Sections of Garibaldi Provincial Park closed for October in order to give bears their space

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      Fall has arrived. That means many outdoor enthusiasts across B.C. are planning their final weekend getaways before B.C.’s cold-and-rainy season blows in.

      Unfortunately, an incident in southwestern B.C.’s Garibaldi Provincial Park means that sections of the area won’t be open to campers and hikers for the next few weeks.

      According to B.C. Parks, the large outdoor-recreational area located just 70 kilometres northeast of Vancouver has experienced a high number of bear sightings and has closed a section of the park as a precautionary measure.

      “Taylor Meadows Campground and the Taylor Meadows Loop Trail are closed until October 31, 2019,” a B.C. Parks notice reads. “There are a number of bears feeding in the meadows so in order to protect this important bear habitat, the campground will remain closed.”

      The Taylor Meadows Campground and the Taylor Meadows Loop Trail are located in Garibaldi Provincial Park’s central-western region. Anyone with reservations to camp in that area before the end of October is asked to contact B.C. Parks.

      According to CBC News, the closure was implemented and the closure notice posted online after a black bear “charged” a large group of people over the weekend (September 28-29).

      “The remainder of the trail is open; however, be prepared and be bear aware,” the B.C. Parks notice continues. “If you have camping reservations for Taylor Meadows, please contact Discover Camping for information on refunds. Thank you for your understanding.”

      Parks Canada recommends the "triangle approach" when camping in bear country.
      Parks Canada

      Last July, the Straight reported that bear sightings are up across B.C. this year, and nobody's exactly sure why.

      There were 12,000 bear sightings in B.C. last season, according to a CBC report. And so far this season⁠—which from April to November⁠—the wildlife service has already recorded 7,400.

      A B.C. Parks website on bear safety outlines best practices for how to avoid the animals.

      “Never store food, toothpaste, perfumes or items that have any odour in your tent,” it begins. “Never feed a bear. Never approach a bear. Never get between a mother bear and her cubs.”