Alaska Wildlife: Eagles, Whales, Sea Lions and More Aboard Luxury Yacht

March 24 – 31, 2025

Did you know that the majority of the land in Southeast Alaska lies within three miles of some of the most jaw-dropping coastline in North America? There is such an intimate relationship between land and sea in this region that the best way to see these magnificent waterways is by private yacht.

Bald eagles—some 25% of the world’s total—fish for salmon and herring along Southeast’s waterways. Bears, too, grow unusually large here on the local bounty. Humpback whales travel thousands of miles from their breeding grounds to feed in Alaska’s nutrient-rich waters, and orcas, porpoises, and otters are residents. Nearly every living thing in Southeast Alaska depends in some way—directly or indirectly—on its waterways.

Aboard the Alaskan Story, you’ll explore the islands, waterways, and quiet natural harbors around Sitka. We have scheduled our workshop for springtime, historically the best time of year to see spawning herring and the abundance of wildlife that gathers to feed on them. We hope to see eagles in great numbers, humpback whales feeding, Dall’s porpoise riding our bow, vast haulouts of Steller sea lions, and more. Although the commercial fishery has threatened the herring spawn in recent years, the region remains one of the best for witnessing an awe-inspiring natural wildlife gathering. And it’s all complemented by a jaw-dropping backdrop of mountains, forests, and even a sleeping volcano!

This is a very exclusive workshop. You’ll be joining a small group—only seven guests—of like-minded photographers and wildlife enthusiasts aboard one of the most outstanding small vessels in the region. You will learn and hone wildlife photography skills, easily capturing fast and slow-moving animals. We will work with you to make compelling compositions of the wildlife and the landscape it inhabits. We’ll have image reviews, and you will learn new techniques for post-processing in Lightroom. You’ll learn how to photograph swift eagles in flight or feeding humpbacks. We’ll teach the finer points of tracking, focusing, exposure, and composition. Expect warm hospitality, comfortable accommodations, great food, and outstanding photographic opportunities!

Our stabilized luxury yacht is quite comfortable. The staterooms have luxurious beds, down comforters and pillows, and individual temperature controls for heat. Each stateroom has a private bathroom with a shower “ensuite.” There’s a huge salon with comfortable seating, and outside, you will find ample open and covered deck space for photography. Each night we will anchor in a quiet, secluded anchorage.

The food is a highlight of every trip. Our chef selects the best available produce and often combines it with the freshest “catch of the day.” Gourmet meals can include king and silver salmon, halibut, Dungeness crab, Alaskan spotted shrimp, and fresh produce! Top the meal off with a homemade dessert prepared daily. If seafood is not your favorite, fear not, the chef will work with you to accommodate any diet.

Your Pro

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Location

Alaska, USA

money
Tuition

$11,995

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Dates

March 24 – 31, 2025

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Availability

Open for Registration
Limited to 7 Guests

Itinerary

About the wildlife: This workshop offers significant opportunities for photographing wildlife, and while we do our best to maximize our wildlife encounters—based on past experiences, local knowledge, and the current conditions—we need to impress upon you that the wildlife really is wild and that we don’t control it.

This itinerary is subject to change due to weather, local conditions, and other factors.

March 24, 2025: Arrive in Sitka, Alaska anytime this day. We’ll meet for dinner and kick off our expedition. Overnight at our hotel in Sitka.

March 25, 2025: We embark on our yacht in Sitka at 11:00 AM, and shortly after lunchtime, we head out.

March 26–31, 2025: We’re aboard Alaskan Story, sailing the waters around Sitka. We’ll be on the lookout for whales, eagles, sea lions, otters, seabirds, and more. And we’ll follow the herring spawn, wherever that may take us. No matter where we are, Southeast Alaska offers a jaw-dropping backdrop to the wildlife spectacle we hope to see.

We’ll photograph from the yacht and use the skiff to get up close and personal with the action. We may also have the opportunity for a short hike in the forest.

March 31, 2025: We reach the port in Sitka at approximately 3:00 PM. It is OK to fly out on this day at 6:00 PM or later. We have rooms arranged in Sitka, as you might need to fly out on April 1, 2024.

Gallery

Aboard the Alaskan Story

Fitness

Easy: You will live on a small yacht for a week. You can climb steep stairs on the boat and get in and out of the zodiac. Short hikes on land.

Flights

Arrive Sitka Rocky Gutierrez Airport (SIT), Sitka, Alaska anytime on March 24, 2025. Flights out can be made after 6:00 PM on March 31, 2025. Air travel delays are common. Please arrive early, possibly even the day prior, so you don’t miss any of the workshop.

What to Bring

Please see our page How To Prepare For Your Workshop. We will send you a detailed information document 90 days before your workshop. This document will include specifics of where and when to meet, gear and clothing recommendations, and more.

What’s Included

  • Double occupancy lodging. Single available for $450 supplement. (Hotel only.)
  • All meals, soft drinks, and snacks during the workshop.
  • All permits and park fees.
  • All transportation during the workshop.
  • Tips for crew, drivers, and local guides.
  • Waterproof boots for shore excursions.
  • Photographic guiding and instruction from Jeff Wendorff.
  • Image reviews and post-processing instruction.
  • Adventure, fun, inspiration, and a great time!

Not Included

  • Travel to and from Sitka, Alaska.
  • Unscheduled airport transfers.
  • Passport and visa fees (if applicable).
  • Any meals or accommodations before or after the workshop dates.
  • Items of a personal nature.
  • Alcoholic Beverages.
  • Medical Evacuation Insurance (required).
  • Travel Medical and Trip Cancellation Insurance (optional, but recommended).
  • Anything else specifically not listed as included.
  • Single rooming available for $450 supplement. (Hotel only.)

Payment Terms

  • Your non-refundable deposit of $4,995 will hold your space in this workshop.
  • Further non-refundable payment of $4,000 is due by August 1, 2024.
  • The non-refundable balance is due not later than December 1, 2024.
  • In addition to our standard Terms and Conditions, for this workshop all payments are non-refundable, and this is why we recommend comprehensive travel insurance including trip cancelation.
  • Need special payment arrangements? No problem, just ask us.

Testimonials

“I have learned the quality of instruction, prior scouting, personality of your leaders, depth of knowledge, how you take care of your clients and how you run your business is worth the price of the trip. I have no worries when I put myself in your hands. ”

— Kathy Martin, Alaska Wildlife '19

“My increased weight showing on my scale was the measure of delicious meals I consumed. I was so thankful for fresh seafood and produce and Megan was an exceptional cook. I was so comfortable with Greg at the helm and he knew exactly how to position the boat for the best shots. Ryan and Catherine were so helpful and kind. I just can't give enough praise fort the accommodations and crew. ”

— Nancy Hardie, Alaskan Story '21

Summer Sale!

$500 Off Any Workshop

Register for any workshop before midnight, July 7, 2024, and we’ll apply your $500 discount to your final balance payment.

Cyber Monday Sale!

$750 Off Any Workshop

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Sign up for any workshop before midnight, November 28, 2023, and we’ll apply your $750 discount to your final balance payment.