Ecologist and wildlife guide

I am a naturalist first.

I explore nature through wildlife research, photography, writing, education and wilderness expeditions. Conservation of wildlife and ecosystems is at the core of what I do.

I am also a guide and founder of Wildlife Jouneys. In collaboration with Marven Robinson of the Gitga’at First Nation, I lead trips in the Great Bear Rainforest in pursuit of wild and toothy things like wolves, grizzlies, and spirit bears. 

Wildlife Journeys with Tim Irvin logo

Spirit bear tours

Steam rising off of a spirit bear in the Great Bear Rainforest

During these tours, we explore lush river valleys in search of spirit, or Kermode, bears in a place that National Geographic has called the “Wildest Place in North America.” By travelling with Marven we will spend all of our time in the very heart of spirit bear territory. By staying in Hartley Bay, we will also be supporting the Gitga’at Nation by providing local employment within their traditional territory.

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Rainforest wolf expeditions

coastal wolf standing in sedges in an estuary in the Great Bear Rainforest of British Columbia

In a world dominated by human landscapes, the wilderness of the Great Bear Rainforest is a refuge for wildlife, including the wolf. In the words of eminent scientist Dr. Paul Paquet, “the remote ocean archipelago of the Great Bear Rainforest comprises North America’s most unusual and one of its most pristine wolf populations.”

This is an expedition-style trip offering an extraordinary opportunity to photograph wild wolves in the coastal rainforest of British Columbia.

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Recent Posts

A young coastal wolf standing on a beach in the Great Bear Rainforest

BC’s coastal wolves: elusive and worthy of protection

I worked as a guide in the Great Bear Rainforest for 14 years before I managed to get a decent photo of a coastal wolf. I had seen plenty of wolves – even entire packs – but mostly fleeting glimpses, and mostly from a distance. Once, I was lucky enough to watch a wolf chase a grizzly bear through an ...
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An elder female spirit bear eating a salmon near a waterfall in the Great Bear Rainforest

Great Bear Rainforest IMAX celebrates local First Nations

Three years is a long time to wait for anything. But finally (finally!) I was able to see the Great Bear Rainforest IMAX film. As I sat in the giant theatre the rest of the world slipped away while the cameras took me soaring over mountains, through the tangled beauty of the rainforest and into the sea with sea lions, ...
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A coastal wolf lying on a beach in the Great Bear Rainforest

Wolves are just wolves

I have read there have been more books written about wolves than any other species. There is something so compelling about them and, yet, they are also polarizing for people. Opinions about wolves are strong and varied. They are icons of wilderness, wildness and all things good. They are vicious killers, not to be trusted and must be controlled. It ...
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An American black bear half above and half below the water

Wildlife photography is full of failures, and that is okay

This is a photo of an American black bear checking out a remotely triggered camera in the Great Bear Rainforest. Thanks to Paul Nicklen for technical assistance with this one (i.e. teaching this buffoon the basics of how to use and maintain an underwater housing). There were many, many failures while trying to get this one shot. So many failures ...
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A spirit bear standing on a rock in the Great Bear Rainforest

Salmon, spirit bears and Ma’ah.

This is Ma’ah. Her name means grandmother in the language of the local Tsimshian First Nations language. She is perhaps 18 years old, and she is a really special bear. Not only did Ma'ah appear on the cover of National Geographic for Paul Nicklen's 2011 spirit bear story, but, somehow, being in her presence puts one at peace. It is ...
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Charlie Russell sitting next to a grizzly bear in Kamchatka. Photo by Maureen Enns Studios Ltd

Coexistence: Charlie Russell’s legacy

Hunting grizzly bears for sport was banned in British Columbia in April, 2018. This is a conservation success story, 20 years in the making, that is about a lot more than killing bears. I think it reflects the changing relationship people have with nature. It gives me hope we are forging a new and more nuanced relationship with the earth, ...
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