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Best Bear Tour in Homer

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Denver, Colorado
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Best Bear Tour in Homer

Hello,

We have been looking at the Day Bear Tours and will be arriving in Homer the fist week in September. I was wondering if anyone could let us know please if you have compared Emerald Air (New Emerald Air) to K Bay Air or Sasquatch Alaska Adventure Co.

I don't think we can go wrong with any of the companies. We just want to make the best choice since it is a little pricey.

If anyone has any feedback it would be appreciated....

Texarkana, Texas
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10 posts
26 reviews
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1. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

I can't tell you which one is betas I myself have not done the bear watching yet. But we will be doing it with kbay air the first week of September also. We went with them after reading many great reviews. The new emerald air had a few good reviews, but I also read some from this forum where people who have had tours compare the new emerald air with the old emerald air and decided they would not be going with the new emerald air again for one reason or another. I just wanted someone who has been around awhile and who I thought would be the best for us.

If you do a search on here you should see the reviews I am talking about.

Good luck and maybe I will see you there!

Sydney, Australia
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2. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

My mum went back in August 2010 with bald mountain air and absolutely loved it. They flew out to geographic bay and saw many bears. She has loads of amazing pictures. She refers to it as THE most amazing day of her life and most definitely the highlight of her few months travelling in alaska.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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3. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

There's an excellent thread on bear viewing tours on the Alaska forum under the TOP QUESTIONS. It includes first hand reports from people who have used various vendors to different locations and different types of trips..... day trips, overnights at lodges, camping.

Lake Tahoe...
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4. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

Both Emerald Air and Bald Mountain Air take off from Beluga Lake. We were over at the lake Saturday and could not find anyone around at Emerald Air and no apparent office to check it out. Bald Mountain seems more organized and says after arrival requires about 1/2 mile walking compared to four miles for the operations from the Homer airport. Note the new webcam that has been installed at Brooks Falls

Adirondack, New York
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5. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

"Best" is very personal. After many bear watching trips I know the best for someone else won't be the best for me. We went with OLD Emerald Air on many trips and once with the new people. You cannot compare these two but if you don't know how it used to be so who cares. A few years ago we spent several days days in Katmai NP camping with bears. We had 4 other people with us and our guide was Derek Stonorov. Our first day trip with Emerald Air took place when only Bald Mountain and OLD Emerald Air conducted these tours. Then others came and created floatplane traffic on small lakes. During our first trips we never saw any other people all days long. It was a very unique experience. Lately you see groups everywhere and there are new bear watching companies every season. Some are hiring guides who have no previous experience with bears. It is just not the same. Therefore, what is the best tour has to be decided individually. To me there are no longer the best bear watching tours from Homer.

If you decide on one company and before paying a deposit you should ask many questions. For example, how many people in group, experience of a guide, how long she/he leads these tours, experience of a pilot, how many hours pilot has, does your guide stay with you or there is only a pilot who drops you off at the Brooks and then comes back to pick you up after a few hours, cancellation policy and refund if your trip has to be canceled by the company, tipping, lunch and many more questions. You're paying a lot hence you should ask all these and many additional questions you can come up with.

Edited: 2:42 pm, July 30, 2012
Denver, Colorado
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6. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

I just wanted to say thank you to everyone for posting the info. We still have not booked a specific company for the Bear Viewing Tour, we are probably going to go with kbay Air they seem the better choice maybe just because they have more reviews. It does not sound like early Sept is a good time for bear viewing but it should be less crowded which is a positive. I hope we at least see a few bears, we are also hoping the bugs will not be to bad the first week in September. We are still considering Emerald Air too, I hope they both are not booked by the time we make a decision : )

Lake Tahoe...
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7. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

If we do one of these tours it will be Bald Mountain Air (floatplanes from Beluga Lake). They claim about 1/2 mile walk. I also believe that ones like Kbay walk several miles to the viewing area, not something I would want to do as I would rather view the bears over the walking.

8. Re: Best Bear Tour in Homer

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