Archive for the ‘Videos’ Category
An Expeditions Alaska Video Review
A week in arctic Alaska, photographing Nanuq, the magnificent polar bear? An awesome, awesome trip. I took 3 people up earlier this month for a fantastic week, where we were so lucky to get to spend time up close and personal with polar bears; literally, dozens and dozens of polar bears. US F&WS estimates there were nearly 80 bears in the area in sept/oct.
These 2 youngsters were an absolute treat to watch, as they tussled and wrestled and ran and frolicked on the ice. With a great local Alaska native (Inupiaq) guide, we were able to watch these bears for several hours; everyone came home with thousands of great polar bear photos. I grabbed this quick video when I had to stop shooting and change memory cards in one of my SLR cameras. The bears were so much fun to watch.
Next year, 2013, I’ll be back for another round, leading a small photo tour for a week in the arctic, photographing the polar bears. Space is limited; I’ll keep the group to a maximum of 4 photographers and myself. I’ll have full details online this week, but the dates are scheduled for Oct 7-14, 2013. Drop me a note if this is something you’re interested in, as this trip will very likely fill quickly.
PS: Oh, someone asked about the music track; it’s a little R&B groove I recorded (on guitar) with my friend Steve F on bass years and years ago. I found a copy of it and thought it’d be a cool track for this video. Steve sounds great on bass, as always. It sounds better L-O-U-D, so turn your speakers up to 11.
Many of you may or may not be aware of this critical issue. A proposed open-pit mine in Alaska, in the heart of the Bristol Bay watershed, potentially threatens some of the wildest and vital land in Alaska. The salmon fishery of Bristol Bay is one of the world’s most productive fisheries. It is also the pulse of a vibrant and productive ecosystem that’s home to the great coastal brown bears of Katmai National Park and surrounding regions. The bears we love to see and photograph grow fat on the riches of spawning salmon. The bald eagles that gather in the thousands every summer here thrive on spawning salmon.
The proposed mine, the Pebble Limited Partnership, would create a “10-square-mile-wide containment pond are intended to hold between 2.5 billion and 10 billion tons of mine waste that Pebble would produce over its lifetime”, a 700′ tall dam wall and several miles in length. One of the largest mines in the world, it’s expected to span a 20 mile swathe of Alaska State land. The acidic nature of the waste would require environmental treatment and monitoring for years to come. The potential devastation if something goes awry here, in the land of frequent volcanic and seismic activity, would be immeasurable. (more…)
Here’s a short video from our Canning River Trip, in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. We spend anywhere from 10 days to 2 weeks in the refuge, depending on the year, and a little video like this doesn’t even touch the surface of the trip. But hopefully it catches at least a little of the feel of the trip.
Because of the nature of the logistics here, typically, the maximum number of people on this trip is 3, plus your guide. If you have more than 3 people, please call or email to discuss trip options.
Enjoy the video. I just recorded the music for it this afternoon; hope you like it.
If you have a nice, large computer screen and broadband connection, what I REALLY recommend you do is go to my page on Vimeo and click the ‘HD’ button underneath the thumbnail. You can watch and listen to this video in full HD resolution, at 720 x 1280. It’ll take a moment to load, but is (hopefully) well worth the time.
50 photos for 50 years!
Dec 6, 2010, marks the 50th anniversary of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, or ANWR. Over 19 million acres of wild lands, the refuge is a treasure, home to thousands of creatures and features; the caribou herds, the Brooks Mountains, the broad coastal plain, migratory birds and countless other gifts to this world. A beautiful landscape that warrants our respect, not our exploitation.
I hope you like this. These photos and this music is my simple tribute to this special place. Happy Birthday ANWR – and cheers to many, many more.
Turn up your sound!
Watch this clip, destined to become a classic, to see a brief, sudden and welcome appearance by the great Usain Bolt; Usain pops up in the video and shows his classic ‘bow and arrow’ pose, while simultaneously unveiling some gorgeous new footwear. I managed to grab a few seconds of him on video before he raced out of sight.
I was trying to grab some footage of the Chitistone Valley in heavy fog, from the “Wolverine” landing strip, when Usain appeared. I believe this is the first time he’s visited Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Preserve, indeed Alaska itself. I’m sure he’ll make another appearance or 2 before the end of this season.
One of the more challenging aspects of an Alaskan backcountry trek is river crossings. With the exception of the occasional Kenai Peninsula hike, all of these treks are off-trail, wilderness backpacking trips, and so there’s no easy way to get across the streams, creeks and rivers that meander through the mountains. A few tips that can be useful to heed:
1) For smaller streams, I prefer to cross one person at a time. If by chance someone in the group does stumble, it means we have one wet person to deal with. Everyone else in the group is safe and secure on shore. Things unravel quickly in the backcountry, and that happens most often when something small goes wrong. One person stumbles, takes a dip, someone else reaches to grab them, they go down, knock their partner off balance, and all of a sudden bedlam results. That’s how people get hurt. It can also mean everyone gets wet gear. A much simpler problem to deal with is getting one person out of a creek, drying them off, and loaning them some warm, dry gear that another person in the group has in their pack. One person falling is a hassle – a group falling can be a disaster.
2) For anything over knee-high, unbuckle your hip belt and sternum strap on the backpack. (more…)
I thought this video might be both entertaining and useful to visitors to the website. Here, Andy Seeger shows off his fashion-sense and creative ingenuity with ‘Shower Cap Hat’ – a cheap workable solution to protecting your camera gear from bad weather on backpacking trips. Backpacking is ALL about compromise; weight, bulk and space, durability, multi-use, etc … these are things to consider when packing for your trip.
Rather than carry an expensive and heavier camera rain cover, a cheap plastic shower cap fits perfectly. it’s lightweight, packable, durable, light and easily available. What’s more, as Andy says, you can even get water with it. (more…)
I’ve been crazy busy trying to get the website overhauled – I hope you enjoy the new design. Fortunately, I’m a better photographer and backcountry guide than I am web coder!
Here’s a video I shot in Katmai National Park and Preserve, of a family a bears fishing in Brooks River while another young bear wanders around the scene – the young cubs get a little distraught, but ole mom is pretty undisturbed about it all. If you’re not a member of Facebook and can’t see the video, you can view the video on Youtube here.
Anyway, I thought I’d post this here just to keep in touch, and look forward to our Grizzly Bears in the Fall phototour coming in 2010. I’ve just added that html page, so be sure to check it out. I have 2 slide shows on there of new grizzly bear photos.