Grouse Mountain...and Grinder and Coola the rescue bears
Vancouver Travel Blog› entry 6 of 8 › view all entries
May 28th, 2008 – by: hummingbird50
We had crammed quite alot in the few hours of saturday...but it was fun to play tourist, then come to this spot, and enjoy the end of a great day. The weather was perfect, the bears were a sight to behold, dinner was great, and then the ride back down the moutain was awesome riding in those cable cars...it was a fine day!!!!
So come with me to see this great place. I have much to tell about Grouse Mountain...the Twin lions peaks...and a story about a couple of orphaned cubs called Grinder and coola, there is also a wolf orphanage there but I did not see it at this time.
Grouse Mountain story
Grouse Mountain is virtually only about a 15 minute drive from Downtown Vancouver. Grouse Mountain is the "Peak of Vancouver" and provides some of the best viewpoints of the area as well as many year around activities.
Grouse Mountain is located on Vancouver's north shore. The mountain is easily accessed via the Famous Lions gate bridge from Georgia street in Vancouver...just follow the signs.
The mountain is on the fringe of wilderness and civilization.
It is also home to Vancouver's famous hike, the Grouse Grind, which is often referred to as Mother Natures Stairmaster. This fully rigorous 2.9K hike, takes you straight up the face of Grouse Mountain. (This is in case you have loads of energy and don't want to take the skytram). By the time you reach the plateau, your ascent will have gained 853 meters (2,800 feet). And yes it is quite some hike!!!!
The first hikers to Grouse Mountain were in 1894.
In 1929 the Tyee Ski Club was formed, which is now the oldest ski club in Canada. By the mid 1930s, the mountain had its first rope tow.
On september 2nd 1929, Grouse Mountain was proud to host Winston Churchill, his son Randolph and his brother Jack for dinner in the original chalet.
In 1949, the world's first double chair lift was built.
In December 1966 the 45 passenger skyride was opened.
In 1974, the Mclaughlin family purchased controlling interest in Grouse Mountain Resorts Ltd, and provided the necessary funding to construct a second tramway.
THE TWIN LIONS PEAKS
These pair of pointed peaks are probably the most visually striking and distinctive formation among the North Shore Mountains. Along with the Lions Gate Bridge named in their honor, these twin summits have become one of the most recognizable Vancouver landmarks. The city's BC Lions CFL football team is also named in their honor.
Geologically The Lions are composed of hornblende diorite, the oldest plutonic rock on the West coast of Canada....(gesh how do they know that)....
According to an article by Steven Threndyle, the earliest recorded climb of the West Lion in 1889 happend almost by accident. A group of hunters following a herd of goats found themselves at the top with no place to go but down. (Hmmmm.
With its steep granite face East Lion was believed impossible to scale. This of course did not deter John Latta and his two brothers from setting out to climb the East Lion in 1903. Hearing climbers often used ropes for mountaineering ascents, they packed one along, but actually did not know how to use it. the Latta brothers also climbed the West Lion on their way out.
To the Indigenous people the Lions are known as the Sisters. These mountains remain sacred to these people for their history, and spiritual value. In their history, these sisters transformed by the Sky Brothers, or transformers, after the sister created a path for the war to end between them and the Haida. Sometimes around 1890, Judge John Hamilton Gray proposed that the name be changed due to the peaks resemblance to lions. (gesh go figure).
GRINDER AND COOLA ORPHANED BEARS
Grinder and Coola were found in different parts of British Columbia at around the same time and when they were about the same age.
Grouse Mountain is however a great home for the orphaned bears. They spent the first few months eating, exploring, playing, getting fat for winter. By the time winter did come around they were more than three times their size. Despite not having their mothers to teach them, they instinctively got ready for hibernation.
They are quite a sight to behold these two now grown bears...both with completly different personalities....
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