Land of the Ice Bears

Polar Bear in Svalbard, Norway

One of the top animals on our list to photograph has been the “Ice Bear” or Polar Bear.  These elusive creatures are getting harder and harder to spot in the wild but we knew we could count on Lindblad Expedition’s National Geographic Explorer and their crew to find them for us.  We travelled on the National Geographic Explorer to Antarctica last year and had an amazing time.  The ship, crew, staff, Nat Geo photo instructors and Antarcitca itself was one of the most amazing places we’ve been to.  Many of the passengers on the ship with us in the Antarctic raved about the trip to the Arctic.  Since seeing Polar Bears was on our wish list we booked the trip immediately after returning home.

Polar Bear in field of arctic flowers

Lindblad calls the trip to the arctic the Land of the Ice Bears.  They market the trip as an 11 day tour of the Svalbard archipelago.  In actuality, you only have 5 days on the ship searching for the elusive Ice Bear.  All of the other days are travel days or embarking/disembarking from the ship.  The trip was still amazing even though it was shorter than we expected.  An extra 2 days at sea exploring the archipelago would have been perfect.  It would have allowed extra time to search for Polar Bears, Walruses, Whales and most importantly not feel rushed when trying to get that perfect shot.  Overall, the photography experience in Antarctica was far superior and I came away from that trip with much better pictures than this one.  Even though it was only a 5 day trip they packed as much into every moment as they could and I did end up with a few good photos.

Over the next week or so I’ll do a few posts that describes what we did and what we saw each day we were on the ship.  Similar to what I did for our expedition to Antarctica.

The photo instructors onboard the ship put together a video slideshow of the passengers best photos from the trip.  Miki and I submitted some of our favorites.  We tried to submit pictures that other people wouldn’t have posted so we tried to get a little creative and kept the wildlife pictures to a minimum since everyone else had lots of them.

Some of my favorites.

- Polar Bears above.

Arctic Landscape

The Ice of the Arctic

Waterfall flowing off the Austfonna ice cap. Largest ice cap by area in Europe.

Kayaking in the Arcitc. (Gopro camera attached to end of kayak paddle)

and here are a few of Miki’s favorites…

Fox skull


Reflections in an arctic pool

What is he doing??? - National Geographic Explorer in the background.

Hot choco zodiac to the rescue on a cold Arctic morning

Moai? Are we in Easter Island?


Polar Plunge in the Arctic

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