Most Popular Photo

Ron Niebrugge Alaska, Denali, Photos, Shameless Self Promotion, Travel 12 Comments

This year, I'm very excited to say, we have the cover image for all three Bell's Travel Guides!

This year, I'm very excited to report that we have the cover image for all three Bell's Travel Guides!

In my last post, in response to a question I shared information about our top grossing photos.  I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the above photo.  The boxing bear cub image you see on this travel guide hasn’t been used in an advertising campaign, this kept it off the top grossing list, but in terms of total number of sales, it has to be our most popular image.  

These guys are so cute, it is easy to understand why.  Not only has this image appeared on travel guides, in calendars and on post cards, but it receives a fair amount of attention on the internet as well.  In just over a year, it has been viewed by over 100,000 people on flickr!

This photo was captured in early spring of 2005 in Denali National Park.  The weather was clear, so we got up well before sunrise, probably about 3:00 a.m., and started driving across the Park with the hope of capturing Denali “the mountain” at sunrise.  I hadn’t seen spring cubs in Denali for years, and research reports from the Park confirmed for two years in a row spring cubs had not been spotted anywhere in the Park.  That just added to my surprise as we drove around a corner near Polychrome Pass and spotted a sow with three spring cubs right in the middle of the road!

I immediately turned the engine off, rolled down the window and began photographing.  The bear cubs were so fun to watch!  The bears actually walked down the road towards us a bit and got fairly close, before turning around and heading back up the road.  After walking a short distance, the bears left the road into the thick vegetation leaving us with goose bumps and huge smiles!  We watched for the cubs the rest of the trip, but never did see them again.

Comments 12

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  2. Hey Ron,

    “in post cards”??? I never got a card with this photo on it. What gives????


    It’s a great shot bud .. and hope it keeps on keeping on. I saw theKung Fu bear book in Tidal Wave the other day with this on the cover. Looks great.



  3. I love this photo! Ah, Title Wave – my favourite bookshop which I make sure I can spend half a day or night in when in Alaska! Coming from Australia, unfortunately that isn’t often enough!

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    Hey thanks Carl! Do people still mail post cards?

    Thanks Noella, I hope you have a great trip! Splitting time between Alaska and Australia sounds like a great life.

  5. Hey Noella

    I come from Australia too! But I don’t have to commute everyday to TW. Great store, eh?


    Ps – it’s not fair that Ron has more Aussies posting on his site than I do.

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  7. Hey Ron,

    I think the raised toes of the cub on our left is what really makes this such a great shot (along with all the other attributes, of course, the low angle, the action, etc – just the fact that they’re bear cubs makes it a great shot!) .. but that little left backfoot is awesome.

    I know for SURE if I was shooting this, my center focus point would’ve grabbed the background right before this happened, and I’d have 2 out of focus bears and a nice crisp shot of those trees.



  8. Post

    Hi Carl,

    Thanks man, I agree, that little foot is cool – kind of human like.

    You are funny – I know I sure have missed plenty of shots – I don’t talk about those.

    Interesting question Ricard, I will have to think about that one.

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