Home Free

Churchill, Manitoba

Two little polar bear cubs that had emerged from their den were tirelessly playing. Mom would occasionally poke her head out of the den to make sure they were safe. They played games constantly. It was spellbinding to watch the activity which, in reality, was preparing their muscles for the long walk to the ice of the Arctic Ocean. They were chasing each other, and one made it to a tree, looking every bit as if he was 'Home Free' in a game of tag. The next day we returned to the den. We knew the bears hadn't left yet, but they didn't come out. Mother was deliberately blocking the exit, to conserve their energy. The following day we went back and sure enough, they had started their walk to the coast. She made sure they were both rested and strong enough to make the trek. She hadn't eaten for several months and needed to be on her way. 

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