King Salmon and Katmai National Park

June 1998 

Katmai National Park has a huge concentration of brown bears (grizzly) and is a paradise because of the beautiful landscape, made of volcanoes, lakes, rivers and endless forests. The nearest gateway is King Salmon, a small town with daily jet service from Anchorage.


King Salmon is a small town of about 350 inhabitants, located southwest of Anchorage, near the Naknek river, one of the world's most rich in salmon river. The economy is based mainly on Salmon and Halibut fishing, which are delivered daily to Anchorage by air, and, from there, to any other part in North America. Every year, from the end of June to mid September, almost every Alaska's river, from the biggest to the smallest, is interested by one of the most massive, powerful and mysterious phenomena in nature, that is the migration of the Salmons. From the Ocean, they will enter the rivers, swimming for miles over miles toward impressive currents and crossing waterfalls up to 3 meters high, for a crazy run toward their original birth place (some lake in the interior) where they will reproduce and die shortly after. During the trip, many of them will be captured and eat by a large number of bears, which are usually located on the most strategic places.

Katmai National Park is a national park which includes large areas of the southwest, between majestic mountains glacier-covered, vast lakes and rivers, volcanos. Interested by a terrible eruption in year 1912, this area has been designated as protected because one of the world's highest concentration of brown bears, with an average of one bear every 2 square kilometers.

The confortable room with a beautiful view onto aknek river.
King Salmon, Alaska King Salmon, Alaska
Naknek river, Alaska Naknek river, Alaska
Naknek river, Alaska The Naknek is a wide and powerful river, rich is salmons and other wildlife. From here, close to the town of King Salmon, a lot of boats and floatplanes depart daily bound for Katmai National Park and other areas of interest. Back
After 30 minutes by bus and 90 minutes by fast boat, I arrive in Katmai N.P.
Katmai National Park, Alaska
Katmai National Park, Alaska Katmai National Park, Alaska
Katmai National Park, Alaska

Snow covered mountains, dense green forests, crystal-clear waters. This is the typical landscape in Katmai National Park.
Brown bear, Alaska Brown bear, Alaska
Brown bear, Alaska Brown bear, Alaska
"You are hiking on a land full of bears" was the first words told by the national park's staff after my arrival here. They explained me how I must behave in case of an unexpected "face to face" encounter and then they made me a lot of questions twice to make sure that I understood. After less than one mile, the first bear, following me silently.
On summertime, a large number of salmons swim toward the tremendous stream's current, jumping also the waterfall. Often a lot of bears stand here to catch the more unlucky fishes.
Grizzly fishing for salmons, Alaska Grizzly fishing for salmons, Alaska
Grizzly fishing for salmons, Alaska

After a while... a beautiful brown bear arrives and explores the waterfall, looking for salmons.

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