In mid to late September, the surrounding landscape is now awash with vibrant colour, decorated in its vivid Autumn ensemble. The last bears of the season are preparing for their hibernation, and many individuals may be present. Mid to late Autumn is the prime season to observe bear cubs, which venture into the area alongside their mothers in search of food. The bears are in prime condition at this time of year, with pristine thick coats. The quickly shortening daylight hours in late summer and early autumn produce wonderful light, and on clear, dark autumn evenings, mist can form above the swamps followed by harsh morning frost. As Autumn progresses and the nights get longer, the magnificent glow of the Aurora Borealis is often visible from the hides. This time of year offers some incredibly unique photographic opportunities, as the light richness and surrounding colours intensify, especially during sunrise and sunset. Throughout Autumns’ entirety, the elusive Wolverine is present most nights from the hide area, as they scuttle around the swamp in search of food. Daytime species include red squirrel, which is seen regularly as they prepare for the fast approaching winter. An assortment of forest birds returns in Autumn, with Crested Tit, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Bullfinch all regularly present, offering additional photographic potential.
✅ 5 nights in professional bear photography hides.
✅ 6 days accommodation
✅ All meals (breakfast, dinner and packed lunch for the hide)
✅ Expert photographic guiding and tutoring/advice
✅ Bear lectures, processing tips and image reviews in auditorium
✅ Transfers to/from Kajaani airport
❎ Airline Flights
❎ Travel insurance
❎ Additional personal items
Why Choose Us:
We are the official UK representative of Wild Brown Bear Ltd, sharing a close-knit partnership, allowing us to develop exclusive photographic opportunities for tour participants only.
We are the most experienced photographic guides at this location with valuable local knowledge.
Our energy and enthusiasm create a fun and productive trip atmosphere for all involved.
We know exactly which hide to position you in to capture your desired images.
Two guides mean more one-to-one tuition and guiding in a more intimate setting.
We are dedicated to getting the absolute most out of our tours for you, providing an unforgettable experience.
Our location boasts some the most pristine Finnish wilderness situated next to the Russian border, where elusive apex predators (Bear, Wolverine and Wolf) can be seen together.
Our base for this trip is a rustic wildlife lodge located in the picturesque surroundings of the Boreal forest. This is one of the best locations in Finland to observe and photograph Brown Bear and Wolverine among their natural habitat. This package includes five nights in professional bear photography hides, custom built and carefully positioned, with photographers in mind. We offer you a choice of 25 different professional hides, all with a different view of the surrounding wilderness. A number of hides have been installed with state of the art low angle shooting windows, allowing an optional fresh and intimate perspective with images. You will have the chance to photograph the predators among three different distinctive Boreal habitats, including forest, swamp and lake. The untouched landscape is totally unique to this site and will allow you to photograph predators in a number of ways. With mirror-like reflections possible at the lake hides, or among the surrounding pristine environment of the swamps and forests the bears call home. On an average hide night, you can expect to see a number of different bears, as well as Wolverine, with both species of predators being very mobile. This gives participants many photographic opportunities throughout the night. The opportunity to photograph bears at this time of year is incredibly unique, as most other locations do not permit access after the ‘summer’ season is finished. We are incredibly fortunate to work in this location, allowing you the opportunity build a unique portfolio of images.
Day 1: We will arrive on an afternoon flight at Kajaani airport via Helsinki, where you will be met by the BearPhoto guides. A 2-hour transfer will follow, taking us to the Wild Brown Bear lodge where we will be based for the duration of the tour. Dinner is prepared for our arrival. After dinner, we will meet in the auditorium where the BearPhoto guides will deliver a short presentation detailing the week ahead.
Day 2-6: Breakfast will be served early on, followed by a period of free time to spend as you wish. BearPhoto guides will prepare optional daytime photographic opportunities including forest birds and red squirrels. Feel free to explore the surrounding area, during the day as you wish. Before dinner, participants are welcome to attend our informative photo lectures. Dinner will be provided shortly after this around 4:00 p.m. before your guides will lead you to your chosen hides for the night. A packed lunch, flasks (tea/coffee) and bottled water will be provided for each individual whilst in the hide. Following a short walk, upon entering the hides it is simply a case of setting up, getting comfortable and waiting for the first Bears and Wolverine to appear. Each hide is equipped with beds and a basic toilet facility. The following morning you will be escorted from your hides by the BearPhoto guides, followed by the short walk back to base camp where breakfast will be waiting. The following days and hide nights will all run in a similar pattern.
Day 7: This is the final day of the trip, and upon leaving the hides at 8:00 a.m. you will be guided back to basecamp one final time for breakfast. We will have just enough time for a shower and any last minute packing that may be required before our minibus arrives to transfer us back to Kajaani airport for our flights home.
Special guest guide
We are delighted to announce that for our 2020 ‘Autumn Gold’ trip (9th - 15th) world renowned wildlife photographer Andy Parkinson will be the guide for the duration of the trip.
‘Andy is a feature contributor to National Geographic magazine and a multi-award winning wildlife photographer. His images have been awarded three times in Wildlife Photographer of the Year, three times in the European Wildlife Photographer of the Year and in 2016, as well as winning two categories he was also named as the overall winner and Bird Photographer of the Year 2016. He is also the most successful photographer in the history of the British Wildlife Photography Awards with over 30 awarded images and four category wins. In 2012 he was named the Nature Photojournalist of the Year with a portfolio of 12 images captured whilst working on assignment for National Geographic and in 2017 he was also a category winner and runner-up in Nature Photographer of the Year. He is also becoming known as much for his writing as he is for his images and among others he writes regularly on wildlife/environmental/ethical issues for his regular Opinion piece in Outdoor Photography magazine’.
To view more of Andy’s work please visit his website: www.andrewparkinson.com.