Ultimate Alaska Wildlife Photo Safari (Gold Creek Lodge)
14 days with Natural Habitat Adventures Rating:
Day 1: Fairbanks, Alaska
Our Alaska photography adventure begins in Fairbanks, Alaska's thriving "second city" that retains its frontier flavor with pioneer saloons,
Days 2–4: Denali National Park
Denali National Park, larger than the state of Massachusetts, is one of the world’s great wilderness preserves. Denali, which means "The Great One," is the native Athabascan name for this 20,320-foot mountain that is the highest peak in North America. Its ice-clad summit looms over the tundra and taiga below that provide habitat for grizzlies, wolves, moose
Day 5: Denali / Alaska Railroad / Talkeetna
Depart for the park entrance this morning by road, keeping an eye out for moose, caribou, grizzly bears and other resident wildlife often visible from the road. At midday, we board the Alaska Railroad for a classic train journey through Alaska’s rugged Interior. Our route through the Alaska Range climbs above tree line over Broad Pass, then descends to follow the Susitna River to the historic village of Talkeetna, where we disembark to spend the night. This rustic town, founded over a century ago as the district headquarters for the new railroad, sits at the confluence of three rivers and enjoys a striking panorama of Mt. Denali and adjacent peaks. An outdoor recreation mecca, Talkeetna today has an economy that thrives on rafting, flightseeing, mountain biking, hiking, camping, fishing
Days 6 & 7: Talkeetna / Girdwood
Leaving Talkeetna, we continue south, eventually reaching the coast and following Turnagain Arm to Girdwood and Alyeska Resort, Alaska’s premier ski area, where a host of exciting summer activities is also available. Set in a lush glacial valley in the Chugach Range southeast of Anchorage, Alyeska offers nature and luxury in tandem. Explore the northernmost temperate rain forest in North America that surrounds our deluxe accommodations at the Hotel Alyeska, or choose an optional tram ride to the alpine summit with vistas of the ice-bound peaks and inlet far below. On Day 7 we'll photograph iceberg-choked Spencer Lake, then take a gentle float trip down the Placer River before returning to Girdwood. Dinner is not included on Day 7, to give you a chance to sample your choice of restaurants in the Alyeska/Girdwood area.
Day 8: Kenai Peninsula / Fox Island
This morning's drive showcases the magnificent scenery of the Kenai Peninsula as we drive south to the fishing town and port of Seward. Once we reach the harbor, look for floating sea otters—frequently spotted here—as we prepare to board a boat to Fox Island, a private outpost on the edge of Kenai Fjords National Park. The island's secluded location reveals a pristine side of Alaska that most visitors miss. The waters around our lodge offers excellent sea kayaking, and an easy paddling excursion late this afternoon is likely to reveal some of the area’s prolific marine life. Keep your camera handy during paddling breaks to capture possible shots of Steller sea lions, sea otters, harbor seals and black bears wandering ashore.
Day 9: Kenai Fjords National Park—Private Cruise
Iconic images of Alaska are on display today aboard a
Day 10: Seward / Anchorage
Days 11 & 12: Katmai National Park—Brooks Falls
It's hard to imagine that anything could top all we've experienced so far, but for most wildlife photographers, today is the ultimate highlight of our Alaskan adventure. Katmai National Park is home to the world’s largest population of brown bears, and it takes some effort to get here. We fly by small plane to King Salmon, then by floatplane to world-renowned Brooks Lodge, one of the very best places to view these coastal grizzlies in their natural habitat. From the safety of platforms built over Brooks Falls, photograph this classic wildlife spectacle at close range. On our June and July departures, when the salmon are running upstream to spawn, we may get photos of bears vigorously fishing, attempting to catch salmon as they leap from the boiling falls into giant waiting jaws. Later in the summer, we're likely to see even more bears in the area, though not primarily in the falls catching fish.
Day 13: Katmai / Anchorage
After one more opportunity to photograph the famous bears of Katmai, we fly back to Anchorage, arriving in the afternoon. At a farewell dinner this evening, join our Expedition Leader to celebrate our Alaskan adventures.
Day 14: Anchorage / Depart
Our Alaska photo safari comes to a close this morning as we transfer to the airport for homeward flights.
All This Included
Special photo departures are guided by Expedition Leaders who are not only expert naturalists but nature photography pros, versed in helping guests attain memorable images of Alaska's legendary landscapes and wildlife. The focus and pacing of the trip is geared toward photographers of all ability levels, with flexibility inherent to adapt to changing light and weather conditions to maximize photo opportunities. A small group assures exceptional personal attention and coaching from our Expedition Leader, plus plenty of space for your camera equipment.
Fairbanks: Springhill Suites Fairbanks
Denali National Park: Kantishna Roadhouse or North Face Lodge
Talkeetna: Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge
Girdwood: Hotel Alyeska
Kenai Fjords National Park: Kenai Fjords Wilderness Lodge
Katmai National Park: Alaska's Gold Creek Lodge
Anchorage: Anchorage Marriott Downtown
Terms and Conditions
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* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.