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Seal River Fall Polar Bear Photo Safari

Polar Bear at Seal River Lodge Polar Bear at Seal River Lodge Dennis Fast

Priced from $10,395 CAD   Days: 7

Imagine photographing polar bears just a few feet away, RIGHT FROM GROUND LEVEL -- the holy grail of almost all photographers! This is not only possible on this trip, but standard practice! In many cases, you’ll be able to approach wildlife on foot!

In the Blog: Read about IWA Directors Randy & Susie Green's recent trip to Seal River: Arriving Seal River and Seal River Journal 

You’ll stay in a warm and comfortable remote, eco lodge some 20 miles north of the Churchill River. Enjoy gourmet meals, lecturers, slideshows and evenings by the fire -- a true Canadian wilderness lodge experience.

Polar bears and other wildlife often come right up to the lodge and observation decks and fencing make photography safe and exciting, and your photo results can be spectacular! In addition, the shoreline location of the lodge make it perfect for getting the bears on photogenic ice and snow.

This area has more clear nights than Churchill, so it’s also the perfect place to photograph the northern lights.

Check out this TripAdvisor review: "Great Polar Bear trip!"

  • Itinerary
  • Date - Rates
  • Lodging
  • Map
Itinerary:

Photo Tour Highlights 

  • Photograph wildlife from GROUND LEVEL
  • Base out of a comfortable back country lodge with gourmet meals
  • Polar Bears
  • Caribou
  • Arctic & red fox Snowy owls, Ptarmigan, Gyrfalcons
  • Spectacular northern lights
  • Dedicated to getting the best photos possible right on the shore of Hudson Bay for great sea and ice background

Seal-River-Map

Day 1: Arrive Winnipeg

Arrive in Winnipeg at your leisure but in time for dinner. A group dinner will be held at the Inn at the Forks where you will meet your group and your adventure specialist. D

Day 2: Arrive Churchill, transfer to lodge

The early morning flight takes us 600 miles north to Churchill where your adventure begins. You will be met at the airport by one of our staff members who will  provide you with an orientation of the tour including a clothing check (in order to crosscheck your "What to Bring" list as provided to you prior to departure). You will then be transferred by fixed wing aircraft or helicopter to the Seal River Heritage Lodge.

This flight takes you out over the historic Churchill River, and then northwest up the rugged Hudson Bay coast, where you will likely see many bears, caribou, moose, and seals from the air.  Keep your cameras ready.

Upon your arrival, we'll  provide a tour of the Lodge, have a wonderful pastry snack and get you settled into your room. A thorough orientation on traveling in polar bear country will be provided prior to any outings. Then it's time to grab your gear and start photographing! B,L,D

Day 3 - 5: Polar Bears, tundra walks and photography

This remote lodge is located in a wildly rugged and remote area that caters to the dedicated wildlife photographer willing to spend hours in the field getting up close and personal with the Arctic wildlife. The photography is at ground level where getting up close is easy for Arctic wildlife including polar bears in this pristine wilderness. We ARE in the heart of polar bear country so bears you have! Your photos will have stunning backdrops of the sea and /or tundra landscapes surrounding the lodge.  The shoreline is ideal for photographing bears on snow and ice.  Furthermore we have an exceptional number of clear nights for northern lights photography.
Our meals are on the gourmet side with fresh breads, soups and pastries made daily.  Meal times will be adjusted to accommodate photo opportunities which are the priority, so expect many a meal to be interrupted.  Generally breakfast is served at 8:00 am, lunch as required; with appetizers at 6:00 pm followed by a feast for the palate at 7:00 pm.

Evenings are spent near the fireplace in the living room area downloading your images, rehashing the day's events, or taking in an informative lecture or slide show by your guides. The lodge area is patrolled for polar bears all night by one of our night watchmen so be prepared to have your sleep interupted by a visit from one or two of the Great Ice Bears (or by one of our dazzling displays of northern lights!). B,L,D

Day 6: Day in Churchill

After another delicious breakfast, it is time to pack for the flight back to Churchill. Again have your cameras ready for the chance to photograph bears from the air as you wind your way along the river back to Churchill. On arrival in  Churchill,  your bags will be stored for you until your flight back to Winnipeg later in the day. You are free to explore and wine & dine in this frontier community at your leisure.

While waiting for your flight to Winnipeg it gives you time to explore local places such as Cape Merry, the Port of Churchill, the Eskimo Museum, the Polar Bear Holding Compound (otherwise known as the Polar Bear Jail), or add dog sledding, helicopter rides or a plane ride to York Factory as well as the Parks Canada exhibit which are all of interest. Any of those items can be arranged by us.

