2018 “Bald Eagles of Alaska” Photography Tour

2018 Tour Dates:
Tour 1: March 8-13th  and Tour 2: March 13-18th (4 spots left)

Cost: $3295 / Deposit: $500
Limited to 5 participants  •  From Homer, Alaska

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The magnificent  bald eagle is our national bird and the symbol for the United States and I can think of nowhere more beautiful to photograph them than Alaska. Coastal Alaska has a large population of bald eagles.  During this special tour we spend 5 days cruising the coastal waters of Kachemak Bay on a chartered boat photographing eagles along with many other interesting birds such as long-tailed and harlequin ducks, surf scooters, glaucous and mew gulls, While exploring secluded coves and harbors we often find northern sea otters, harbor and fur seals or maybe even a humpback whale along with the incomparable Alaskan scenery.

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I’ve been photographing at this location since 1992.  Photographing bald eagles in flight is the emphasis of the tour.  This is the premier location in the world for bald eagle flight photography.  During the week you will capture more great action photos of bald eagles diving, fishing, banking, chasing, fighting than at any place in North America I know of.  I will do my best to help you learn the proper techniques for handheld flight photography.  I’ll also teach you how to set exposure manually.  Manual exposure is the best method to get proper  and consistent exposures of these, tough to meter birds, in some very difficult metering scenarios.

This will be a high volume shoot. Participants on my eagle tours average 2000-3000 images per day and up to twenty thousand on the tour.  One week of eagle photography here will give you a lifetimes collection of eagle images.  We’ll be based out of the Beluga Lake Lodge located near the airport and the entrance to the famous Homer Spit. This is a very popular tour and  I can only take 5 people per tour so this one will sell out fast.  Don’t miss out! 

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 ITINERARY:

Day 1: (March 8 or 13)  Arrive in Homer Alaska. All flights to Homer originate in Anchorage via Raven Airlines. You could also rent a car in Anchorage and drive to Homer. It’s a scenic 250 mile drive. Accommodations will be at the Beluga Lake Lodge near the Homer Spit.  We meet at 7 pm for a welcome dinner at the Chart House Restaurant this evening.

Days 2-5:{March 9-12 or 14-17 )  We spend the next 4 days photographing bald eagles.  We have 2 boat charters per day each lasting approximately 2 hours.  The timing of the charters is dependent on tide and weather conditions.  Our captain allows us the flexibility to make sure we’re photographing during the very vest conditions possible.   On one day depending on conditions and scheduling we may just one have a longer charter to explore different areas of Kachemak Bay. Our goal is for you to take home the best photographs that conditions will allow.

Day 6: (March 13 or 18)  After our final morning eagle photography session you can depart for home from Homer Alaska.  There are afternoon and  evening flights to Anchorage with Raven Air allowing you to easily catch an overnight  flight to the lower 48.  Most of these flights depart from around 11pm to 1 am.

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WHAT TO BRING:

Equipment: We highly recommend a good mid range zoom such as a 70-200mm as well as a minimum of 300mm telephoto lens for this tour in addition to a variety of wide angle lenses.  Digital shooters will want to bring along enough CF or SD cards to hold 1000-2000 photographs per charter. You should also have a means to download images when cards get full in your room. We always suggest you bring along 2 camera bodies if possible in case of equipment failure. On the boat most of the photography is done handheld.  I strongly suggest a good over the shoulder strap like those from Black Rapid.  While on shore a sturdy tripod and a good ballhead or gimbal mount are strongly encouraged.

Clothing: Clothing should be warm, comfortable and adequately cover a full range of weather conditions and temperatures. Expect everything from cool sunny days with temperatures into the 40’s to bitter cold, windy and snowy conditions. In the mornings temperatures will likely be in the teens or twenties so we recommend layering clothing, a rainproof and windproof parka, a warm hat and a light pair of gloves. Warm boots are advised.

Tour Prices Include:

  • Welcome dinner
  • 9 boat charters of approximately 2 hours each
  • Photo Instruction and image critiques (if desired) by D. Robert
  • Guides and Boat Captain
  • Taxes on all services
  • Primer on Bald Eagle action photography sent to all participants

Tour Prices DO NOT Include:

  • Airfare to/from Homer, Alaska
  • Lodging
  • Transportation (We like to work out some car pooling)
  • Gratuity for Guides and Boat Captain
  • Meals, except for welcome dinner on first night
  • Alcoholic beverages

 

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About your Tour Leader

D. Robert Franz have been full time professional wildlife photographer for the past twenty five years.  With formal training and university degrees in wildlife management, geology and earth science, Robert has an extensive knowledge of the natural world. His nature and wildlife photography has been extensively published (over ten thousand published images including hundreds of front covers) worldwide with images featured in, Audubon Magazine, National Wildlife, Sierra Magazine, Smithsonian Magazine, Defenders Magazine, National Geographic, Das Tier Magazine, Sports Afield, Field and Stream, and many more. Their photographic prints have hung in the Smithsonian and the United States Congress.  They are also accomplished assignment photographers specializing in nature and environmental issues. Clients have included Adolph Coors, Wildlife Conservation Society, Field and Stream Magazine, The Trust for Public Lands, Via Magazine, Greater Yellowstone Coalition and others. Their photography is represented by a number of the worlds leading stock photo agencies such as Corbis, Getty Images, Alamy, Windigo Images, Okapia and Index Stock Imagery.

