Recreational users are advised that the Pebble Creek/Keyhole Falls hot springs trail is closed until further notice to all visitors, due to the presence in the area of numerous aggressive black bears and grizzly bears with cubs.
A press release Friday, June 24, stated that the closure at the Pebble Creek/Keyhole Falls trailhead — located at the 42-kilometre mark of the Upper Lillooet Forest Service Road, northwest of Pemberton — was prompted after several encounters with bears, including a confirmed report of a bear-charge incident, that were attracted by the presence of human food and garbage at the hot springs.
Warning signs that were posted at the trailhead several weeks ago were repeatedly removed. Removal of such signs is an offence under the Forest Recreation Regulation, and subject to a $58 fine. The trail will remain closed until the district recreation officer has confirmed that the bears have moved away from the area.
This is the second recreation area in the Sea to Sky district to be closed this year due to food-conditioned bears. The High Falls recreation site, located at the five-km mark of the Squamish River Forest Service Road, was closed on June 16 due to the presence of a grizzly bear. Irresponsible use of district recreation areas could result in human-bear conflicts and/or bears being euthanized.