Captain Neil found a pod of about 12 humpbacks that were lunge feeding. And we stuck with that group all day. Using Neil’s and Lione’s experience and knowledge and his hydrophone, we were able to know exactly when they would lunge feed!
Professional Photographer Guide
Humpbacks & Gray Whales
Designed For Wildlife Photography Enthusiasts
3 Days Photographing Iconic Alaskan Wildlife
On this Sitka photography tour, we take you to the best locations to see humpback whales and transient killer whales performing athletics feats such as breaching, tail slapping, and if we’re lucky, the cooperative feeding behavior called “Bubble Netting.” Your expert guide will also help you snap bears, sea otters, eagles, and puffins in the wild! If one of your goals is to create original and impactful wildlife photos then this is the tour for you!
$2,359 per person
Times vary due to the change in sunrise and sunset times – please inquire upon booking for the exact time.
Non-cruise Ship Guests:
Our vessel “ Catdaddy” is in Thomsen harbor 617 Katlian. It’s the same parking lot as the Harbormaster. It’s across the street from the Petro One gas station. Go down the ramp and we are on the second finger. The boat is toward the end of that finger. Thank You. Please arrive 10 minutes before your scheduled departure.
Cruise Ship Guests:
All cruise ship passengers are transported to Harrigan Hall either by liter or shuttle bus. We have a table set up in front of the building.. Please check in with one of our bright yellow jacket wearing team members. Our vessel is located just down the gangway in the harbor next to Harrigan Hall.
Year-round – please see our calendar
3 full days – 24 hours on the water
Maximum 6 people
- Personal mentoring and instruction from our photography experts.
- Detailed booklets for the wildlife we often see on this tour.
- Access to Coast-Guard recommended marine binoculars for all guests while onboard.
- Beverages and snacks including coffee, hot chocolate, tea, water.
- Flights to and from Sitka
- Transport to and from the meeting point
- City and Borough of Sitka sales tax
- Staff gratuities
Suitable for ages 15 years and over.
What to bring
- Camera or cell phone with well-charged batteries – we have a limited number of USB outlets.
- Plenty of memory cards.
- Patience – these are wild animals that abide by no man’s schedule.
- Wear comfortable, closed-toe, rubber-sole, flat shoes. Boat (or non-marking) shoes are not necessary.
- To reduce the number of items in the waste stream, personal water bottles are recommended.
- Rain gear – just in case as Sitka is surrounded by temperate rainforest.
- Temperatures on the water are cooler, come prepared and dress in layers.
About your guide
- 1 US Coast Guard 25GT masters licensed captain
- 1 certified naturalist/photography expert
Get out on the water during the golden hours to capture wildlife in the best light.
Photograph humpback whales, orcas, and sea otters at sunrise and sunset.
Spot tufted puffins, bald eagles, Sitka black-tailed deer, and Steller and California sea lions.
Hear the songs and calls of the whales on our state-of-the-art amplified hydrophone system.
Gain a better understanding of photo composition, hands-on camera work, and equipment care in a marine environment.
Rest assured, these are Alaska photography tours with high chances of seeing diverse wildlife.
What You'll See & Do
Join your knowledgeable, accommodating captain and an expert wildlife photographer guide on this 3-day boat tour around Sitka Sound. We’ll take you to the best places to photograph whales breaching and tail slapping and bald eagles swooping down to snatch fish from the ocean. Enjoy incredible scenes of orca pods making their way through the deep blue waters of the Sound.
We’ll circle round the Tongass National Forest, a temperate rainforest, to catch sight of black-tailed deer and bears coming down to the shore for a bite to eat. We’ll head over to St. Lazaria Island, a birdwatching paradise where you can see tufted puffins, murres, black oystercatchers, and pigeon guillemots. You’ll be treated to our legendary Sitka sunrises and sunsets, where the dormant Mt. Edgecumbe volcano is bathed in pink and red light and the Alp-like peaks create a stunning backdrop for your wildlife pictures.
If you’re looking for Alaska wildlife tours with high chances of seeing a range of different creatures, this 3-day tour is the ideal option. With more time on the water, we can be more flexible with the itinerary and spend more time in different locations to ensure we capture frame-worthy images.
Good to Know
All our expeditions are subject to the realities of the natural world. A Whale’s Song Expeditions makes no guarantees of seeing any specific species. Although we will do everything in our power to find the species that are of interest to customers and stay on the itinerary, circumstances such as species location, weather, and ocean conditions may necessitate alteration of an itinerary. Payments are not refundable for any itinerary change.
Unfortunately, our vessel is not wheelchair accessible.
Features of our vessel:
- A spacious heated cabin
- Deluxe comfortable seats for all guests
- Restroom equipped
- Large wrap-around windows for unobstructed viewing
- Expansive deck space for multiple perspectives
- Great stability to ensure safety and comfort
Smoking and the consumption of alcohol or any illegal drug while aboard is prohibited.
If the captain determines that you may be under the influence or may pose a hazard to yourself, the vessel, the crew, or other guests you will not be permitted to board, and no refund will be given.
If you are motion sickness prone, take your remedies at least 1 hour in advance.
Please arrive at the vessel 15 minutes before departure.
Hear From Our Previous Guests
We can not thank Neil and Lione Clare enough for the wonderful time we had! Both went out of their way to make our tour special. It’s hard to put into words the excitement we felt at seeing our first whale and all the others after! We learned so much about a multitude of birds and animals!
Had a great time aboard the boat with Neil and Lione. Saw lots of birds, otters. Sea lions and whales. Couldn’t have asked for a better trip.