Alaska from North to South
Arctic to Prince William Sound
June 13 to July 2, 2012
| At a Glance |
Other Details |
Prudhoe Bay, Denali National Park, Prince William Sound,
and Katmai National Park
Experience a slice of pristine Alaska and have the opportunity to see the wildlife that makes Alaska famous – Brown Bear, Caribou, Muskoxen, Moose, and all varieties of birds, from shorebirds to raptors, amidst colorful tundra and beautiful glacier-covered mountains. Begin at Prudhoe Bay in search of the many species of wildlife that make their home here during the brief summer season. Drive south on the Dalton Highway through the Brooks Range, crossing the Arctic Circle and the mighty Yukon River, ending in Fairbanks. Spend three days in Denali National Park, the best park in North America for viewing wildlife and wildflowers. Enjoy a flight-seeing excursion over the park! Continue to Anchorage and further south to embark on the MV Discovery for a voyage around Prince William Sound. Explore the sound on a route that maximizes opportunities for marine mammals and birds and visit some of the most spectacular glacial scenery in the Northern Hemisphere. Enjoy shore excursions to hike and view wildlife more closely. The grand finale will be at famous Katmai National Park, where we will view bears as they snatch salmon from the river!
Surveying the Arctic Coastal Plain ©Hugh Rose
At a Glance
Cost: $9,500 per person, double occupancy, most airfare is not included as described.
Leader: Hugh Rose.
Size: 7 participants plus leader.
Transport: Travel in Hugh's private 9-seat van with room to stand and opening windows for photography and viewing, by plane, and aboard the 12-passenger boat MV Discovery.
Conditions: A non-smoking safari for people who are very interested in all wildlife and spending the maximum time in the field.
Update: This itinerary was updated in May 2011.
||Arrive in Anchorage
||Fly to Prudhoe Bay to meet Hugh
||Search for Prudhoe Bay birds and Arctic wildlife
||Drive the stunning Dalton Highway (Haul Road)
||Wiseman and the Brooks Range
||Drive to Fairbanks past the Arctic Circle and over the Yukon River
|June 19 - 21
||Famous Denali National Park, including flight-seeing
||Drive to Anchorage with stops along the way
|June 23 - 26
||Prince William Sound on the MV Discovery
||More Prince William Sound then back to Anchorage
||Fly to Katmai National Park
|June 29 - 30
||Bears at Katmai National Park
||Fly to Anchorage for an overnight
||Flights and arrive home
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June 13, Wednesday Arrive in Anchorage
Choose the best route to Anchorage, Alaska, to arrive in time to connect with the early afternoon flight to Prudhoe Bay on June 14. See flight schedule details. We strongly suggest that you arrive in Anchorage on June 13 and book your own hotel room. If you arrive on June 13 for one night, then we recommend a lodge near the airport with free airport shuttle, such as the Courtyard. If you plan to arrive a few days early, we recommend the Susitna Place Bed and Breakfast, which is in a quiet location for a very pleasant stay in downtown Anchorage. Arrange your own taxi ride to the Susitna Place, which is reasonably priced. Arriving early will allow time to explore downtown Anchorage and its fine museums, especially the Alaska Public Lands Information Center, which contains exhibits of Alaskan history, culture, geology, flora and fauna. Anchorage has an amazing diversity of wildlife. Loons, ducks and Red-necked Grebes are frequently observed on lagoons in parks within the city limits, such as at Westchester Lagoon. Anchorage is the largest community in North America with a population of breeding loons. The loud resonant yodeling call of a loon late in the evening across a still lake is an unforgettable experience, especially in an urban setting. Other avifauna found in the local area include Hudsonian Godwits, Alder Flycatchers, Common Redpolls, Rusty Blackbirds, Boreal and Black-capped chickadees, and several species of warblers.