If you are interested in a dog sledding tour please book through us so we can ensure you arrive in Churchill in time for your tour departure.  We work with Blue Sky Mushing and you can visit their website at www.blueskymush.com.

For aerial tours you can contact Hudson Bay Helicopters at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone at 204-675-2576.

You will have a choice of Churchill restaurants for an early dinner and will be provided with a dinner voucher.  Participating restaurants will be listed on the voucher.

After dinner, you will meet up with our staff and you will be transferred to the airport for your flight back to Winnipeg. Return flight to Winnipeg after dinner and overnight at Inn at the Forks. B,D

Day 7: Fly home.

Participants may arrange to fly home any time today. B
Date - Rates:

2016 DATES ARE SOLD OUT!

2017 Dates:

October 25-31

October 29-November 4

November 2-8

November 6-12

November 10-16 - photo leader Robert Postma

Rate Information:

Strong US Dollar translates to 20% or more savings! Because of the current exchange rates (April 2016) between the US and Canadian dollars, the US Dollar price for these trips is more than 20% less than the listed Canadian dollar price.  Call our office for a current quote.

2017 Rate: $10,395 CAD from Winnipeg, Manitoba, plus taxes of 6.5% based  on double occupancy.

2017 Private room rate: $19,195 CAD plus taxes of 6.5%. If you are traveling alone and would like us to arrange a suitable roommate, we will make every effort to do so.  If you prefer a room alone, then the private room rate applies.

Child rate: $9,295 CAD plus taxes of 6.5% for children 8-12 sharing with 2 adults. 

Note: If guests are weathered in at the lodge a $200 per day supplement will be charged.

To calculate today's spot exchange rate, click here.

Please note that this is the "spot" rate, and the actual bank exchange rate may vary a few points from this. Your exact rate will be determined at the time of your booking and payment in full. VISA and MasterCard accepted.

Included:

  • Round trip airfare between Winnipeg and Churchill
  • 6 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 6 dinners
  • Round trip aerial transfers from Churchill to the lodge and all necessary ground transfers

Tour Details

Registration:

To confirm your space on this tour, please send a deposit of $3,500 CAD to our office. Balance is due 120 days prior to departure.

Cancellation Policy

In the event you must cancel your reservation, refunds will be made according to the following schedule: Deposit is non-refundable.  120 days out all fees paid 100% non-refundable.

Insurance

Because many advance logistical arrangements have been made prior to the running of this trip, we must adhere to the above policy. In addition, please be aware that many insurance policies do not cover illness and accident expenses outside of the U.S., and Medicare does NOT cover any such expenses at all. In light of this, we strongly recommend trip cancellation and supplemental insurance.

Weather can be a factor in getting in and out of the lodge.  If you are delayed by weather, it will be at your expense in Churchill and a rate of $200 additional will be applied to the lodge and paid at the lodge if you are stranded at the lodge.

A travel insurance quote will be sent to you upon registration, or you can purchase it from our site by clicking on the "Purchase Travel Insurance" in the left-hand column. Our insurance carrier is Travelex.
Lodging:
Winter-Seal_River
Seal River Heritage Lodge is a true wilderness eco lodge with solar panels, rain water catchement, recyled grey water and homemade gourmet meals daily. This is our base for our Seal River Fall Polar Bear Photo Safari. The lodge was strategically built on the shores of this Hudson Bay location to offer guests the ability to photograph polar bears on the ice and in the snow. Because of its distance from Churchill (a 60 KM and 30 minute flight), guests arriving Seal River Heritage Lodge will enjoy a wonderful aerial tour on the way to the Lodge adn return back to Churchill.
 
The lodge offers guests exceptional ground level photography of Arctic wildlife including polar bears, unlimited photography time, viewing towers to get a bird's eye view of the amazing sunset and sunrises, and the finest gourmet food and wine.


Access: By air only, float plane, wheel plane or helicopter. 
Location: 60 kilometers north of Churchill, Manitoba on the Hudson Bay coast near the mouth of Seal River.

Features:

  • A viewing tower is situated above the lodge so guests can take in the expansive tundra landscape while looking for wildlife
  • Inviting common area with fireplace for evening presentations and chatting with other guests
  • 8 double, triple or quad rooms each with their own private bathroom
  • Full service gourmet meals
  • Electricity generated 24 hours a day along with wood heat
  • Library area with maps
  • Gift Shop
  • Radio/Telephone/Internet
  • Authentic eco friendly wilderness lodge with all the comforts of home
Map:
 Seal-River-Map
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Buy Framed Polar Bear Photos & Cards

Art Prints

Browse some of IWA Director Randy Green's polar bear photos - framed prints and greeting cards! Great holiday gifts!