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“Can't wait to return”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Grizzly Bear Ranch

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Grizzly Bear Ranch
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Sunbury-On-Thames, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Can't wait to return”
Reviewed 12 June 2012

My wife Sarah came across GBR's website late last year and we immediately knew it was the place we were looking for. We were not disappointed.

We've just spent a superb four nights at GBR. Julius and Kristin are great hosts and we were in food heaven with Kristin's cooking. There were plenty of lovingly prepared and tasty dishes.

We stayed in the Eco cabin which is perfect for couples. Considering we were out in the wilds, the shower was hot and powerful, and we were glad of the wood burning stove (Kristin had to teach us soft city types how to make a fire).

Spring-time bear spotting can be a bit hit and miss but this made each of our black bear sightings all the more thrilling. The grizzlies were either still high up in the mountains or knew the Brits were coming and stayed out of the way. We definitely want to return later one season when the bears are heading down to the rivers and lakes to fish and fatten up for the winter.

Another high point was the boat trip where we had the lake almost to ourselves, spotted a few eagles, and our guide Lily found us the most idyllic beach for our lunch stop.

If you are looking for unlimited bear sightings, or you are someone who is particularly fussy about what they eat, then GBR is not the place for you. However, if you want to go in search of bears in a beautiful isolated locations, are prepared to eat what is put in front of you (although special dietary needs are met with no fuss), enjoy good company and have an open mind, GBR is definitely the place to visit.

Thanks Julius, Kristin and Lily!

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Ian L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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139 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (43)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Oreland, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 June 2012

I originally stumbled across the website for Grizzly Bear Ranch last year when looking for bear viewing places on the coast, and it looked like exactly the kind of small and personal, non-commercial place we would like. Then when I then checked TripAdvisor, the unanimous 5-star rating from reviewers convinced me to change direction inland and make reservations immediately for spring bear-viewing. My husband and I have just returned from our trip there and if I could, I would give the Ranch a 6-star rating because they exceeded all my lofty expectations based on previous reviews.

It takes a bit of an effort to get to the ranch location, but the drive and scenery are beautiful from any direction and each mile passed brings you closer to nature and a true, authentic get-away. The land is gorgeous, the cabins are clean and nicely furnished, and the bed was very comfortable. The river that runs along the property lulls you to sleep each night. The food was exceptionally delicious and each meal was better than the last. All these things combined together create a basis for a perfect review based on tangibles. But it’s the intangibles that make the place so special, and I can't adequately describe the sense of wonder of being in a place like this.

The lovely owners treat you like honored guests and make you feel very comfortable. The other guests in our group were wonderful, easy-going people and we had so much fun spending time with them and becoming friends. The owners and the guide were knowledgeable, capable, and dedicated, and we learned a great deal about bears and also the entire surrounding environment while on gentle hikes, car and boat tours. All wildlife viewing is done with complete respect for the animals. We saw bears, elk, eagles, and other wildlife, but truthfully I would not even have been that disappointed if we had not, because it felt like a privilege to be part of the entire experience. There is definitely a reason why 47 people before me gave the Ranch the highest rating, and I wholeheartedly agree.

Room Tip: We stayed in the eco-cabin which was right on the river and had a very nice view from the porch. I...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Fruitflyjr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
liverpool
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 June 2012

We were at GBR the same time as Sarah M who wrote the previous review. There's not much more I can add but wanted to say that Kristin and Julius were the best hosts you could hope for. We were made to feel so welcome and after one day felt like we had known them for ages, I cried the day we left as I knew how much I was going to miss everything about this place. It is very special and not just because we got to see bears close up in their natural habitat, everything about this place is special - the hosts; their dogs; the cabins; the setting; the bears (especially the bears!); Kristin's cooking and not forgetting Lily the bear guide. I get emotional every time I think about our time there and hope so much I get to go back.

Room Tip: All the cabins are lovely so you can't really go wrong. The new cabin is set back from the rive...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank jkm009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
17 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 May 2012