Lodging: Your own arrangements
June 14, Thursday Fly to Prudhoe Bay to meet Hugh
Hugh will meet you at the Prudhoe airport upon arrival in the afternoon to begin this amazing Alaskan adventure. Check in at the lodge before heading out into the field to seek the mammals and birds that make their home on the Arctic coastal plain during the brief summer season. Muskoxen, Caribou, Grizzly Bears, Gray Wolves and other wildlife all are present at this season along the Arctic Ocean on the magnificent coastal plain. After a welcome dinner we will either drive to a location to walk amongst Arctic birds or walk directly from the hotel and watch the midnight sun dip towards the horizon, but never set.
Lodging: Prudhoe Bay Hotel
Common Eider © Hugh Rose
June 15, Friday Search for Prudhoe Bay birds and Arctic wildlife
After an early breakfast, we will spend our day searching for birds and mammals in the unlikely environment of the Prudhoe Bay oilfields. Birding and bird photography are spectacular here with Pacific Loons, Common Loons and Red-throated loons all in breeding plumage and regularly seen in this area. Other species, such as Common Eiders, Baird Sandpipers and 125 other species of birds are seen in this birding paradise. Arctic Fox and the native Red Fox are common visitors. A short drive down the Dalton Highway (Haul Road) in the afternoon may afford us looks at Long-tailed Jaeger, Arctic Warbler, Muskoxen, Grizzly Bear, Caribou, possible Bluethroat and maybe wolves.
Lodging: Prudhoe Bay Hotel
June 16, Saturday Drive the stunning Dalton Highway (Haul Road)
After breakfast in Prudhoe Bay, drive south down the Dalton Highway, the 500-mile long road that stretches from Fairbanks to Deadhorse. Travel half way, to arrive at Wiseman for a two-night stay. We drive south across the Arctic coastal plain to the distant foothills of the Brooks Range. This first 130 miles is wildlife rich, taking us through an alien landscape of flats and low rolling hills devoid of any trees, but covered with a brilliant green carpet of tundra vegetation. Wildlife flocks to the coastal plain in the summer to partake of the brief, but intense bloom of life that feeds on the tundra vegetation. Caribou, Moose and Muskoxen are often seen browsing on willows and sedges, while predators, such as wolves, fox, bear, Golden Eagle, Snowy Owl, and Gyrfalcon, search the tundra for a meal.
Next we ascend the foothills of the Brooks Range and over the Atigun Pass at 5,000 feet, the highest mountain pass on any road in Alaska. We will stop along the way for a small hike and picnic lunch. Wildflowers carpet the tundra here at this time of year, and it we can count as many as fifty species of wildflowers in the high alpine of the Brooks Range. We descend from Atigun Pass onto the south side of the Brooks Range and enter the scenic Koyukuk River Valley and the northern edge of the boreal forest. The drive for the next 75 miles is through the spectacular Koyukuk Valley, past craggy peaks of 400 million year old limestone and dense spruce forest. Here we may see Grizzlies, Grey (Timber) Wolves, Moose and even Lynx. At the end of an unforgettable 250-mile drive, arrive in the historic gold mining town of Wiseman to overnight at the Arctic Get-away Bed & Breakfast commonly known as "Igloo #8." The Igloo Club, similar to the Elks Club, originally built this historic bed and breakfast lodge. It is a real log cabin where get a feel of the true Alaskan wilderness. Many of the historic log cabins still stand today, housing residents or small businesses such as Igloo #8 and the Wiseman Museum.
Lodging: Igloo #8
June 17, Sunday Wiseman and the Brooks Range
After breakfast in the comfortable kitchen of Igloo #8, set out for a day of exploring and photography on the south side of the Brooks Range. Take a picnic lunch and stop to eat on a carpet of wildflowers that should be stretching in all directions. This afternoon will be an excellent opportunity to explore the town of Wiseman. Settled in 1903, most of the buildings are older than the oldest surviving buildings in Fairbanks. Several old log cabins, a general store, and lots of historic gold mining artifacts can be found within a short walk of Igloo #8.
