Brown Bear Watching

 

During this tour you will spend a night in the brown bear watching hide. From there it is very good possibility to see brown bears. The hide is comfortable and cozy, inside are bunk beds and dry toilet. It is possible to take pictures through glass and photo hatches. There are separate smaller photo hides.

Hides are located in Alutaguse, N-E of Estonia. In Estonia are about 700 Brown Bears, 300 of them live in this core area. It takes 1,5 hours drive from Tallinn or Tartu to Alutaguse.

Besides the bears it is great chance to see Racoon Dog, different birds, sometimes Fox, Wild Boar  and rare visitors are Pine Marten, Wolf, Elk, Badger, Golden and White -tailed Eagle.

See video about staying in the big hide in BBC The Travel Show

Longer introduction of the hides:

Book brown bear watching with Triin: info@natourest.ee or by phone: +372 55 55 87 55

Participants are saying..

Ben Hoare from BBC Wildlife visited Natourest Brown Bear hide in May 2010:

I was determined to see my fist brown bear. Not least because bear tourism has become big business in Europe, with hides in Sweden and Finland offering success rates of higher than 90 per cent. By now, our party had recorded bear prints, scats and claw marks raked across tree bark, and even the remains of a boar that had been stripped to the bone by these opportunist omnivores. So we were quietly confident of observing the real thing. Waiting for the bears to appear was nerve-racking. Two ravens and, bizarrely, a nuthatch of the ghosty northern race visited the site to pick at its flesh, while a pine marten zipped across the cleaning and vanished up a tree. And then, illuminated by the setting sun, a mother bear and her cub ambled into view. Read article

 

Dipl. Biol. Sebastian Rogahn in May 2011:

Watching time really was great! The adult male (Brown Bear) came out at 21:03 PM and stayed there for almost half an hour! Before there only was one red fox, a goose hawk, ravens and one magpie.

 

George 28/06/2013:

We found the starting point with no problems –  I had downloaded it from your website to my phone before we left. Andres was waiting for us and so we knew we had arrived.

The weather was not great as it was raining and the overcast sky made it a little too dark for photographs. It also made the mosquitoes particularly troublesome. However, we found the hides and once we had changed our wet clothes we settled in.

We saw what we came to see.

About 21.30h, a wolverine visited 4 or 5 times staying a few minutes each time (searching out the bait that had been left). The light was good enough for viewing through binoculars and we watched it for a about 30 minutes in total. That was really good as I didn’t expect to see a wolverine. Each time it visited, it took away some of the bait  it could drag from where it was placed under the fallen tree.  Had the light been better, it would have been easy to photograph. Even though the light was quite good for viewing but for photography – iso set to 2400 and with F4.5 lens – the resulting shutter speeds were still too slow.

About 23.30 a large brown bear visited. We had a good view of the bear for about 1 hour. Even at this time of the day it was not very dark and so we could watch the bear easily  (Even though it was too was too dark for photography – 1 s exposure times at ISO 3200). Again, it  took the bait that was left (the bait the wolverine had left behind). Clearly the bear found no problem in moving the tree and revealing the bait. Again, the bear would take some bait and go and eat it a few meters away and then return.

We also saw a fox 3 times and had a visit from a group of 3 wild boar – they looked young to me and were quite entertaining.

Also seen, 3 visits from a fox, a small bat, and pair of woodpeckers.

So, overall we were very satisfied. Clearly, if we want to see bears in daylight, we need to think more about the best time for a possible visit in the future.

 

Kalevi  21/09/2013

Thanks for your mail and thanks for stay at the hide. The week has gone by so fast since i got back from estonia.

I had a succesful two nights. Yes saw bear on both nights. First night came about 7.30 pm and second night some time after 8pm.

Weather was great too.

 

 

 

The hide location

View Natourest Brown Bear Watching and Photography Hide in a larger map

Season End of April -October. It is possible to stay in hide every night  17.00 – 8.00

Duration

About 15 hours, including a night in the Brown Bear hide.

Level Easy walking from car to hide 1 km.

What to wear Warm clothes and comfortable (preferably waterproof) footwear are necessary to walk to hide. Warm clothes, socks and indoor footwear to wear in the hide.

Getting there Hides are located about 1,5-2 h drive from Tallinn in Alutaguse. You can go there on your own or by rental car. After booking you will get specific instructions how  to drive to meeting spot in Alutaguse. There you will meet Natourest person who directs you to the hide.

Hides

There are 3 hides:

The big hide has room up to 10 people. It has bunk beds, a dry toilet, viewing windows, photo hatches, chairs and sleeping bags.

The lux photo hide accommodates 2 people and has same conveniences.

Mini photo hide is for one person and doesn’t have toilet or bed. It has photo hatches to 3 directions and is more on ground level height.

Interesting There is live video stream form hides area when season is on: http://www.looduskalender.ee/en/node/24684

 

Price:

95 EUR per person,

55 EUR per child ( not suitable children under 12)

210 EUR per family ( 2 adults, 3 kids),

650 EUR  group until 10 person.

Please see lux and small photo hides prices here

Price includes:

  • Brown Bear Watching from the hide
  • Sleeping bags in the hide

 

Book brown bear watching with Triin: info@natourest.ee or by phone: +372 55 55 87 55