Monday, June 27, 2005

Photo Shoot: Anchorage

If it is at all within your budget, a trip to Alaska's Anchorage will provide one of the best photo shoots a photographer could ask for. There is something for everyone as far as activities are concerned and whether you are a pro or amateur photographer, there will be plenty of things to keep you snapping pictures constantly.

One area that you will most likely want to visit is Prince William Sound. If you enjoy nature photography, you will find some excellent shots whether you are hiking, biking, or even renting a kayak for some unique photographs of the great outdoors.

While in this area, check into one of the many tours that go out for things like whale watching, nature viewing, or one of the cruises that are offered. The cruises are a great choice because they allow shots that are impossible to get anywhere else in the 48 continuous states. You will see (and be able to photograph) things such as glaciers and fjords when you take one of these tours or cruises.

You may find native Alaskans doing storytelling or one of their native dances at the Alaska Native Heritage Center. Find out all about the legacy of the native peoples at this relatively new center found at 8800 Heritage Center Drive.

If you want to take some animal and wildlife photographs, try the Alaska Zoo on O'Malley Road. Some well-known species are housed here, but also some more exotic animals such as tigers, camels, yaks, etc. The size of this zoo is 25 acres.

For additional outdoor nature shots, there are numerous lakes around Anchorage. A few of them that you may want to check out are Eklutna Lake, Lake Hood, Campbell Lake, DeLong Lake, Lake Spenard, Goose Lake, and Jewel Lake. Also plan to spend some time in nature at the Katmai National Park and Preserve. There are actually quite a few parks of this type in Alaska and present many opportunities for outstanding photographs.

Don't be surprised if you are just driving along a highway in some part of Alaska and you see that a moose is sharing the road. If you have rented a car, by all means have your photography equipment ready to grab and use on very short notice for things like this or perhaps catching a sight such as a bear fishing for salmon.

You will want to be sure to shoot some pictures of Mt. McKinley while you are spending time in Alaska, of course. Consider hiring a plane tour company for this part of your photo shoot unless you're a climber as well as a photographer.

For quiet time that also allows great pictures, try the Alaska Botanical Garden. It is large with over a hundred acres and you will get some lovely plant and flower shots here.

If all that didn't present enough photo op options, try riding the railroad, rafting the white waters in one of the canyons, or booking a tour to do some dog sled riding. There are so many diverse areas within a short distance of each other that an avid photographer will feel as if he or she definitely struck the jackpot while shooting photographs in the Anchorage area.

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