Lodging: Igloo #8
June 18, Monday Drive to Fairbanks past the Arctic Circle and over the Yukon River
After an early breakfast we depart for Fairbanks, located 250 miles south of Wiseman. The drive traverses boreal forest and ascends mountain peaks of windswept tundra. A crossing of the Arctic Circle sixty miles south of Wiseman will be celebrated with good cheer. Sixty miles further south we cross the mighty Yukon River and continue through the White Mountains to Fairbanks. An afternoon arrival in Fairbanks allows us a chance to relax and enjoy Fairbanks in the summer. Well known for warm summers and cold winters, high temperatures can be in the 90s this time of year, but average 65 to 70°F. Dinner is on our own this evening. A choice of dining is available in Fairbanks to allow you to try the cuisine that appeals most to you. Finish this exciting day with the night at River's Edge Resort.
Lodging: River's Edge Resort
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June 19, Tuesday Travel to Denali National Park
After a relaxing morning in Fairbanks with time to explore the "Golden Heart City of Interior Alaska", we'll drive south to the entrance of Denali National Park (formally Mount McKinley National Park) to enjoy the east side of the Park. We will arrive at the wonderful Earth Song Lodge, located on the edge of the park, in time for dinner.
Lodging: Earth Song Lodge
Brown Bear in
Denali National Park
June 20, Wednesday Denali to Kantishna
Depart early to leisurely drive through the best part of Denali National Park to mile 95 at the end of the road. Hugh has a special vehicle permit, which is possible because we will be staying at the private Skyline Lodge in Kantishna. There are only 100 miles of gravel road within the 9,300 square mile park. In order to protect wildlife viewing opportunities, the use of non-permitted private vehicles is restricted to the first fifteen miles of road; only specially sanctioned park shuttle buses and those with special permits are allowed on the remaining road system. This is probably the best park in North America for viewing wildlife and wildflowers from early June through August. Moose, Grizzly Bear, Dall Sheep, Caribou, Red Fox, Arctic Ground Squirrel, Marmot, and Pika are all seen from this road. Even Wolverine and Wolves are occasionally found. A total of 37 species of mammals have been documented in the Park. Interesting birds include Golden Eagles, Gyrfalcon, Rough-legged Hawks, Long-tailed Jaegers, Rock and Willow ptarmigan, Northern Wheatear, Arctic Warbler, American Golden Plover and over 100 other species. One area of interest is the Stony Creek area where 132 species of wildflowers occur, as well as wheatears, nesting shorebirds, Long-tailed Jaeger, and other birds. Hugh knows this area very well from his employment as resident naturalist at Camp Denali.
Denali National Park and Preserve lies 250 miles south of the Arctic Circle and 237 highway miles north of Anchorage. Spend all day traversing the gravel spur road through the center of the park. Stop to observe and photograph both large and small wildlife and incredible scenery. Large mammals may be found feeding very close to the road, such as the Denali Grizzly Bear with their beautiful blond fur. We will explore on foot some of the best spots for photography and scenery, which Hugh knows so well. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the field and arrive at Skyline Lodge for dinner with an incredible view of Mount Denali, weather permitting. "Denali" is a local Indian word meaning "Great One" referring to North America's highest mountain, still often called Mount McKinley.
The Skyline Lodge consists of three large, clean and comfortable cabins: one dining cabin and two sleeping cabins. Each sleeping cabin contains one big sleeping room equipped with a sleeping loft, affording some privacy although not what we may normally be used to. The bathroom and toilet facilities are in the adjacent dining cabin. The privilege of exploring this remote area of Denali National Park on our own schedule makes this rustic accommodation well worth our two-night stay. The meals at Skyline Lodge are excellent. We have stayed at other lodges but found that the regimented activity schedule did not accommodate our desire to spend as much time in the field as possible.
