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Hunt’s Photo Adventure: The Ultimate Grizzly Bear Photography Workshop

June 29, 2023 - July 6, 2023

$2,375.00 – $9,499.00

Tickets

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Total Cost: Hunt’s Photo Adventure: Alaska Grizzly Bear Adventure
$ 9,499.00
2 available
Deposit Only: Hunt's Photo Adventure: Alaska Grizzly Bear Adventure
$ 2,375.00
2 available

Class Summary

Date & Time:

June 29, 2023 - July 6, 2023

Featuring:
Photographing Coastal Brown Bears (Grizzly Bears) in their natural environment in Alaska at Katmai National Park, Lake Clark National Park, and the McNeil River Bear Sanctuary
Skill Level:
All Skill Levels Welcome
Instructor:
Don Toothaker
Class size:
6 attendees with 1 instructor
What to Bring:

Recommended photo gear:

  • Camera with a variety of lenses. Wide, standard, telephoto, super-telephoto are all recommended. You don’t need to bring every lens, but you will likely want a variety, from 24mm to 600mm. Rentals are available from rentals.huntsphoto.com!
  • Sturdy Tripod with head and quick release. A gimbal head would be helpful, but not necessary.
  • Extra memory cards & Extra camera batteries are essential
  • Laptop and external hard drive
Recommended Prerequisites:
Basic Knowledge of your Camera
Misc:

Physical Ability:
•We will walk up to 5 miles a day carrying our camera equipment and packs while wearing waders and wading boots. Most often the hiking is on dirt roads, but there will be hikes in tall grasses through meadows as well. At times the terrain in the meadows and along the river banks are uneven.
•We will wade through water to exit planes and possibly wade through moving water to reach good bear viewing locations.
•We will utilize small bush planes that seat no more than 7 guests for all of our local transportation to and from bear locations. These planes take off and land on water. If you have difficulty getting in and out of a small plane or any fear of flying in small, propeller planes, please consider carefully

Notes about transportation and lodging
• We recommend for attendees to fly into Anchorage, Alaska on/before June 29, 2023. We strongly recommend a day to acclimate yourself to the time change before the start of the workshop.
• Attendees must make all of their own flight arrangements to and from Anchorage
• Attendees must make their own hotel reservations in Anchorage if staying prior to June 29th. We Recommend Staying in one of two Anchorage hotels. Both hotels are close to the airport and have airport shuttles.

The Lake Shore Inn & Suites (907) 248-3485
Very Basic Hotel with good prices

The Lakefront Anchorage Millennium (907) 243-2300
Upscale Hotel Overlooking Lake Hood

Policies:
Refund / Cancellation Policy

Refund Policy – Adventures

For all Adventures, a deposit of 25% of the total cost of the workshop is required to hold a spot. Please note: Deposits are non-refundable, but you can receive a 50% credit toward a future adventure. Within 45-days, the deposit is non-transferable.

For national adventures (excluding Alaska), final payments are due one month prior to the start of the workshop.
For international adventures (and Alaska), final payments are due 90-days prior to the start of the workshop. We strongly encourage travel insurance!

For all cancellations, you must contact classes@huntsphoto.com

Description

Welcome to Alaska! Our base camp will be Jacques Adventure Lodge located on the north shore of Lake Iliamna and nestled between Katmai National Park, Lake Clark National Park, and Bristol Bay. Jerry Jacques, a lifelong Alaskan and renowned bush pilot, will be our host. His lodge is surrounded by 18 million acres of wilderness that is accessible only by bush plane. This remote region is home to Alaska’s highest concentration of coastal grizzly bears, other wildlife, and stunning wilderness.
Each day, bush planes will take us in search of our primary goal: Grizzly bears in their natural, wild habitat. During our days we may also encounter wolf, moose, Dall sheep, and eagles in the remote regions of The Katmai Coast, Lake Clark, and Brooks Falls. In addition to wildlife there are some landscape opportunities for us to enjoy as well. At night we will enjoy the comforts of the Lodge, fantastic food, photography discussion, and image reviews. This unique workshop is indeed an adventure.
We guarantee that you will photograph Grizzly Bears!

Jerry stands behind this guarantee. With great attention to safety, Jerry and his guides and reliable transportation will get us where we need to be. Jacques Wilderness Lodge has boats, two sea/float planes, and three tundra tire equipped planes as well as years of experience guiding visitors in this remote wilderness. As amateur photographers themselves, the guides will locate bears and other wildlife, but also get you into the proper position for light and background. Helping you capture fantastic images of wildlife is what Jacques Adventure Lodge has been doing for the last 42 years!

Itinerary- This is a ROUGH Itinerary that is subject to change based upon weather and wildlife conditions

June 29, 2023 – 6:30pm
Hunt’s Photo Education’s Director of Photo Adventures, Don Toothaker, will meet everyone at The Lakefront Anchorage Millennium’s Hotel for check in, introductions, and dinner. This is the night BEFORE the workshop begins.

