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McNeil Falls, Alaska


The largest known gathering of brown bears in the world occurs each July along the McNeil River in Alaska. Salmon are returning from their ocean journey to spawn in the same river where they were born. The long cascades of McNeil Falls create an ideal fishing spot for the bears.  The best fishing spots are occupied by the large, dominant male bears while the more junior members search for fish in more challenging locations. When a fish is caught, it is often taken away from the river up the hill. The salmon provide a rich bounty for the bears, eagles, seagulls, wolves, and the entire ecosystem. Currently free from development (a large mine project is pending nearby), this unbelievable annual ritual continues as it has for thousands of year.


Edition of 250

River of Bears