To quote myself, "For now Brooks Falls is just a small waterfall on a mile-long river, and standing there it is hard to believe that such a seemingly insignificant place is the basis for the health of an entire ecosystem, the survival of a community of brown bears, the strength of a regional economy, and the spiritual fulfillment of thousands of people."
Well folks, it's not so hard to believe anymore.
And here's what it looks like if you step back a bit:
There you have it, the reverse-zoo of the Brooks Falls River Platform. Here's another shot from the downriver Riffles Platform, looking up at the falls.
More on the bears later; I have a few more pictures to share. The other day I went out fishing in Naknek Lake, and I wasn't having any luck so I traded my pole for my camera so you could see the kind of views I get here while waiting to hook a salmon.
Here is another great view; I took this photo of Brooks Lake right before I set out in a boat to Headwaters Creek at the other end of it to fish sockeye.
I took these from the same spot later that day. Follow the eagle -- he starts in front of Dumpling Mountain...
And 27 seconds and 180 degrees later he is in front of Mt. Kelez.
Working the corner, a wooded spot where bears frequently pop out right next to you, can be an exciting affair. But I often ponder what it would be like if brown bears were not the solitary creatures that they are, and learned to hunt in packs. I call this my "Jurassic Park Theory"; imagine a group of photographers gawking over a gorgeous blond bear in the distance, when all of a sudden the bears that have been stalking them all along ambush from the sides... Fortunately for us (or unfortunately depending on how much you like photographers) bears are not velociraptors. A spring cub with a protruding tongue seems intent on reminding me of this: