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“This is the National Geographic photo opportunity”
Review of Brooks Falls

Brooks Falls
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Area on the Brooks River where a large number of brown bears spend their summer due to salmon migration.
Reviewed 12 August 2017

This is a must do when visiting Alaska. I saved it for our last event and wow was it the experienced I dreamed it would be. If you can spend the night either camping or in a cabin to get more time here. You have to take a prop plane then transfer to a float plane...you may as well spend more than 4 hours here. Wow the bears in July are well worth it. The salmon are making there way back to spawn and the bears know it. You will not be disappointed at all in this experience.

The lodge offers food but wow is it expensive and it is just OK.

Thank Marie F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"salmon run"
in 18 reviews
in 35 reviews
"viewing platform"
in 31 reviews
"king salmon"
in 40 reviews
"float plane"
in 38 reviews
"day trip"
in 48 reviews
"lower platform"
in 10 reviews
"the river"
in 26 reviews
"bucket list"
in 9 reviews
"bear viewing"
in 18 reviews
"katmai air"
in 13 reviews
"watching bears"
in 8 reviews
"salmon jumping"
in 7 reviews
"mother bear"
in 6 reviews
"bear safety"
in 8 reviews
"an amazing experience"
in 6 reviews
"three days"
in 6 reviews

41 - 45 of 269 reviews

Reviewed 10 August 2017

We booked our stay at Brooks Lodge inside Katmai National Park for 3 days the first of August 2017 we booked 10 months in advance and could not book anytime during the month of July it was full. July is suppose to be the best time of year during the Salmon run to view the Grizzly Bears at Brooks Falls we booked the August 1st dates hoping the Bears were still going to be at the falls. WHAT A TRIP!!!. THEY WERE STILL THERE IN FORCE. We flew from Anchorage to King Salmon via Pen Air then boarded a float plane Katmai Air for the short flight to Katmai National Park. Flights to and from Anchorage and Lodging were included in the Brooks Lodge package food is and extra charge based on what meals you eat each day all meals are served Buffet style at preset hours. The Lodging was a small individual cabin with 4 bunk beads, bathroom, heater, and shower which are sufficient for a comfortable stay. We arrived and after a required Ranger Bear orientation film and checking into the lodge we immediately took off to Brooks Falls to get our first siting of the Bears. I must repeat it was amazing you are literally walking in Grizzly territory learning how to make noise as you walk and getting very good at saying HEY BEAR when you spot or hear a Grizzly on a path to the falls, on the beach or in camp around the cabins which happens frequently. On one of our many visits to the Falls I counted 17 bears all doing their thing trying to catch the elusive Salmon with out seeing any fights between the bears including Moms with Cubs, Females, and Males. It seems dangerous to be walking around an area where Grizzlies are actively roaming free and it could be if your not always aware and a GREAT FANTASTIC GROUP of RANGERS were not on site constantly monitoring bear movement. Cannot say enough about the quality of the Rangers, they continually watch, report, block paths, close walking paths, keep bears moving, and keep visitors aware of any bear movement and their location, many times the walking bridge from the Lodge to the upper and lower viewing platforms was closed due to bear activity in the area we actually had to wait on the platform side of the bridge for 2 hours waiting for a mom sand her cubs to leave the area, bears were not chased or made to move the Rangers realize this is the Bears home so people wait bears do not. We stayed the three days and had the time of our life you can figure roughly $1000.00 per night per couple Air Fare, Cabin, Food, & Gratuity for a similar length stay . HIGHLY RECOMMEND this trip. We also saw many fishermen making the trip to Katmai as we understand its a great fishing destination we did not fish, we did see fishermen having to leave the water when a bear approached Another possibility for packers and campers is to get a flight to the Park out of King Salmon and stay in the tent area campground right down the path from the Lodge. The campground is surrounded by an electric fence to hopefully prevent Bears from entering and it seems to work based on our conversations with the campers, many were families with small children. The camping area has special places to eat inside another electric fenced area or the campers can purchase meals at the lodge. To get a good look at the falls Salmon and bear activity try visiting Explore.org and find the LIVECAM Brooks Falls you can actually snap pictures while on this LIVECAM. The bear activity is solely based on the Salmon activity at the falls and lower river, the lodge is normally open first part of June through mid September. Its to bad that it's not more economical to get to Katmai National Park it would be great if more families could visit the park its such a fantastic place. If your thinking of visiting the WONDERFUL destination be sure to begin your planning 12 months in advance.

4  Thank dbtravels2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2017

This place is amazing! On our way to the falls we saw a mother bear and her two cubs coming towards us in the opposite direction. We were surprised but stayed calm. So, we backed up slowly about a quarter of a mile until we reached the restroom and watched the bears take another route. We then resumed our walk until we were at the Falls. Only forty people can be on the top platform at a time so we waited about an hour at the ripple platform where we saw multiple bears. Getting to the top platform was great, we saw many bears eating salmon. The smell of dead fish was very pungent but the challenge of taking a perfect picture took our mind off that bad smell. We went back again the next day and took numerous pictures. This adventure was surely the highlight of our trip to Alaska.

1  Thank Ritam1360
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2017

I went solo camping in Katmai for a week. It was amazing. I went the first week of July. The salmon were running. Here are some tips:

1. Book a few days if you can. The weather can be rainy, overcast, etc. For Photography, you really want a few days (I felt like 7 was perfect since 4 days were rainy). I saw day trippers get minimal time in overcast weather to see a bear. It is though.
2. Budget in the hike to 10,000 smokes. It is neat. I would not do the ranger lead walk and do it yourself if you are able bodied. Why? Because then you can see the waterfall and the fork where the rivers meet as opposed to just the one place. If you have seen waterfalls before, the union of the rivers (confluence) is a better hike. Though the waterfall hike let you get real close to the volcanic ash. Both are great, do both on your own since you can move faster (unless you are elderly, then please go with the ranger since it can be tough coming back up).
3. The rangers here are AMAZING. Chat with one of them if you are a naturalist.
4. You will encounter bears. I didn't take bear spray. Just don't be stupid and respect distances to the bears.
5. If camping, bring an inflatable mattress. I didn't and didn't sleep well. Ended up making a nest with my clothing.
6. Take a good sleeping bag that can keep you warm. Night time temps can suddenly drop.
7. Rain gear is a must. So is wearing layers in July.
8. I over packed food and gear. Do you really need 3 flash lights?
9. There is a lodge where you can get beer and charge your camera gear. I took batteries for a week's worth. It did limit my down time charging and maximized my field time. To each their own.
10. The bridge to cross the river will get closed and you may have to wait hours. Best bear viewing is after 9pm, in my opinion. The beach is filled with bears, day travelers are gone or sleeping.
11. Some of the day trippers can be real jerks. Mostly cruise people flying for the day or really anti nature folks just there to fish. Who goes to a place famous for bears and says "To bad you can't shoot these guys. I shot one last year smaller then that one." Go off the beaten path to avoid these people.
12. If you are brave, bring waders and walk the river. Just respect the bears and be alert. :)

I plan on coming back. I loved this place.

8  Thank 1909_Chris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 28 July 2017

It's about a 1 mile hike to the falls. You'll see lots of bears before you get to the falls. There may be "bear jams" on the trail. Viewing platform offers excellent views of the feeding frenzy.

1  Thank hiker1949
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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