Our Trip to the Anan Bear Sanctuary

This morning, July 14, we boarded a small boat which traveled down the Eastern Passage, seen to the right, and got to the little red triangle at the bottom of the map. This boat ride took about an hour. 

From there, it was an easy thirty minute walk on a boarded trail to the actual sanctuary. The lady on the left of the picture below and her husband were our guides. The number of persons allowed in the sanctuary at a time is severely limited and our group had to visit on two different occasions. The others in our group visited the day before, right after we got to Wrangell. 

I had left my spare camera battery on the boat, and I am using many pictures supplied by Jim Henkleman-Bahn. Thanks, Jim. His pictures are the ones with the red time stamp at the bottom, but subtract four from the time to account for the 4 hour difference between Alaska and EDT. 

Gene and Linda came a little late, and they had their own protection.

Bears were everywhere but were concentrated mainly near the salmon-rich stream.

There were supposed to be brown and black bears at this sanctuary. All of these were clearly black.

Bear/Salmon Connection

Meal Time
Grab a Salmon
A Privilege to Watch

Above,  looking straight down onto the squirming salmon.

Marv, Elaine, Jackie and Jim. Special thanks to whomever took this picture. I promised to never again separate myself from my spare camera battery.

This ends our fantastic bear experience. Tomorrow, we fly to Juneau and visit the Mendenhall Glacier.  Stay tuned!

This is the view of the sanctuary taken from the out-house.  To use the out-house, one had to alert the guide since bears were free to walk there as well as you can see below.

Anan Wildlife Observatory

Bear Sanctuary
Makes Nature Present

Looks like this mother is taking the whole family to the loo.

This was the last rapid a salmon needed to pass in order to get to the spawning area. We didn't see a single one make it.

Seen above,  there was a blind in which five persons at a time could be eye level with the fishing bears. We could stay there for thirty minutes.

The pictures above and below were taken from this blind. The bears were particularly interested in female salmon -- for the brain and roe. They would frequently grab one, throw it away and grab another.