What can we say about Grizzly Bear Ranch that has not been said so eloquently in previous reviews.
To sit on the rear balcony of the Volga cabin, overlooking the churning waters of the snow melt as it tumbled downstream, felt like we had arrived in a place as close to perfect as we could ever hope to find in this world.
To pick up the details of the cabin, to become totally enthralled by the story of how Kristin and Julius’ lives brought them to be living at Grizzly Bear Ranch in the Selkirk Mountains, a story so absorbing I read it from cover to cover before our first evening meal.
And the food, well Kristin’s cooking skills excel, so tasty, created and eaten with Kristin, Julius, the guides and guests in the beautiful, cosy cabin that is Julius and Kristin’s.
To go to Grizzly Bear Ranch is not just to get a holiday snapshot of bears, but to truly learn about bears. Julius and his guide Lily are so knowledgeable about these magnificent animals and they make sure that by the time you leave, you have lots of bear knowledge and hopefully a few shots of bear sightings as a reminder of a precious encounter.
Days out bear viewing with Julius and Lily were adventurous, sometimes heartbeat raising, travelling around the wilder parts of the mountains in comfortable vehicles on our searches and to be able to ask Julius of his life as a war correspondent and some of his other ‘moments’ in life....like learning to fly!!
It would be so sad if you could not set aside 4 days of your life to meet Kristin, Julius, the guides and absorb yourself in the peace of living in the ranch at a speed that enforces relaxation from the stresses of modern life

If there was money in our account we would go back in a heartbeat....

Room Tip: All the cabins are unique and you will love any of them
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sarah M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2011

My husband and I spent a few days at the Grizzly bear ranch in June as part of a 3 week honeymoon around B.C and without a doubt I can say it was the highlight of our trip.

As the safari was towards the end of our honeymoon and we had already seen a fair few bears along the way I was worried that it might have been a foolish idea to go on a bear safari but I could not have been more wrong. I don't want to go into too much detail as its something you need to experience to appreciate but everything about the trip, the setting, the food, the bears, the guides, the host Kristin and our lovely cosy cabin were just wonderful. We had the sunny cabin which was really cosy and had one of the biggest beds i have ever slept in. Seeing the bears is brilliant but combine with everything else it really is a great place to go.

Although the ranch will not be able to guarantee bear sighting we saw 11 bears in total and plenty of other wildlife including several beavers and more humming birds then i could count.

Practical things, take long tops and trousers even if its warm due to the mossis and if you are driving have faith in Kristin's directions, the final road you take may look like it leads to nowhere but the instructions are spot on and you will find it with no problems.

If you are undecided stop thinking about it and book it, you won't regret it.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Sara G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Red Oak, Texas
Level Contributor
49 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 November 2011

We first visited GBR in late Oct 2010. We were the last group for the season, had a great time, met wonderful people, had 5 star meals, and learned a great deal about the area and its bears. But, the bears were gone for the season. So, we decided to try again, this time earlier in Oct 2011. (by the way, the last week in Oct has been removed for bookings)

It was magical, the bears were everywhere! We saw bears, from rafts on the river we observed Mums with cubs on both trips. There were bears in the road and on the cliffs above the road. Again we met great people and the guides were awesome. Thanks to Lily, Ollie and Tamara. The food was still 5 star and the accommodations are excellent. We spent the first night at the Kaslo Hotel and it was very nice with a great view. Even the eight hour drive from Calgary was spectacular.
I admire and respect GBR’s passion for these majestic creatures and their environment. If you are looking to observe bears in their natural habitat and not from a viewing platform, this is the place for you.
Thank You Julius and Kristen an even better second time around!

Room Tip: all cabins are equally great!
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Debbie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
123 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 October 2011

Had a great few days with Kristin, Julius and the guide team. Their passion for the pristine wilderness in which they work and reside is infectious. Kristin prepares fresh wholesome food to a very high standard on a daily basis. We enjoyed Kristin's fare all the more having built an appetite whilst spending our day's in an ethically sound quest to view wildlife in the most natural of settings. Nothing staged here you either see animals or you don't. We were fortunate to see a Grizzly bear, Wolf, Elk, Deer and numerous Golden eagles. We stayed in one of the well appointed cabins situated on the banks of the Lardeau river. The cabins have all you require to enjoy this experience including a wood burner with an endless supply of firewood. If you visit in the autumn season take some thermals as the rafting can get chilly but I would contend that your rapt expectation of what is to come at each bend in the river will suffice to keep warm. We both hope to return in the near future and recommend the Grizzly Bear Ranch unreservedly.

Room Tip: Riverside cabins allow you to drift off to the sound of the Lardeau River flowimg by metres away.
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank beekeeper16328
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grizzly Bear Ranch

Property: Grizzly Bear Ranch
Address: Highway 31, Kaslo, British Columbia V0G 1M0, Canada
Region: Canada > British Columbia > Kootenay Rockies > Kaslo
Amenities:
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Speciality Lodging in Kaslo
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grizzly Bear Ranch is a small luxury lodge hidden away in a remote BC valley that offers specialist black bear and grizzly bear viewing holidays as well as summer hiking and rafting adventures. The ranch opened in 2006 and is run by Julius, Kristin and an exceptional team of experienced and certified bear-viewing guides who will take you out on foot, in 4x4s and on river rafts into the surrounding wilderness. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Grizzly Bear Ranch Hotel Kaslo

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