The wildlife here is as diverse as our ecology and geography. The dramatic forces of nature sculpted this land and created a myriad of ecosystems. This place is home to interesting creatures from the damsel dragonfly to the bald eagle — from the beaver to the grizzly bear.
Flora and Fauna
As you explore Route 97 you’ll see sagebrush laden deserts, rolling foothills, and daunting cliffs. Feast your eyes on towering mountains, incredible forests, powerful rivers and shimmering lakes. Bighorn sheep, deer, moose, mountain goats, wolves, foxes, coyotes, grizzly and black bears make their home here. Marmots, salmon, hawks and owls are just some of the abundant wildlife in this area. In the winter, watch for wildlife footprints in the snow.
Witness wildlife in their natural habitat on a guided river safari from Blue River, BC. You might get get goosebumps as you stare into the eyes of a bear and her cubs grazing on the shores. The Wildlife Park in Kamloops, BC, has wolves, coyotes, cougars, lynx, bobcats, bears, birds of prey, waterfowl and small mammals.
There are several opportunities to spot Bald Eagles and other birds of prey in and around Pateros, WA along the Columbia and Okanogan Rivers. Okanogan County is a wild-life-watcher’s paradise. Here you’ll find Washington’s largest mule deer population as well as wild turkey, turkey buzzards, osprey and waterfowl.
Rattlesnakes can be found in the south central interior of BC, the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains, and eastern parts of the Columbia River Gorge in WA. Rattlesnakes are shy and non-aggressive creatures that love to sun themselves on rocks. They hunt in the desert shrub and grasslands. They will sound the alarm with their rattles and strike if they feel threatened. Be on the lookout and always wear long pants when hiking in rattlesnake country. For more information on rattlesnakes visit the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre and the Desert Centre in Osoyoos, BC.