After dinner we will walk along the shore of Lake Hood looking for waterfowl and moose, so have your camera gear with you and ready to go! Lake Hood is North America’s busiest sea plane base, so we are sure to see many sea planes coming and going during our walk as well.

Day 1- June 30, 2023

2:00PM: We will take taxis to Iliamna Air Taxi’s Terminal, 6231 S Airpark Pl. Anchorage AK 99502 for our flight to Iliamna at 4:00pm. (907) 334-9845 is the phone number for Penn and Air Airlines. You MUST make your own reservation for round trip flights from Anchorage to Lake Iliamna. An estimate of airfare is roughly $500.00.

We will board the 9 passenger Pilatus PC-12 Aircraft for the one hour flight to the village of Iliamna where we will be met by the staff of Jacques Adventure Lodge and transported to the lodge to get checked into our rooms.

After check-in, everyone will gather in the main lodge for a mandatory safety orientation. Next, everyone will be individually fitted with state of the art Gore-Tex waders and wading boots, all supplied by the lodge. Waders give us the ability to remain perfectly dry sitting on wet tundra or crossing creeks. The gear is lightweight, comfortable for all-day wear, and impervious to the weather! We will have a hearty dinner and prepare for the morning’s activities.

Day 2- July 1, 2023

We will leave early in the morning in float planes for the Katmai coast. Depending upon the weather and the salmon run, we may fly out to Brooks Falls to photograph Grizzly Bears fishing for salmon at the iconic falls or we may fly out to photograph bears digging for clams and eating sedge grasses along the coast. Here it is also common to see a wolf walking the river bank and tidal flats or just napping in the sedge grasses meadows. The entire day will be spent with a background of a steaming volcano partly covered by glaciers. A 45-minute flight back to the lodge will fly you low over the glaciers and ice fields of Mount Douglas. And, of course, a hot shower, Hors d’Oeuvres, dinner, and fellowship at the lodge will follow.

Day 3- July 2, 2023

We will fly by float planes to Twin Lakes in Lake Clark National Park to view and photograph the Dick Proenneke log cabin (One Man’s Wilderness). There will be lots of photo-ops while flying over the turquoise water of Lake Clark, in the high Alpine-mountain passes with Dall sheep and caribou, and the glaciers of Lake Clark National Park. The plane will touch-down on Upper Twin Lake, a mere 100-yards from the historic homestead site built by Dick Proenneke. The history is well-documented and preserved by the Park Service. You will find no shortage of subjects to keep your camera clicking through the day.

Day 4- July 3, 2023

We will leave the lodge arriving on the Katmai coast, landing on the beach in a tundra-tired wheel plane, just in time for low-tide. The mission for today will be photographing bears digging for clams and eating sedge grasses with the glaciers and ice fields of Mount Douglas in the background. Here, it is also common to see a wolf on or near our secluded beach. This day may require more walking than other days, as the bears may be spread out along the tidal flats, or napping in the sedge grasses. On the 40-minute flight back to the lodge, we will fly low over saltwater estuaries and tidal flats. As always a hot shower, Hors d’Oeuvres, dinner, and fellowship will follow.

Day 5- July 4, 2023

Independence Day. We will head out once again to the McNeil River Sanctuary where we will photograph grizzly bears in the sedge grass meadows along the river as they graze on grasses and dig for clams. Once again, this will be an adventurous day flying to this remote area, landing on a small pond, and hiking into the meadows. The backdrop for our day will be snowcapped mountains, meadows as far as the eye can see, and the unique feeling of being in the midst of this vast, wild wilderness.

Day 6- July 5, 2023

We will fly out to Brooks Falls for a morning of photographing Grizzly Bears at the falls, fishing in the river, and along grass meadows. We will be back to the lodge in time to pack and transfer to Iliamna Airport for our flight back to Anchorage at 5:45pm. We will spend the night in Anchorage at either of the recommended hotels.

July 6, 2023

Flights home depending upon traveler and destination

Trip Highlights
• A once in a lifetime Photo Adventure to some of the best grizzly bear photography locations in the world
• All Lodging, food, guides, daily bush flights, daily maid service and waders are included
• Hands On guidance and instruction photographing grizzly bears in their natural, wild environments as well as constructive image reviews and discussion
• Magnificent scenery in a true wilderness environment
• Fun, camaraderie, and the adventure of a lifetime!

Your trip does not include:
• Price of flights to and from Anchorage and to Lake Iliamna, baggage fees, hotel and food in Anchorage, car rentals, and lodge gratuities NOT included
• Trip insurance (recommended for all attendees)
• Certain meals at start and conclusion of Workshop in Anchorage

Notes about transportation and lodging
• Attendees must fly to Anchorage, Alaska on/before June 29, 2023. We strongly recommend a day to acclimate yourself to the time change before the start of the workshop.
• Attendees must make all of their own flight arrangements to and from Anchorage
• Attendees must make their own hotel reservations in Anchorage if staying prior to June 29th and for the final night on July 5th. We recommend staying in one of two Anchorage hotels. Both hotels are close to the airport and have airport shuttles.

