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FISHING BEARS, FEEDING WHALES, GINORMOUS GLACIERS, AND A WHOLE LOT MORE!

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July 23 - August 5, 2020

SOLD OUT!

2021 NOW ON SALE

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • See a part of Alaska rarely seen by the majority of photographers
  • Photograph Brown and Black Bears – mortal enemies – compete for salmon in a unique forest habitat in the Tongass National Forest
  • Witness humpback whales, working in tandem, create a ‘bubble net’, driving enormous schools of herring to the surface for a feeding frenzy
  • Be awed by the size and color of LaConte Glacier, the southernmost tidewater glacier of the Northern Hemisphere
  • Thrill to the float plane experience - not once, but seven times - one of which you ride co-pilot while travering the lush scenery of Katmai
  • Be dumbfounded by Alaska's majestic beauty on the scenic railroad from Anchorage to Seward
  • Marvel at the marine wildlife and dramatic landscape on the Kodiak Coast and Seward's Resurrection Bay
  • Be awestruck by the massive whales and glaciers in Kenai Fjords National Park
  • Track the flight of eagles, puffins, and local and migratory birds on Kachemak Bay in Homer
  • Be inspired by what goes on Behind-the-Scenes at the Alaska Sealife Center
  • Celebrate the photo knowledge you learned, the places you saw and the friends you made

ITINERARY At a Glance

(with links to Accommodation)

  • July 31, 2020
    Late morning flight to Wrangell. Transfer to Hotel.
    STIKINE INN
  • August 1, 2020
    Day at Anan Creek photographing brown and black bears fishing.
    STIKINE INN
  • August 3, 2020
    Day photographing whales bubble netting.
    STIKINE INN
  • August 4, 2020 Second day photographing brown and black bears fishing at Anan Creek
    STIKINE INN
  • August 5, 2020 End of workshop. Morning departure for Anchorage or the Lower 48.
  • July 24, 2020
    Commercial flight to King Salmon. Transfer to Brooks Falls.
    KING SALMON LODGE
  • July 26, 2020
    Bear photography or optional Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes. Return flight to Anchorage.
    THE LAKEFRONT ANCHORAGE
  • July 29, 2020
    Drive from Seward to Homer. Photo barge on Kachemak Bay for eagles.
    LAND'S END RESORT
Over the past few years I have been fortunate to have Rick as my guide while photographing brown bears in Alaska. His professionalism, sense of humor and understanding of animal behavior rank him among the best guides anywhere. The only thing that may outshine his own images is his ability to get the best out of each photographer he guides.
— Andrew C.
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What wildlife photographer doesn't dream of capturing the iconic Mangelson shot of the salmon jumping into the mouth of the hungry brown bear perched above Brooks Falls?  Now's your chance!

Katmai National Park contains the world’s largest protected brown bear population - approximately 2200, and it’s not uncommon to see up to 30 bears at one time fishing the falls during the two sockeye salmon runs, one in July and the other in September. July is the best time to catch fishing bears as they’re hungry and motivated. In September it’s not uncommon to see fat, lazy bears lying at the base of the falls, too overstuffed to make the effort. We should be right at the peak of the July salmon run, and the photo opportunities should be exceptional.

We’ve factored in a bad weather at the falls ‘just in case’. If, on the third day, the weather remains brilliant, you’ve fulfilled your fishing bear dreams and filled your cards, there is an option for a day excursion to the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, a scenic photo opportunity to explore the aftermath of, by volume, the largest volcanic eruption in the 20th Century.

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Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes

It's always important to book an extra day when shooting wildlife in remote areas as you can't predict the weather or animal behavior. On DAY 3 at Brooks - assuming both the bears and weather have been agreeable - the possibility exists for a Day Excursion to Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, a valley caused in 1912 by the largest volcano eruption in the 20th Century.

This is an Optional Extra and costs $135 if interested. Price includes a packed lunch.

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The Alaska Panhandle is known for its raw beauty, offering unique opportunities to photograph scenery different from that we’ve been exposed to thus far and animal interactions we won’t see elsewhere.

