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Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

california
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Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

Hi, I read somewhere that there is a place in juneau where I can watch bears by a bit of hiking. I have a vague recollection that this was near mendenhall glacier - can't recall where at all, my bad. Any idea where this might be, or where I can bear-watch for the cheap in Juneau? (I checked the flight prices to pack creek, that seems super duper expensive!)

Thanks!!

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Ketchikan
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1. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

There are bears who live at Mendenhall Glacier. Your chances of seeing them are multiplied by going very early in the morning and/or late in the season....late August/early September when the fish are spawning and the bears are eager to come to the waterways and gourge on fish in Steep Creek. As always with bears, be quiet and respectful, do not carry food and be careful. One viewing platform is off the first parking lot on the left as you arrive; the other is at the far end of the short Steep Creek Trail. Stay on the trail at all times and give the bears space if they approach....but never run.

Juneau, Alaska
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2. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

Talk to the Forest Service personnel when you get to the parking lot area. They are usually very well informed about where bears are most likely to be seen, and can often point them out when you might have walked right by without noticing them. Late in the season, some trails are closed to give the bears their space while they feed.

Good advice from Rainbirdreader all 'round about bear viewing. Be respectful of their space, don't try to chase them to get a photo (no matter what other, less respectful, people are doing). And remember NOT to bring food to the glacier visitor center area.

Juneau, Alaska
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3. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

There are a few that run around Star Hill (downtown)!

I've been seeing more and more along glacier highway between tee harbor and lena point (not sure if you'll have a car or not).

we've got an active bunch this season!

Adirondack, New York
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4. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

Diver, where is Lena Point? Maybe near Auke Bay Research Lab? My husband has an appointment there so if this is the same area maybe I'll go with him and look for bears when he is busy. svgp, thank you for asking this question

california
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5. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

Thanks, all!

Juneau, Alaska
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6. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

Places, the Auke Bay Research Lab (shared with UAS?) is about 4 miles west of where I speak of. NOAA does have a huge facility at Lena Point, the turn off for it is where you *could* start to see some bears, and Tee Harbor is another few miles up the road.

Adirondack, New York
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7. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

That's wonderful. Do I just drive in this area or are there some hiking/walking option? Thanks again

Juneau, Alaska
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8. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

there are a number of trails around. Keep an air horn handy (cheap at the local shops) in case you come across a bear.

I'll try to find an online trail resource guide for you - the 1st that comes to mind is the Auk Nu trail - its 3 miles and a fairly constant grade up (500 feet/mile) but has *amazing* views of the surrounding area.

Edited: 16 June 2011, 19:17
9. Re: Juneau - bear watching on the cheap?

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