Tag : Alaska

01 Jan 2011

Looking back, my favorite photos of 2010

I don’t care much for year-in-review stories and remembrances, so I thought I’d do mine. 2010 was a great year and I photographed many things for the first time. I’ve always wanted to see a bear, so I was thrilled when one came to visit Somerville. My friend Walter Choroszewski made it possible for us to visit Alaska for a near non-stop photo adventure. A neighbor in Woodstock, Vermont, gave me access to her family property to photograph the water, trees and vistas. It was a good year for weddings as friends and family got married. And I made a special effort to observe what is good in my life and looking back I can see there is plenty of goodness around when I take the time to look.

2010 favorites – Images by Loren Fisher

18 Jul 2010

Alaska photo adventure slideshow

Alaska – Images by Loren Fisher

These are some of my favorite photos from my trip to Alaska.

16 Jul 2010

What’s good: Memories of a week in Alaska

Crevices form in a massive glacier near Achorage, Alaska.

It was a great week during my first trip to Alaska. Going there has been long my list of places to see for a long time. It is the 49th state I’ve visited, now I need to make my way to Hawaii.

The sun barely breaks through the clouds in Denali National Park.

Alaska is big. Real big. We drove over 2,200 miles during the week making a loop around the bottom third of the state. That’s like driving from New Jersey to Las Vegas. The borough of Mat-Su is the size of West Virginia.

Eagles fill the sky in Ninilchik, Alaska.

I photographed critters I hadn’t before: bald eagles, golden eagles, sea otters, moose, sandhill cranes, Dall sheep, coyote and even a pocupine. There was scenery that can’t be described. The mountains are majestic and the valleys wide. The forest is extensive and seems to last forever, until you get to the North Slope where trees can’t survive the hard winter.

An Alaskan carries her net to catch salmon on the Kasilof River.

We met great people, natives, converts and tourists. The locals were friendly and happy to be there. They love the outdoors and most get out and enjoy it whenever they can.

The two main buildings in Chitina, Alaska.

The towns were neat, although few and far between. I like that though. Anchorage is a real city but easy to get around. Homer is eclectic. Chitina is real, old-time Alaska.

The owner of Wal-Mikes, a store unlike any other in Trapper Creek, Alaska.

I experienced more than I could expect while in Alaska, but there is so much more to see. If I am lucky, I’ll get back there again.

14 Jul 2010

What’s good: Sandhill cranes bid us goodbye from Alaska

Sandhill cranes in Fairbanks, Alaska

After eight days of fun and awe in Alaska, it is time to head home. Our last stop was the Creamer’s Field State Wildlife Sanctuary in Fairbanks. The preserve is known as a haven for sandhill cranes after their migration to their summer home. Cranes like open fields, like airports, so they put out plenty of food at the preserve so the cranes aren’t tempted to fly over to the airport. Cranes have a funny mating dance but they weren’t in the mood today. We have been keeping track of how many critters we could identify. The cranes let us hit our goal of 50.

Birch trees and fireweed surround a Fairbanks, Alaska field.

On our way to the field, we drove past a grove of birch trees behind a grassy field that was lined with the ever-present fireweed. A beautiful end to a great trip.

Read more at Walter’s blog.

13 Jul 2010

What’s good: Being in Denali, Alaska

A coyote poses in Denali, Alaska.

We traveled to Denali National Park on our bear search. On the way, we saw a pretty coyote sitting along the road. So, of course, we screeched to a halt and went back for some shots.

Fireweed grows everywhere in Alaska.

You can drive 12 miles into the park and then you have to take a converted school bus the 89 miles to the end of the road – unless you know somebody. Walter has a client doing road work past where the buses go. So we are going in with them tonight at 6 p.m. It is a four hour ride, then Walter will shoot some photos of them working for a couple of hours and then we’ll ride back out.

A gull sits on our car roof in Denali National Park, Alaska.

We drove the 12 mile route a couple times this afternoon. It was a rainy day so we decided not to do any hikes. We’re also saving energy since it will be a sleepless night. We are amazed at the number of gulls in Alaska. They are everywhere, including Denali which is hundreds of miles from any major body of water. At one of the pulling off spots on the 12-mile drive, a friendly gull lands on car roofs. It seems like it his gig, being cute for food. I’m sure it works way too much.

Be sure to read more at Walter’s blog.

13 Jul 2010

What’s good: Great skies, but no Alaska bears

Clouds turn dramatic at the end of the day.

Another beautiful day. This is getting old, nothing but great scenery. We spent much of the day around the Talkeetna area, which was the town they modeled the Northern Exposure TV show.

Mt. McKinley from Talkeetna, Alaska.

There are great views of Mt. McKinley and Denali National Park from town. It is the base camp for the mountain climbers and the town has a real Alaskan feel. We had breakfast at the old Roadhouse, we you sit at a big table with a bunch of other folks. It is a great way to talk to other travelers and locals.