Basing ourselves in Wrangell for four days, we’ll sample what the area has to offer, starting with two days at Anan Creek Observatory in Tongass National Forest, famous for one of the largest pink salmon runs in Southeast Alaska, attracting large numbers of both brown and black bears who, though mortal enemies, fish side-by-side.

We’ll also have the opportunity to observe the incredible feeding practice of whales bubble-netting where humpback whales circle a school of small fish such as salmon, krill, or herring using a team effort to disorient and corral the fish into a net of bubbles, driving them to the surface where the whales gorge themselves. It is visually stunning to watch and photograph.

We’ll also spend a day in the LaConte Glacier area, spectacular scenery and home to abundant marine life.  NOTE: This workshop ends in Wrangell.

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There’s nothing Rick doesn’t know about bears! Having been a bear guide at the lodge for many years and being a photographer himself meant we were always safe and put in the best spot possible for photos. Absolutely brilliant experience!
— Lori B.

THE KENAI PENINSULA

Alaska has so much to offer that it's hard to fit everything into one trip.  In addition to 8 days of shooting bears, we're including 4 days on the Kenai Peninsula shooting whales and glaciers in Seward’s Kenai Fjords National Park and Resurrection Bay, and eagles and a variety of marine life in Homer's Katchemak Bay.  And if that’s not enough, we're kicking off the Kenai tour with one of National Geographic Travelers 'Top Ten Train Rides in North America'  - the 4-hour scenic train journey from Anchorage to Seward in Goldstar Class featuring the glass-domed observation car and outside viewing decks.

SEWARD

FLOATING WITH WHALES…..

The port town of Seward is gateway to the Kenai Fjords National Park. The park is renowned for the glaciers that flow into coastal fjords that are habitat to whale and porpoise.  The scenery is exquisite and we'll be spending two days on Resurrection Bay and Kenai Fjords National Park exploring the abundant marine life and scenic attractions.

  • Images 2, 3 & 5 above and the one below used under license from Shutterstock.com

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HOMER

…..SOARING WITH EAGLES

Come aboard the GRANITE CAPE for two adventure-packed half-day trips shooting eagles, puffins, kittiwakes, sea otters and stunning landscape in beautiful Katchemak Bay. We'll be overnighting in the swank Land's End Resort at the end of Homer Spit where you'll enjoy views of the bay and further photo ops of mariner life and the local fishing fleet.

Just wanted to say thanks again for all the attention to detail you spent making my trip to Alaska one of the best trips of my life.
— Carole M.

INCLUSIONS, EXCLUSIONS & COST

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • 11 full days of photography

  • 13 nights accommodation in 3-star lodges, cabins and hotels (based on double occupancy)

  • All meals and soft drinks, limited wine and beer

  • 4-hour scenic train journey from Anchorage to Seward

  • 11 Flights (including 6 float plane flights)

  • Private boat charters in Seward, Homer and Wrangell

  • All ground transport - one way by private 12-pax van from Seward to Homer

  • Unlimited infield and classroom photography training

  • Taxes and Park Fees

  • All Gratuities

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

  • Flights between domicile and Anchorage; Wrangell and domicile.

  • Excess luggage on internal flights

  • Mandatory travel and health insurance

  • Alcoholic spirit drinks

  • Laundry

COST

12 DAYS | 13 NIGHTS
July 23 - August 5, 2020
All-Inclusive $9,950

TERMS and CONDITIONS

*ALL PRICES QUOTED ARE BASED ON SIX PARTICIPANTS AND DOUBLE-OCCUPANCY.  FEWER THAN SIX PARTICIPANTS WILL NECESSITATE A PER PERSON INCREASE IN PRICE. SINGLE SUPPLEMENTS ARE SUBJECT TO AVAILABILITY.

PRICING IS GUARANTEED AS DESCRIBED AT THE TIME OF PUBLICATION. PRICE FLUCTUATION CANNOT BE CONTROLLED SPECIFIC TO PARK FEES, INTERNAL FLIGHTS AND ACCOMMODATIONS. ANY INCREASE IN PRICES, IN THE UNLIKELIHOOD THEY SHOULD OCCUR, WILL BE PASSED THROUGH TO THE CLIENT.

Travel is the only thing you can buy that makes you richer!