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Contact: Roy Wood, 907-246-2122
Contact: John Quinley, 907-644-3512
Katmai National Park, AK & Santa Monica, CA - July 25, 2012 - The image of the giant brown bears of Alaska catching salmon is one of the most iconic symbols of the rugged Alaskan wilderness, and now the dramatic focus of a collection of live HD video streams set up by explore.org, a philanthropic media organization and Katmai National Park, a pristine reserve known internationally for its salmon runs and thriving bear populations.
The live HD cams will stream activity from four locations at Brooks Camp and be available commercial free at explore.org/bears via computers, smart phones and tablets. The Brooks Falls cam is located on the banks of a five foot high water fall where as many as thirty bears have been spotted at one time to catch the up-streaming salmon that must pass the bears and the falls to spawn in nearby creeks and rivers. Another cam is located at the mouth of Brooks River and the entrance of Naknek Lake, where close to 100 bears in the area utilize the lower river to feast on salmon and raise their young before the impending hibernation, sometimes in convergence of 40 or more.
In the coming days, explore.org will also release additional cams, one just down from the falls is the Riffles cam - an area where the water is lower and a safer ground for mothers and cubs to reap the rewards of the salmon-rich environment. The Dumpling Mountain cam will provide a bird's eye view of this area in addition to 10,000 Smokes, the site of the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century. explore.org used solar paneling and wind power to power the cams, which use no outside electricity in delivering the images to viewers. The philanthropic media org will also post highlights and special interviews and utilize social media for real-time education sessions hosted by Ranger Roy Wood and other bear experts.
"A trip to Katmai National Park is a once in a lifetime event for most people and for nature and bear lovers and children everywhere, it is an impractical proposition. By installing live cams we are giving people the chance to experience the bears, learn from their behaviors and develop the same strong emotional connection almost everyone who comes here has," said Roy Wood, Chief of Interpretation at Katmai National Park, who spearheaded the initiative with explore.org. "The opportunities to educate and inspire with these cams is tremendous".
For explore.org, the Bear & Salmon Cams are the latest addition to its Pearls of the Planet initiative, a portfolio of live video feeds installed around the world to help people everywhere deepen their connection to nature and fall in love with the world again. "To me Alaska is one of the last great natural cathedrals on the planet-and the bears and salmon are the high priests in a scared place," said Charles Annenberg, founder of explore.org and VP of the Annenberg Foundation. "We hope people turn to this for inspiration and when they do, they will see lessons these creatures have for us- about cohabitation, instinct hand beauty."
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Katmai National Park:
Roy Wood |(907) 246-2122 | firstname.lastname@example.org
John Quinley |(907) 644-3512 | email@example.com
Jason Damata |(917) 279-8706 jasondamata at gmail.com
Chris Thonis | (303) 818-2170 | chris at fabricmedia.net
explore.org is a philanthropic media organization and a multi-media division of the Annenberg Foundation. Created by filmmaker and philanthropist Charles Annenberg Weingarten to champion the selfless acts of others, inspire lifelong learning and bring people closer to nature, explore.org is home to more than 300 original films and a massive library of world-class photography from all over the globe. In addition, explore.org recently launched Pearls of the Planet, a growing collection of live HD cameras that provide people with an unprecedented view into the lives of amazing animals and beautiful places around the world. As an advertising-free philanthropic media organization, explore.org regularly provides grants to organizations focused on improving the human condition and the planet
About Brooks Camp and Katmai National Park
Situated at the mouth of the Brooks River, along the shore of Naknek Lake (the largest lake within any unit of the National Park System), Brooks Camp attracts visitors of all kinds to view brown bears, enjoy world-class sportfishing, and learn about the long human history of the area. Also a starting point for many backcountry adventures, daily naturalist-led/concessioner-operated bus tours from Brooks Camp provide easy access to the geologic splendors of the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, site of the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century.
From June 1 to September 17, the National Park Service operates a visitor center, ranger station, campground, and auditorium with daily interpretive programs. Also during this time, the park concessioner, Katmailand, Inc., provides additional services and amenities, including meals and lodging at Brooks Lodge.
Additional park information is available on the park website at http://www.nps.gov/katm or by calling (907) 246-3305 from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm daily.