This isn’t your typical gear review. It’s more my commentary on rain gear and the failings of waterproof breathable rain gear.
I’ve bought and worn dozens of rain jackets over the years. Literally, dozens of them. Right now on the rack beside me as I type this I can count 11 rain jackets. Eleven.
It’s a bit ridiculous. I have everything from my old Aussie Dryzabone to my most recent Outdoor Research Goretex jacket I bought last year. Whatever your jacket, chances are good I’ve owned at least one of those.
And none of them, I mean none of them, work like I want them to. In fact, it’s fair to say none of them work like they did when I first bought them.
It’s been my experience that the magic of waterproof breathable technology is in the DWR (durable water repellent) coating. I don’t know what kind of black magic voodoo those manufacturers employ, but that stuff is astonishingly good. Continue reading…
Large adult male polar bears can weigh over 1400lbs.
Seriously? How big?
We’ve all heard polar bears are the largest terrestrial carnivore, right? We’ll side-step the rather silly idea of labelling Ursus maritimus (Sea bear), a marine mammal, as a “land-based carnivore ” for the moment. Instead consider the point behind it. Polar bears are the largest predator on land. This begs the question “just how big are polar bears?”
That’s a tough question to answer, for a number of reasons.
What does “big” mean? How tall? How heavy? What’s the volume?
Generally animals are measured by weight. Largely because weight can be such a good indicator of health and particularly population health. So we’ll consider the question (for now) of “How heavy is a polar bear?”. Continue reading…
Wrangell Mountains in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, Alaska.
Welcome to March, 2017!
A photo of my favorite view. And a view I’ve seen many, many times this winter. The Wrangell Mountains. Left to right, you’re looking at Mt Drum, Mt. Sanford, Mt Zanetti (the little “cone” shaped peak the looks like a ski-jump on the side of Mt Wrangell (the broadest mountain on the far right that looks like an egg on its side – a big egg).
To give you a perspective on this mountain range …. Mt. Zanetti, the tiny little cone .. is the same volume mountain as Mt. St. Helens, in Oregon. The one that went “Boom” all those years ago.
Few things are as cute as polar bear cub playing on the snow and ice. This young fella, and his siblings, were having a ball on this particular day. They’d just had a few days of harsh steady high winds and nobody likes that.
The snow fell and after the winds died down everybody was keen to enjoy it. The bears played, the photographers fired away and and it couldn’t have been better. Continue reading…
I’ve had a great summer, and spent much of it photographing bears. In another week, I head off for 2 more weeks of brown bear photography, followed by 2 weeks of polar bear photography. Should be a blast.
This shot was taken last week on a fantastic trip camped along the Katmai Coast. Great fun.
Here’s a curious young brown bear cub from one of our photo tours last summer. We had a blast photographing this guy and his sibling and mom; amazingly cute, try tolerant of our group, and they loved to play. We all got some great photo opportunities on the trip.
The bear tours are extremely popular, and always a ton of fun. Bears are just such an amazing animal to be around. Continue reading…