Lodging: Skyline Lodge
June 21, Thursday Flight-seeing, hiking and viewing at Wonder Lake
The Skyline Lodge owner offers "flight-seeing" excursions in a single engine aircraft operated from a small airstrip located at Kantishna. The flight is included in the cost of this trip. The north face of Denali's 20,320-foot summit is only 20 miles from Kantishna. The vertical relief of this impressive mountain from its base to its summit is 18,000 feet, even greater than that of Mt. Everest. Bring your wide-angle lens - Denali more than fills a picture window at the lodge on a clear day! The mountain makes its own weather and it can be cloud-hidden as much as 60% of the time. Winter temperatures on the mountain can dip to 85°F below zero and winds can gust to more than 150 miles per hour. Even summer temperatures on its summit can be severe. Permanent snowfields cover more than 50% of the mountain and feed the many glaciers that surround its base. Over 1,000 people now attempt to climb the mountain each year by a multitude of routes. The most popular route is not technically difficult, but low temperatures and awesome winds in upper reaches make this environment one of the harshest on earth, usually claiming the lives of some climbers every year. The park exemplifies interior Alaska's character as one of the world's last great frontiers offering an opportunity for wilderness adventure. Most of Denali remains largely wild and unspoiled, but there are many development pressures. Today we'll walk in the Kantishna Hills to look for birds, mammals and wildflowers. We'll enjoy a picnic lunch amid the magnificent scenery that surrounds this area. Also spend time at Wonder Lake, one of the best places to photograph Moose, if one comes to drink in the late afternoon. A delicious dinner awaits us at the lodge at the end of our day.
Lodging: Skyline Lodge
June 22, Friday Drive to Anchorage with stops along the way
After a hearty breakfast at Skyline Lodge, we depart early for more great wildlife experiences traversing slowly back across the park. Stop at the park entrance to explore this area and eat lunch. Depart on the George Parks Highway south to Anchorage. The trip will take us through fertile Matanuska Valley farmlands, across high bridges spanning several Susitna River tributaries, and will provide spectacular views of Denali, weather permitting. Make a stop halfway at Denali State Park for a short hike and a chance to photograph and sightsee on the south side of the Alaska Range. We will arrive in Anchorage and drive directly to the inn for the night. Dinner is on your own this evening.
Lodging: Susitna Place Bed and Breakfast
June 23, Saturday To the dock in Whittier and board the MV Discovery
After breakfast, we depart for the dock in Whittier, where we rendezvous with the MV Discovery. Meet the captain, Dean Rand, and crew at the harbor for a warm welcome. It is owned and operated by Dean, a long-time Alaskan, who expertly pilots boat through the Sound's narrow passages. The MV Discovery has six cabins with two baths and offers a comfortable means to explore this astoundingly rich wilderness seacoast. Relax in the cozy lounge and enjoy a specially prepared lunch. Then depart for Prince William Sound, where breath-taking glacial scenery, blue icebergs, spectacular birdlife, Orca and other marine mammals await.
Lodging: Aboard the MV Discovery
Sea Otter ©Hugh Rose
June 24 - 26, Sunday - Tuesday Prince William Sound aboard the MV Discovery
Weather and wildlife will dictate our destinations, but we will strike out on a route around Prince William Sound to maximize our marine wildlife and bird viewing, and will visit some of the most spectacular glacial scenery in the Northern Hemisphere, such as Icy Bay and Harriman Fjord. Prince William Sound is surrounded by the northern-most temperate rainforest in the world. Each day will consist of excursions on shore to hike and view wildlife and scenery up close. The MV Discovery is equipped with Zodiacs, which make shore excursions easy. Humpback Whale viewing should be outstanding, weather permitting.
Lodging: aboard the Discovery
June 27, Wednesday From Prince William Sound to Anchorage
Awake to some of the world's most spectacular scenery: corridors of breathtaking beauty, sprawling glaciers, and a panoramic skyline of mountain grandeur. Harbor Seals hauled out on the flotillas of icebergs watch closely as the MV Discovery navigates the icy, blue waters of Barry Arm. The enveloping mountains of this inlet stretch skyward to nearly 10,000 feet, with glacier after glacier descending the terraced mountain valleys. Alaska's lush rainforest vegetation drapes the hillsides in green as streaming waterfalls fall from the rocky cliffs. Listen to the cracks, pops, and thunderous roars of the Cascade, Barry, and Coxe glaciers while the MV Discovery, dwarfed by blue and white walls, drifts silently by these actively calving rivers of ice. Enjoy a buffet lunch while our boat exits this magical place back to the Whittier Harbor. After disembarking, return to Anchorage and check in at the Susitna Place Bed and Breakfast. Dinner is on our own this evening.