A pocupine in an Alaskan tree.

It was clear all day and we drove to several places looking for bears, but we only found a porcupine. It went up a tree and posed for us.

The clouds rolled through late in the day, which made for dramatic shots.

12 Jul 2010

What’s good: The Alaskan bear search continues

A bull moose on the Alaskan Kanai Penninsula.

We started the day with a bonus: a bull moose first thing in the morning. That was the wildlife highlight of the day.

The Russian River in Copper Landing, Alaska.

We went to the Russian River and hiked 2.3 miles to a waterfall where we were told the salmon would be jumping the falls and probably bears would be catching them. The falls and the hike were beautiful but the critters weren’t around. We saw several salmon in pools but they weren’t jumping. And no bears.

Two immature gulls near Anchorage, Alaska.

We stopped at a marsh and photographed some ducks, wading birds and ever-present gulls. Our plan for the day involved over 300 to get north near Denali National Park. So we had about six hours of driving, which limits the shooting.

See Walter’s blog for more details of our day.

11 Jul 2010

What’s good: Eagles, salmon, moose and caribou in Alaska

A golden eagle soars along the Alaska coast.

Another great day in Alaska. Today we worked the Kanai Penninsula from one end to the other.

Bald eagle in Homer, Alaska.

On the way back north, we saw eagles soaring off a bluff. We found a place to pull and and a short hike took us to the bluff’s edge where bald and golden eagles soared right past us like they were in a parade. We had well over 50 birds pass by including a slew of golden eagles. Neither Walter or I had seen a golden before, so it was quite a thrill.

An Alaskan cleans a salmon he caught using a net.

Also today we saw natives fishing with nets for salmon. Only native Alaskans are allowed to net salmon and they have a limit of 25. We saw moose mommies and babies three times, in Homer we watched sea otters playing and a bald eagle posing for photos in town. We finished the day with a caribou about a mile from our hotel.

Again today we are running on way too little sleep and I am too groggy to put together a gallery of photos from the last couple of days. We have a long day planned again tomorrow, so it looks like I have to get home before postings lots of photos.

10 Jul 2010

What’s good: A flight over a glacier with an old friend

A glacier flows into Lake George near Palmer, Alaska.

Day three, more grandeur and beautiful weather around Anchorage. Everyone tells us it has been raining for three weeks, but it couldn’t be better. My highlight today was meeting up with an old childhood friend, Tim Kochert and his wife Rhonda. I knew Tim before we started school and we shared a locker in high school. I take credit for hooking him and Rhonda up, which seems to have worked out quite nice since they have been married 34 years. I haven’t seen Tim and Rhonda for over 30 years. They are great people and it was really fun to reconnect.

Walter, Tim, Rhonda and I after the flight of a lifetime.

Tim is a United Airline pilot and lives in Colorado and flew in Alaska for several years. Their son goes to college here and they spend a lot of time in Anchorage. Tim has a four-seat Cessna 180 and was kind enough to take for a flight of a lifetime. He took us to a glacier that is only accessible by air. Spectacular doesn’t cover it. We circled the lake below the glacier a couple of times and then flew low over the ice field. We then headed out in search of bears. We didn’t see any, just a bunch of moose and more great scenery, including an incredible view of Mt. McKinley unobstructed by clouds. The flight lasted nearly two hours and it seemed like forever.

09 Jul 2010

What’s good: More splendor, grandor and Alaskan wildlife

A bald eagle in Chitina, Alaska

It’s 11:30 p.m. and the sun just set. We’ve been going since 5 a.m. and I need to get some sleep. Today started with a great horned owl, then we had waterfalls, majestic mountain ranges, eagles, crazy colored rivers, moose, Anchorage, glaciers, I got pecked on the head by an Artic Tern.

There are lots of photos at Loren’s Alaska photo gallery.

Read daily details at Walter’s blog.

08 Jul 2010

What’s good: My first day in Alaska

My new moose friend mugs for the camera.

What a first day in Alaska. It started with arriving at the Anchorage at 2:30 a.m. and then catching a 6 a.m. flight to Fairbanks. That meant catching a few winks in the airport, very few.

Walter and I hit the ground running, heading right out to shoot in the beautiful weather. Our plan was to head to Copper Center near Wrangle-St. Alias National Park, the nation’s largerst and least visited. We stopped in North Pole on the way to make fun pictures with all the Santa stuff, then it was down the Richardson Highway. We stopped for lunch along a river and then met our first big animal. A moose who was happy to pose for pictures. The rest of the day featured big mountain ranges, following the Trans Alaska Pipeline, watching a loon family and ending along the Klutina River.

See more of Loren’s Alaska photos

Read daily details at Walter’s blog.