We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A wonderful bear watching experience that turned very sour!”

Tide Rip Grizzly Tours
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Tide Rip Grizzly Tours Ltd. is a small independent company located in Telegraph Cove on Northern Vancouver Island, British Columbia. For over 15 years, Tide Rip has been leading daily boat-based expeditions to view and photograph the wild grizzly bears and other spectacular wildlife native to coastal British Columbia. We subscribe to the philosophy: 'conservation through coexistence' and endeavour to promote that through outreach education programs and presentations, fundraising projects, and sponsoring conservation NGOs, in addition to our daily grizzly bear tours.
Reviewed June 20, 2013

The first part of the day was terrific. The trip out to the Estuary on Knight Inlet was all good. Over the course of the morning and early afternoon we saw 9 Grizzlies and various other wildlife. The Lunch was also good. There were 11 patrons in addition to the operator who did an excellent job of guiding us aboard the Keremode. Everything met or exceeded our expectations. Unfortunately, on the way back to home port things began to go from bad to worse. About one hour out while still in Knight Inlet the power steering unit on Keremode broke down causing us to move in circles only. The operator did try to fix the steering problem to no avail as a major hose had ruptured. We began 2 plus hours dead in the water with breaking seas of about a foot or so. An attempt to steady the boat with a sea anchor was soon abandoned as useless due to the small size of the anchor. A series of radio calls back to home base seemed to indicate that no back up plan existed. At no time did the operator make any attempt to secure a commercial tow. He did attempt to contact Prawn Boats in the Inlet but admitted that he did not know what radio channel they operated on. Eventually a second boat arrived from Telegraph Cove and a potentially dangerous transfer of the 11 patons occurred in seas that exceeded 3 feet. At no time were life jackets suggested to passengers. What was supposed to be a 9 hour day turned into 13 plus hours. The main question asked was, why is there no auxiliary power for the boat in such potentially difficult waters. Also on our minds was the question of no obvious emergency backup plan. It was a case of a good experience turning vey sour vey quickly!

5  Thank david k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wonderfulbc, Manager at Tide Rip Grizzly Tours, responded to this reviewResponded July 4, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to offer your evaluation.

There are inherent risks associated with adventure tourism operations in remote, uninhabited areas. Tide Rip has a proven safety record and has always endeavoured to mitigate as many unforeseen hazards as possible. Our boats are subject to a rigorous maintenance program and are operated by certified captains trained in the use of all navigation and safety equipment on board. Despite that, mechanical malfunctions and other emergency situations are inevitable.

Tide Rip has reviewed this incident and its safety procedures with all staff and has since acquired a larger drogue in addition to an auxiliary power unit. Tide Rip takes guest safety very seriously and candid reviews such as this assist us in bettering our program and sharpening our safety pencil. Thank you.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review
Reviews (557)
There are newer reviews for Tide Rip Grizzly Tours
See the most recent reviews
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year

389 - 393 of 557 reviews

Reviewed June 18, 2013

My husband and I were on a return trip courtesy of a voucher given to us last year by Tide Rip due to a non-sighting trip last July (probably too hot for the bears). And man, did they deliver this time. We arrived at Glendale Cove to transfer to the viewing platform barge and there were some two-year-old youngsters right away. Unbelievable timing. Derek our skipper launched right away and from then on it was a packed morning/afternoon, with bear sighting after bear sighting. Theresa our guide was an awesome spotter. She kept directing us to sighting after sighting. These two are a great team. They're so enthusiastic and knowledgable and they're genuinely delighted to introduce new people to the great BC scenery, the fantastic wildlife and marine life. Another highlight? Dolphins came to swim in the wake of the boat. My husband loved it - and so will you. Happy travelling. Thank you Tide Rip - That was awesome (And I do not use that word lightly).

Thank pirtrosi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 2, 2013

Words cannot describe our experience with Tide Rip Grizzly Tours. My husband and I and another couple went on the tour yesterday. We were greeted in the office by our team for the day the wonderful Theresa, our skipper and all around bundle of energy and information Darryl and the lovely Jodie. Due to the rainy weather they ensured that we all had wet weather gear and off we headed. On the trip to Glendale we were served muffins and hot beverages along with fresh fruit and yoghurt. To our great delight our first stop we saw a mother grizzly and her cubs. We spent a long time watching them all fascinated and lots of photos. Further along we swapped to the skiff and saw another 9 grizzly bears. Thanks to the girls we were so close we could hear them eating the grass. While we ate lunch on board the boat we were able to watch a mum and her cubs walk along the shoreline very close to us. It was an incredible experience. We managed to see a black bear on our way back. To quote another passenger this day really was the true meaning of Awesome. The staff are first rate as was the service. A must do. Your lifetime trip.

2  Thank BrisbaneBenni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 25, 2013

We (wife and I) got to Telegraph Cove somewhat late in the evening and had a mother black bear and two cubs greet us on the logging road into the Cove. We ran into Howard, who runs the tours, as he was leaving for the day. We asked where we could be breakfast before the tour and he said there was nothing open at that hour but he would get us something. The next morning we found a sack of milk, cereal, and fruit hanging for our door. The ride out to Glendale cove is full of sights such as eagles, bears, dolphins, and whales. The cove itself is one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. The boat is very comfy with a good rest room. Lunch is quite good and filling. You may or may not see bears (we saw a few) but the area is just spectacular. Howard and his family are first rate hosts. I have steered many of my traveling friends to this trip and they all say it was the highlight of their Canadian tour.

Thank DWathenYoungstown_OH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wonderfulbc, Owner at Tide Rip Grizzly Tours, responded to this reviewResponded April 29, 2013

Thank you for your five star rating of your Grizzly Bear Expedition with us. In the spring, when we have our heads down working on the boats, painting the hull and servicing the engines and gear, it is great to be reminded of the magical moments of wildlife encounters in beautiful coastal British Columbia. My van licence plate says "Fortun8" and I love it here.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 3, 2012

Great trip - wonderful views of the sea during the (very fast) trip up to Glendale. Mother and cute cubs in the morning and a young male - very close to the boat - in the afternoon. Lunch down at another cove and a bear on the shore on the way back were amazing too.

3  Thank PGON
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Tide Rip Grizzly Tours also viewed

Telegraph Cove, Vancouver Island
Campbell River, Vancouver Island
Victoria, Victoria Capital Regional District

Been to Tide Rip Grizzly Tours? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing