Walking with Giants: The Grizzlies of Siberia

Bears and humans tread common ground in NATURE’s Walking with Giants: The Grizzlies of Siberia.

Jutting into the North Pacific from Siberia, Kamchatka is a rugged peninsula of volcanic craters and steep valleys. While its impenetrability once made Kamchatka the perfect home of a notorious Soviet prison camp, its isolation also has kept it a haven for one of Earth’s last giants, the grizzly bear.

In fact, there are more grizzlies per square mile there than anywhere else on the planet. The discovery of this bear sanctuary gave two naturalists, Charlie Russell and Maureen Enns, the opportunity they’d been looking for — to live among the grizzlies and study them in close proximity to understand their true nature.

To order a copy of Walking with Giants: The Grizzlies of Siberia, please visit the NATURE Shop.

Online content for Walking with Giants: The Grizzlies of Siberia was originally posted February 1999.

  • bonnie robinson

    Thank you for all you have done to educate humans about the gentleness of Bears. Yes I know they are not always gentle, I have lived in the yukon for 34 years. Haines Junction YT really needs you to work with them. Too many bears are killed here every year, and they are not hurting us. they are just moving tru. With the loss of salmon, and poor berry crops, we must learn to live with our four leged brothers, and sisters.You have so much too share. ThankYou

  • Stephanie

    Is there an email address to contact Charlie Russell? I went to his website but there is no contact information.

  • Amanda Green

    i just have to say first of all that as a nature lover and aspiring conservationist, that charlie is a true inspiration! because of him i decided i want to work with bears someday and help fight for their protection. and like stephanie i would love the opportunity to ssend an email to him!!

  • Duke Aschan

    I strongly believe in the truth of Mr. Charlie Russel’s words and actions. He is doing a great job and I hope that we can obtain a contact adress for him because I too would like to thank him for his perserverance in studying bears and their behaviour in habitat. His insights are not only attributable to bears, but to many of the wonderful creatures of this world, who we are unwittingly and willingly destroying with our beliefs, ignorance, exploitation and ever-increasing human population. Thank you Mr. Charlie Russell

  • Richard Griffin

    Charlie Russell has convincingly demonstrated the truth of the Bible`s teaching that the animal kingdom, part of our grand Creator`s work, was originally subject to man`s loving care, and soon will be again. When paradise is restored soon under God`s kingdom, then all mankind will enjoy these wonderful experiences that Charlie has shown us. Thank you, Charlie Russell.

  • Candice Mason

    I find Charlie Russell to be heaven sent. His documentaries, should be seen and heard by all! I so strongly agree with the above comments from duke Aschan. The ignorance of humans is destroying so much of a beautiful planet, and so many beautiful animals. There needs to be more angels like Charlie Russell! Is there a Charlie Russell website, email address, or any information where we can donate/contribute to Charlie’s cause, so that he may continue his work with bears? Does anyone know if Charlie was ever able to return to the bears in Russia after 2005? THANK YOU CHARLIE RUSSELL!

  • ethy77

    Charlie Russell has contributed so much to help the public understand the world of the Grizzly bears. I was so moved by this program and the earlier “The Bear Man of Kamchatka”, which ended with the sad truth that ALL the Russian bears Charlie has encountered in Kamchatka has been killed by poachers.

    I hope these programs will awaken the compassion in more people. Hope the Chinese Television will buy this program to educate it’s public. Somebody help them treat animals nicer!

  • Kayla

    I think that is it insaine to even go near a bear!!!!That can hurt you and they are very dangoress!!!!!!!!! You should not go near or try to live and swim and do stuff!!!!!!

  • Maiyana

    No its nt they are sweet

  • Per-Ola

    Charlie Russell has done so much that sometime, someday, people’s eye have to open up, and realize that we actually CAN live and co-exist with wildlife. It does not need to be “managed” and hunted for the sheer underlaying pleasure.
    One needs to have respect for wild animals, but respect is never the same as fear, and openess and understanding goes far.
    I had the wonderful opportunity during a few years in Texas to get close up and personal with big felines (tigers, lions, cougars, leopards, jaguars). Those years will always be remembered for having some of the finest moments of my life – both for the amazing animals, but also for the wonderful people working tirelessly to save these animals from early and untimely death.

  • Cynthia

    The ABC in Australia has just aired ‘The Bear Man of Kamchatka’. Whilst it was inspirational, it is really disturbing to check out websites and find there are organised attempts to stop the protection of wildlife; greed and ignorance being major motivators. Are Charlie and Maureen still working on projects to educate people on how to live with bears? How can donations be made to help this work? How will Charlie and Maureen’s work be continued when they have to stop? Are there any plans for further documentaries?
    I am sure there are many people who would/could help if they knew how, including myself.

