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Discover Alaska’s Wilderness: Photography Workshop with Bear Viewing at Pack Creek

Embark on a journey to the heart of Alaska’s deep wilderness with our Alaska Fjords and Pack Creek photography workshop. This adventure is not just a trip; it’s an immersive collaboration with Adventures Northwest Magazine that is designed for photography enthusiasts of all levels who are passionate about nature, wildlife, and the art of capturing moments. Join us as we explore the majestic landscapes of the Tracy Arm / Fords Terror Wilderness, and Admiralty Island’s Kootznoowoo wilderness with a special highlight on bear viewing at Pack Creek, where the wild bears roam free and the beauty of nature is unparalleled.

Brown bear at Pack Creek bear viewing area in Alaska
A Brown Bear at Pack Creek passes by the viewing area. Photo by Christine Smith

In this hands-on workshop, you will have an opportunity to make and post-process photographs with two knowledgeable instructors, John D’Onofrio & Alan Sanders. During the day, you will be exploring and photographing from the boat, skiff, and on land, while in the evenings, you will receive customized Adobe Lightroom Classic instruction to bring your artistic vision to life.


Trip Highlights:

Embark on an extraordinary Alaska Photography Workshop, where your lens becomes a gateway to unparalleled wildlife experiences. This journey offers:

  • Encounters with Brown Bears at Pack Creek: This extraordinary location limits its visitors to just 24 per day, creating an intimate and rare opportunity to not only photograph these magnificent creatures but to deeply observe their natural behaviors away from the crowds.
  • Photographer’s Paradise in the Tracy Arm / Fords Terror Wilderness: You’ll be enchanted by the breathtaking scenery of this designated wildernesses’s Endicott Arm and the awe-inspiring landscape of Fords Terror. These locations are a dream for photographers, offering a canvas of dramatic landscapes and serene beauty, perfect for capturing stunning imagery.
  • Intimate Wildlife Observations: Beyond the brown bears, immerse yourself in close encounters with humpback whales, killer whales, seabirds, and mountain goats. Our small group size ensures a personal and unobstructed experience with Alaska’s diverse wildlife.
  • Off the Beaten Path: Our commitment to small group travel grants access to exclusive wilderness areas, far from the hustle of crowded tourist spots. This unique approach allows for serene wildlife viewings and undisturbed nature photography.
Two Bear Cubs Play Fight on the Pack Creek Mudflats. Photo by John D’Onofrio

This workshop is not just a photography trip; it’s a deep dive into the wild heart of Alaska, offering moments of connection with nature that are as rare as they are beautiful.


Workshop Highlights:

  • Comprehensive Photography Instruction: Learn basic or advanced techniques in landscape and wildlife photography, from capturing stunning shots to post-processing.
  • Hands-On Experience: With daily shooting opportunities, both from the boat and on land, immerse yourself in the art of photography amidst Alaska’s stunning scenery.
  • Adobe Lightroom Classic Insights: Dive deep into photo editing with Lightroom, enhancing your captures for that perfect shot.
  • Print a Masterpiece: Return home with a gallery-quality print from the workshop, ready for framing.

Iceberg in Alaska with old growth forest in the background

    An iceberg calved from Dawes Glacier floats in Endicott Arm. Photo by John D’Onofrio

Join our Alaska photography workshop with Pack Creek Bear Viewing and the Tracy Arm / Fords Terror Wilderness. This workshop is perfect for both beginners and experienced photographers. Explore stunning landscapes and wildlife aboard the M/V David B. Capture whales, bears, and more in the Alaskan wilderness. This workshop offers a unique blend of adventure and photography in Alaska’s breathtaking nature.

Click here to see our current schedule and rates.

To Book Your Alaska Fjords and Pack Creek Bears Photography Workshop Call 877-670-7863 or Email.


About the David B: Your Floating Classroom for Photography and Adventure

Embark on an unparalleled journey aboard the David B, a 65-foot wooden vessel built in 1929 and beautifully restored to modern luxury. It features private staterooms with ensuite bathrooms, showers, a cozy fireplace, and a wood-fired cookstove. Enjoy gourmet meals renowned along the Alaska coast, complemented by a selection of microbrews and fine wines, ensuring an all-encompassing adventure at sea.

Three bears at Pack Creek with a boat in the background
Three Coastal Brown Bears forage for clams at Pack Creek.Photo by Christine Smith

Daily shore excursions offer boundless opportunities to capture the majestic Alaskan wilderness—from the deck, the skiff, or ashore. With a workshop aboard the David B, you’ll receive personalized instruction and enjoy ample downtime to immerse yourself in this extraordinary setting. Limited to just eight passengers, this ensures a tailored and intimate learning experience.

Besides the David B, our skiff, dubbed the Skiffyasaurus, is designed and engineered for photographers. It’s spacious, and stable, and provides exceptional access to glaciers, waterfalls, and wildlife for unforgettable photo ops.

In addition to daytime activities, the evenings onboard are enriched with photography instruction in the David B’s saloon, which is equipped with a ceiling-mounted LCD projector and screen. Here you’ll learn to master Adobe’s Lightroom Classic, by enhancing your photos to their fullest potential. You’ll also enjoy our light-hearted group critiques, designed for sharing insights and gaining a deeper knowledge of the art of photography and post-processing your photos. The workshop culminates in producing a gallery-quality print of your work that is ready for framing.

To sum it up, this exclusive 8-day photography workshop, led by professional photographers John D’Onofrio and Alan Sanders, offers a blend of awe, wonder, and creativity. Dive deep into outdoor photography, capturing dramatic landscapes and iconic wildlife in locations like Tracy Arm/Fords Terror Wilderness Area, Pack Creek Bear Viewing Area, and Baird Glacier Nature Site. Enhance your skills with Adobe Lightroom Classic, benefit from personalized tips, and engage in constructive photo critiques.

Join us aboard the David B for a memorable week of photography, learning, and adventure in Alaska’s breathtaking wilderness. For more information on the David B, visit our FAQs.

Click here to see our current schedule and rates.


Image Gallery from Previous Workshops


Photography Workshop Details:

Bears in a meadow with people looking at them

Two brown bears at Pack Creek. Photo by Al Sanders

In this hands-on workshop, we’ll have an opportunity to make photographs in a remote wilderness landscape. Then we’ll use Adobe Lightroom Classic to bring out the best in your images. We’ll also discuss the use of Photoshop as well as other plug-ins that can be used in conjunction with Lightroom. Once the images are optimized, we will share and discuss the work as a group. Finally, we’ll spend time learning to print our work. Everyone will go home with at least one print – ready for framing – from the workshop.

What to Bring for Your Photography Workshop:

  • Digital camera
  • Shooting from the boat will be enhanced by lenses with built-in stabilization (optional)
  • Tripod (suggested)
  • Laptop with Adobe Lightroom Classic installed and optionally Photoshop as well.
  • Lots of Memory Cards
  • Extra Batteries & Battery Charger
  • Lens hoods for shooting in the rain
  • Mouse – because laptop touchpads just don’t work as well
  • Cable release or remote shutter release

To Book Your Alaska Fjords and Pack Creek Bears Photography Workshop Call 877-670-7863 or Email.

Click here to see our current schedule and rates.


Meet Your Instructors:

Alan Sanders

Instructor for photography cruise in Glacier Bay

Alan Sanders has been making photographs since the 70’s and teaching photography since the 80’s. He has taught at the University of Alaska, Anchorage and Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington.

As a recovering commercial photographer specializing in advertising and public relations, Alan now concentrates on his own fine art photography. His photographs have been in many group and one person shows over the years. He has work in the permanent collections of several museums as well as many private collections. Alan has also spent many years doing custom printing, both analog and digital, and still loves to see a good quality print.

Currently, he teaches workshops at Whatcom Community College in Bellingham as well as at location workshops, mostly in Alaska.

To see Alan’s workshops visit his website.


John D’Onofrio

Photography Cruise in Glacier Bay Instructor

John D’Onofrio’s photography has been exhibited widely in museums and galleries around the United States and utilized by the National Park Service, the National Forest Service, the National Parks Foundation, the North Cascades Institute, and Defenders of Wildlife, and the NBC and ABC television networks.

His images have been published in numerous calendars and magazines, including National Geographic Adventure, Trail Runner, Washington Trails, Tracks and Trails, and coffee table books including The Wild Nearby: Finding Beauty and Renewal in the North Cascades (Mountaineers Books) and The Salish Sea (Sasquatch Press). His film, Cascadia Dreams, a multi-media collaboration with photographer Lance Ekhart and Native American Flute Master Gary Stroutsos was featured as part of the San Juan Islands Film Festival.

He is the publisher/editor of Adventures Northwest Magazine and the author of Hiking Mt. Baker & the North Cascades and co-author of Images of America: Mount Baker (Arcadia Publishing).

A life-long wilderness traveler, he is inspired by the luminous landscapes of Alaska and the Pacific Northwest and has made it his life’s work to share these deep connections through photography, literature, and film. Committed to helping others capture both the grandeur and intimate details of our diverse landscapes, he has led photography workshops for the past eight years aboard the M/V David B and at the North Cascades Institute and loves nothing more than a good adventure. Check out his website.

To learn more about John and Alan, listen to our Northwest Navigation Podcast where we talk with them about their philosophies, photography, wilderness, and being in the moment. Listen here…

For more information on photography workshops hosted by Adventures Northwest Magazine:

Curious to see what it’s like on one of our Photography Workshops? Check out our Zoom Live Event Recording featuring our crew and instructors.


Comments from Previous Workshop Attendees:

People in front of a glacier in Alaska
Visiting Dawes Glacier on a Photography Workshop. Photo by Al Sanders

“In seven days this workshop can transform your eye, focus your attention to detail, and restore your soul.”

–   Alison S., Eldorado Springs, CO

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“Honestly, it was the best trip of my life…I learned a lot and gained a level of confidence that translated to better pictures. You are very good teachers. I am grateful to you both, for your professionalism, patience, kindness, and your humor!”

–  Laurie C., Sandy, OR

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“The best outcome has been a change in the way I’m seeing. I can’t quantify what I mean but it is very exciting!”

–   Dave F., Australia

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” The whole experience was unbelievable…my perspective about photography was blown out of the water!”

–   Shannon. F., Stanwood, WA

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“An awesome experience…with excellent instructors.”

–   Marian R., Spokane, WA

To Book Your Alaska Fjords and Pack Creek Bears Photography Workshop Call 877-670-7863 or Email.

For more about photography workshops with Adventures Northwest Magazine.

Curious about our Photography Workshops? Check out our Zoom Live Event Recording featuring our crew and instructors.

Click here to see our current schedule and rates.