 20 October 2013

We stayed for three nights in Tofino and after a lot of research we decided to take two trips, both with Browning Pass Charters. This was as a result of all the positive comments made about Mike the skipper putting his customers and the wildlife first. We were not disappointed when we finally met up with Mike. We were instantly struck by the genuine warmth that exuded from him.
Our first trip was a bear watching one. There were only five customers on this trip so there was plenty of room to move around the boat. Mike was very engaging in explaining about the geography of the area as well as the local wildlife that we may see. Due to Mikes expertise we had nine bear sightings. As previous reviewers have stated Mike allows you ample time to observe the bears without intruding on their personal space. I am keen on wildlife photography and at no time felt rushed. In fact Mike left it to his customers on whether they want to stay with the current sighting or move on. Invariably it was to move on as we had been allowed plenty of time with each sighting.
The weather was mixed but Mike's boat was able to ensures his passengers were kept dry undercover if they wished. This trip lasted over four hours. I felt sorry for customers travelling with some of Mike's competitors who seemed be to flying from one sighting to another on their much shorter trips.
Our second trip was to Freedom Cove to see the 'Floating Gardens'. This is a location that I can highly recommend. The trip out there is very scenic with an abundance of wildlife being a bonus. The first sighting of the gardens in their sheltered cove setting is breathtaking. We were then greeted by one of the two occupants of the gardens, the world renowned ivory carver Wayne ADAMS. We were given a personal tour around the gardens and accommodation areas by Wayne. We were able to learn a lot about Wayne and the inspirations behind his beautiful carvings. It is difficult to adequately describe visiting Freedom Cove except to say I have not stopped talking about the experience or looking at my photographs since. It is a trip that I will never forget.
Back to Mike and Browning Pass Charters. The previous day I had asked Mike if there would be any opportunity to see any Sea Otters. He stated he would alter his return route from the Gardens to visit an area where Sea Otters had been sighted. Mike was true to his word and we stopped on three occasions to allow me to take some photographs.
This trip was once again over four hours in length and excellent value for money.
I can highly recommend Browning Pass Charters as Mike White will ensure that you will take away memories to treasure from whichever trip that you partake in!

Visited October 2013
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Thank steveoCottingham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Zurich
Level Contributor
365 reviews
154 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 210 helpful votes
“It was the right choice !”
Reviewed 7 October 2013

We arrived Saturday in Tofino and it was our wish of having a bear watching tour as well as a whale watching tour. After the beautiful weather on Sunday, it was raining today and we were really glad having choosen Mike's boat which offered some shelter from the rain.

From the first minute on we felt welcomed on Mike's boat and really enjoyed his company. We were able to see 4 bears and Mike did everything to accomodate our wishes and lengths of the stops - unless the bear moved earlier into the coppice ...

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Bariloche-61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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