Trip Planning Resources
We get it, planning a trip to Alaska can seem daunting at times. The state is big, diverse, and there’s not a lot of tourism infrastructure in it. This page is designed to give you trip planning resources to help you navigate the details of your tour, workshop, class, guide service, or whatever the heck it is you want to do photographically in the Great Land. If you don’t find your answer here, feel free to contact us anytime.
Travel in Alaska can be full of surprises. We encourage you to take out trip insurance for your visit to the Great Land. Recommended companies include AIG Travel Guard and CSA Travel Protection.
Photography Gear & Rentals
Recommended gear for most treks included the following:
- Camera with manual settings and interchangeable lens
- Lens[es] ranging in focal length from at least 24mm to 200mm
- Fully charged battery [preferably at least 2]
- At least 16GB memory card
- Sturdy Tripod [we have a limited number to loan]
- Remote shutter release or cable shutter release [optional]
- ND filters in varying grades [optional]
- Polarizing filter [optional]
Rentals are available upon request.
We’re pretty passionate about what we do and whether you trek with us or not, we like to share the love. Feel free to download the Photography e-Guides and contact us anytime you have Alaska related photography questions. Getting To Know Your Camera is a simple worksheet designed to introduce you to the most basic, yet important features of your camera. The Essential Photography Primer is a quick-start manual written especially for Alaska Photo Treks guests and students. It’s perfect for preparing or reviewing photography classes, workshops or tours.
Most regions of Alaska are known for changeable weather. A single day can produce every kind of meteorologic condition imaginable; sun, rain, sleet, wind, fog, you name it. If weather stopped us, we wouldn’t make many photos. Besides, it’s possible to capture beauty in all types of conditions. Our mission is to make the most of what we get, or have a contingency plan in place for the rare occasion we’re weathered out for safety reasons. So if you end up touring in what may seem like subpar conditions, keep in mind that there are often wonderful surprises associated with less than ideal weather. Sunsets can be more brilliant after a storm, glacier ice is bluer under overcast skies, clouds can add drama to an otherwise formless sky, fog is mysterious, wildlife is more active when it’s cool and wet, and low light conditions are often the best in which to shoot moving water. Learning to photograph well in all types of weather is a big step forward in your photography game, and Alaska delivers interesting meteorologic conditions in spades. Read Bad Weather – Good Photo Ops to get the scoop on how to make the best of a situation and protect your gear while doing it.
Southeast, Southcentral and most of Western Alaska have a maritime climate, which means these regions are cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter than the Interior and Far North. On average, Southcentral Alaska has temperatures around the mid 60’s (18° C) during summer and low 20’s (-4° C) in winter. Just south of Anchorage, the Kenai Peninsula is the northernmost extension of the Pacific Northwest Coastal Rainforest, so with the exception of Southeast, it experiences more precipitation than other regions of the state.
Recommended clothing for Summer Treks
- Comfortable walking or hiking shoes with good traction
- Short sleeves
- Fleece jacket
- Water/windproof outer shell
Recommended clothing for Winter Treks
- Warm and comfortable snow boots with good tread
- Moisture wicking socks
- Moister wicking under layer
- Fleece jacket
- Well insulated and snow proof outer layer (coat and pants)
- Hat, scarf and gloves
During aurora season (Aug – Apr), we keep a close eye on the solar wind, but that’s not all. There’s a lot of science involved in tracking auroral displays. Our favorite space weather forecasters are Alaska Geophysical Institute and NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center. There are also a number of aurora tracking apps available. We recommend Aurora Pro.
Where We Go
Alaska Photo Treks operates out out of Anchorage, Alaska – a base-camp to adventure for all regions of the state. Our tours, workshops and guide services are available in every remote, wilderness location of the Alaska, with most treks beginning or ending in Anchorage. Enjoy the short video highlighting some of our favorite locations around here.
Anchorage and Southcentral Alaska