Grizzly, black bears force closure of Anderson Beach, near Squamish
Bears attracted by garbage and food left behind by campers at beach on Squamish River
Anderson Beach, a recreational site along British Columbia's Squamish River, is closed indefinitely after several encounters between humans and bears.
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Officials with the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations took action August 2 after a grizzly bear and a black bear sow with two cubs began visiting the area, north of Squamish.
The walk-in site attracts campers and day trippers, and will remain closed until recreation officers have confirmed the bears have moved along.
An advisory posted on the provincial Recreation Sites and Trails website blames campers who left food and garbage behind during the long weekend for attracting the bears.
"It is critical the recreation site be free of these types of attractants for a period of time or the bears will start to permanently associate the site with food," according to a news release issued Monday.
"Unfortunately, even short visits are potentially dangerous and will ultimately encourage the bears to stay in the area."
Farther up the Squamish River, the Levette Lake campsite — which was closed earlier this month — has reopened and now includes bear caches to help keep food secure.
Unfortunately, regular flooding at Anderson Beach precludes the use of bear caches.
Squamish is one of a handful of designated Bear Smart communities, and has undertaken an extra level of commitment to mitigate conflict between people and wildlife.