Our Alaska bear viewing trips feature the coastal brown bear. This amazing creature of Alaska evokes a complicated mix of respect, love and fear in humans. Weighing up to 1200 pounds with six-inch claws, with the speed and power to bring down a moose single-handedly, the emotions of fear and respect are easy to understand. The love comes from their majestic appearance, their intelligence and the capacity of the cubs to be amazingly cute.
While there many air charter tour operators offering bear viewing tours, we at BigHalibut.com offer a 28 ft Offshore Alumaweld boat with a passenger capacity of 6 outfitted with all the latest safety equipment.
Traveling by boat is a more leisurely way to travel and there are viewing opportunities for other Alaskan wildlife - including whales,orcas, dolphins, sea otters, black bears, bald eagles, puffins and other sea birds. We have the boat and the time to spend observing and photographing any of these species we encounter. We take only small groups (6 maximum). If you have a party of only one or two, we frequently have other individuals who we can place you with.
There is no hectic schedule or plane to catch. You may stay as long as you like. There are optional activities which you may add on to your bear viewing adventure:
Razor clam harvesting
These delicious clams are found in abundance of the west side of Cook Inlet near the bear viewing area. Harvesting them is currently prohibited on the Kenai Peninsula.
There are creeks in the area of Chinitna bay which have salmon runs during the months of July and August. You can fish them from the river bank or in the salt water from the boat
En route to Chinitna you pass over the best spots for halibut in this region. You can try your luck fishing for these monsters of the deep.
You can picnic on a remote beach with spectacular views complete with fish or clams cooked over an open fire by your crew. For those who do not eat seafood, other menu items can be provided by our local caterer.
The bears are found in large meadows grazing on sedge grasses throughout May and June. As the summer progresses, they remain in the same area and shift their diet to clams and salmon entering the small creek that winds through the meadows. It is a highly reliable location to spot bears. We have never failed to see bears on one of our trip and have seen as many as 30 in the meadows on one trip. The viewing areas are wide open with great visibility, and on a clear day
the massif of Mount Iliamna (one of our active volcanos) makes a spectacular backdrop .
These are wild bears and there are no fences to separate humans from them. Your security comes from traveling in a group. Bears do not attack groups of humans. Also these bears co-exist throughout the summer with Park visitors and are used to people. In the highly improbable event that a bear should act aggressively, your guide is armed and experienced in bear behavior and the use of deterrents.
Base tour is $390 and is approximately 5-8 hours long depending on how long you want to stay. Upgrades are available listed above.