|Katmai Bears 2015
with Elston and Jackline Hill
Katmai National Park and Preserve is notable for the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes and for its Alaskan brown bears. The park
covers 6,395 square miles, roughly the size of Wales. The park is located on the Alaska Peninsula, across from Kodiak Island.
There are no roads to Katmai, so access is by boat and plane.
We went with Art Morris and four of his guests and stayed on a yacht for meals and sleeping. Our trip took place the first week of
September when the salmon are running.
Below are links to our photos. If you click the first link (or picture), you can access the other pages consecutively by clicking the
link at the bottom of each page. Below the links on this page is some information about the trip for those who are interested in
pursuing this trip.
Some additional comments to be read after going to the above links.
We booked this trip with Arthur Morris. Artie is a brilliant photographer--one of the best. Indeed, he would tell you that he is the
best. Not only is Artie brilliant at his photography, but he is brilliant in locating the wildlife. You can not do better than Artie. But to
go with Artie, you must have a thick skin. He is a former New Yorker. He does not hesitate to tell people that they are stupid and
that they have selected the wrong equipment. But underneath the brash exterior is a very nice man. We will go with Artie again.
The boat owned and operated by Chuck Kelm and his wife Olga. A terrific couple. The food prepared by Julie was just amazing.
Not only did we have the fresh fish caught by Artie and Donna, but we had prime rib and pork roast.
To get to the boat, we flew in on this float plane.
We were very fortunate to make the flight timely as no float plane flights went out for the four days prior to our flight because of
very high winds. For two days prior to our arrival, the air was so thick with volcanic ash from the 1912 volcano so that there was
no visibility for flying.
This is Geographic Bay where we spent four days. The white stuff on the mountains is ash, not snow. The little brown specks at
the bottom are grizzly bears. We had up to 20 grizzlies at a time, each claiming or respecting the territorial claims of other bears.
The quantity of bears varried with the tide.
Me, in the center, walking to the tender. Chuck provided waders.
|Chuck who owns Coastal Outfitters 907-286-2290
We were very fortunate to have mostly clouds and light rain. Photographers hate sun.
That is me with a not very close bear.
A picture of me taken by Donna.
Jackie took this picture of Artie, Sometimes the big lens were almost useless.
The inspiration for this trip was our 2009 trip to Katmai and Raspberry Island. To see photos from that trip, please click the link
Chuck's boat was amazingly roomy. It was nice to take hot showers and sleep in a clean bed. The food was amazing. But if your
funds are limited, it is possible to camp at Katmai. Go to the park web site for more information. If you like hordes, you will love
Brooks Falls. However, I recommend a more remote location. Go with some friends. This may be the location where Timothy
Treadwill (Grizzly Man) was killed, but a group of six or more has never been attacked by a grizzly. Indeed, the grizzlies are easily
intimidated and it is important to learn how not to scare the bears away--such as fast movements or twirling a big lens.