Polar Bear Photos

Nov 1st, 2005, 07:36 PM
  #1  
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Polar Bear Photos

I know, polar bears are not indigenous to Africa, but I thought information on an easily accessible wildlife encounter to those of us in North America may have some appeal; if not, you needn't review the photos nor comment.

http://kodakgallery.com/BrowsePhotos...1&sort_order=0

On Friday, October 21, I flew from JFK to Winnipeg (via Minneapolis) and caught the 2:00 Calm Air flight from Winnipeg to Churchill, Manitoba, the Canadian port on Hudson Bay. As the Bay melts in the Spring, the polar bears come ashore and hibernate, mate, etc. until the Bay re-freezes, usually in November. Many bears congregate at Cape Churchill, which just into the Bay, to await the freeze, and its the area around Cape Churchill that is visited in October and November.

I arrived in Churchill on Friday night, the day before my group arrived, mostly because I wanted to spend the night in Churchill instead of Winnipeg. On Saturday morning, I met my group at the airport, and we departed by bus to the Tundra Buggy launch site, about 10 miles or so from the airport. We spend the day driving around the area and encountered many polar bears, a few arctic hare, ptarmigan (beautiful white bird) and a couple of caribou. We arrived at the launch site around 10:30 on Saturday morning and spent around six hours watching the bears. We returned to Churchill for dinner (I had musk ox).

Sunday, we departed early and left the launch site around 8:30, spent around eight hours watching the bears, and returned to a gift shop in town for a brief visit before catching our 7:00 charter flight from Churchill to Winnipeg.

The bears are easy to find -- in fact, my guide told me they have a 100% success rate during the October/November season.

My only disappointment with the visit was the weather, which was too warm for there to be much snow and ice and the bears looked a bit out of place wandering naked tundra.

I would like to return and have requested the 2006 trip schedule from Frontiers Adventures, which operate the Tundra Buggy.

Michael

thit_cho is offline  
Nov 1st, 2005, 07:38 PM
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Better link for photos

http://kodakgallery.com/Slideshow.js...5&conn_speed=1
thit_cho is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 03:53 AM
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This is a trip my husband and I plan on doing in the next couple of years. Would love to see the photos - but the second link does not seem to be working either. If you could try again, that would be great.

Thanks.
eenusa is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 05:22 AM
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Michael - I can't access the links, either! Hope it gets worked out. Thanks!
cooncat is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 05:52 AM
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The second link should work, but you'll first need to join or log into kodakgallery.com, which is free (its the old ofoto.com)
thit_cho is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 06:24 AM
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Michael, I tried the link last night and this morning. It did take me to the login page (which I did) and then it took me to a page that said "The page you're looking for is not available." This morning (different computer) it didn't even stop at a login, it just went straight to that message.
sundowner is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 06:52 AM
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Neither of the links work for me. I've been a member of the gallery since it started (actually I was an Ofoto member and my account details were simply shunted across when it became KodakGallery).

Can you provide another link?
Kavey is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 07:11 AM
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What other link can I provide?

I sent it to my assistant, and after he joined kodakgallery he was able to log in and see photos. Maybe you need to first log into kodakgallery and then copy the link and paste it in your browser -- that's how he opened it.

If not, give me a hint where to get the link from.

Thanks
thit_cho is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 07:22 AM
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Kavey, I e-mailed you my log in info for kodakgallery, so maybe I can impose upon you to see if you can find the correct link. I'm all linked out. Thanks
thit_cho is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 07:23 AM
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Sure, let me go check.
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 07:25 AM
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No email yet, as soon as it comes through I'll have a go.
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 07:34 AM
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http://www.kodakgallery.com/I.jsp?c=...&x=1&y=-vn2xcn


TRY THIS ONE!

I've set it so that viewers have to sign in first to see it. If you'd like me to post a link that allows them to see it without signing in, let me know.
Kavey is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 08:06 AM
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Thanks Kavey! It worked. Nice shots, Michael - love those polar bears.
cooncat is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 08:42 AM
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GREAT photos. What beautiful animals. Thanks for posting (Michael and Kavey!).
Leely is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 09:11 AM
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Thanks for sharing your pics!
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 09:28 AM
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Thank you Kavey and Michael! They are great. This is a trip that we have on our radar so loved seeing the pictures. What camera and lenses do you use?
Thanks again.
J
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 09:45 AM
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Great job, Michael! You have some wonderful photos. It seems you saw quite a bit for 3 days and it looks like you were able to get pretty close, too. Too bad about the weather. Thanks for posting this here.

sundowner is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2005, 09:51 AM
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BTW you should cross post this on the Canada board. I'm sure there are those who would be interested in your trip details and pics but wouldn't think to look on the Africa board
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 10:12 AM
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A bit more info:

Camera -- Nikon F100, with 200-400mm lens and 28-210mm lens. For some shots, like the owl, the arctic hare, ptarmigan and caribou, which were quite a distance away, I used the longer lens, but the shorter lens was fine for the bears.

One problem with the longer lens, though, is that with people walking around the bus, there is some vibration and its not always easy to hold the camera still using the longest lens (a tripod really wouldn't be useful due to the vibration).

The distance between the buggy and the bears ranges from 100 yards or so, to a few feet. In fact, one bear stood upright against our buggy, and he was less than 5 feet from me.

PS -- I'll also post on Canada board.

thit_cho is offline  
Mar 5th, 2007, 08:33 AM
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thit_cho: my husband and I are planning on doing the Frontiers trip to Churchill next November; waiting to hear back on pricing for their "specialist" group, which includes staying at the Tundra Buggy Lodge and goes out to Cape Churchill.

Would you mind posting a bit about your experience with Frontiers? Or, if you would rather, please drop me a message at "eerkun at yahoo dot com".

Thank you.
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