  • sylvie

    He’s work is so amazing. I’m from Quebec. Is it possible to have his books or video in french please? Thank you for your help.

  • paul

    i watched the show twice tonight it was awesome charlie is the man.as for the men who were killed near the mine god bless there familys.i heard they were trying to fly in and kill the bears.well if they were not netting the fish killing the bears food supply im sure this type of thing wouldnt be happening.we need charlie back there!

  • Kimberly

    I will just simply say “Thankyou”…….

  • Professor Keaton

    Our brothers and sisters? are you hippies honestly comparing yourselves to bears? maybe you should get married and have some bear/human babies. god made animals for us to eat and survive, not protect and be “brothers and sisters” with.

  • Professor Keaton

    It’s pretty sad when the best years of your life are spent with an animal that probably doesn’t even like you. The only reason they don’t tear your head off is because you feed them.

  • Carola

    dear professor Keaton, how can you be so short sighted. By the books and documentaries given by people like mr. Russell and mrs. Enns it is proven that live with bears it possible, just like we people live amongst other dangerous people. Isn’t it so that humans are the killers, they can kill another human or animal just like that, not to survive just for pleasure or religion! Animals don’t care about religion or killing for fun !!! So I can only say, good on mr. Russell and his partner, mr. Vandergaw and all others who have tried to prove that live with those beautifull creatures is possible, all is based on respect for one another, from human being to animal and vica versa.

  • Coeur de Lion

    Hi to all,
    START CHANGING THE WAY YOU ALL LIVE. That is the only solution for a better and more human world! It’s up to us ALL to make this planet a better place to live in. Man and animals are ONE! We need each other, and NOT for food only! Start changing your world and the world around you will change with you. Fight and resiste our “uncivilised” systems! Revolution is part of evolution. Tell me who your friends are, I’ll tell who you are! Peace to all. Respect. PS: Bears are not the only animals in danger. Even human beings are in danger. Keep the faith in a better world!

  • Sean

    Mr Keaton What exactly are you a professor of? Charlies work never aimed to prove bears could ‘like’ humans but coexist with them. Anybody with a remote interest in this subject knows bears are not killed by human for food but for hunting trophies and ‘traditional medicines’. Maybe you should research a little more before you choose to grace charlie’s website with nothing but attention seeking negativity.

  • robert south france

    Hello. Had seen some time ago, part of a TV broadcast (French TV I believe…, not sure) about Charlie Russell’s Walking with Giants – the Grizzlies of Siberia ; splendid (& bravo to the Charlie’s of this world). So I purchased, in a roundabout way (am writing from France) said Video but was disappointed to discover that many of the scenes shown on Television were not included in the Video. Is there a “supplment” somewhere, or can anyone tell me where, on the Web – or elsewhere – I can see the rather more complete Grizzlie + Charlie video (for example, there was a scene in which the cubs were almost agressed (& devoured?) by an Alpha male, which was chased off by Charlie and his Pepper Spray, and other scenes of him & his wife walking FIVE bears (two different litters) at a time. Anybody know where to see this stuff?
    With my thanks /
    bob – south france

  • Patrick

    Although I admire very much what Charlie Russel has done regarding education about bears I still disagree with what he is trying to portray about bears being harmless if we just respect them. Charlie Russel definitely knows alot about grizzly bears, as he grew up with these magnificent creatures with a great mentor..the late Andy Russel. I had the honor of meeting Andy Russel years ago and he was amazed at how his son walked with a grizzly and was able to get so close to the bears. My biggest worry is that the same fate will befall Charlie & Maureen as what happened to Timothy Treadwell, Michio Hoshino, & the Russian who’s name escapes me at this moment who all fell prey to grizzlies. Yes we can live with grizzlies, but not alongside them. Yes indeed they have volcanic personalities and in a flash can turn from a passive state into a raging frenzy. They are as the native peoples called them “real bear” and should be avoided and also controlled with properly regulated hunting to keep populations in a healthy check.

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  • Knut (from Norway)

    to “robert south france” The scene where Charlie uses pepperspray is from The Bear Man of Kamchatka (AKA “edge of Eden living with grizzlies” – I’m not sure about the scene of five bears, but it might be just a short clip from when he wrote “Grizzly Heart” and “Grizzly seasons”.
    I have all of his books, they’re great reading (although sometimes sad…)

    If you need further info, i can be contacted via email: knut.paulsen@yahoo.no

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  • Evert Thor

    At age 17 I met Andy Russell in Glacier Park B.C. so when this show came on I one loved the scenery and two thought it a riveting story. Even though I was charged as a defensive manouver by a mother grizzly two weeks after our informative meeting with Andy, I still say that poaching must stop and hope we never see the species flounder. A tremendous job of filming.

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