Kayaking with Grizzly Bears

in Pinmapple2 years ago

There are some amazing adventures to be had in Alaska. One of my favorite vehicles for adventure is a kayak. There is something so peaceful about the quiet that comes with kayaking. No sound from motors, no propellers to hit on shallow rocks. It is the perfect way to silently sit and watch nature unfold before you.

I have had some wonderful animal encounters from a kayak as well, probably because of the quietness of it. Also, as a photographer, I love the very close-to-the-ground perspective. Shooting up at wildlife is often a very powerful way to capture them. And if you are not disturbing them then you can get them walking towards you which is powerful as well.

Today was a pretty spectacular kayak. I was at a place called Pavlof Harbor. It is a well known spot to find coastal brown bears, especially during the salmon season. A large lake empties over a waterfall and down a river into the harbor. It is pretty dramatic scenery, but when you add feeding brown bears into the mix you definitely take it up a notch.

Take a look at some of the photos of my guests and I venturing up the river, to the waterfall, where two brown bear siblings were feasting away on the salmon. Believe it or not, the salmon can make it up that raging waterfall to the lake above. The two bears didn't take much note of us, other than sniffing in our direction a few times. They eventually walked down the shoreline right past us before disappearing into the forest.

A brief, beautiful moment in time.

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These two hungry bears are most likely siblings, but no longer young enough to be with their mom.

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Success! That salmon looks pretty tasty to me.

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Bear in front of the beautiful waterfall at Pavlof stream.

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Here is my coworker Shana, kayaking with bears in Alaska.

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A couple of my guests getting in on the action.

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This is when the bears walked down the side right next to our group.

I just can't get enough of Alaska. Although now that the season is winding down it is time to start looking ahead to getting the Hawaii season started.

-Dai Mar
Check it out on pinmapple
[//]:# (!pinmapple 57.84144 lat -135.03606 long Pavlof Bear Viewing d3scr)


Oh thank you so much for sharing this! It sent me on a full nostalgia trip to my childhood! I spent a big chunk of it in Icy Bay, a logging camp at the base of the Wrangell-St. Elias mountains north of Yakutat and had many adventures, including more than a few with the coastal grizzlies.

And it sounds like you lead a beyond adventurous life, which made me smile all the smiles, and gliding through the water on kayaks no less!

Can’t wait to read more of your posts😊

Hi Generikat, thanks for the wonderful response. I'm so glad it brought a smile to your face and reminded you of good times. I pass some of the remains and relics of the old logging camps. I can't imagine 600 people, and their kids, living in what is now a ghost town. You must have some stories indeed.

Oh yes, it's always fun to see people's reactions when I tell them how we had to fly home from town in a plane on skis over a glacier the size of Rhode Island lol! It was definitely a wonderful and formative part of my story and there are times I miss the bears, orcas, and even the Sherman tank our camp mechanic resurrected and we got up to mischief with.

But like I have to regale you with stories, after taking a look at your most excellent blog, it definitely seems like you have more than a kayak-full of your own adventures, that made me smile more than anything!😊

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Awesome post!... Thanks a lot!!!


I can only wonder what it feels to have such large beasts near you, and that you might not be at all risks free around them even tho they are focused on their thing and humans on their own, amazing pictures!


This post was upvoted by the Nature Lovers Community

Ouch !!!! Nice experience !

Thanks Marc. I can't wait to go back there next year!