The Lake Shore Inn & Suites (907) 248-3485
Very Basic Hotel with good prices

The Lakefront Anchorage Millennium (907) 243-2300
Upscale Hotel Overlooking Lake Hood

What to Expect

This spectacular photo adventure is based in the remote village of Lake Iliamna. The village and our lodge are surrounded by 18 million acres of wilderness that consists of Katmai National Park, Lake Clark National Park, and McNeil River Bear sanctuary. These wild and remote areas are accessible only by specially equipped bush planes flown by incredibly experienced pilots. Our home for this epic adventure is Jerry’s Adventure Lodge located on the shores of Lake Iliamna. The lodge’s host, Jerry Jacques, has been leading bear excursions here since 1978 and is regarded as one of the best in the business. Jerry’s Adventure Lodge is family run, environmentally friendly, and safety conscience at all times. Each day, after enjoying a hearty home cooked breakfast, we will climb aboard our bush planes and fly off to some of the most incredibly wild locations for bear photography on earth. After landing we will hike into the best locations possible. You will carry your camera gear while wearing waders and wader boots. You should be able to walk approximately 5 miles a day on dirt roads, walk ways, uneven grassy ground, or in river beds featuring moving water, mud, and rocks. It IS a workout. It is also a truly incredible adventure.

Daily excursion locations will be determined by your tour leaders and Jerry each morning based on weather and bear activity. The lodge has access to numerous locations in the Alaskan Wilderness so each day promises to be an exhilarating and memorable experience for all. Grizzly bears fishing for salmon is action packed. Grizzly bears digging for clams or eating sedge grass is an intimate and exciting experience. At the end of the day the group will return to the lodge for a hearty hot meal and discussion from the day’s events.

Guides are with us at all times for safety. They and your tour leaders will be provided with bear spray whenever in bear country. Your guides and pilots have years of experience with bears and will lead us each day with an emphasis always on safety.

Accommodations and Food
The lodge is located in the remote village of Lake Iliamna directly on the shores of Alaska’s largest lake for which the village was named. The lodge is about a 15 minute drive from the small regional airport that we arrive at from Anchorage. Guests will stay in small efficiency cabins on the property next to the main lodge. Two guests per cabin; there is no single occupancy. Each cabin has two full sized beds, unlimited electricity, and a private bathroom. The lodge finalized major upgrades to the septic system as well as improvements in the main lodge this year.

Hot breakfasts and dinners will be served in the lodge each morning and evening. We will eat as a group. Meals are prepared fresh daily by the chef who can cater to both meat lovers, vegetarians, and any dietary restrictions. If you have special dietary requests please call the lodge at least 3 weeks before your arrival so supplies will be on hand to meet your needs. Bagged lunches are taken with us each day and eaten in the field. The lodge is equipped with a fireplace, a pool table, and ample table space for us to gather for meals, relaxing, editing images, and have class discussions too. There is a large screen TV that we can utilize for image review during any weather delays or in the evening if time allows.

Getting Around
The lodge utilizes large SUV’s when necessary for local ground transportation to and from the local airport as well as any local destinations for photography. Transportation to and from prime bear locations is done by small bush planes equipped with floats for landing on water, radios, and survival gear. Each plane can take 7 passengers. Each plane is meticulously maintained for safety. On days of ANY inclement weather we will NOT fly!

Physical Ability:

– We will walk up to 5 miles a day carrying our camera equipment and packs while wearing waders and wading boots. Most often the hiking is on dirt roads, but there will be hikes in tall grasses through meadows as well. At times the terrain in the meadows and along the river banks are uneven.

– We will wade through water to exit planes and possibly wade through moving water to reach good bear viewing locations.

– We will utilize small bush planes that seat no more than 7 guests for all of our local transportation to and from bear locations. These planes take off and land on water. If you have difficulty getting in and out of a small plane or any fear of flying in small, propeller planes, please consider carefully

Photography Skill Sets: All Levels of Photographers are Welcome. While this is a photography workshop, non-photographers may also register, but please note that we will emphasize photographing on the workshop.

Recommended photo gear:
•Camera with a variety of lenses. Wide, standard, telephoto, super-telephoto are all recommended. You don’t need to bring every lens, but you will likely want a variety, from 24mm to 600mm. Rentals are available from rentals.huntsphoto.com!
•Sturdy Tripod with head and quick release. A gimbal head would be helpful, but not necessary.
•Extra memory cards & Extra camera batteries are essential
•Laptop and external hard drive

Misc: When we get closer to the Adventure, we will send recommendations for what gear to bring, both photographically and personal wear. When necessary, Jacques Adventure Lodge will provide gear, such as Gore-Tex waders and wading boots.

Notes about registration
•A $2375 non-refundable deposit is required to hold your spot for this trip. The total cost of this trip is $9499. Final payment is due 90-days prior to the trip.

Details

Start:
June 29, 2023
End:
July 6, 2023
Cost:
$2,375.00 – $9,499.00
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