California Grizzlies

The California grizzly bear (Ursus arctos californicus) is a subspecies of the brown bear that once inhabited various regions of California. Historically, grizzly bears were found throughout the state, from the coast to the mountains and valleys. They were an important part of California’s wildlife and played a role in the culture and folklore of indigenous peoples.

California grizzly bear (Ursus arctos californicus)

Unfortunately, due to habitat loss, hunting, and human conflicts, the California grizzly bear population declined significantly throughout the 19th century. The last known California grizzly bear in the wild was killed in 1922 in Tulare County. The species was declared extinct in 1924.

Efforts have been made to preserve the memory of the California grizzly bear, and it is often symbolically represented in the state’s flag and seal. The California grizzly bear is also the state animal, even though it no longer exists in the wild.

1846 – 1910
1911 – 1952

There have been occasional discussions and proposals for reintroducing grizzly bears to certain parts of California, but these efforts are complex and face challenges related to habitat, human-wildlife conflicts, and public opinion. As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, there were no active reintroduction programs in place. Still, it’s advisable to check for the latest information, as conservation efforts and plans may evolve.

Grizzly Bears in Bear Valley

Bears – Yosemite

Issac Slover


Benjamin Wilson leads a posse of 22 men into the San Bernardino Mountains to search for Indians who had been raiding ranches in . He discovers Big Bear Valley and gives it the name it has today. Up until 1845, Bear Valley was known to the local Serrano Indians as Yahaviat, which means “Pine Place”. – bb