Brooks Camp Brown Bear Viewing Location & Access
Katmai National Park & Preserve is located on the Alaska Peninsula, across from Kodiak Island. The Park Headquarters is in King Salmon, about 290 air miles southwest of Anchorage. Several commercial airlines provide daily flights into King Salmon as there is no road access. Brooks Camp, along the Brooks River approximately 30 air miles from King Salmon, is a common destination for visitors to the Park and is the only Federal Fee Area within Katmai. Brooks Camp can only be reached via small float plane or boat.
For those visitors arriving in King Salmon on a commercial flight from Anchorage, additional transportation arrangements must be made to reach Brooks Camp. Local air taxi services are available for hire in King Salmon. Advance reservations with the floatplane charter service is necessary as this is their busiest part of the season.
Most visitors, especially those who plan on spending only the day at Brooks Camp will hire an air charter from the Kenai/Soldotna area or more commonly from Homer on the southern Kenai Peninsula. For those who may be spending time in Kodiak, air charter services are also available there for transportation to Brooks Camp. Float plane flights from these communities fly directly to the Brooks Camp seaplane base.
Air transportation costs vary depending on which community is your point of origin. Commercial airlines flights from Anchorage to King Salmon will cost $250 and up for roundtrip airfare with the peak of the season being the most expensive. Float plane air charters from Kenai/Soldotna, Homer or Kodiak may charge by the person for full plane loads or charge a daily rate for use of the plane for less than full loads. Some may offer packaged Bear Viewing Trips which may be slightly less money than a private charter.
It is about a two hour flight from Kenai to Brooks Camp by DeHavilland Beaver (six passenger). Homer and Kodiak flight times are a little shorter due to their closer proximity. Float plane flights from King Salmon are only a few minutes long since the distance is only 30 miles.
One thing to remember, flights to Brooks Camp using air charter services provide an exceptional flight-seeing experience going to and returning from Brooks Camp. The commercial jets and twin engine planes which provide commuter service from Anchorage to King Salmon always fly at commercial altitudes. Air charters are smaller planes and fly much lower. This will provide the visitor with many great opportunities to photograph Alaska's wilderness, see ice fields and glaciers up close and perhaps even view wildlife passing below during the flight.
Although the Brooks Camp bear viewing area has been managed by the National Park Service for many years, some changes to the programs, activities, and regulations may occur from time to time. The following contact information is provided if you have any further questions or require additional information.
Katmai National Park & Preserve
#1 King Salmon Mall
King Salmon, Alaska 99613
King Salmon Office: (907) 246-3305
Coastal Unit Office:(907) 481-1762
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