grizzly viewing expeditions for Natural Habitat, guiding a BBC film crew at a series of remote, extended camps on the Alaska Peninsula in the heart of the densest population of coastal grizzlies (or coastal brown bears) in the world. We had no problems or incidents, because we were meticulous with our bear safety techniques. Through using common sense, respect for the bears and the country, and proper equipment, we minimized our impact on the land and the wildlife. Here is a video tour of one of our camps in June:This past summer I spent nearly 2 months, while I wasn’t guiding
The basic rule of camping safely in bear country is to eliminate any chance that a bear can access something edible. A bear will always be attracted to a camp, no matter how careful you are, as they have a sense of smell 2000 times greater than us (7 times greater than a bloodhound)! We place all edible items (including garbage and toiletries) in bear proof food containers (known as BRFCs), keep our eating area away from our sleeping area, and enclose both areas in electric fences.
During the filming of this documentary we had very few bears show any interest in our camp, and those that did only needed a few hand claps and stern voice prompts to leave our property alone. If a bear was to begin to cause problems, and was to oblivious to voice and body language, we would use hand flares and/or pepper spray as a last deterrent. I don’t ever carry a gun for bear defense, on top of not having to carry a gun cleaning kit, which is tiresome I find it safer, as I believe that it will only increase your chances for a variety of disasters, and they are simply less effective than flares and spray.
Camping in bear country is difficult and expensive, and in the regions that I guide expeditions, it should only be done with locally experienced individuals. Bears are powerful, stubborn, super-intelligent animals that demand a tremendous amount of respect, which is why I love being in their presence so much.
Good job Brad….as always…on my way to Homer….maybe I’ll run into you..
Amazing job Brad! Your words brought me back to the incredible journey Steve and I shared with you and the bears this summer!
wonderful videos. reminds me of some of my scenes when I went w Brad on a Nat Hab trip. Wish we could have seen bears catching fish and mothers/cubs. But it was a wonderful trip.
Your last photo is exquisite. Thanks for sharing
Really great to see the high tech approach and found it pretty interesting. Guess I hadn’t appreciated how much went into making a successfulf nature video. Well done and keep up the inetresting work. Love to see more.
Don and Jan Wilkinson, Australia
Pat & I are on our way to Antarctica? Where are you?
Both of us really enjoyed our trip to Katmai and hope
to visit you again either in Katmai / China in the near future.
All the best 2013! Pat Edwards & Kathy Pattee