Lodging: Susitna Place Bed and Breakfast
June 28, Thursday From Anchorage to Katmai National Park
After breakfast depart for the Anchorage international airport and take the one hour flight (included in the trip cost) to King Salmon located in Bristol Bay. Many government resource agency offices (Alaska Department of Fish and Game, National Park Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service) are located here along with several sport fishing lodges. From King Salmon, take a 20-minute flight on a single-engine airplane equipped with pontoons to Brooks Lodge in Katmai National Park. The scenic, low-level flight and smooth water takeoff and landing will be a unique, exhilarating, and safe experience. Brooks Lodge is situated on a peninsula at the mouth of the Brooks River, which flows from Brooks Lake 1-1/2 miles before emptying into Naknek Lake. Naknek is the largest freshwater lake in the National Park system and is the fourth largest lake in Alaska. The lodge complex, operated by a concessionaire under Park service permit, consists of eight cabins, a main dining room and a small trading post. Adjacent Park Service facilities include a small campground and a visitors' center. Delicious family style meals are served.
With only eight very popular cabins at Brooks Lodge, the owners will allow us only two cabins. We make reservations over a year in advance. We will occupy all the available beds in the two cabins - each cabin has two bunk beds with four beds total. Each cabin has one bathroom. With wildlife this spectacular in this wonderful setting, we easily make do with less privacy, taking turns dressing if necessary. The porch outside each cabin is great for sitting and bears might even walk by, not to mention moose and Bald Eagles. There is also a set of bathrooms very close to the cabins.
The opportunity to observe concentrations of Brown Bears fishing for salmon is the primary attraction of this area. Alaska Brown and Grizzly Bears are considered one species (Ursus arctos), but the coastal Browns are larger due to their high protein salmon diet for a portion of the year. Mature males may weigh in excess of 1,000 pounds. Mating occurs from May to mid July, with cubs born in the dens in mid-winter. Up to four cubs are born weighing a mere one-pound each. Cubs stay with their mother for two or three years during which time she does not reproduce. Brown Bears dig a new den each year entering in November and emerging in April. About half of their life is spent in their dens.
Upon arrival at the Lodge we will receive orientation from Park Rangers about bear behavior. Hugh will provide additional information on safety precautions when in bear country. In late June as many as 30 bears may be present in the vicinity of Brooks Falls (located mid-way down the river), which acts as a partial migration barrier to salmon. Bears normally begin arriving by the third week of June and begin departing in August to feed on more accessible salmon in adjacent smaller streams. Special observation platforms are available for observing and photographing fishing bears at the river's mouth and the upstream falls, easily accessible from well-maintained trails. Lunch will be served at the lodge when we arrive and the rest of the day will be spent viewing bears and becoming familiar with the surroundings.
Lodging: Brooks Lodge in Katmai National Park
Brown Bear Fishing in Katmai National Park ©Hugh Rose
June 29 - 30, Friday - Saturday Katmai National for Park Bear Viewing
We'll spend time observing and photographing these phenomenal bears. It is also possible to see a wolf in the vicinity of the falls, as they have been seen scavenging for fish remains. Young bears not yet competing with adults for the live salmon will search downriver for floating fish carcasses.
Or you might choose to travel one day by bus on a 23-mile gravel road to the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes (additional cost of about $100 paid at that time). Let Hugh know and he will make arrangements while at Katmai. This trip offers a view of wilderness sculptured by glaciers, stream erosion and volcanism. After a picnic lunch at the road's end, hike to the valley floor on a steep, but well maintained trail. This is the site of one of the most violent volcanic eruptions in recorded history. Novarupta Volcano, located near Mt. Katmai, exploded in June, 1912, with blasts of hot, glowing pumice and ash destroying all living things over a large area and covering 40 square miles of lush valley to a depth of 700 feet. The valley floor is composed of a myriad of subtle colors of pumice and ash. Return to the lodge for dinner. Take a short evening hike to observe bears and possibly attend the visitor center program.
