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The Alaska experience

by Sarah Phipps Modified: April 18, 2013 at 11:58 am •  Published: September 23, 2012
A humpback whale swims in front of the National Geographic Sea Lion in the Hanus Bay,, Friday, June 8, 2012.  Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
A humpback whale swims in front of the National Geographic Sea Lion in the Hanus Bay,, Friday, June 8, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

In June, I wrote a few blog posts while aboard the Lindblad Expeditions National Geographic Sea Lion about my travels in Alaska. Today I am posting my final story, video, and photos. They can be seen by clicking here.

The above photo is from my last hike I took in Alaska. I would like to think my buddy the whale was waving goodbye to me. Alaska is a very magical place. I hope that I am fortunate enough to visit again.

An Iceberg floats in Tracy Arm in Southeast Alaska, Sunday, June 3, 2012.  Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
An Iceberg floats in Tracy Arm in Southeast Alaska, Sunday, June 3, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
Naturalist Berit Solstad explores the Lake Eva trail in Southeast Alaska, Friday, June 8, 2012.  Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
Naturalist Berit Solstad explores the Lake Eva trail in Southeast Alaska, Friday, June 8, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
A Steller sea lion growls on cliffs in the Inian Islands Wednesday, June 6, 2012.  Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
A Steller sea lion growls on cliffs in the Inian Islands Wednesday, June 6, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

The Sea Lion was a wonderful way to explore the Inside Passage, it provided an up close and personal view of nature that I could not of ever imagined.

For those photo enthusiasts, I brought with me a Canon 5d Mark II, Canon Mark III, 80-200mm 2.8, 300mm 2.8, 15-35mm 2.8, 24-70mm 2.8 and two extenders, 1.4x and 2x. I also took a 50 macro lens.  The below photo was taken with Canon 5d and the 300mm with both extenders attached making it a 840mm lens. The other specs are,  ISO 1600, aperture 8, shutter 1/640. We saw several bears walking along the shorelines and cliffs at different spots in the Inside Passage. My shipmates and I began calling these “far away bears.”

Bears walks along a cliff in Glacier Bay Alaska, Thursday, June 7, 2012.  Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
Bears walks along a cliff in Glacier Bay Alaska, Thursday, June 7, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

We saw all sorts of animals on the National Geographic Sea Lion and fortunately they were not all far away animals. This sea lion was swimming by me while I was on a zodiac ride.  It was shot with a Canon Mark III. The other aspects are lens 200mm 2.8,  ISO 320, aperture 4, and shutter 1/3200. The image is not cropped.

A Steller Sea Lion swims in the waters near  Inian Islands, Wednesday, June 6, 2012.  Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
A Steller Sea Lion swims in the waters near Inian Islands, Wednesday, June 6, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

So no matter what camera equipment you have, you will walk away with some fantastic nature shots. Many of my shipmates carried point and shoots and had wonderful shots of a nature and Alaskan scenes. And if you want to learn more about photography, there is a National Geographic trained photography specialist onboard to help you. My number one tip for you is to bring rain gear for yourself and your camera equipment. An aquapac is an excellent choice for point and shoots. There are lots of options on the market, so do your research. On our first day, one of my shipmates dropped his camera in the water while kayaking and ruined it. Don’t let that happen to you.

This cruise was a fantastic way to combine my love for nature and love for photography.

Read more about my adventures in Alaska and see more photos by clicking here.

— Sarah Phipps

Travel and accommodations provided by Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic.

 

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by Sarah Phipps
Photographer
Born in Missouri, Sarah Phipps graduated of Northwest Missouri State University with a degree in Mass Communication and French in 1999. After an internship with the St. Joe News-press, Sarah moved to Oklahoma for a full-time job at the...
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