Chinitna Bay: Lake Clark National Park

Getting There

There are air taxis from Anchorage (55 minutes) and Homer (40 minutes); planes land on the beach a short distance from the prime bear-viewing area.

The Bears

This is the most concentrated area of bears in the entire park. Early in summer, the brown bears graze on sedges, protein-rich beach grasses that grow in the area’s sandy soils. Some observers think the bears look like buffalo or cattle, grazing on open range. But then salmon fill the local streams and the bears disperse, spreading out over five or six square miles. On a good day you can see up to 40 of these magnificent creatures—females with cubs, adolescents, and even large males.

The Viewing Situation

Bear-viewing here isn’t secluded, but it’s far from overrun. Viewing is on foot, watching the bears as they wander this large area at the edge of the giant sedge meadows. Planes will be landing on the beach nearby, while lodges drive their guests to the area.


May 20-July 15


Fixed-wing plane

Getting There

Latitude: 59.867347
Longitude: -153.119672
Driving Directions