Lodging: Brooks Lodge in Katmai National Park
July 1, Sunday Katmai then fly back to Anchorage for an overnight
Enjoy the last day bear viewing and depart mid-afternoon on the floatplane back to King Salmon, and then on to Anchorage. After arrival in the Anchorage airport, we will transfer to the Susitna Place Bed and Breakfast. A final dinner and going away party at a local restaurant will be planned.
Lodging: Susitna Place Bed and Breakfast
July 2, Monday Flights and arrive home or continue on your own
After breakfast, Hugh will make the drive to the Anchorage airport for your flight home. Transfers to the airport are included in the trip cost, but will only be offered after breakfast. A taxi is easily arranged for later transfers. See flight schedule details. Alternatively, stay longer to explore Alaska on your own.
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The Discovery in a cloud of
in Prince William Sound
MV Discovery is meticulously fitted to combine the finest blend of luxury, comfort and utility, the 65 foot classic working yacht gently sails you into one of the world's richest marine environments. Named after one of Captain Cook's ships, the Discovery's atmosphere is one of charm and style. The lower deck includes sleeping accommodations for up to 12 guests in 6 cabins, plus crew quarters, two bathrooms with hot showers, and stowage space. Guests can readily view and photograph the panoramic scenery and marine life from the ship's complete walk-around deck and expansive windows. Unlike the cumbersome cruise ship giants, the Discovery's size enables access to Alaska's lesser traveled, more intimate inside passages. Well equipped for travel in Alaska's wilderness, the Discovery safely charts the Sound's remote waterways. Review more ship details including the deckplan.
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Costs, Payments and Cancellations: Upon receiving your deposit, we will send trip materials and travel insurance information. Until the final payment date, payments are refundable except for a cancellation fee of $150 per person. This fee may go toward another tour if reserved within six months of the departure date of the cancelled trip.
|Cost per Person
|Trip cost, double occupancy
|Deposit - to reserve your space
|October 1, 2011 - second payment
|March 1, 2012 - final payment
|For reservations made after the second payment date, the deposit and second payment will be due with registration.
- Flight-seeing in Denali National Park on June 21.
- Round-trip flight from Anchorage to Katmai National Park.
- All meals from dinner on June 14 to breakfast on July 2 except three dinners listed in the Not Included section.
- Transfers in Prudhoe Bay on June 14, Anchorage on July 2, and throughout tour as listed.
- Complimentary beverages (wine, beer, sodas, water and juice) onboard the MV Discovery.
- Airfare is not included, except as mentioned above.
- Possibility of optional flight-seeing in Prudhoe ($100 per person).
- Overnight(s) and transportation in Anchorage prior to flight to Prudhoe on June 14.
- Separate transfers – Hugh will provide one group transfer on arrival and departure dates as described in itinerary.
- Gratuities: Tipping is, of course, discretionary, however we suggest budgeting a total of $225 per participant to be distributed among all the MV Discovery crew and to lodge personnel. It is not necessary to tip Hugh Rose, but Hugh will be happy to collect and distribute the gratuity.
- Dinners on June 18 in Fairbanks and June 22 and 27 in Anchorage.
- Laundry services, when available, personal expenses, and excess baggage charges to Prudhoe Bay (limited to 44 pounds).
- Beverages, except onboard the MV Discovery.
- Travel insurance.
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To Make a Reservation: Please contact us to assure space availability
and to let us answer your questions. Then, print our reservation
form, fill it out, and post it to us in the mail with your deposit:
Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris
20800 Kittredge Road
Saratoga, CA 95070
Toll Free: (800) 527-5330
Local: (408) 741-5330
Fax: (408) 741-0358
Leader: Hugh Rose is an outstanding resident naturalist. He has led Alaska tours since 1991 receiving unending praise for his broad knowledge, attention to details, and ability to fulfill everyone's needs. He has an excellent understanding of all aspects of Alaskan natural history from in-depth bird behavior to geology. Hugh is a professional photographer and is also on our Antarctica staff. Onboard the MV Discovery, Captain Dean Rand will lend his expertise. After more than 20 years of experience on Alaska's waters, Captain Rand really knows Prince William Sound and all its special places.
