With a thunder storm pounding the Stowe area recently, I anxiously drove out on the course in the morning thinking I would find storm debris and washed out bunkers. Zooming down the 11th fairway, a big black bear stopped me in my tracks. It was a beauty! Big and black as night with a beautiful brown snout. We both checked each other out and then it moved on. Check out the video. BLACK BEAR VIDEO
Sightings of black bear on the 11th hole is not uncommon. The design of the golf course included a wildlife corridor that starts on the 15th hole, drops down between the 18th and 11th hole and ends next to the 10th hole. This corridor is actively used by wildlife because it encompasses multiple habitats; ridge top forest, meadow, wetland, and a stream. Many people ask what does it mean to be a sustainable golf course. Including wildlife corridors in development is a prime example of what it means to be "sustainable". It is a simple understanding of our surroundings (Place) and allowing it to continue existing along side us (People) while we engage in our human endeavors (Profit). People, Place, and Profit all in balance is sustainability.
There is no need to be scared if you encounter a black bear on the course. They are more scared of you than you of them. I have posted an informative piece about black bears in the "Environment" section of the blog. The piece was produced by our naturalist, Kim Komer.