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“absolutely fantastic” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Emerald Air Service, Inc.

Emerald Air Service, Inc.
1244 Lakeshore Drive, Homer, AK 99603
+1 907-235-4160
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Ranked #2 of 47 Activities in Homer
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Owner description: Please join us for the bear viewing trip of a lifetime. Find yourself in pristine, remote areas where you are not limited to paved trails or platforms--where you are away from the crowds. Fly in our deHavilland Beaver on floats across Cook Inlet to Katmai--bear country--and spend a full day watching thse magnificent creatures. An unforgettable experience.
South Perth, Australia
Top Contributor
114 reviews 114 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 62 cities Reviews in 62 cities
167 helpful votes 167 helpful votes
“absolutely fantastic”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2012

We considered ourselves lucky when we woke up to a sunny day for the bear viewing. The day just got better and better!
Sarah gave us an information drill and we were fitted with our hip boots over our waterproof pants. Then it was onto the plane with Craig who is a very careful pilot. We felt extremely safe with him. Unfortunately Sarah couldn't come because there was a larger gentleman and we reached the maximum weight limit.
Craig flew us over some wonderful territory and finally over the stream where we could see the bears. After a little trek and across the stream we finally stayed on a little island with the bears walking in the river around us. We could see the red salmon in the stream. There was so much activity and Craig's patience in keeping us at the small island paid off when a mother bear and 3 cubs came to the river.
Such a simply wonderful day. Craig took great care of us all and we never felt unsafe on ground or in the air. Thank you Craig and Sarah. It was the highlight of our trip to Alaska.
Well worth the $.
We bought our sandwiches/rolls for the trip from Safeway and the lovely lady there put them in ziplock bags.

Visited August 2012
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107 reviews from our community

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English first
Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Bear Viewing”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2012

I lived in Alaska back in the late 70s. I forgot how much I missed this place and all it as to offer. The bear trip with Craig was one of the top ten all time trips I have ever taken anywhere. There were a total of seven us including Craig our pilot and guide. The flight over was a little cloudy and I was expecting a miserable day in cold, wet and windy conditions. I was wrong, and it was spectacular. Toward the end of the trip we walked up from the river bank and there were 2 bears wrestling almost right in front of us. When they tired of this they strolled right past us on the way to the river to feed on salmon. I was a little nervous but felt very comfortable under Craig's guidance.
It has been over two weeks since this trip and I can't stop thinking about it. I did a small video with my cell phone which I have posted everywhere I can and most of the comments are the same "WOW". I have referred Emerald Air Service to plenty of friends and associates. It was pricey but worth every dollar.

Visited August 2012
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Top Contributor
87 reviews 87 reviews
34 attraction reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
144 helpful votes 144 helpful votes
“Trip of a life time - do not miss this.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2012

Our trip with Craig and Sarah was great - one of those "must do" trips that you will always remember. The trip is worth the price charged. We always felt safe - from Craig's quiet competence and love for his airplane to Sarah's confident guiding on the hike among the bears. The flight over was a beautiful overview of the area (with a quick circle viewing some whales). The hike itself was an easy stroll over flat, marshy ground, some mud flats and wading a shallow tidal stream or two. We walked for a couple hours, stopping regularly to watch bears or, in one case, waiting for a bear to move past where we wanted to go; stopped for lunch while watching 5 or 6 bears; then walked for another couple hours with lots of stopping to observe the bears. They provided waders, you should bring binoculars, picnic lunch, water/drinks, camera, suntan lotion, bug spray, hat, rain jacket. We had an overcast day with no bugs and very light wind. We saw our first bear within 30 minutes of starting the hike and never stopped seeing bears until we finished that afternoon. Sarah provided lots of both useful and fun information about the bears generally, and particular bears she recognized. Do not miss this trip of a life time.

Visited July 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
141 reviews 141 reviews
32 attraction reviews
Reviews in 78 cities Reviews in 78 cities
288 helpful votes 288 helpful votes
“Best Bear Viewing Service in Homer”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2012 via mobile

I recently spent a day with Craig and a group of 3 others viewing bears in Katmai National Park. It was the highlight of my 10 day trip to Alaska. The cost for the day was $675, which to some am seem pricey, but the memories and photos were priceless. The experience was personal and tailored to the group. I had visited Katmai to view bears several years ago at Brooks Fall and that was a great experience but it lacked the personal experience of meeting the bears in the wilderness. This experience required some moderate hiking. . . about 2 miles. You spend some time standing in the water of the stream and fording knee deep water. If you want a more genuine experience of bear viewing in the wild, this is better than Brooks Falls and no crowds. Sarah did not go out that day. Craig was the pilot and guide and was outstanding. He gave us the time we needed for pictures and explained the behavior of each bear we met. Great guide! Sarah gave the orientation briefing and welcome. Clearly they love what the do. Anyone considering bear viewing in Katmai should check Emerald Air out. I plan to return next year for a coastal experience earlier in the summer.

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Lincoln, California
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Outstanding Experience with Sarah the "Bear Whisperer"!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2012

Day spent with Sarah and Craig in Katmai NP was the BEST day of our 3 week Alaskan vacation! Sarah and Craig ARE this business! Craig cares for the plane like it's one of his children. The pre-trip information was helpful to bring necessary gear. Safe behavior while walking the bears' "dinner table" was clear and a requirement of all participants. Sarah and Craig respect the bears and do nothing to negatively impact them. It was so exciting to see the bears, at times, within 10 yards: eating grasses, clamming, napping and mating. While eating lunch (into our backpacks), we could see 21 bears in the meadow. Whether we saw 1 or 101 bears was not important, it was exciting seeing the bears in their natural habitat and sharing the meadow with them with no bear aggression. The hour plus flight to and from Katmai was stunning! We appreciated Sarah and Craig's sensitivity to some "knee" and "ankle" limitations in our group. The enormity & beauty of Katmai, the bears, Sarah being "one with the bears" and being one of only a few humans in the park made me feel as if I were in a cathedral. AWESOME EXPERIENCE!! We'd do it again in a heartbeat!

Visited July 2012
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