Flights: Please let us know if you would like help arranging your own flights. Fly from your home to Prudhoe Bay via Anchorage, and then back home from Anchorage. Alaska Air can help you with most, if not all parts of this route. The Alaska Air flight from Anchorage to Prudhoe Bay costs close to $400 if purchased separately, so it's best to purchase it along with your ticket to and from Anchorage. We will arrange the internal flights from Anchorage to Denali and back to Anchorage, included in your tour cost.
Arrival - Arrive in Prudhoe Bay (SCC), also known as Deadhorse, by the afternoon of June 14. Please book Alaska Air flight AS53 from Anchorage (ANC) to Prudhoe Bay (SCC), currently scheduled to depart ANC at 2:15 pm on June 14. This is the flight that Hugh will arrange transfer for. Please note: this flight time could change to the morning, so it is better to arrive in Anchorage on June 13 for an overnight. Please book your own room (see the suggestions mentioned earlier in the itinerary) for an overnight on June 13.
Departure - Fly home from Anchorage (ANC) on the morning of July 2, unless you wish to spend additional time there on your own.
Travel Insurance: Emergency Medical Insurance is optional, but encouraged, for this tour. Read about travel insurance and our recommendations and requirements.
Detailed information about your specific tour will be sent to you after you make your reservation with us. These trip materials include information about flights, packing, entry and departure requirements, airport transfers, gratuities, etc. Please take a moment to read this important informtation upon receipt.
- Non-smoking policy: We have a strict non-smoking policy. Smoking is not permitted at any time or any place during our tours.
- Maximum time in the field: We try to spend as much time in the field as possible to observe all wildlife behavior, sometimes resulting in long days but giving you a more in-depth experience.
- Itinerary route: The itinerary route, stops and plans are subject to change by unforeseen circumstances beyond our control, such as weather, wildlife sightings, or road conditions.
- Additional forms: For some of our tours, you may be asked to fill out additional forms (e.g., medical questionnaire).
- Medical conditions and travel risks: Travel to remote places is exciting, but understanding and accepting the risks, both medical and logistical, are important. Minor medical problems can usually be treated, but due to the fact that we often travel to locations far from medical facilities, there can be no expectation for immediate medical treatment or evacuation, even in cases of trauma. Anyone with health problems needing close medical supervision should not consider going on this trip. Bring enough medication for the duration of the trip for any chronic medical needs, since pharmacies are usually not available. When you send your tour deposit and signed reservation form, you certify to us that you do not knowingly have any physical or other conditions that would create a risk for yourself or for other trip participants.
If you would like to be on our mailing list or request information, please use our online information request form or contact us to give us your name, address, email address and phone number. Please note we will never share your personal information with anybody!
Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris, Saratoga, California, act only as agents and shall not be responsible or become liable for any delay incurred by any person in connection with any means of transportation, nor for the loss, damage, or injury to person or property by reason of any event beyond the control of the agency or default of such agency suppliers. We reserve the right to cancel the tour prior to departure in which case full refund will constitute full settlement to the passenger. No refund will be made for any unused portion of the tour unless arrangements are made at the time of booking. All rates are based on current tariffs, exchange rates and fuel prices and are subject to adjustment in the event of any change therein. By sending your initial deposit, you agree to accept our payment schedule as a contract. If payments are still outstanding two weeks after the due date, your space may be forfeited. Baggage is at the owner's risk.
Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris is registered as California Seller of Travel #2063050-40. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California. Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris is a participant in the Travel Consumer Restitution Corporation (TCRC). In event of a client canceling where a refund is applicable in accordance with the schedule above, or in the event that CES needs to cancel the trip, all payments for transportation or travel service not provided to the client shall be promptly refunded, unless the client instructs us otherwise in writing. All client payments are deposited into a trust account in accordance with California law. If for any reason a valid refund is not forthcoming, the client may request reimbursement from the TCRC within six months of the scheduled end of the tour. Please feel free to ask us for more information.
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All material © Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris.
All photos © Doug or Ted Cheeseman, unless otherwise credited.
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