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When to go to see bears at Anan?

pennsylvania
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When to go to see bears at Anan?

We have a choice to go June 5th, July 3, or august. Which time would be best? This trip sounds amazing.

fti
MN
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1. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

July 5 to Aug 25 is considered "peak" time there. I think those are the times they require a permit. So for sure not June. July 3 is a bit early. I guess it depends when in August. You gave specific dates for June and July, so does that mean your August date is flexible? I would pick early to mid August.

Last year I used Breakaway Adventure as a water taxi since I spent two nights at the Anan Bay cabin. I think the cabin is full for most dates in prime season already. But when you confirm your boat company, be sure to ask how long they spend at the observatory. Some spend a lot less time than others. Arriving early and/or departing late is best. We were the only 2 at the observatory from 8am until 10am and from 3pm until 6pm. That was the beauty of staying at the cabin.

You really don't need a guided trip - just the unguided water transfer is fine. If a company can't get permits for you, you can obtain them yourself online.

John

Yukon, Canada
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2. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

You can see all of the best bear viewing opportunities at explorenorth.com/library/nature/alaska_bear_… - locations, dates, permit requirements and so on. You may decide that Anan isn't really where you want to go - it's a fair way down the list of the best spots and is usually only black bears.

Murray

fti
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3. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

I don't agree that Anan is usually black bears. Certainly more black than brown/grizzly but I would say there are often brown bears at Anan from what the rangers there told me last year.

Still, it is good to figure out where and when you want to go and what kind of bears you want to see.

John

Marlton, New Jersey
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4. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

Is there anywhere to see bears at the end of May, beginning of June? Thank you.

fti
MN
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5. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

Best place so early in the season like that would be Denali NP. No guarantees but I saw at least three bears there last year in early June. One was extremely close (not close enough for the bear to notice us, but close enough that we willingly hopped on the next shuttle bus that came along!).

Yukon, Canada
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6. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

>>I don't agree that Anan is usually black bears.<<

The Forest Service says it is - "Black bears are the main wildlife attraction at Anan." ( fs.fed.us/r10/…anan.htm )

fti
MN
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7. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

"usually only" as you said and "main" as the Forest Service said are different in my eyes.

I agree that black bears are the "main wildlife attraction" as per the Forest Service link you referenced. But definitely not usually the only attraction.

I guess we will have to agree to disagree.

John

Webster Groves...
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8. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

In my experience, and I've gone more than once, Alaska Waters tours, out of Wrangell, is one of the best options for bear viewing at Anan. Great folks, reasonable price (check the Toursaver book) and a very special experience. Check out their website.

Enjoy!

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fti
MN
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for Alaska
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9. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

>>reasonable price (check the Toursaver book)

There was a report last year that the vendor didn't accept the coupon with the excuse that there were no permits available, even when the customer gave multiple dates. Best to check with that vendor well in advance and purchase your own permit.

Another great boat operator I used last year was Breakaway Adventures. I only used them as a "water taxi" to and from the Anan Bay cabin but day trippers were on the boat both ways.

Southeast Alaska
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10. Re: When to go to see bears at Anan?

Based on "local" information, mid- to late-July, early August, is the best time to view bears. There are both brown and black--which is a rare occurance. You do have to remember, nothing is guaranteed in nature.

Alaska Waters or Alaska Charters and Adventures would be our pick. They are respectful of the wildlife and wilderness areas.

While in the Wrangel area, don't miss the opportunity to spend time on the Stikine River, and in the surrounding communities--especially Petersburg and Prince of Whales Is.

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