Katmai Wilderness Lodge claims to offer “the world’s most spectacular bear viewing” and our CEO Steve Cameron was absolutely in agreement when he visited Katmai. On just one afternoon Steve saw 20 bears and was able to approach several individuals quite closely on foot. Katmai National Park is a 3.6 million acre spectacular, unspoilt reserve originally created in 1918 to protect the famed Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes. Today, most of the fumaroles have stopped steaming, and visitors come not only to view the interesting volcanic landscape but the brown (grizzly) bears that flourish in this rugged wilderness.
Brown bears are very active in Katmai, numbering more than 2,200. As they are not hunted, they are extremely tolerant of humans and extraordinary viewing is possible. Males can grow to an amazing 3 metres in height and to observe their behaviour at close quarters is a privilege few people will ever experience. In summer, when food is plentiful, bears may be seen fishing for salmon in the rivers and foraging for berries in the bush.
Despite the park’s great size, there are only a few places where you can view bears in Katmai. Katmai Wilderness Lodge is one of these special places, set at the edge of picturesque Kukak Bay against a backdrop of majestic mountains and dramatic glaciers. Comfortable accommodation is provided in modern log cabins and hearty meals are served in the dining room.