Steve Smith’s image of two sibling adolescent grizzly bears playfighting in the Chilko River in the B.C. Interior earned him best of show at the prestigious Lion’s Gate Celebration of Nature club competition for 2020-21. (Photo by Steve Smith)

Steve Smith’s image of two sibling adolescent grizzly bears playfighting in the Chilko River in the B.C. Interior earned him best of show at the prestigious Lion’s Gate Celebration of Nature club competition for 2020-21. (Photo by Steve Smith)

Chilko-Newton Road closed as of Sept. 1 to protect people, bears

Closure of road will be monitored, enforced under BC Wildlife Act

Beginning Wednesday, Sept. 1, the Chilko-Newton Road south of Henry’s Crossing in the Chilcotin will be closed to protect the public and wildlife during salmon-spawning season when there is increased grizzly bear activity in the area.

The closure will remain in effect until Sunday, Oct. 31.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development noted the Tŝilhqot’in Nation, Xeni Gwet’in First Nation and the Province of B.C. are jointly closing public access to the Upper Chilko Corridor and the Tŝilhqot’in Title Area on the Chilko-Newton Road, south of Henry’s Crossing.

“The closure of the road will be monitored and enforced under the B.C. Wildlife Act. and penalties and fines for violators will be issued,” the ministry stated in a news release.

A ministry spokesperson told the Tribune that commercial businesses in the closure area that provide bear viewing tours will continue.

“Of concern, are unguided pedestrian bear viewers walking very close to bears.”



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