Happy Valentines Day from Churchill

polar bears in Churchill, MB

Polar bears in the snow in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area. Katie de Meulles photo.

We wish everyone a very happy Valentines day from Churchillpolarbears.org! Enjoy the day with the special bears ..er people in your lives!

Churchill Field Notes and Photos – Aurora Season

The first groups of travelers have been experiencing dramatic cold and sensational northern lights in Churchill these last couple of weeks. Here are some pictorial field notes from the far north and northern lights season guru Brad Josephs. So much of what Nat Hab’s aurora borealis trips encompass is more than seeing the northern lights. The amazing train trip north and stops at Pisew Falls and Thompson leading to the journey through boreal forest and taiga coming to rest in Churchill. Dog-sledding, igloo building, curling and various other cultural experiences make this an unforgettable adventure. Northern lights above the vast frozen Hudson Bay is more often than not the proverbial “icing on the cake”! Enjoy

Nat Hab group in Churchill

Natural Habitat Adventures group with guide Brad Josephs. Brad Josephs photo.

 

dog sledding in Churchill

Dog – sledding in Churchill. Brad Josephs photo.

 

boreal forest in Churchill

Moonscape above the boreal forest before the aurora appeared in Churchill. Brad Josephs photo.

 

aurora borealis in Churchill, Wapusk Adventures

Northern lights above Wapusk Adventures tee – pee and boreal forest. Brad Josephs photo.

 

Natural Habitat Aurora Pod Churchill

Northern lights action at the Natural Habitat Aurora Pod. Brad Josephs photo.

Natural Habitat travelers in Churchill.

Natural Habitat Adventures travelers beneath the northern lights in Churchill. Brad Josephs photo.

Churchill Polar Bear Season – Guest Blog Finale

In our last posting from Jeff and Kathy Klofft, we have some of Jeff’s remarkable photos of a polar bear family trying to escape safely from a energized male polar bear hoping to get to mom to mate or possibly at the cubs for some sustenance. These interactions are fairly rare but pretty exciting when witnessed by travelers. You can see more of the Klofft’s adventures on their blog site Go See It Travel!

“We watched the sleepy family for a little while and then noticed a large male making his way towards their direction.”

Polar bears churchill

Male polar bear starts to move towards mother and cubs. Jeff Klofft photo.

Our guides explained that a male polar bear can try to separate the mother from her cubs in order to mate with her.  The cubs will surely not survive on their own without their mother, and their survival depends on her staying away from the big male.  Unfortunately, she and the cubs were sleeping soundly as the male approached closer and closer, and all of us held our breath in dread of what we might see if he surprised them before they could hustle away.

polar bears churchill

Mother and cubs become aware and begin to move. Jeff Klofft photo.

Finally, as we all silently willed the mother bear to wake up and move on, she was up on her feet and she and her cubs were on the move even faster than Jeff’s rapid camera could catch it!

“So once she started to move, she and her cubs MOVED!  Some in our group actually were able to hear her hiss at the big male. They ran towards our Polar Rover at top speed until she was right behind our viewing platform.”

polar bears in Churchill

Polar bears on the run to safety. Jeff Klofft photo

“Directly behind us, the female stopped to see where the big male was, and found him to be plodding along in her direction, so although she slowed her speed, she and her cubs continued moving off away from the larger bear.”

polar bears in Churchill, Manitoba

Mother polar bear on the lookout for aggressive male. Jeff Klofft photo.

The big male moved more slowly but quite deliberately in her direction, stopping along the way to sniff where she and the cubs had been.

polar bear churchill

Sniffing the family’s scent the male polar bear slowly tracks them. Jeff Klofft photo.

 

polar bears in churchill

Once the big male had given up the chase, the polar bear family moved off toward the shore in a group. Jeff Klofft photo.

 

polar bear churchill

Male polar bear finally gives up the chase and heads for a rest in the willows. Jeff Klofft photo.

 

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