November 2, 2019: Alaskan Brown Bear fishing at Devil's Falls


We planned our recent visit to Alaska to coincide with the salmon spawning season because this is when large numbers of Alaskan brown bears migrate to the rivers and streams to begin a feast, fattening themselves for the upcoming winter hibernation.

Fishing 01

It had been a nearly rain-free and warm summer in Alaska and many of the streams were dry.  Fortunately Devil's Falls, which drains glacier melt from the mountains of Katmai National Park, was in full flow.  The base of the falls is only a few meters above sea level but, nonetheless, salmon spawn here and bears gather to catch them.  Our boats could go only so far up the river during rising tide because of all the rocks in the shallow water, so our view of these bears was a little distant.  Still, the setting of bears wandering among algae-covered rocks and roaring water is memorable.

Fishing 04

We spent some time watching this female grizzly and her nearly grown (perhaps 3 year old) cub fishing the stream.  

Fishing 02

Fishing 03

The cub disappeared after awhile but the mother bear kept fishing, catching several salmon and quickly devouring each one.  The video-clip at the bottom of the post shares some of that action with you.

Fishing 05


Images (6)

Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

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