Robert has won many awards for his nature photography over the years. In 1989 Robert won the Colorado Outdoors Magazine Nature Photography Contest. In 1993 he won the Wyoming Wildlife Magazines Nature Photography Contest. Also in 1993 Robert and Lorri won an award for a published calendar image from the Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History. In 2001 and 2004 Robert had winning images the prestigious Nature’s Best photography contest. In 2003 Robert won Image of the Year for Nature Photographers.net. In 2006, 2008 and again in 2010 Robert finished 2nd in the Images for Conservation Pro Tour of Nature Photography contest held in different locations in Texas. This is the world’s most challenging nature photo contest.   In 2007 Digital Photography Magazine proclaimed Robert as one the worlds best wildlife photographers.

Robert has been leading photo tours since 1989 and now conducts high energy nature & wildlife photo tours through Franzfoto Instructional Tours. In the past Robert lead tours for Wildlife Images Photo Tours, Voyagers, Natural Habitat Adventures & Close Up Expeditions.  Robert, Lorri and their Great Dane Shelby live in the heart of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem near Cody Wyoming.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

GROUP MINIMUM: Occasionally, we are able to run a tour below our group minimum which is usually 4. In such instances it may be necessary to apply a small group supplement in which case you would be contacted regarding such a situation but you would not be obligated to accept the new terms.

RESERVATIONS: Your deposit which varies by tour is required to secure your place on any tour, with the balance due 60 days prior to the departure date. Deposits are fully refundable if cancellation is received at least 91 days prior to the departure date. Upon receipt of your deposit, we will mail you our acknowledgment and tour reservation form. Details of hotels, flight arrival recommendations, and other trip tips will be mailed when the tour is full.

MEALS: Some meals and refreshments are included depending on the trip details, but not alcoholic beverages.

ADMISSIONS: Access to public buildings and national parks etc. is not included in the land price.

CANCELLATION P0LICY:  Due to the high number of cancellations we’ve received in the past several years a new refund policy has been implemented.

  • Cancellations more than 120 days ahead of the tour are refunded 50%.
  • Cancellations between 60-120 days ahead of the tour will only be refunded if the spot can be filled minus $150 handling charge.
  • Cancellations less than 60 days ahead of the tour are non-refundable.

Franzfoto Tours strongly suggest that tour participants invest in trip cancellation insurance.

CANCELED EXPEDITIONS: In the event of insufficient tour sign-ups, Franzfoto reserves the right to cancel any given tour. In that event 100% of moneys received will be returned. However, Franzfoto Tours is not responsible for expenses incurred by its customers.

LUGGAGE: Franzfoto Tours requests that tour participants limit their luggage to the equivalent of one suitcase, one flight bag, one camera bag, and tripod. We do not wish to be dictatorial in this matter, but asks that group members bear in mind space and comfort in our vehicles. All personal luggage are the responsibility of the owner.

SMOKERS: Smoking is not permitted at meals or in vehicles. It can be permitted at photo stops where local ordinances permit, photography and photographers are not affected.

RESPONSIBILITY: Franzfoto Tours and its agents act only as agents for the passenger in all matters relating to travel arrangements, and as such, do not assume responsibility for injury, accident, damage, loss, delay or irregularity which may occur via defect of transportation or any other cause. Franzfoto Instructional Tours reserves the right to substitute hotels, and other previously outlined arrangements as necessary, to either improve or equal the travel experience. Franzfoto Instructional Tours reserves the right to pass on to tour members any additional and unplanned expenditure incurred during a tour, via events beyond Franzfoto Tours control. The right is reserved to accept or decline any person as a member of any tour. Payment of tour fees by trip participants constitutes their acceptance of all conditions contained herein.

RESERVE YOUR SPOT ON THIS

PHOTO TOUR TODAY!

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Tour 1 March 8-13
Deposit $500
Pay in Full $3295
Pay Balance, Less Deposit $2795
TOUR 2 March 13-18
Deposit: $500 btn_pay-deposit
Pay in Full: $3295 btn_pay-in-full
Pay Balance, Less Deposit: $2795 btn_pay-balance
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2 thoughts on “2018 “Bald Eagles of Alaska” Photography Tour”

  1. Hi Dale wanted to drop you a note to wish you and your family a Blessed Christmas and Holiday Season. Believe it or not I still have Bald Eagle pictures in development from this years trip in March. I enjoyed it so much I want to go back and have submitted a deposit for the 1st trip March 11 thru 16th. Look forward to see you again… God Bless :-)) Hank

  2. Hi Dale,

    I just wanted to thank you for a wonderful Bald Eagles of Alaska Photography Tour. It was a great trip and a lot of fun. Your suggestion to drive from Anchorage to Homer worked well and I saw and photographed some beautiful areas. I never thought I would ever see so many eagles at one time and to have so many opportunities to photograph them. This trip was easily the most exciting photography trip I have ever been on.

    Thank you so much,
    Larry Matney
    http://www.larrymatney.com

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